Quick little follow up to my Facebook video about footwear and how it can impact your alignment. (You can watch that now if you missed it!)

One thing I neglected to talk about in the video is how jandals/flip-flops/clogs/mules - anything that does not have a strap or something securing the shoe to the heel of your foot - can negatively affect your foot mechanics and alignment. Read: LOTS of tension in the foot and lower leg. So even though most of those shoes fall into the category of a neutral or minimal rise, they aren't the best for moving around in. There is already a fantastic article written by Katy Bowman on this topic if you want to read more about that: How Flip Flops Change Your Feet.

Here is a link to my favourite flip-flop that is super comfy and has an ankle strap. 

Katy also has two books on how and why to transition to minimal footwear. One is targeted more towards women because, as a general rule, women tend to spend more time in less than ideal footwear (however, the principles can be applied to everyone): Every Woman's Guide to Foot Pain Relief. The second book she wrote on the topic of footwear is a shorter follow up with some additional information on how your footwear affects your whole body: Whole Body Barefoot. As Katy says, "all body issues are whole-body issues."

Here is an article that goes into more detail about all of the ways that shoes (and socks) dampen the necessary input that we get through our feet. Key message: our bodies evolved based on certain input, and the way we are put together is due to natural selection. Our feet adapted to allow us to climb, walk, and articulate all of the grippy joints that exist in the structure of the foot. Footwear has not been around long enough to be part of the evolutionary process. “The further humans stray from what they were naturally selected to do…the more their health suffers.” 

 http://orig15.deviantart.net/9f03/f/2007/343/1/6/feet_by_ewewew.jpg

http://orig15.deviantart.net/9f03/f/2007/343/1/6/feet_by_ewewew.jpg

 

And this is an informative article about what running shoes to our feet when we run (unfortunately the photos are all dead links now, but the written information is still helpful). 

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