Questions & Answers

time to adjust to bare feet

I have been going barefoot for 5 months now and I am wondering how long it should take until the feet will not hurt after a day of working. The hurt I refer to is the connecting ligaments between the toes and bones in the top of the feet and the plantar tendon. I should mention I am not running but I do maintenance around a cottage resort. I am up and down a hill all day. Carrying loads of lumber or what have you. the ground is mixed forest, grass and sandy scree. By the end of day when I sit for awhile my feet hurt for the first few steps when I get up.... not just the plantar facitias issue but between the bones in the instep. I have high arches, spent years in the gym so have what would be termed over developed calves so I understand this can be a problem for the plantar issue. Thanks Geoff


Answers and Replies


I would have thought after this much time barefoot those muscles would loosen. I actually had less problems the first two months then I have recently. I do the first stretch shown but not the last two so I will add those and see if helps.....Thanks!!

When I was going to the gym I was up to 560 lb leg presses and after doing 3 sets of those I would simply slide my feet down to do calf extensions with the same weight. It has been about 6 years since I was doing those though.

thanks again I will post how it goes



Do you have tight gastroc/soleus muscles? That could put a lot of stress in the areas your describing. If your calves are tight it drives the front of your feet into the ground with each step. Something has to give and it's the muscles and tendons between the bones. Being irritated all day and then you sit down everything tightens up. Then when you stand the muscles have to stretch out and the pain you feel is micro tears. A good stretching program would help, especially with the getting up after sitting.

Here's 3 stretches that can help. Hold each move for 60sec and do this twice a day.



would agree on assessing calf mobility as well as large toe mobility (plantar fascia tightness?). doing a basic squat will assess your calf mobility and see if large toe dorsiflexes 30 degrees when anke is fully dorsiflexed (bent up).

it often takes a solid year to get foot up to barefoot strength also .

Dr. Mark Cucuzzella


I can not get the left big toe to come up more then about 10 degrees. Right toe/ toes move fine. I did a 6km hike in moccasins on Sunday and half way through that left toe was hurting. As soon as I go barefoot it is fine. Unfortunately the ground was not good for barefoot.

Also the left hip is the one the gives me trouble. Feels like it gets out of it's socket if I squat. Rather annoying. All this goes away when I am barefoot. Winter is coming and I hope to not lose the gains I have made this summer. guess this means lots of stretching. By the way folding the toes under....tops of toes against the ground and stretching that way feels great a releases a lot of tension. UPDATE Sometime in Feb, about 10 months in I noticed one night that my toe can be flexed right back same as the right one.

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