It drove my mother crazy when I went barefoot as a kid. Still does – because I’m in stockinged feet in the fall and winter and barefoot the rest of the time!

I can’t stand the confinement of shoes. And I’ve long been an advocate for children to go without them. As I wrote in the very first edition of my textbook:

“Children have been moving in sneakers for physical activity for so long we seem to have forgotten that feet do have sentient qualities. They can be used to grip the floor for strength and balance, and their different parts (toes, ball, sole, heel) can be more easily felt and used when bare. Furthermore, there is evidence indicating that going barefoot strengthens feet and improves body alignment. Young children feel a natural affinity for the ground that can be enhanced by removing all the barriers between it and the feet.”

Nothing really startling there. But you might be surprised to learn that there’s scientific evidence that barefooted is better. Among other things, it’s important to development of the nervous system and to optimal brain development as well! Turns out the feet are the most nerve-rich parts of the human body, which means they contribute to the building of neurological pathways in the brain. Covering them in shoes, therefore, means we’re eliminating all kinds of opportunities for children’s brains to grow new neural connections.

Of course, it’s worry that keeps parents and teachers from setting children’s feet free. One common concern is that kids will contract germs by going barefoot. (That’s my mother’s issue.) But our skin is designed to keep pathogens out. We’re much more likely to become ill from touching something with our hands, which are in contact with so many things during the course of a day. I’d hate to think we’d keep kids in gloves all day to prevent germs!

There’s also concern about injury. But being barefoot actually toughens up the bottom of the feet, so unless children are walking through a construction site full of nails, the likelihood that they’ll injure themselves is slim.

The truth is, many podiatrists contend that shoes can be much more harmful to little feet than nakedness can. Feet should be allowed to develop naturally, not conform to the shape of a shoe. Also, shoes can often constrict movement of the feet, and can negatively impact walking, balance, sensory development, and proprioception (the understanding of our body’s orientation in the space around us).

If you’re worried about the potential chaos of many children shedding shoes and socks at the same time, you can establish and practice routines for removing and retrieving footwear. Socks should be put inside shoes and shoes lined up against a wall or placed in each child’s cubby. And should you have children who are reluctant to remove shoes and socks, you can encourage them with concepts like “barefoot time” or, for toddlers, “tippy-toe time.” They’ll also become more enthusiastic about bare feet if you remove your shoes and socks as well.

If you still face reluctance (and even if you don’t!), offer sensory experiences like those shown in a couple of fabulous videos I’ve shared on Facebook (here and here). In them, children are walking barefoot through plastic bins filled with many different textures, including water, soapy water, sand, leaves, and more. It would be the rare child who’d pass up temptations like these!

106 Comments

  1. I am 59 yo and am preparing to run my fourth consecutive barefoot Auckland Marathon here in NZ. I have been running barefoot since turning 55. Totally agree with the benefits for children but why stop there. Consider the benefits for seniors who so often struggle with balance and general foot strength/sensitivity. It’s also hard to overrate the additional benefits of increased blood circulation in the lower legs and perpetual warm feet. I wish I had known that at the point where I started wearing shoes because that was the social norm as a teenager. Thanks for raising the awareness. Right on the money!

    • Tom, thanks so much fo ryour comment. I hadn’t considered the benefits to seniors…even though I actually qualify as one! I’ll definitely bring this up the next time someone frowns on my barefootedness!

      • Tom is right. I am 64 and hate wearing shoes. That’s the first thing I ditch at the door when I get home from work. Growing up, we weren’t allowed to wear shoes in the house so a big thank you goes out to my mom. As a senior I can honestly say the only time I have balance issues is when I’m in shoes. Barefoot, I can feel the Earth’s rotation through my tootsies!

