5 Reasons to Walk Barefoot This Spring

After a long, cold winter, there’s nothing quite as refreshing as kicking off your shoes in the spring and feeling†the grass beneath your feet. Walking barefoot through the grass, in fact, has health benefits that extend†far beyond the†pleasurable sensation†it offers to your sense of touch.

Many of these benefits have scientific evidence to back up their claims, suggesting that almost anyone can improve their health just by†walking, running or standing barefoot in the grass. Best of all, it’s such a simple thing to do, you have no excuse not to try it this spring!

1. Improve your†sleep.

“Earthing” is the practice of making direct contact with the Earth so that†its vast supply of electrons can be transferred to your body. In a study involving participants with sleep dysfunction, chronic pain and stress, the participants were grounded to the Earth in their own beds by sleeping on a conductive mattress for eight weeks. By the end, 11 out of 12 of the participants reported falling asleep more quickly and waking up in the middle of the night less frequently.

2. Reduce pain and stress.

In the same study mentioned above, the participants experienced†reductions in both pain and stress in addition to improvements in sleep. Insomnia is often associated with a range of problems including physical pain, depression, generalized anxiety and more, suggesting that grounding the body at night can not only improve sleep but also positively impact morning fatigue levels, daytime energy levels and pain levels at night.

3.†Relieve your†lower body†joints.†

You may not realize it, but your shoes may be placing a larger load on your joints than you think. A study that evaluated gait and lower extremity joint loads in 75 participants revealed that peak joint loads in the hips and knees decreased significantly when they walked barefoot compared to when they walked with their shoes on. Stride, cadence and range of motion at the lower extremity joints also changed significantly.

4. Recover faster from difficult physical activity.

The soreness you feel about a day after performing hard exercise is called delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS). Research has shown that walking barefoot on the ground affects†immune system activity and pain by slightly decreasing†the number of white blood cells at the stage where DOMS peaks. In comparison, study participants who didn’t ground themselves to the Earth first before exercising experienced a significant increase in white blood cells, signaling a typical inflammatory response.

5. Reconnect with your inner child.

There may not be any scientific evidence to back this up, but you probably don’t need any to be convinced†that walking barefoot in the grass is a great way to step away from your adult self†for a moment and get back in touch with your child-like self who once played†happily and freely outside without any shoes on. The simple act of walking barefoot can help you open yourself back up to that sense of carefree playfulness, which has a tendency to fade away†as we grow older into adulthood and become distracted by all our responsibilities.

So when you find yourself enjoying the outdoors this spring, make sure you take a moment to kick off your shoes and enjoy going barefoot. It doesn’t just feel great ó it’s super healthy for you, too!

Related Articles
5 Tips to Help Beat Depression With Yoga
5†Science-Backed Ways Sex Can Positively Impact Your Life
Chronic Stress Is Linked to Higher Obesity Risk

Photo Credit: Thinkstock

53 comments

Ossie A
Ossie A8 months ago

I walked bare foot and lay at the park half nude on this warm day, and it felt amazing! I just wish the parks were cleaner and the grass was cut more often so we can enjoy grounding! Also, the lady's feet in the photo above are nice :)

SEND
Cindy M. D
Cindy M. Dutka8 months ago

I cannot wait to walk barefoot this spring, summer and fall. I walk barefoot as much as possible. Just make sure to watch for clear paths!! Happy barefooting everyone... :)

SEND
Lola P
Lola P8 months ago

Walking barefoot reminds me times at the beach, thanks for the info!

SEND
heather g
heather g9 months ago

I spent many years running around barefoot when I was a child. Since moving to Canada I can't think of seeing anyone - other than at a swimming pool - without shoes.

SEND
Margie FOURIE
Margie FOURIE9 months ago

I only wear shoes when necessary.

SEND
Marija M
Marija M9 months ago

tks for sharing

SEND
Georgina E M
Georgina M9 months ago

No Thanks, I am still paying dearly for walking barefoot last Summer.
Be careful

SEND
David P
David P9 months ago

interesting.

SEND
Edgar Zuim
Edgar Zuim9 months ago

Walking barefoot reminds me of my childhood.

SEND
william M
william Miller9 months ago

thanks

SEND