When it comes to feet, the terrain or the environment is made up of two primary factors - the surface we’re walking on and our footwear (or lack thereof).
Footwear was invented to provide a layer of protection from dangerous elements of our environment - things that were sharp, hot or cold.
In modern times footwear has become a lot more about fashion than function.
Conventional modern footwear actually has characteristics that disrupt the natural function of our feet - things like thick cushions, elevated heels, rigid bodies and toe springs.
This drastically reduces the sensory inputs and the movement outputs that we’re able to experience through our feet.
Over time we lose our ability to interact well with the ground and become more likely to experience pain and tenderness without shoes on.
Natural footwear is best identified with the 4f’s - shoes that are foot shaped, flat, flexible and allow us to feel the ground
Foot-shaped means widest at the tip of the toes
Flat means no higher at the heel than the forefoot
Flexible means then can be bent, twisted, folded
Feel means having thin enough soles allow us to feel the texture from the ground under us