Exercise! - Is exercising barefoot a no-no???




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luckyme0510
12-27-2010, 07:59 PM
I'm into doing exercise dvd's, I like the idea of being in private when I exercise, but also I cannot afford a gym membership at the moment, nor do I have the time. Anyway, my dilemma is that I live in an apartment with a light beige rug now so I don't want to dirty the rug (plus I have a little bit of a germ phobia because of my little one). My questions... is it bad for my feet or my body to exercise barefoot? For some reason I believe it to be so, I know it's probably because I heard or read it somewhere a million years ago but I can't remember. Mostly I use Jillian Michaels dvd's which usually involve a considerable amount of jumping. I guess I can buy a pair of sneakers just for exercising in the house, but I would much rather just do it barefoot if there is no harm...


CherryPie99
12-27-2010, 08:24 PM
I can't imagine why it would be bad for you. I never wear shoes with any of the DVD's or other workouts I do except for the treadmill and on that I wear my barefoot running shoes!

tiffany0809
12-27-2010, 08:36 PM
I guess it depends on what you're doing. If it's lots of cardio and jumping I think that having the support of sneakers would help protect ankle, knee and hip joints. But you should also listen to your body. If you're feeling ok, then keep doing what you're doing. But if you have pain then try using sneakers that are designated for just inside the house.


tytbody
12-27-2010, 08:47 PM
as long as you are okay with it. Not dropping anything. maybe just get a cheap pair at walmart for just exercise to cover your feet.

I know some are done barefoot and you mentioned Jillian, you're okay. No quick turning and tourking (sp) etc. so no foot burns. Congratulations on moving.

kat999
12-27-2010, 10:14 PM
I do some workouts barefoot and some in sneakers. Jillian I'm usually okay barefoot, but I wear sneakers for FIRM workouts, Cathe Friedrich, and anything that involves sustained jumping (like not just Jillian's little jumping jack segments) or climbing onto steps or other pieces of furniture. I will sometimes do walking/Leslie Sansone videos in socks if I'm too cold to do them barefoot (but only if there is literally NO impact or complex choreography). I do all my yoga/pilates/ballet stuff barefoot.

matt_H
12-27-2010, 10:19 PM
If you have no pain, I don't think there would be a problem. :)

RoseRodent
12-28-2010, 07:30 AM
I‘ve had a number of small fractures in my feet frrom doing exactly this sort of thing, and the pain doesn‘t always show up immediately, it‘s something that gradually builds up from repetition injury. Cost of a pair of sneakers compared to a medical bill? I‘d take the sneakers every time. If it is a well sprung floor such as a suspended wood floor then that is a bit different as it‘s the sort of floor that is constructed for ballet and gymnastics, but this is why ballet companies invest thousands in a portable floor to bring to theaters on tour, as they cannot risk repeated jumping on hard floors.

If you are going to do this for a very short time on a good floor then you may well be fine, but the damage builds over repetition.

Jonesie
12-28-2010, 09:35 AM
I go barefoot too! Im a closet hippie I think so its even hard for me to run/walk in shoes but I DO put shoes on for that. Any dvd I do is barefoot though. Honestly, I get foot pain from walking in shoes and Im totally fine when barefoot. I had a friend tell me (not an expert but a very active person) that she runs/walks/dvds in crocs. I was thinking of getting myself an indoor pair and an outdoor pair when the weather permits. Good luck and I like what tyt said Congrats on moving!

nelie
12-28-2010, 10:15 AM
In the past, I've bought shoes specifically for exercising indoors.

I used to do impact cardio at home all the time until the one morning where I woke up and couldn't sit up in bed. My back was out of whack and it took it a few months and chiropractic care to be pain free.

I go barefoot at home if I'm not doing any impact cardio. If I'm doing jumping jacks or running in place, I'm wearing shoes.

Aclai4067
12-28-2010, 04:10 PM
Exercising barefoot can actually be good for your feet, increasing strength and flexibility (hence the whole barefoot running craze). But if you are experiencing pain from it, you may want to get some shoes (especially for jumping).

patchworkpenguin
12-28-2010, 05:16 PM
You could try getting a yoga mat or puzzle mats to put down over the carpet to protect it from dirt. I also have a pair of sneakers that I only wear to exercise indoors.

tytbody
12-28-2010, 08:03 PM
Hi patchwork. I know you from VF. (waving)

patchworkpenguin
12-28-2010, 09:04 PM
Hi patchwork. I know you from VF. (waving)

Hi, Tyt! I thought that was you. Your smile still brightened up the WWW! :D Glad to see you here

darway
12-28-2010, 09:17 PM
I run on my treadmill in slippers or stocking feet. (Bare feet on the belt is a little *too* rough to handle!) Yeah I wear holes in them ... but they're cheap and I just buy more.

