Strengthening the foot and leg muscles: Sand provides resistance, so walking requires more energy while strengthening all your muscles between your feet and back, particularly in your legs and buttocks. However, beware of overdoing it or you could get painful ‘shin splints’! Start slowly and gradually increase your distance.
Burning calories: walking in the sand with or without shoes uses more energy than walking on flat surfaces. One study from Berkley Wellness showed as much as a 50% increase in calorie burn compared to walking the same distance in the same time on pavement.
Massaging and exfoliating the feet: besides feeling great, a brisk walk on sand gently massages the soles of the feet which activates venous and lymphatic circulation, while gently exfoliating the skin at the same time.
Grounding: the ground, including sand, is electrically charged with an excess of negative ions which are absorbed through the soles of the feet. The negatively charged ions provide a strong source of anti-oxidants in the body which produce many health benefits, one of which is thought to be an anti-inflammatory effect.
Improving proprioception: “The ability to sense stimuli arising within the body regarding position, motion, and equilibrium”. With around 5,000 nerve endings in each foot, walking barefoot in the sand makes us keenly aware of where we are walking and what we are walking on.
Finally – relaxing: it is really hard to focus on work or to be angry etc. when we are ‘feeling’ all that sand under our feet and between our toes!
Don’t forget: start off slowly with a short distance then gradually increase every day. Wear sunscreen and a hat if you are not used to the sun and don’t forget to apply Footlogix Rough Skin or Cracked Heel to protect your feet.