Today, there are more athletic shoes on the market than one could possibly imagine. While shoes are useful if you’re running somewhere where it’s necessary to protect your feet, running barefoot also comes with certain benefits. If you’re curious and have access to a sandy beach or smooth track, it’s definitely something that’s worth a try. It takes a bit of getting used to, but once you’ve adjusted you may find that you enjoy running more than ever before.
While supportive, shoes are also constricting. Feet are confined to the shape of the shoe which may be smaller or differently proportioned than our natural bone structure. Shoes also make it more difficult for us to feel the ground beneath us as our feet strike the sand or pavement. Running barefoot allows our feet to stretch and strengthen, which along with feeling the ground more completely can improve our balance overall.
Running barefoot requires the utilization of muscles that may not get as much use when running with shoes. Muscles in the feet are less supported without shoes, and so they need to get stronger in order to carry us where we want to go. Each foot contains over 100 muscles, and running barefoot is a great way to cultivate strength within them.