I dunno why, but shoes make me feel clumsy on the treadmill. :tread:

tytbody
12-28-2010, 09:21 PM
Darway, get the vibra five fingers. I'm loving mine. Just got a pair. Now I know I'll only wear these indoors to exercise. Even when I don't want to put on the exercise bra. Lol.. :dance:

nelie
12-28-2010, 09:35 PM
Exercising barefoot can actually be good for your feet, increasing strength and flexibility (hence the whole barefoot running craze). But if you are experiencing pain from it, you may want to get some shoes (especially for jumping).

I think there is a difference between high impact aerobics and running. Running barefoot or minimalistic can have some benefits but the act of running is different than your typical aerobics workout. The idea with running barefoot is your foot would learn how to land properly to absorb any impact to the rest of your body.

Ursula745
12-28-2010, 09:51 PM
I'm all about barefoot. I use Vibrams. My feet have become stronger, and I've had stress fractures because of weakness in my feet, so I'm all about building strength. barefoot shouldn't hurt you unless you have some type of medical condition or doing something improperly on form. I think God gave us what we needed which was thick soles on our feet and joints/muscles to absorb impact. No other animal that runs wears shoes and they've done just fine for a long time.

nelie
12-29-2010, 12:19 AM
I'm all about barefoot. I use Vibrams. My feet have become stronger, and I've had stress fractures because of weakness in my feet, so I'm all about building strength. barefoot shouldn't hurt you unless you have some type of medical condition or doing something improperly on form. I think God gave us what we needed which was thick soles on our feet and joints/muscles to absorb impact. No other animal that runs wears shoes and they've done just fine for a long time.

I agree with you to some extent but concrete, even covered with carpet isn't the same as sand, dirt, grass, etc. Also, you don't see other primates doing jumping jacks and other high impact movements on comparatively hard surfaces. Which is one reason I think that shoes inside can be beneficial, to help absorb the shock of unnatural movements on unnatural surfaces.

luckyme0510
12-29-2010, 12:19 PM
Thank you guys for your input! I guess it's different strokes for different folks :) I was thinking like ursula... our bodies are built for this. But I think Nelie makes goo sense; unfortunately, my body is not in the form that it should be, nor is a carpet a natural surface. I exercised to Cindy Whitmarsh Less is More cardio... and 10 minutes into it I had to put my dirty outside sneakers on to finish it because my feet were hurting pretty bad, not in one particular section, but just the whole bottom of my foot. I think I need the sneakers until my feet get stronger and I weigh less.

I should also mention that it might have something to do with the fact that I have flat feet... and I've tried those toe shoes on and they're uncomfortable for me because they all have arches.

Scolecite
12-29-2010, 02:40 PM
Wearing shoes just increases the need for more shoes! Ease into barefoot since your feet are not going to be used to actually getting used properly. After that you will be fine. The only reason jumping would be bad is if you don't know how to jump properly. There are 7,000 nerves in your foot that help you feel the ground, its time to put them to use.

Aclai4067
12-29-2010, 02:54 PM
I should also mention that it might have something to do with the fact that I have flat feet... and I've tried those toe shoes on and they're uncomfortable for me because they all have arches.

Good to know! I have flat feet too. I've seen a lot of talk about those shoes and hadn't heard anyone mention that.

CherryPie99
12-29-2010, 06:04 PM
I have very flat feet and I think that's why just about every shoe that I've ever worn kills my feet. I am barefoot all the time in the house and outside all spring summer and fall, so I didn't really need to condition my feet for any barefoot working out or the Vibrams. But if you've always worn shoes, you do need to work up the muscles in your feet.

Jesse Taylor
12-29-2010, 06:18 PM
The only indoor exercise I do with shoes is the treadmill because that sucker gets hot. Anything else I do barefoot and seem to get better traction. I tend to be clumsy.

Ursula745
12-29-2010, 07:08 PM
I agree with you to some extent but concrete, even covered with carpet isn't the same as sand, dirt, grass, etc. Also, you don't see other primates doing jumping jacks and other high impact movements on comparatively hard surfaces. Which is one reason I think that shoes inside can be beneficial, to help absorb the shock of unnatural movements on unnatural surfaces.

Maybe not jumping jacks, but they sure do run and jump from trees and upon things. I wasn't talking about just primates. And, I don't think concrete or wood or whatever is any harder than rocks. Men use to run on those all the time. I think it's about stride, strength, and form.

To each his own. I say do what's comfortable for you but do it well. If you are sacrificing form/comfort/efficiency, you need to rethink your choices.

I will tell you that going barefoot has helped my bone density and joint strength, and I had osteoporosis at age 26. It's now reversed and my dexa scans show improved density every year, now with no medicine.

