Going Barefoot What Happens to Your Tootsies any Benefits

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person wearing jeans barefoot in dark soil

Ah this past year, you may have been barefoot more than usual. Because of working at home or spending more time there. But you may be on to something considering the health benefits of going barefoot.


Remember as a kid you may have done this too just ditching your shoes. That is around the house or out in the yard. Do you recall the feel of grass between your toes?


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Our ancestors actually went barefoot most of the time. Today we suffer from being disconnected. As a result some say a lack of earthing or not being grounded.


Well today we are going to look at the reasons and benefits of going barefoot (I am).


What is Earthing?

Earthing or “grounding” is a therapeutic ancient technique to reconnect to the earth. This includes body, mind and spirit. The focus is on realigning your electrical energy. One method is by going barefoot.


Like this giant battery the earth consists of this natural but subtle electrical charge. This is a special kind of energy found in the ground. So this is how we get the term “grounded”.

There is a science behind how these electrical charges from the earth can affect the body. This involves positive energy something like working with crystals. You can draw the energy from both.


When you’re grounded you generally feel good. Maybe having less pain or none at all.

When you are electrically grounded you feel:

    • Centered
    • Not stressed
    • Balanced
    • Less tense
    • Relaxed

A Type of Alternative Medicine


According to naturopathy this is a technique combining nature and its properties in healing. The two forces nature and energy complement each other. Our health is suffering because we are disconnected from our environment meaning the earth.


By reconnecting with electrons from the earth this promotes changes physiologically along with well-being. Also by walking barefoot reflexology principles work.  While your soles are pressing more because of this the functioning of your organs are regulated.



Earthing or grounding can be used as cathartic form of mindfulness. Because of bare feet you don’t have the ability for speed. So you have a slower gait and are more aware of your surroundings. Mother Nature is therapeutic.

Martial Arts and Yoga

Going barefoot is required in martial arts and yoga. This can strengthen your feet while increasing stability in your lower extremities.



Our Ancestors Going Barefoot

Due to our modern lifestyles you may have less and less interaction with the outdoors. Unlike our ancestors who walked barefoot most of the time. It is thought that this disconnect could be a big contributor to physiological dysfunction and being unhealthy.

Over the past 50 years or so our life has gotten more comfortable as in well cushioned shoes.  But we have developed chronic diseases, immune disorders and inflammation. Some research is showing that a lack of grounding could contribute to our decline in health.


Actress/author Mariel Hemingway

Electricity and the Body

You are electricity. That goes for all of your cells which transmit multiple frequencies.


  1. Controlling for instance:

    • Your heart
    • Immune system
    • Muscles
    • Nervous system

If you have ever shuffled your stocking feet on the carpet you’ve felt the effects of earthing or grounding. Basic physics you are an electrical being living in this electrical world. When this overall charge is off in your body chemical reactions occur that shouldn’t.

Along with other reactions failing to take place when these should. This leads to a disruption of your body’s charge which is a health concern. Grounding also means discharging built-up static electricity by direct contact into the earth. In other words minus a barrier of shoes or carpet, you’re earthing.

The earth has a mild negative charge. Through time your body has this build-up of positive charge. Being in direct contact with the earth you even out, returning your body to a more neutral state.


Earthing Health Implications of Reconnecting

When your bare feet or skin makes contact with the earth, your body takes in free electrons. These electrons could be described as nature’s largest antioxidants. So they help neutralize excess damaging free radicals that cause inflammation and disease in the body.


Studies also show the many health benefits of connecting your body with Earth’s electrons.

  1. Reconnecting Benefits

    • Improve sleep
    • Decrease stress
    • Improve well-being

You can reconnect by sitting, standing or walking on:

  • Soil
  • Grass
  • Sand
  • Concrete


You can draw the Earth’s energy because these are all conductive surfaces. As long as you are barefoot. Try incorporating this technique of healing energy into your daily routine.


Foot Muscles

You can draw the Earth’s energy because these are all conductive surfaces. As long as you are barefoot. Try incorporating this technique of healing energy into your daily routine.


