Take off your shoes before you enter the house?
This has been a question for ages. (Unless you're of asian decent)
A best practice is to take off your shoes. Why?
When you’re home, kick off your shoes and stay a while. I have a bad habit of always wearing shoes. Why is this bad? It weakens your feet. They get used to all that cushy support that limits their range of motion during walking. Stronger feet means better balance, less injuries overall and quicker healing should you manage to end up with a bum flipper.
Here is a story from a friend of mine....
I had a long-term problem with my right foot (up near the little toes) cramping after standing for a while and doing any extended physical activity. A couple of years ago I went to a charlatan foot doctor who diagnosed a neuroma and did 3 shots of alcohol to kill a nerve in my foot. This seemed to work for about 6 months and then I was right back where I started, expect I had lost some muscular control in my foot (presumably from the alcohol shots which damaged the nerve he was targeting).
I felt that the outside part of my front right foot was bending downwards. I thought maybe my right foot was wider than my left but measurement did not show this. However, I found that I could get some relief by cutting out part of the right side of my shoes?
A few months back, I went to another doctor who could find nothing wrong from the x-ray but recommended physical therapy. I’ve heard mixed reports on PT before so wasn’t particularly happy with this diagnosis, but said what the hey and scheduled a few appointments.
The therapist found some swelling in my foot and said the problems were probably due to extreme muscle and ligament tightness and poor alignment.
After 3 treatments, I began to notice improvement in the condition and my foot felt a lot better.
I then got a new pair of orthotics. Next I measured my foot myself at a shoe store (instead of letting the clerk do it). I discovered that my foot size was really a 10 1/2, not a 10, the size I had been wearing my whole adult life. So I brought new sneaks and some shoes at size 10 1/2.
The therapist also gave me some exercises to do for my feet and showed me a variety of stretching movements also. While I had always stretch before a workout, what I learned and what I do now is much more extensive and deeper.
I began (and regularly do now) these exercises, stretching and also self-massage of both feet, ankles and calves. After years of pain, I no longer have the problem on my right foot (at least not right now).
I subsequently undertook PT for my right shoulder and neck which has given me much pain for many years (I had rotator cuff surgery back in 1991 on the right shoulder). Again, through a program of various exercises, stretching and massage, my shoulder is much better than it previously was and I have much more flexibility now. I am of the opinion that I may not have needed shoulder surgery originally if the doctor had pushed me into PT.
So on top of my regular workouts, I now also do regular deep stretching and self-massage. I’ve developed certain exercises that I can even do while I am sitting at my desk. Overall, I feel genuinely better all over.
Taking off your shoes is probably helpful. But also try stretching and self-massage, not only for your feet but for all parts of your body.
btw: I brought a book on stretching that was recommended by my therapist. This book is hard to find through normal search engines and looks out of print. However (after I wound up paying $100 for this book), I found another source that is selling the same book for $40. The book is called Auto Stretching. This is a great book with nice graphics showing exactly what muscles are being attended to. I highly recommend this book to anyone. Go to:
and type in “autostretching”.
I've found that taking your shoes off is calming, peaceful and will help you enjoy your home more.
Good luck and find peace in your home.
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