Try barefoot walking

The Naturalista, Xochi Balfour, explains the benefits of barefoot walking


Try barefoot walking

Earthing, or barefoot walking, is one of the simplest ways to, quite literally, ground ourselves.

I find this particularly beneficial in the city, where we can so easily become disconnected from our natural environment.

Kicking off our shoes for a walk in the park is an instant way to press ‘reset’ and reconnect with nature when we are caught up in everyday stresses. 

Research reveals that, when we touch the ground with the soles of our feet, exposing specialised pores, we are able to absorb the earth’s electrons.

These are thought to help balance the autonomic nervous system, which controls our stress-response mechanisms.

We spend more time in the sympathetic (or ‘fight or flight’) state than we used to, and the negative effects on health are recognisable as widespread modern imbalances.

Barefoot walking can bring these back into harmony, and regulate our natural day-night cortisol rhythm.

We sleep better, feel better and strengthen our natural resources.

Photograph: iStock