Thursday, June 5, 2008

The Barefoot Baby Brain

© Buchanan Design. Image from

Barbara was working with Google's translating search engine and she came across a Japanese web page with the curious title, Fitness and Barefoot Baby Brain. It was translated from Chinese so the language is a bit awkward but also very amusing.

We had heard in the past that schools in Japan were having their students go barefoot to develop themselves physically. What we did not know is that it had extend to barefooted baby brains. The article Barbara found was a Japanese article about how kindergarden schools are removing concrete floors in their gyms and replacing them sand.

They are doing this because Japanese child care experts are convinced that being barefooted has important effects on a child's development. "Child-care experts believe that barefoot training for the children's physical and intellectual development brings enormous benefits - barefoot exercise is the biggest contribution to the brain's puzzle, can enhance children's intellectual level."

The web page goes on to outline the various benefits of the barefoot baby and the impact on the nervous system. They see it as a healthy environment for developing parts of the brain left untouched by shoes.

Japan, Germany and China are all advocates of barefooted babies. Are we losing the barefooted baby brain race? Will these barefoot baby brains out performed our Western shoed baby brains?

I have always said that health is but one of the wonderful things about reflexology. We have felt that the impact on the mental side of our lives has never been really thoroughly addressed.

It looks like the stimulation to the unshod foot has more than health at it's core as well. It may extend to the barefooted baby brain as well.

Kevin Kunz

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