Just make the choice for yourself and if you don't like it, change it.

Ursula745
12-29-2010, 07:10 PM
Wearing shoes just increases the need for more shoes! Ease into barefoot since your feet are not going to be used to actually getting used properly. After that you will be fine. The only reason jumping would be bad is if you don't know how to jump properly. There are 7,000 nerves in your foot that help you feel the ground, its time to put them to use.

I agree with you. It's all about how your own joints and muscles absorb impact. And properly trained feet will do the job nicely.

Jesse Taylor
12-29-2010, 11:01 PM
I agree with you to some extent but concrete, even covered with carpet isn't the same as sand, dirt, grass, etc. Also, you don't see other primates doing jumping jacks and other high impact movements on comparatively hard surfaces. Which is one reason I think that shoes inside can be beneficial, to help absorb the shock of unnatural movements on unnatural surfaces.

Actually, if you think about it, the force upon which an 800 pound gorilla lands barefoot on to the ground is far greater than anything we as even 200 pound humans could sustain. I watch a lot of Smallville and the one thing that always strikes me is that whenever Clark hits the ground, there are fissures in the ground. The weight upon which we strike the ground is directly based upon the force of the impact. An 800 pound gorilla is going to have a lot of impact and his feet can take it, as can ours. When man was first put on this earth, he ran on every surface barefoot. I don't see a problem exercising barefoot or even running barefoot. I did it as a kid, I could do it now if I was actually still able to run.

nelie
12-31-2010, 10:49 AM
Actually, if you think about it, the force upon which an 800 pound gorilla lands barefoot on to the ground is far greater than anything we as even 200 pound humans could sustain. I watch a lot of Smallville and the one thing that always strikes me is that whenever Clark hits the ground, there are fissures in the ground. The weight upon which we strike the ground is directly based upon the force of the impact. An 800 pound gorilla is going to have a lot of impact and his feet can take it, as can ours. When man was first put on this earth, he ran on every surface barefoot. I don't see a problem exercising barefoot or even running barefoot. I did it as a kid, I could do it now if I was actually still able to run.

A gorilla doesn't do exercise videos :) Also the way a gorilla does land when they jump actually helps distribute the force throughout their body. I agree with the concept of barefoot running (as long as you ease into it at first), I don't agree with the concept of high impact aerobics at home barefoot.

That is me personally, I've experienced injury do to high impact aerobics barefoot but I think the two things are different. Your body can learn proper mechanics of barefoot running I believe but the wrong mechanics are similar to standing in place and doing aerobics.

den29
01-09-2011, 06:09 PM
I always exercise at home with bare feet, but if there are some things that I feel are too high impact I'll modify (i.e. do them slower, or a different exercise) so as to not impact my knees as bad. Also turning on carpet seems easier with bare feet rather than tennis shoes. I just can't stand exercising with shoes on.

kat999
01-09-2011, 07:58 PM
Because of this thread, I just got myself a pair of ballet sneakers. They have some tread on them, so they help with exercises that require a little more impact or stepping on a hard surface, but they're also incredibly flexible and don't impede my ability to still feel like my feet are "free." I've used them for a few days now for a variety of in-home exercise: low-impact aerobics, ballet, and strength training/AWT, and they have worked great so far. I feel like these would be a good compromise between being barefoot and having a little shock absorption. I probably would not recommend them for outdoor use, though, including outdoor walking or running, and they'd probably be okay for non-foot impact machines, like a stationary bike or elliptical but probably not so good for a treadmill.

Davikatl16
01-09-2011, 10:13 PM
I go barefoot.
If you are concerned about injury, know your body. I like going barefoot when working out at home because I know how clean the floor is and that nothing could potentially injure my feet except for another action that I performed.

cincimom11
01-10-2011, 01:26 AM
Ive had a number of small fractures in my feet frrom doing exactly this sort of thing, and the pain doesnt always show up immediately, its something that gradually builds up from repetition injury. Cost of a pair of sneakers compared to a medical bill? Id take the sneakers every time. If it is a well sprung floor such as a suspended wood floor then that is a bit different as its the sort of floor that is constructed for ballet and gymnastics, but this is why ballet companies invest thousands in a portable floor to bring to theaters on tour, as they cannot risk repeated jumping on hard floors.

If you are going to do this for a very short time on a good floor then you may well be fine, but the damage builds over repetition.

Amen. Last year I did the Shred barefoot, and I ended up really hurting my feet. I had to see a physical therapist a few times each week, and short walks were very painful. I always felt fine while doing the Shred, and then BAM, foot problems. My podiatrist said working out barefoot was definitely to blame. Yoga is the only thing I do barefoot. Jumping and lifting require shoes for me.