If you're the kind of person who can't keep your shoes on, even outside, you now have an excuse – no, actually an excellent reason – to remain the barefoot child, you've always been! It turns out being barefoot is good for you, no matter how often mom and others warned of cuts, thorns, flat feet, and even disease.
Scientists, calling it “earthing,” are finding that going barefoot outside connects you to the physical world in a very unique and powerful way. How? Well, to explain it, we have to go back to 1952, when German physicist, W.O. Schumann, theorized that our earth emits a sound frequency, which he and another scientist later determined to be 7.83 Hz. That measurement is now known as the Schumann resonances (SR).
What else, besides earth, vibrates at 7–10 Hz? The deepest frequencies a human can hear are in that range, and the lowest notes on a piano are at the high end of it. But don’t expect to listen to the world humming under your feet – it’s more a measure of how electronic energy transfers from the earth and, possibly, into your body.
Scientists say connecting to the earth can reduce pain, improve sleep, thin the blood, reduce inflammation, minimize the physical impact of stress, improve healing, and assist the body’s minute-by-minute efforts to take in oxygen, keep blood fl owing, and maintain a healthy pulse. While larger, long-term studies need to be conducted, there are indications that “earthing” can have positive effects on the endocrine system for people with diabetes and those with thyroid disorders.
But why wait for more data when you can enjoy some of the other benefits of a barefoot walk in your yard right now? Orthopedists say that walking barefoot improves balance and proprioception (awareness of your body’s position and movement), while encouraging proper structural alignment of the body, and the strengthening of legs and hips. Of course, if you’re unaccustomed to walking barefoot, start indoors or in a yoga class before taking your treks to the wild!