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Barefoot Walking

How to make the switch to barefoot shoes

16. Juni 2024 Kommentare deaktiviert für Advantages of walking barefoot or wearing barefoot shoes according to Harvard study Knowlege

Advantages of walking barefoot or wearing barefoot shoes according to Harvard study

Barefoot Walking on Wood

Running barefoot or wearing barefoot shoes is becoming increasingly popular among running enthusiasts and other athletes. According to a study by Harvard University, this practice can offer numerous health benefits.

In the following, the various aspects of barefoot running and the use of shoes without cushioning, known as minimal or barefoot shoes, are examined.

Running in barefoot shoes

The majority of people worldwide are physically active on a daily basis. Running is one of the most popular activities. This sport does not require expensive equipment and can be practised anywhere, both in the city and in natural surroundings.

Minimal shoes, which sit between conventional shoes and barefoot running, allow runners to enjoy the benefits of both options.

Benefits of barefoot running according to Harvard

The Harvard University published a study highlighting the benefits of barefoot running or running with minimal shoes. When running without conventional cushioning systems, the body’s natural systems are activated, which distribute the weight over the entire sole of the foot. This process is not only beneficial for the feet, but also for other parts of the body.

Health benefits in general

  • Cognitive development in children: Walking barefoot promotes cognitive development in children as it improves perception and connection to the environment.
  • Reduction of tension: It relieves the tension that builds up in the feet from wearing conventional shoes.
  • Improving mobility: It increases the mobility of the foot muscles.
  • Benefits for the nervous system: It stimulates the nervous system and reduces stress.
  • Blood circulation: It improves blood circulation.
  • Back pain relief: It can help reduce back pain.

Five-finger shoes or ‚barefoot‘

Five-finger shoes are designed to mimic the feeling of walking barefoot. These shoes allow for a natural stride and a better awareness of the ground and surroundings. Although their design may seem unusual, they do not put pressure on the toes and offer protection similar to traditional shoes, but without cushioning.

Disadvantages of minimal shoes

Despite the many benefits, there are also certain risks associated with wearing minimalist shoes or walking barefoot. The main risk is the possibility of being injured by objects on the floor, such as stones or broken glass.

In addition, switching from conventional shoes to minimal shoes can take time and patience.

Adjustment phase and risk of injury

During the transition phase, it is common for feet, ankles and knees to become more strained and overstimulated. It is therefore important to proceed slowly and perform exercises that strengthen these parts of the body to minimise the risk of injury.


Walking barefoot or wearing minimalist shoes offers numerous health benefits, from improving mobility and blood circulation to reducing stress and back pain. However, it is important to be aware of the risks and proceed with caution during the transition phase. With the increasing availability of this type of footwear, it is easier than ever to experience the benefits of a natural and healthy running style.

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