Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Barefooting vindicated!

I've long been a barefooter. And not just around the house or on the river, but also walking to town, doing errands, playing catch in the street with the kids, and picking up the kids at school. (Their elementary school was in walking distance, and I became known, I was once told, as "the barefoot dad." I've been called worse things.) Even hiking the backcountry -- I once even approached and climbed 12,800-foot Engineer Mountain barefoot a few years ago, just to see if I could. And, of course, in karate, we train barefoot.

So, I've long been something of a barefoot believer, believing it was better for the body, and (therefore) better for the soul: That the condition of your soles indicates the condition of your soul. Or somesuch ...

Well, I feel vindicated: The article "You Walk Wrong," from New York magazine, looks at the biology of how we walk differently barefoot and shod, and how we evolved for the former (in both ways) condition. The article is illuminating, informative, and fun to read. And it's one more thing that reminds us how much we can learn by looking at where we came from ...

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