Barefoot walking is healthy. But most of us have unlearned it. We are used to putting our feet in constricting and supportive shoes. If feet make problems, there are insoles and shoes with footbeds. The resulting unnatural posture affects the entire body. If you have recurring physical problems, such as pain in your hips, knees or back, barefoot shoes may be the answer. Even organic symptoms for which there is no logical explanation could come from wearing the wrong shoes.
Below we answer the questions we are most frequently asked about barefoot shoes and barefoot running.
Will I get flat feet if I always wear barefoot shoes?
No. It's not insoles or soft soles that protect against worn-out feet, but natural resistance. Barefoot or with barefoot shoes you strengthen and train the foot muscles, while padding or footbeds ensure that the muscles of the foot hardly work and lose their strength. Malpositions of the feet are not caused by barefoot shoes , but by unsuitable footwear.
Surely barefoot shoes cannot be worn in everyday life?
When the first barefoot shoes came on the market in America, they had the typical eco or health look. Those times are long gone. Various manufacturers supply the market with a wide range of trendy barefoot shoes that are perfect not only for leisure and sports. Elegant barefoot shoes are also offered for professional life. Whether it's a sneaker, lace-up shoe, boot, hiking shoe or ballerina, you can't tell from many designs that it's a barefoot shoe.
Don't I get cold feet in barefoot shoes in cold weather?
No. Because the feet have to "work" more than in thick winter boots, the blood circulation is stimulated, which basically counteracts cold feet. The more the foot muscles are used, the warmer your feet will be. For really cold winter days, there are barefoot shoes with thermal soles and light lining. Especially "barefoot beginners" appreciate this. And besides, barefoot shoe doesn't mean you should wear them barefoot. So you can feel free to put on a pair of warming socks.
Can you wear barefoot shoes all day long?
If you are a new barefoot runner and you buy your first pair of barefoot shoes, you should not wear them all day long. It's a big adjustment for your body, back to its natural posture. You may feel soreness at first in muscles that have never been noticeable before. So start with an hour or two and slowly increase. It varies from person to person how long it takes you to make the switch from footbeds and cushioning to barefoot shoes. Sooner or later there will probably come a time when you don't want to wear conventional shoes at all.
Do you wear barefoot shoes without socks?
It is often mistakenly assumed that you slip into barefoot shoes barefoot. While you can do that, it's not the actual intention. Rather, the shoes are designed to give you an optimal barefoot feel in them. It is not for nothing that we speak of minimal shoes: the foot gets the optimal protection, no more and no less. The foot has to provide its own support. Exactly the same as when walking barefoot.
Do I get thick calluses on my feet when I walk barefoot?
Often cornea and dermis are confused. Neither the statement that thick calluses form on the feet of barefoot runners is true, nor the one that the strong soles of the feet are exclusively leather skin. What is true is that calluses and corns no longer occur when oppressive, rubbing shoes are eliminated. Calluses protect the feet and make perfect sense. While the dermis serves like a natural cushion between the foot and the ground, the callus protects without taking away the sensitivity to the ground. However, it varies from person to person how much callus and dermis form.
Can I use my insoles in barefoot shoes?
People who need to wear orthopedic insoles are understandably often looking for comfortable shoes. Depending on the type of insole, the barefoot effect is more or less lost. However, because barefoot shoes are cut wider, or tailored to the natural shape of the foot, you benefit from much more comfort even if you need insoles. However, before you buy minimal shoes, you should consult with your doctor who prescribed the insoles.
Why are barefoot shoes so expensive?
Manufacturers of barefoot shoes focus on sustainability. This means you are buying high quality, durable products. The shoes will be with you for years. They are not mass-produced, as the target group is still relatively small. Barefoot shoes are often produced by hand and the manufacturers are committed to fair wages and ecologically responsible production.
Do you have any further questions or would you like to comment? Then we look forward to your comment!