        • I love this article and the comments! I hate wearing shoes and would teach lessons barefoot, walk around my house without shoes, and drive barefoot. I’d wear shoes to and from places and I’d kick them off once I got in the car. About 3 years ago, I liberated my feet entirely. I keep a pair of shoes in the car for places that require shoes….stores, restaurants, etc… but for the most part go shoeless everywhere. 🙂

          • I exactly the same as you Esther. I am an early childhood educator and encourage children to take off their shoes. It frustrates me sometimes that I have to advocate for them at work to both other teachers and parents worried about getting sick from not wearing shoes on a cold day or shoes to walk & climb. Cold doesn’t make you sick, germs do. So often I have a child who can’t balance properly on something wobbly or can’t climb a tree. As soon as I remove it they can do it as their toes can grip and they can balance

        • I am 64 also and when May 1st hit i was allowed to go barefooted anywhere but church.. i was thankful for a grandma who disliked shoes as much as i did.. i still wear only crocs and flipflops now.. i find my balance off in shoes..

        • I totally agree with you! Pretty much the only time we wore shoes growing up was when we went out shopping, dinner, etc. I too have way better balance when bare foot. I was outside putting together a couple rock gardens for neighbors, climbing up and down big construction dirt piles for awesome rocks. Everyone kept telling me to put shoes on, so finally I did. I stepped on a round rock, completely turned over my right foot then preceded to involve the left foot, fell down the hill and severely sprained the right ankle, broke the left ankle in 3 places with a compound. I know if I had stayed barefoot, none of this would have happened. Barefoot all the way for me!

      • All my life I have adored going bare footed.Even now I have to remember to wear slippers in the house. The reason I have to do this is because I am diabetic and have to prevent damage to my feet.

    • I was think that very thing when reading. Older people tucked away with feets covered and rugged. They may feel more alive at the beach and on a walk bare foot. How nice that might be for them .

    • Right on! I am turning 77 in a month and am always barefoot at home. I would be the same in public if I could get away with it. In addition, when my son started walking it was barefoot, and continued throughout his childhood. We both have strong feet and legs.

  2. Thanks for this Rae. In my primary school days we kids, all went barefooted to school. just the norm. Also there is the phenomenon called earthing. …which is best barefoot on grass and ground.

      • I did ‘earthing’ once on part of a coastal forest walk. A group of us shed our shoes and it felt very nice, especially n deep moss

    • I love shoes, but love walking barefoot more. Science is now proving the health benefits of walking barefoot, for all ages, and how it can improve mental capacity and mood. I’m lucky to live by the beach, so can walk barefoot in shallow seawater which, is even more beneficial. Feet in contact with the Earth, Earthing, connects us to important energies within the Earth. If we all did that for half hour a day, there would be fewer mental health problems, also better connection to Mother Earth. That would help stop the destruction of the planet, I think!
      It’s an all-round, good thing to do ♥️✌???

  3. I lecture at a university and my students often laugh at me when I kick off my shoes during a tutorial session and walk around without them. I also tend to remove them when I’m in my office. However because of I am so comfortable doing this, I’ve noticed that many of my students and colleagues have now started doing the same and have also started walking barefoot in class and the office. There’s nothing wrong with that and it’s definitely more comfortable!!

    • Christine, you’re singlehandedly (footedly?) starting a revolution! I often kick off my shoes when I’m conducting staff development training. I may need to start doing it during keynotes as well! The only problem: I’m then even shorter than usual. 🙁

    • I love it! I was always so very happy when my teachers taught classes barefoot, because it totally validated my love of not wearing shoes! Barefooter for life, here!

    • Thank you, so glad I stopped by to check this out. My son daycares his son at home, whenever I go to visit my grandson (28 mos), he is always barefoot, I forget as a child we (I am 62) never wore shoes in the country. #ILOVEBAREFEET! Thank you, so glad I stopped by.

