Monday, June 28, 2010

Dancing With Nature

“The press of my foot to the earth springs a hundred affections.”
-Walt Whitman

There's been a lot of joy around here these days. With the arrival of Summer, we've all been feeling a little freer and happier. One of my favorite things about the warm weather is watching the boys slip off their shoes outdoors and run around freely and joyfully. Recently I've decided to join them in their fun and have joined "The Barefoot Movement".

It all began when a friend had recommended the book Born To Run. I was inspired by story of the reclusive, gentle tribe of Tarahumara Indians of Mexico who had mastered the lost art of running for survival and more importantly, for joy and the runners who came from all over to learn from them. The book was an inspiration on so many levels. It was an epiphany to read about how the expensive, highly padded shoes that we run in today can actually cause damage to our bodies, rather than letting our feet develop as they were meant to support our body movement. I loved the idea of bringing running back to the most basic elements, my feet and the ground beneath them.

I have been learning that the journey of going barefoot must be taken slowly. My feet are relearning how to move. My pace is often slow and meditative as I practice walking with the balls of my feet hitting the ground first rather than the heel. With this gait, my body adjusts itself naturally where my torso and back straighten up and I can feel myself breathe more deeply. I feel graceful and I feel at peace.

Hiking through trails has become a dance with nature as I learn to step lightly, skipping around tree roots and stones. I feel as if I'm becoming one with the Earth as all my senses become focused upon each step. As my feet strengthen and I'm able to run among the trees, I start feeling the joy that had been lost encumbered by shoes. It's as if I am a pebble skipping across a lake, lightly dancing across the surface. The other day as I finished a long run/hike through the woods, I found myself laughing with pure and utter joy as I sprinted through the last quarter mile... it had just been that much fun.


It's funny that now I find it difficult to wear conventional shoes, they just feel too constricting and I tend to clod around like Frankenstein's monster, not knowing how to move with my feet bound! So I bought some shoes that are meant to simulate the feel of being barefoot. Not exactly the most attractive of shoes, but I do love them so for just the absolute fun in wearing them!

Vibram Five Finger Sprints

But after all that is said and done, nothing beats going barefoot. I've often wondered if perhaps by touching the ground, some of the thousand of nerve endings in my foot are releasing endorphins to my brain. Not being a scientist, I don't know the answer, but I just know the bliss I feel by feeling connected to the Earth...


Happy Barefoot Summer to All!

As Always With Love and Light,
Marina

26 comments:

Simple Mama said...

How do your feet look so darn cute with all that barefootedness? Mine would look like hobbit feet after a hike through the hills without shoes.

Christine - Origami Mommy said...

These photographs are just so lovely. What a wonderful concept, the idea of going barefoot as our bodies were made to do.

Natasha said...

Marina,
That first photo is fantastic,great capture of movement:0)
Happy summer x

Gwynneth Beasley said...

What a lovely post! My Mum encouraged me to go barefoot but I was trying it on a treadmill. It felt fine but I was just a lot slower. I think I will try it your way - with the dirt under foot - defintely would be bliss!

healing hillary said...

I love being barefoot. I'll have to check out the book. Thanks for the recommendation!

cat said...

i love this post! and i hate your feet..haha they are so beautiful! seriously, mine would NOT be so graceful or uniform..LOL

i love that you are doing this. you are inspiring me to find the book and try it out. i don't run, bad knees, but i can walk!

love you lady! xoxoooxox

CHILDHOOD MAGIC said...

wow! nice feet!

renee ~ heirloom seasons said...

Wonderful Marina! Sometimes Jason and the girls go on barefoot walks through the forest...
Good to touch the earth!
XOXO

Nicola (Which Name?) said...

I love that foot picture at the bottom, Marina! And Matteo, too. :)
You might be interested in Renee and Damien's blog Adventure in Progress.
http://www.adventureinprogress.com/

Huge hugs. Looking forward to joining you in some barefoot adventures this summer
Nicola

江婷 said...

河水永遠是相同的,可是每一剎那又都是新的。......................................................................

Tahara said...

That's amazing!...I never knew walking barefoot could be so great...You make me want to try it!...Your feet are lovely by the way :-)

Heather said...

Barefoot is how I remember my childhood, and how I enjoy watching my children's. Thanks for the reminder, and have a great weekend

靜宸靜宸靜宸 said...

成熟,就是有能力適應生活中的模糊。.................................................................

宜FH定博林P'韓T彥 said...

當一個人內心能容納兩樣相互衝突的東西,這個人便開始變得有價值了。............................................................

童雅 said...

Say not all that you know, believe not all that you hear.............................................................

JasonBirk佳琪 said...

很棒的分享~留言支持!.......................................................

ju吳phe宇te佳ns said...

生活總是起起伏伏,心情要保持快樂才好哦!!.......................................................

育隆 said...

感謝不吝分享您的心得............................................................

楊儀卉 said...

祝福您春風得意。............................................................

香昱信張君林 said...

Lets cross the bridge when we come to it............................................................

christina said...

Wow, what a lovely post. Absolutely love the photo of feet flowers and sky, gorgeous.
I too LOVE to go barefoot and do so most of the time, resulting in some generally dirty calloused feet, and yet I cannot help but wander out to feel the warmth of the earth through my feet, connecting and as you mention stimulating all those nerve endings in the feet.
Wonder if you have noticed Gardenmama's photo challenge which coincidentally centers around...well feet:)
Warmly,
Christina

softearthart said...

Cool blog, cheers from New Zealand, Marie

earthboysblog said...

My children are always barefoot. Their feet are a little rough but they love it,, the connection with the earth. They are so agile within their bodies. They run on hard stones, thorns etc. Nothing seems to bother them.

Beautiful blog, beautiful words. Thanks for sharing beautiful feet.

Oh,, and a very sexy bikini :}
www.earthboysblog.com. You don't have a name and url in your comments section so I can only leave a message as a google account but I don't have a blogspot.

承蘋承蘋 said...

生命所經歷的折磨愈多,其所產生的奮鬥力愈大。............................................................

Catherine Lowe said...

Oww i love the footsie photos! just found you, love your work :)

國林維 said...

Learning makes life sweet.