Walking barefoot is one of the oldest exercises practiced by man besides searching for foods. As hunters and gatherers, our ancestors walked a lot without Bata slippers or Nike sneakers. They walked on very harder surfaces like African Savannas and hot desserts. Later Man found ways to protect his valuable asset (legs) by inventing slippers and later various types of foot wear. Now he has foot wears for everybody from new born baby to 122 years late Jeanne Calment (independently verified oldest person).He has foot wears for every season(Winter,Autumn,Summer&Spring) and every surroundings(Indoors & Outdoors).And also for every terrain-hard mountains, snow covered peaks, slippery waterfalls, hot/cold desert and so on. We have shoes for walking, jogging, running, sprinting, games and sports. There are shoes for comforts and for fashion. For some people, status comes before comfort. They say “A person’s worth and social status is decided by the footwear he/she wears”. A simple thing which was used to protect us from thorns and stones has turned into fashion icon and symbol of social status.
There is a story about Roman royals using a special type of utensil made of zinc for eating their meals. That was considered as status symbol to them and was made exclusively for royals. Later it was discovered that the royals started to suffer from impotency and immune related disease. In the modern times too, symbols of social status are turning people into potential targets of various health problems. People come to realize the need only after the sun goes out .Some gets the wake-up call sooner and start to act faster by incorporating healthy habits into their life.
Back to the topic, I am not asking readers to walk barefoot on harder and colder surfaces. I urge the readers to follow a routine of barefoot walking at the least of 30 minutes a day. If it is possible to walk on playground or grass filled bare-lands, it will be much better to walking barefoot on marble floors .If you are lucky enough, you get to walk bare foot on multi-coloured beach soil while admiring the beautiful reddish orange sun setting into dark sea. The point is, if the surface is more even and smooth, then you will not feel the pressure exerted on acupuncture points on your feet. Foot Reflexology is an alternative medical practice that involves application of pressure on those specific points.
The theory behind the foot reflexology is that every organ in our body is connected to the nerve endings in our feet. In our traditional Ayurveda practice of medicine, it is said that energy flow channels and pressure points exist in our human body. By massaging, the pressure points are activated and the energy flow is our body is regulated to rhythmic flow of nature around us. This concept of energy flow or life force exists in traditional Chinese medicine too. They called it qi or chi which means vital energy.
Our ancestors have insisted on walking bare foot around the temple and while climbing to temples built on hills and mountains. It was seen and continued to be seen as foolish and superstitious act by younger generations. But Bare-foot walking is no more a superstitious act of our ancestors. The modern medicine are gradually recognizing and recommending the health benefits of bare-foot walking. Some of benefits of bare-foot walking are: I) Releasing the stress and strain in your body,ii)better breathing, iii)Clears your mental fog ,iv)Better clarity of mind, You can do the simple and cost-free bare-footing walking or you can opt for complicated and costly foot massage .The choices are up-to you to choose. The thing which matters most is your health.