  4. Love the article! I am an unapologetic barefooter, lifelong, because bare feet simply bring me joy & make me feel young at heart! I always dance barefoot at wedding receptions with my gal pals, who all love that I’ll party in bare feet with them, as fast as they shed their high heels and leave them under the table for the entire reception! I also get regular pedis, because I figure that, if I’m gonna promote the happiness of bare feet, I’d better make sure I keep my goods looking top-notch! 🙂 Thanks again, and #livelifebarefoot

    • You’re welcome, Al! Dancing barefooted is the only way to go. I’m sure you last a lot longer on the dance floor than your high-heeled friends! (I’ve never really understood how anyone can walk in those, let alone dance!)

  5. Additionally, I love the idea of teachers going barefoot in class! I used to go barefoot at school a lot, during my high school years, and at Stonybrook U., when the weather was warm enough for it! It turns out, I had a 9th grade social studies teacher, and an 11th grade math teacher, who both would kick off their heels behind their desks, and taught their classes barefoot, almost everyday! In fact, there was one funny incident where I was barefoot in that math class, my sneakers tucked in my backpack, and my teacher, with her shoes already off, patted me on the shoulder and laughed, “Looks like I’m not the only one who loves bare feet!”.. Hah, I knew I wasn’t so completely crazy after all! 🙂

    • Happiness from my side!
      Barefoot is my style (sometimes to my family’s dismay) hahaha!
      Staying in Cape Town, which makes me more relaxed, I recently went to visit my sisters in Gauteng. Here I am so used to going into shops barefooted, but there I was frowned upon when I forgot my shoes at home and went into a mall barefeet. Nevertheless, I just walked on. Call me eccentric, I said to my sisters but never boring!

          • Alan, thanks for letting us know about your organization! I just got a call this morning from a mom whose toddler is being forced to wear hard-soled shoes in child care, supposedly due to “state health regulations.” She’s put in a call to her health department and is awaiting an answer, but I was fascinated to see on your site that that statement is almost always untrue.

  6. I had wide feet to begin with and hated constrictive shoes so I was usually barefoot and that trend stuck (I also attended school for the ‘gifted’ and was tested to have a very high IQ. Not something I usually share but seemed relevant, given the topic of discussion). Now 40, with two middle school age kids, I was recently told by a podiatrist that I had the healthiest feet he had ever seen! My children attend a school where it’s written in to the dress code and code of conduct that children may remove shoes when on natural surfaces like grass and dirt at will, and in the classroom when permitted by a teacher. They are expected to wear shoes on man made surfaces. I found that interesting and was glad to read it as there was no leniency on this topic when I was in school. Their elementary had children out of shoes often (same school), and I (of course) have encouraged it all their lives. I’m often appalled at the rigid shoes parents put on their infants, let alone young walking children. We need more articles like this to raise awareness. Thank you!

  7. My kids all went barefoot. My youngest didn’t even keep her shoes on in preschool. She had half her class going barefoot every day at preschool. We all still go barefoot as much as we can.

  8. I’ve always been mostly barefoot and at 47 only wear shoes when I go out. My childhood was spent barefoot and climbing trees, clambering over rocks and roaming the bushland. My kids are all barefooters, in fact my youngest who is aspergian only owns one pair of “shoes”…thongs! I despaired of getting shoes on his feet when he went to school, but they were accommodating and allowed him to wear soft, comfortable shoes. Still, he had them off more often than not. Now that he’s home schooled, he only wears “shoes” (thongs) outside the house.

    • Lisa, I’m so glad that when your son did go to school, they were accommodating! I can only begin to imagine how distracting it would have been for him to suddenly have his feet “entombed!” Thanks for sharing your story!

  9. I am a senior 72 years old and I go barefooted all the time. I have nueropthy and can’t stand to have shoes on. when I go out for dinner I have to wear flip flops can’t even put shoes on.

    • Sharon, at the opposite end of the spectrum was my grandmother. She wore shoes with heels and wedges (even her slippers were wedged!) for so many years that she completely lost the ability to lower her heel to the floor. Her achilles tendon couldn’t stretch! It’s ironic that people will worry about “germs” when people walk barefoot, but few seem to consider the hazards to knees, hips, spines, and more that occur when women wear those ungodly high heels!

