Archive for January, 2011


Welcome to the home of Westman Rehab! Isn’t is great when common sense lines up with results of a study? In two separate studies going barefoot was analyzed. One study showed foot proprioception*  lessens with age due to the loss of tactile ( or touch sensitivity). Secondly, it showed that shoes impair proprioception in both young and old–due to the loss of plantar tactile sensitivity. For thousands of years we have used little to no support on our feet. Now we use huge heels, various arch supports, etc.
Runners in many other countries often run on their forefoot and don’t land hard on their heels. We have such great cushioned shoes that our running style usually involves a heel strike in front of us where the greatest amount collision forces occur. Another study showed that collision forces were much less in forefoot running as typically seen when running barefoot as opposed to running normally even when using a very cushioned heel.
Of course, there are cases where shoes are necessary and where arches are so fallen that they have to be supported. However, there are ways to strengthen the muscles that support the arch so that by slowly developing your strength, muscular awareness and endurance you may be able to have more freedom in what you have to wear on your feet.
Of course this January weather presents another problem!

*Proprioception – the body’s ability to sense the movements and positions of its parts

Robbins S,Waked E, McClaran J Proprioception and stability: foot position awareness as a function of age and footwear. Age Aging. 1995 Jan : 24(1):67-72

Lieberman DE et al Foot strike patterns and collision forces n habitually barefoot versus shod runners. Nature 2010 Jan 28:463(2780):531-5


Read Full Post »


Welcome the the home of Westman Rehab. Stay tuned for new information regarding myofascial stretching and the latest on footwear or lack thereof

Read Full Post »