Pirates also used to be barefoot !

20130802-182318.jpgDuring vacation, I went barefoot in the French Carribean (islands of Guadeloupe). My first impression of being a pirate is very positive but I’m missing a parrot 😉

Barefoot living is so much fun !

I highly recommend the barefoot lifestyle in Guadeloupe and Martinique.

Anyone with a barefoot experience to share in the Carribean (not at the beach, please) ?

Toe Camp

If you’ve been wearing shoes for most of the winter or, even worse, most of your life, you will need some serious barefoot practice in order to become fully at ease. Ideally, you will spend a few hours a day and a few days a week exposing your feet to a wide range of sensations and situations, which will also enables you to get used to feeling the ground and other people’s reactions. This is what I call Toe Camp.

Last weekend I took a trip to the Bernese Alps for a four-day meditation retreat. I decided from the start that I would try to stay barefoot the entire time. I’d already been mostly barefoot for a full three weeks so I figured it wouldn’t be hard. I walked to the the station barefoot, took several trains, and rode the bus barefoot, then climbed the hill to the center alongside other retreat participants as if I did this all the time (which, actually, I pretty much do).

I already knew that socks were compulsory in the meditation hall (supposedly for “hygienc reasons”) and had packed a pair. Ironically, the Buddha statue stayed shoeless the entire time. The green Tara also showed off her bare soles while sporting most interesting footwear. I sat in awe, my feet trapped in a thin layer of cotton. However, in spite of the regulations’ incentive to “please wear slippers in the house”, I was allowed to go barefoot as soon as I left the hall.


And barefoot I went. The weather was beautiful on Thursday and I discovered a lovely path which started off with a patch of crackled dry mud, then a short distance of broken slate stone, followed by a wooden bridge and a trail winding through the woods. Roots, needles, leaves, moss, smooth stones, tree stumps and small streams made the area very interesting. I forded a narrow river and walked through squishy marshy pastures where my feet were powdered yellow by pollen. But on Friday it started snowing. And it went on snowing. At that altitude I knew it could snow, even in May, but a centimetre or two weren’t going to stop me. I’ve been barefoot on snow and ice before, and it’s ok for a short while. I can walk longer on snow than in snow, however, and the 20 centimetres which soon covered the ground were a bit too much to handle. I had many short strolls on that day but never left the vicinity of the house. By Saturday the wind had turned and the snow was melting. I put a pair of sandals in the back pocket of my jeans and strode along the road. I took a left turn and that’s where I had a painful incident. I’d read about road salt on the web but hadn’t experienced it for myself. Suddenly I felt a very odd sensation under my feet, something like a chemical burn. I jumped off the road and tried to clean my soles in the snow, then put on the sandals and went straight back to the centre. I rinsed my feet in the shower and the sensation gradually wore away. I haven’t had many negative experiences when going barefoot but this was definitely not a pleasant one. Seasoned barefooters of the North, how do you deal with this?

A few hours later I was back on the road, sandals on again, and then I walked across the fields. I mean, this was an ideal situation: I could walk through snow as much as I wanted without taking any risk since I could turn back at any time, plus this was a silent retreat – nobody could say anything! On Sunday the snow had cleared and regular barefooting resumed. When the retreat came to an end, people came to me, saying “So you’re the one who is always barefoot!” and asked lots of questions. I’d earned my barefoot status.

Urban Toe Camp is great, too, if that’s your immediate environment. Be creative and let yourself become as curious as a young child. When a surface, texture, or structure catches your attention, ask yourself “I wonder how this would feel” and immediately proceed to explore it with your feet. You’ll soon be so happy that you’ll forget any self-consciousness. Seek out new experiences and challenge yourself, but be patient. Never push yourself through pain. Instead, let yourself be guided by the pleasure of discovery. Have a wonderful Toe Camp!



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Usual life but barefoot life !

This week end was a 4 days week-end. The kind of week-end many French people like me enjoy a lot :-)

So, I enjoyed the sun and the warm temperature of spring to walk in Aix-en-Provence. It is a very nice city to go barefoot but there is nearly no barefooter except me !

I went to place de la rotonde and sit nearby a fountain, got a drink in a bar to refresh me and enjoyed the differents textures on the grounds. Asusual in this city my soles tuend black but as you can see my feet also get very tough.

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Turistika naboso ( Barefoot walking , Barfuss touristik )

Turistika naboso. Bosý životní styl.

Source: Turistika naboso ( Barefoot walking , Barfuss touristik )

Enjoy Spring !


Spring is the perfect season to start your barefooting lifestyle !

Mild temperature are far better than hot summer ones. Start by a little walk everyday rather than many hours from times to times. Kick off your shoes after work  and feel the freedom of being barefoot !

Once your feet will be in condition they will be ready for summer which is a difficult season for walking barefoot.


Barefoot in Geneva

I started barefooting about three years ago. I’d done it pretty freely as a child;  my parents didn’t care too much if I played barefoot around the house and street as long as the weather was decent. I rediscovered that pleasure as a teenager when I took solitary walks in the nearby forest and tried to toughen my soles. But when I moved to a small town in my early 20s, it never occured to me that I could maintain the habit. Although I sometimes tiptoed down the stairs to the letter box or to haul the bin out in front of the building,  it didn’t extend very far into the public realm. I thought the city was dirty and dangerous. Worse than that: what would people think?

In May 2012 I stumbled upon the online world of barefooting and realised that there were others doing this full-time, even in urban environments. They learned to survive the stares and occasional comments thrown their way by passersby. I immediately took my shoes off, went out for a short walk, and soon started to experiment with various surfaces, areas of town, and a range of establishments. My favourite activity is hiking; given a chance I’ll be traipsing around moss and mud and smooth mountain stone. But I’ve now discovered that although city streets are dirty, I can wash my feet when I get home, and the town is nowhere near as hazardous as I believed. Since the city is where I live, the city is also where I go barefoot.

I’ve worn cowboy boots over the winter and my poor toes are all cramped together and weak. It’s time to free my soles for the warmer season! I’ve made this pledge: no closed shoe until the next frost. Anyone care to join me?

1 Year Update: Barefoot in Public + How To Get Started | Barefoot and Paleo

Source: 1 Year Update: Barefoot in Public + How To Get Started | Barefoot and Paleo

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