Friday, May 20, 2011

Barefoot

Because I have worked a lot in Outdoor Retail, I figured I might share some things that I have learned.

I have never been a runner, and every time I have tried I ended up in pain wondering why I started in the first place. In the fall I moved in with Reggie permanently (eek!) and had to get a new job. I left my outdoor store in Ottawa and began working at one in Peterborough, easy enough transition. One major difference is that the owners (and employees) at my new place of work are strong believers of the barefoot philosophy. Meaning that we are designed to walk, and even run on nothing but our bare feet. In running barefoot you must train yourself to land on your mid-foot, as opposed to the traditional and widely accepted heel strike. The mid-foot landing uses the numerous small bones, muscles and soft tissues to absorb and appropriately distribute the impact of your foot hitting the ground.

This is all very interesting.

Apparently there is an entire website dedicated to being barefoot, and companies have started to create footwear that mimics the natural gait of a barefoot person in order to appeal to this market (and to protect our feet from hot pavement and sharp objects).

Merrell has Barefoot shoes (click on photo):
Vibram makes barefoot shoes that have little toes in them (click on photo):
I have always loved going barefoot. My mom used to make wear slippers in the winter (to keep my feet warm), shoes at the cottage (you could scrape your foot or stub your toe) and water shoes (there might be zebra mussels in there!). I usually listened, but I always loved the feeling of being able to take off my shoes and get my toes in whatever might be underfoot. So, needless to say, I find these barefoot shoes very intriguing... However, I just can get past the thought of my toes being separated from one another.

So I decided to try the Merrell Pace Glove, a barefoot running shoe.
I haven't actually done any running in them, but just walking is so comfortable! They sure make an 8 hour shift at the store more comfortable! And I will be able to wear them in the summer at the park, a much cooler and more comfortable footwear.

Is anyone else on the barefoot train? Do you love or loathe the feeling of earth on your bare feet?

1 comment:

  1. I hopped on and loved me some Vibrams... kinda. Sort of. I'm still keen on straight up bare, though. I love walking into stores and seeing if they will say anything.

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