- 生涯スポーツ学研究 (ISSN:13488619)
- vol.8, no.2, pp.1-9, 2012-03-31 (Released:2012-11-01)
Some pre- and primary schools are running barefoot programs where children spend days with barefoot. This study reviewed research on barefoot education and made some recommendations in education. One of the goals of barefoot is to develop the arch height which is difficult to measure directly. Instead, the footprint image is mainly used to estimate arch height. There are some limitations to the footprint image method, since the method estimates the vertical arch height from the horizontal footprint. However a large number of studies showed that the developed medial longitudinal arch judged by the H-line is likely to have normal arch height. In case of less developed longitudinal arch, both greater BMI due to less physical activities and developed sole muscles seen in some athletes might be valid explanations. Barefoot programs were shown to develop the medial longitudinal arch probably due to more activities of foot fingers than to the case of being tightly bound in shoes. Children with flat feet are recommended to go barefoot unless she or he is diagnosed and recommended to receive medical treatment. Increased balance ability, less occurrences of catching a cold, decreased injury cases, among others are also reported as beneficial aspects of going barefoot.