  10. What a wonderful article. I grew up in South America on the edge of the rain forest. The only shoes we had were the ones required for school which were taken off and preserved the second we arrived home. As the time went by and we were able to afford shoes to wear other than at school I remember my dad would get annoyed by our shoe wearing habits and as a result we did not wear them as often. His only explanation was that they were not good for us because we couldn’t feel the bottom of our feet in shoes. His generation understood something science is now shedding light on. Interestingly, none of us 12 children have any foot issues and I am the youngest now at 53.

    • Sorry for the delay in posting your comment! It got stuck in the spam filter.

      I love your story — and the fact that your father intuitively understood what was best for you!

  11. I am a preschool teacher in Montgomery County, Maryland where regulations require children in a childcare setting to wear shoes at all times including rest/nap time.

  12. At 66 years of age , having been a tomboy when I was young and free, then confined to the norm as an office worker for 30 years I have found freedom. Diagnosed as diabetic of late I noted that when I was wearing slip on shoes it felt like I was walking on cardboard. Of late have been walking barefoot and there definitely is a difference . My toes are getting stronger and feet feel “more”. Mentioned it to my podiatrist, she had a chuckle and said “Stay barefoot , it is very good for you.” As she is a native of Tonga I considered her statement in the light that these people have a connection with the earth and are always smiling. Thank you for the post , it validated my barefoot joy.

  13. Good article! I started going barefoot full time (work excluded) about 20 years ago. I go everywhere barefoot (shopping, homes of friends and family, church, etc.), all year round. I no longer suffer from tendonitis in my knees, lower back discomfort, or achy feet. Also, I am hardly ever ill. Plus, the comfort and freedom are added bonuses. Truly, one of the best decisions I have ever made. My teenage daughter has followed in my “bare” footprints as well. She only wears shoes for school, and only for class. Once class is over, she is permitted to go barefoot. She is looking forward to college next year, where I’m sure she’ll be attending classes barefoot.

    • Kent, thanks for joining the conversation! I’m curious to know where you live, that you’re able to go shopping and to church without shoes!

      • Hi Rae! I live in the deep south of the U.S. People here either don’t notice or don’t care. I have had maybe three confrontations over the past 20 years. Two were at stores and one was at a restaurant. One store and the restaurant ended in my favor. In regard to church, me and my daughter have had nothing but positive inquiries and comments about our bare feet.

  14. Thankful for your article. My 8 year old son Was, runs, plays, climbs etc. Barefooted…we realized that he is a completely different child with shoes that we could hardly deal with. We were planning a hiking trip when he was 2. As a baby he was without shoes. So anyways we thought a good pair of Hiking shoes would make him walk miles…he was not, he was crying, in a bad mood etc. Once we were up the mountain he suddenly took of his shoes and socks and you could see that child breathe…and smile all over the face. He since then takes of his shoes in the middle of March and takes them on to walk to school in the Middle of November. He does everything without shoes, we even spent a week in Rome this year and he walked Via Apia without shoes. He has never ever got injured on his feet, he is a very fast runner, he can hike 6h without moaning, he to me is the downearthed human being I got to know in my life- very sensitive, very powerful. To us, as older he gets, it s becoming difficult to let him do so in public and it costs a lot of back up. People think we force him, we are poor that we have no money to spend in shoes, that he is dirty (we live in Switzerland where water and money for shoes is no problem?) We stand against strong winds but we know that we have a well balanced boy who knows exactly what is good for him and his little body and soul. No back pains, headaches and body structure problems on his side and he stands perfect on his own feet. Sometimes he says: you guys have to take the shoes off and feel the ground and then we do and this is one of the most connecting things we do as a family. Hands up for No shoes required areas…! Thanks again for the article.

