Kick Off Your Shoes: Barefoot man goes viral on TikTok
A man known as Yoshua has been living barefoot for years and has recently been going viral on TikTok, explaining why you should too.
Yoshua has more than 77 000 followers on TikTok, and in his videos, he shares his experiences with the world as he lives barefoot.
WHAT IS EARTHING?
Going barefoot is also called “Earthing” which means walking barefoot on soil, grass, or sand (i.e. any natural surface).
Earthing is anything that allows your body to connect directly with the ground.
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DOES WALKING BAREFOOT HAVE HEALTH BENEFITS?
When a toddler is learning to walk, parents are told to let this process happen naturally, and without shoes. That’s because shoes can affect how a child uses the muscles and bones in their feet.
According to a report by Healthline benefits of walking barefoot include:
- better control of your foot position when it strikes the ground
- improvements in balance, proprioception, and body awareness, which can help with pain relief
- better foot mechanics, which can lead to improved mechanics of the hips, knees, and core
- maintaining appropriate range of motion in your foot and ankle joints as well as adequate strength and stability within your muscles and ligaments
- relief from improperly fitting shoes, which may cause bunions, hammertoes, or other foot deformities
- stronger leg muscles, which support the lower back region
The publication spoke to Dr. Jonathan Kaplan who explained that the most straightforward benefit to barefoot walking is that in theory, walking barefoot more closely restores our ‘natural’ walking pattern, also known as our gait.
Kaplan is a foot and ankle specialist and orthopedic surgeon with Hoag Orthopaedic Institute.
Before you kick off those shoes, first read about the potential dangers.
POTENTIAL DANGERS OF WALKING BAREFOOT?
What are the potential dangers of walking and exercising barefoot?
Walking barefoot in your house is relatively safe. But when you head outside, you expose yourself to potential risks that could be dangerous.
“Without appropriate strength in the foot, you are at risk of having poor mechanics of walking, thereby increasing your risk for injury,” explains Kaplan.
This is especially important to consider when you’re beginning to incorporate barefoot walking after having spent much of your life in shoes.
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Based in Johannesburg, Brian Derenberger is a Senior Editor at Healthy Organic Lifestyle.