Wearing shoes has a dramatic effect on how we stand and move around. Heels (of any size) put us off balance, causing us to lean back compensating by misaligning our spine. Thick and cushioned soles insulate us, reducing sensory feedback from the ground. Stiff soles don’t allow our feet to bend where they naturally want to, which changes our gait. Worst of all, over time our shod feet alter their shape to fit shoes. The fact is shoes alter everything, and not for the better. Wearing shoes weakens our feet and actually creates the need to wear shoes.
When you take off a pair of shoes at the end of a long day, your feet feel great. There’s nothing quite like that feeling of, “arhhhh!” you get when you take your shoes off. Why do you think that is? If shoes are good for our feet, why does it feel so good to take them off?
Of course, no one would consider stopping wearing shoes. This just wouldn’t be socially acceptable. It also wouldn’t be practical. Your feet have spent their life wrapped up in shoes and have become dependent on them.
You Walk Wrong
Leonardo da Vinci described the human foot as a masterpiece of engineering and a work of art. He wasn’t wrong. It took eight million years for the human foot to evolve with our unique and distinctive gait. It’s no wonder we became the dominant species on this planet; it wasn’t only down to our brains, we also had to have a versatile and efficient body to go with it. The foundation for this body is our feet; everything physical about us is supported from there. Yet in less than a thousand years (greatly accelerated in the past 40 years) we have reduced the foot’s amazing efficiency, grace and form to an unloved and forgotten appendage that is now considered to be flawed and in need of correction and protection by… you guessed it – shoes!
A thousand years is only fifty generations, that isn’t enough time for evolution by any means to have an effect. In other words our feet are no different now than they were before shoes were first worn, they haven’t evolved at all. So what’s going on? Why do our feet seem so useless? And more importantly, why do we have so many problems and ailments with them?
The problem, amazingly is shoes. Let me explain…