  15. I have never liked to keep shoes on any longer than necessary! But now, at age 58, I have been having problems with my feet for several years, and if I go without shoes for too long, I have a lot of pain in my feet. (I also have pain if I am on my feet a long time – like 5 hours – WITH the shoes). I have been told that I should keep shoes on (with orthotics in place) for as much of the day as possible. Since I hate having shoes on my feet, I have not exactly complied. 🙂 Do you have any suggestions as to how I can keep the barefoot/stockingfoot lifestyle going?

  16. June, I have the same problem. I would love to be grounding all day long. I can’t be in hard surfaces for more than a few minutes without having issues with my feet hurting or cramping. As a kid, I spent the entire Summer barefoot. My feet were stained green from the grass. God I miss that. Maybe I’ll try a little more this year and see if I can work my way up to sone sone more grounding time.

  17. I accidentally fell into the habit of being barefoot at the beginning of this year. It was summer down here in New Zealand, the sun was out, shoes seemed unnecessary. And I just didn’t put them back on (except for two or three occasions where I was legally required to). I live in the inner-city, so needless to say I get a lot of stares. Four months in, I love it! So comfy and totally used to it now. Shoes feel odd, like podiatric prison. I’ll definitely be encouraging my 9 month old daughter to be barefoot as much as possible as she grows.

  18. I live in Sweden and nobody here wears shoes in the homes. It is considered unpolite to walk into somebodys home with shoes on.

    • That’s fascinating, Jen! I’m going to use that bit of information the next time I’m visiting my mom and she comments on my bare feet! 🙂

  19. Totally agree with this, however, so many surfaces today are made of synthetic, fire retardant and toxic chemical ingredients, like the very popular wood look laminate floors and poly carpet and I wonder about toxic exposure to those for babies who crawl and walk on them all day? Any research on that? It’s best to be outside anyway.

    • Martha, I also think it’s best to be outside! But you raise an interesting question. I haven’t heard anything about the possibility of problems with synthetic surfaces. Perhaps someone here has?

  20. I live in Quuensland, Australia. I have been barefoot since infancy. Only wear shoes when I’m out and they come off as soon as I’m past my fence. Can’t imagine wearing shoes all the time! Our ground can get very. Hot in summer so I’ll wear sandals. But otherwise….barefoot….even when it’s cold

  21. India has known this since ages!!!
    It’s only after the British rule that barefoot was looked down as uncivilized…leading to adapting their culture. Without realizing that it’s too cold in that part of the world to walk barefoot.
    Walking barefoot not only gets u a better grip of the ground but strengthens your muscles too. Today why are there so many legs and knee related issues…cause u have tiled floors….smooth yes but they don’t assist your feet well and u end up with swollen ankles and knee pain.
    It’s time to go back to the roots and our ancient wisdom!

  22. Being barefoot outside has huge, huge benefits for all of us, children and adults alike, and emerging research is showing just how huge these benefits are. Have you and your readers heard about Earthing? Here’s the story in a few words: It’s the Mind-Body-Earth Connection. Throughout time, humans have sat, stood, strolled, and slept on the ground – the skin of our bodies touching the skin of the Earth. Such ordinary contact has always served to transfer the Earth’s natural, negative charge into the body. Human lifestyle has disconnected us (insulating shoes, elevated beds, sedentary life). Earthing, also known as grounding, is the discovery that the disconnect makes us more vulnerable to inflammation, pain, stress, poor sleep, and sickness, and that reconnecting to the Earth restores a timeless link to Nature that improves health, sleep, energy, mood, and appearance. Be barefoot as often as you can and experience the benefits. You can find more information, including the research, at http://www.earthinginstitute.net
    Martin Zucker, co-author of the Earthing book

  23. We are barefoot as much as practical. Momma and 3 ages 2,3,4.
    What are your scientific sources for these claims?
    I have no doubt of the benefits of being barefoot, and only experience foot pain after wearing shoes.
    That said, it does nothing to spread articles like this absent sources from credible medical experts. Otherwise, it’s opinion.
    I see these great, and usually accurate, opinions all the time on fb. I never share unless they’re supported by evidence.

