Submitted by [deleted] in anticiv (edited )



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celebratedrecluse wrote

I would highly recommend wearing shoes in urban areas, because glass/petroleum/plastic/other harmful material may get embedded in, or absorbed by, your body.


haystacks_ wrote

I've been trying, but years of working on my feet in steel toe shoes have resulted in a couple of corns that make walking barefoot on hard surfaces absolutely unbearable. But I do recommend some minimal sandals. One of my friends and I made some out of cord we made from some tree roots, and they were amazing while camping. Kept our ankles limber while protecting the soles of our feet from stones or sharp debris. Plus since they were made solely for our feet by us, they were a perfect fit. Only downside was they wore out fairly rapidly and needed regular replacing. If you have the time and means, I highly recommend.


GaldraChevaliere wrote (edited )

I used to go barefoot absolutely everywhere and did a significant part of my last big hike without shoes after my boots got ruined by a storm. I'd be a lot more worried about what you'd step on in a city than, say, what you'd step on in a forest. Even after about a year since I started grudgingly wearing shoes since hot asphalt and bare feet don't mix and I live somewhere much warmer than I'm used to now, I still have fairly rough and calloused feet. I guess my best advice if you don't want to wear light sandals or something is to keep a light step. If you move quickly and keep your weight shifting between your heel and the ball of your foot you'll deal better with gravel or rough rock than if you had stepped flatly on it.

E: Other bit of advice now that I've had a nap. Walk like goats, not like men. You'll be a lot more comfortable if you pick your steps and keep limber instead of just planting your feet down every time. When I go barefoot hiking I take a lighter pack and move with more hopping, loping or trotting motions than the kind of stomp I'm used to in boots. Your feet will react a lot more quickly once you've learned the ground beneath you, and it's important to learn to pick out and avoid bad ground without thinking about it if you don't want to get sick or hurt. Rainstorms were miserable until I picked up the knack for finding firm ground among mud.


JayGrym wrote (edited )

Out of curiosity, will you be posting a daily summary of your barefoot adventures? I noticed you labeled the post Day 1. It might be a cool idea to add a "Barefoot Adventures" forum and post a daily summary. As more people decide to try conducting life without footwear, they could add their own daily summaries. Idk, it seems cool and most businesses have the whole no shoes, no service rule so it could make for some interesting tales. On a side note, the "no shoes, no shirt, no service" rule seems like it could have been implemented as a way to discriminate against indigenous people, anyone know if that's the case?

EDIT: Apparently the rule is very unofficial as is the history. It was implemented as a way to discriminate against African Americans (too poor at the time to afford footwear) and hippies from what I was able to find.


Blackbeard wrote

I spent several years going shoeless wherever and whenever possible. I grew up near Chicago, and went barefoot around there plenty without ever having problems (I wore shoes when it was too cold of course). After a while you find that you are constantly scanning the sidewalk in front of you for dangerous objects, so I very very rarely ever stepped on more than a small piece of glass that didn't actually get past my callouses. By far, my biggest problem was public bathrooms in the city- fucking nasty! I have yet to enter a public men's room that wasn't covered with at least half an inch of unidentifiable liquid.

As far as entering public buildings, most people don't even notice you aren't wearing shoes, and if I recall correctly, there aren't really any legal grounds for "no shoes no service." Even in restaurants/cafeterias, the fact is you aren't eating with your feet. And, I wash my feet daily, and I have never ever washed the bottoms of my shoes, so which one is really dirtier? How many people are walking into a restaurant with tiny bits of shit/spit/gasoline/oil stuck to their shoes?

The biggest downside for me was that my feet would be calloused all the time, and black after walking around all day. So, if you go to your friend's house and they have white carpet, they might not be super cool with your dirty ass feet walking all over it. You can take off your shoes, but you'd have to go wash your feet in their sink or something. I also developed some pretty righteous callouses which can be a little off-putting for some people, particularly in more intimate settings. For these reasons, I now only really go barefoot in around the neighborhood and in natural settings, like parks and the like, and wear sandals the rest of the time. But, I must say that I was quite proud of my tough feet- I could walk across pretty hot blacktop, hike for hours through the woods, walk across gravel and rock beds, etc. It's a fun experience, and it puts you more in touch with your environment and your body, and studies show that going barefoot on the earth is beneficial physically and mentally.