Foot muscle groups can actually make your body stronger. Without footwear support your feet are working harder. This improves balance, proprioception as well as body awareness helping with pain relief.

Your feet need to keep balance along with stability thus getting a greater workout. The foot position is in better control when it hits the ground. Going barefoot helps to restore the natural way we walk also called our gait.


Better foot mechanics leads to mechanics being improved in hips, knees and core. This maintains the correct range of motion in your foot and ankle joints. Along with enough stretch and stability in your muscles and ligaments as well.

Sans shoes forces the use of foot muscles, extrinsic as well as intrinsic. Your extrinsic foot muscles originate above the ankle and journey into varies foot parts.

This allows for movements like:

    • Pointing the top of your foot away from your leg
    • Raising your foot with shin down
    • Moving your foot side to side

Intrinsic muscles are located within the foot and are responsible for fine motor movements like:

  • Flexing your toes
  • Keeping balance when walking
bare feet splashing in puddle outside

Benefits to Going Barefoot

Helps with Insomnia

Just by walking barefoot for about 30 minutes on grass every morning can prevent insomnia or improve your sleep pattern. With reduced stress this leads to better sleep and waking up feeling more refreshed.

Reduce Inflammation

Due to reflexology walking barefoot on grass helps with stimulating the functions of your organs. Not to mention getting a bit of vitamin D from sunlight. Mainly because of the electrons from the earth’s magnetic field.

Regulated Heart Health

Taking a walk on grass barefooted helps to synchronize your heartbeat. This is important of course because the rest of you depends on it. On the other hand when other organs of your body function well your heart health does too.

Great for Eyes

Again according to the science of reflexology, when walking lots of pressure is placed on your second and third toes. Both have maximum nerve endings. Having this connection to your eyes the function is stimulated. Thus walking with no shoes on keeps your vision in check.

Improved Circulation

When you’re grounded your circulation gets better, by helping with the delivery of oxygen and nutrients to your body’s tissues. This includes improved blood flow to your face.

Regulates cortisol (stress hormone)

When you’re grounded the diurnal rhythm of cortisol starts to normalize.

Going barefoot gives feet a much needed break from poor fitting shoes that may result with bunions, hammer toes or other foot deformities. Your feet are free to breathe and wiggle with no restraints. Easier to play footsies with that significant other.

Potential Dangers Going Barefoot

Just to walk around barefoot in your home is relatively safe (usually). On the other hand to head outside you put yourself at some risk that could be dangerous. If you don’t have the right strength in your foot, you are at risk of poor mechanics of walking. This raises your risk to injure yourself.

More importantly something to consider when wanting to spend more time without shoes after being in shoes most of your life. Also think about the surface you’ll be walking on. It is more natural to walk or exercise while barefoot. But you are susceptible to getting hurt from wet or rough surfaces.

There are changes in temperature or glass along with other sharp things could be on the ground. In addition while going barefoot specifically outside you can expose your feet to harmful bacteria or infections. If you are diabetic this could be especially dangerous.

For those who have peripheral neuropathy encountering a wound on the sole of their feet and not realizing it is not good. Therefore going barefoot is not ideal for everyone.

  1. Don’t go barefoot:

    • Diabetic
    • Peripheral neuropathy
    • Poor balance
    • Weak immune system
    • Sores or cuts on feet

Although going barefoot involves many benefits it is not for those with feet issues. Take precaution if you are diabetic or have peripheral neuropathy. Be aware of the surface you are on and surroundings.

If your barking dogs are really complaining, listen. Should going barefoot develop pain reduce your activities without shoes or modify them. A common cause of injury is overuse.

Have you ever thought about the benefits on going barefoot? It just feels so good. Take some time to connect to the earth. Moderation is always good.


Wrapping it up

How often and where do you go barefoot?


Mary is the founder of All About Our Skin. Former esthetician and CPC. Enjoys researching skincare and has been studying our skin for the past fourteen years.

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