    • Mel, delighted to learn that you and your little ones go barefoot as often as possible.

      Re: sources from credible medical experts, had this been a scholarly article and not a blog post, I certainly would have included them. I did include a couple of links to sources. And, happily, thanks to the many comments here, I’ve learned about two organizations dedicated to being barefoot. If you’d like more in the way of research, you might want to check out http://www.barefooters.org and http://www.earthinginstitute.net!

  24. wow I love this read I came across by accident on a friends page, I hate shoes people always say I got lovely feet for my age, at home I am always barefoot only when it is really cold i wear socks, I love the cold floor on my feet, my toes r straight, gosh this is a feel good feeling. I cream my feet daily they look better than my hands.

  25. Sooo what do you do with plantar fasciitis? I used to go barefoot all the time until I developed this. Now I have to wear shoes with a good arch support until it heals or my foot is in significant pain and can hardly step when I get out of bed.

      • I have had mild plantar fasciitis for several years (after working in the schools where I was on my feet most of the day). I am in my 60’s and a type-1 diabetic. Stretching exercises help. I walk regularly with supportive but not stiff shoes. Now I can do a little barefoot here and there and hope to increase that. You can find these exercises online.

  26. barefoot actually helps in transfer of universal energy from the shasra Chakra to the ground. Cleansing our body and activating cells.

  27. I heard a podcast – and I unfortunately can’t find the reference – emphasizing the benefits of going barefoot on pelvic health for postpartum moms, men, and seniors.

    If using our toes for balance is helpful, I presume walking on uneven terrain is preferable? (As opposed to always being on artificially flat floors and sidewalks.)

  28. Please help guide me. In my younger years I went barefoot all the time. Still remember the sensation of walking on hot asphalt & running through the pasture. Through the years my feet have changed as they do for most of us. I’m now 60 and my arches have fallen & do not have good support. I tried going barefoot approx 5 years ago & acquired plantar fasciitis….. was awful! I want to do this but I do not want to be in pain. Please advise. Thank you!

    • Wanda, this is WELL beyond my area of expertise. But you might find answers at barefooters.org or earthinginstitute.net!

  29. I’m 47 and I live in Florida. I wear shoes as little as possible, and I have done so for my entire life. I have always felt more comfortable without shoes. I find them confining, restricting. But then, I am also 6 foot 5 inches (just shy of 2 meters) tall and right now carrying a few extra pounds at 320 (near 146 kilos), so finding comfortable shoes has always been difficult for me.

    I had never read any kind of research on barefoot being better, but it makes sense. We do so much to protect our kids these days, things that we never were evolved to do, and it always seems that nature is way ahead of nurture and we need to just stop and let kids be kids. At least that’s what I’ve tried to do with my kids.

    Of course in Florida, we have only two seasons; Hot and Not-Quite-So-Hot. So flip-flops or sandals are always advised for walking across asphalt. I made that mistake this past Sunday and actually blistered a couple toes walking 30 feet (10 meters) across a parking lot.

    I did wonder too, is there any continued benefit of going barefooted the rest of one’s life, once the physical development has more or less slacked off?

    • Hi Sean. If you scroll through the comments here, you’ll see many older adults have testified to the benefits of going barefoot — something I hadn’t even considered when I wrote the post! If I recall, much of it related to balance, which certainly makes sense. You’ll likely also find more at http://www.barefooters.org and http://www.earthinginstitute.net. Thanks for joining the conversation — and be careful of that hot asphalt! 🙂

  30. Alas, with planters fasciitis I’ve been told to stop going barefoot ever. Micro tears in the tendon on the bottom of my feet won’t heal if going barefoot. I must have arch support I’m told.

