Yoga is traditionally done barefoot, and most yogis would probably cringe at the thought of wearing shoes or even socks during their practice. #FreeTheFoot, amirite people? In all seriousness, though, you're probably really accustomed to doing yoga barefoot and don't even give it a second thought at this point — but that might not always be the best idea, according to at least one expert.
I don't know about you, but I think there's something very liberating about being barefoot, whether it's during yoga or even when you're just hanging out around the house. "The fat on the bottom of your foot is the only cushion between your foot bones and the floor." In other words, you know those one-legged yoga poses that test your balance, like tree pose?
Putting all your weight on such a small group of muscles might not be a great idea, as it could increase your chances of injury. "All these small muscles are contracted and you're exerting force with all your body weight on your feet," You're most likely to experience this barefoot discomfort during yoga if you're just starting out with the practice, or if you don't practice that often in general. “Pain in feet can come from overuse and doing a new exercise,"
The podiatrist says its really older people, people with bunions (aka bumps that can form on the base joint of your big toe), and again, anyone who's either new to yoga or recovering from an injury, who should proceed with the most caution here. The most common barefoot yoga injuries, include inflammation, sprains, strains, and pinched nerves. Not a fun time, fam. Namastay away from that blasphemy. And what's worse, the podiatrist adds, the barefoot yoga struggles aren't simply limited to foot pain.
Being barefoot during yoga, depending on where exactly you're practicing, could also make you more susceptible to picking up contagious skin viruses that may cause plantar warts. So how can you stay careful and safe if you do decide to practice yoga barefoot? if you start to feel pain in your foot in the middle of a class, it's important to stop immediately and rest for a bit. "Sit down, stretch, and massage the area,"
"Wait until the pain subsides, and really be honest about whether you should jump back into class — don't try to just work through it.” Be sure to wait a day or so before practicing yoga again. If the pain returns, becomes worse, or persists. Stretch the arches of your feet and warm up by practising some of the movements you know you'll be doing during the class — tree posers, unite! "After a few classes and slowly over time, your feet should get used to some of the motions as your foot muscles get stronger," And as for avoiding those skin viruses, the podiatrist suggests steering clear of rental studio mats in your yoga classes. Instead, bring your own mat just to be safe, and be sure to clean it with a sanitizing wipe after each use. "Also, [remember to] use clean flip flops or socks when walking around the studio," Sutera says. Barefoot and buck-wild might sound appealing, but pinched nerves and plantar warts sure don't.
You know the feeling when you're so ridiculously sore after an intense workout that you can barely convince yourself to stand up, let alone execute normal, everyday activities? Like that time you challenged yourself to do 100 squats in one workout, or that fitness class you went to that, for some reason, focused on burpees way too much? But before we get into what those yummy foods are, let's talk about why that soreness happens in the first place.
"The very easy explanation is that you break muscle fibers down during exercise, and then your body builds them back up while healing, causing inflammation." So, basically, even though soreness doesn't exactly feel pleasant, it usually means you did something right in your workout, and as a result, your muscles are growing, repairing, and making you stronger.