Some of you have heard me speak in class about ‘barefoot shoes’ or ‘minimal footwear’ to improve your balance and overall body mechanics. Well, this podcast comes from Steven Sashen, who is the owner of Xero shoes which is a company that produces footwear that is considered ‘minimalist’ or ‘barefoot.’ In this segment, he interviews Katy Bowman, who is the woman who really sold me on the benefits of minimal shoes and natural movement in the first place.
Minimal footwear or “barefoot” shoes possess three unique qualities that are not found in most modern footwear: A zero-drop heel, a large toebox, and a flexible sole. If your shoes don’t possess these qualities – you would know if they did – then your shoes are distorting your gait in a way that can lead to all kinds of problems, like back and neck pain, ankle, knee, and hip trouble, and an inability to balance your body on one leg. And no flip-flops don’t count as minimal footwear, sorry!
This is a long interview, but there are a lot of great gems in. Katy also has a great book called ‘Whole Body Barefoot’ that I recommend checking out if you would like to know more about walking or running with minimal footwear and how to get started doing it. And finally, I recently bought my first pair of Zero shoes, and I love them!
-Douglas Johnson E-RYT 500, YACEP