  31. I hate shoes! It made me happy to read your article and realize there are many other barefooted people out there… I have to wear shoes out in public (most of the time the street is dangerous and unsanitary, plus it’s frown upon to enter certain places with no shoes lol) but my house is a free-toed sanctuary 🙂

  32. I hate shoes, always have. All my friends know this and are totally surprise when they see me wearing shoes. Go barefoot 99 percent of the time.

  33. I must be weird because i dont like going barefoot. and im only in my late 20s lol. Always have socks on at home since my feet get cold. I prob liked going barefoot as a kid but as i got older I prefer wearing shoes when im out and wearing socks and slippers at home. I always have wear flipflops around waterparks because the concrete kills my feet. my mom and bro go barefoot at home but going outside always shoes.

  34. I am a “wearing shoes hater” mainly due to the fact that I have peripheral neuropathy in both feet. The sense of numbness seems worse when I am wearing shoes. I wear a pair of well-suitable shoes advised and bought from my Podiatrist. With the neuropathy I need to be very careful as I move around my home. I keep the floors clean and dispose of anything that may be a safety issue. For the cooler weather inside my home, I wear a pair of All Day Socks – great for being a diabetic 🙂

  35. What does help me with my ice cube feet I used to go barefoot when I was younger but now that I’m older I don’t do it often because I have lost most of the feeling in my feet I had surgery when I was 12 to cut my heel cords I’ve always had problems with my feet and hands and other joints to the mostly my feet I have very bad balance with this also improve my music I’m not a professional heart player but I was just curious what does improve the way I play the pedals on my Harp
    When I was in school they never let me go barefoot plus I had to room where I really really think foot braces socks and heavy shoes where in currently living at the only place I’m allowed to go barefoot is in my bedroom/small apartment I do go barefoot sometimes when I’m at my parents house my first music teacher did have me take my shoes off she said I could keep my socks on Knowing my feet are always cold although one time I did go barefoot she didn’t mind

  36. This is exactly what we should be doing in schools, everywhere..earthing/ grounding has lots of proven benefits. This, breathing properly, and learning how to reduce the impact of chemicals in the home feel like a v basic and great start. I love this.

  37. I have an MS in chemistry and am a MovNat Certified Trainer (Level 2). I’ve known of the greater amount of nerves in our feet compared to our genitals since reading Born to Run in 2015. Since then when not barefoot I’ve been wearing Softstars, Xeroshoes (of which I am an affiliate,) and the Correct Toes of the Barefoot Podiatrist. While I appreciate you bringing this to the attention of the non-science masses I am only leaving this reply to express my disappointment that while you provide not even a single citation of peer-reviewed literature (despite claiming you interview neuroscientists on Studentcentricity) you link to the post of a “D.C.” (Doctorate of Charlatanism at best) who also (unsurprisingly) provides not a single citation either. As a result, I read but not the title, scrolled through looking for citations, found none, leave this reply and depart to the literature for real, actionable information.

    • I appreciate you weighing in, Tashi. And while I understand the desire for citations, this is a blog, not a place for research papers or a textbook (my textbook has a great many citations, I assure you).

      Also, I must tell you that I have a great deal more respect for chiropractors than I do for medical doctors, the latter of whom have been the cause of much grief and pain for friends and family. My chiropractors through the years, however, have served me well — in ways that no medical doctor could.

  38. When our three sons were learning to walk (42-35 years ago), our doctor told me to let them walk barefoot as much as possible and when they had to wear shoes to wear soft sneakers not stiff leather shoes. At 72 I still like to walk around the house and yard barefooted, and the first thing I usually do when I come home is kick off my shoes. My mother and mother-in-law were the same. I also have a friend who is 90% blind, but she walks alone around our area which has no sidewalks and pretty rough terrain. She always walks barefooted, even in cold weather. She says it helps her sense the terrain and keep her balance. So up with being barefoot!

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