During his training to become a Podiatrist, Tim learned that the principles we use for the rest of the body didn't apply to feet.
His athletic and sports training revolved around progressive overload, specificity in training, and variation; to speed-up adaptation.
Traditional training involves conditioning the body to handle more load, more efficiently, and for longer periods. But, this principle was the opposite of what he was taught in podiatry, about the feet.
The feet were these blobs of flesh on the end of your legs that needed special shoes, special socks, padding, support, nurturing, inserts, and cushioning - the more cushioning the better! Right?
Tim asked himself, why do we treat the feet so delicately. The feet are incredibly well engineered to handle most situations. Even bare feet can handle flat terrain, off-road terrain, climbing, jumping, walking, and running.
Why then do so many people require (rely?) on so-called ‘supportive’ shoes and orthotics? Are your feet permanently busted?
Imagine walking around with a knee brace or a wrist brace on permanently - for the rest of your life - just for some ’support’.
It doesn’t make sense that artificial supports are required for the feet, forever, when every other body part that is supported after injury, like torn ligaments, strained muscles, broken bones, surgery - the artificial support is always temporary.
We lose what feet were as toddlers through wearing shoes. Good, bad or otherwise doesn't matter, we lose a lot of that natural inherent strength that we have.
The 33 joints in each foot are not meant to be restricted. The only reason we have a joint is movement. When you have 33 joints, in one foot, you just think about how much movement the foot is capable of, and how much movement the foot is designed to do. And in how many different planes of motion? And the simple answer is - all of them.
A lot of Australian kids run around barefoot from age one through to five, except those whose parents are actually putting shoes on them. Because Mum and Dad have been told to support their own feet with supportive shoes and orthotics they are using the same principles to try to prevent problems in their kid’s feet.
Now here's the big thing - if children's feet are good, and we put him in supportive shoes we're taking away from the function of the children's feet.
To make this point even stronger; If I sit here and say should we put children on blood pressure tablets, just because Mum and Dad need them, just to prevent problems, I’m going to create more problems that I’m ever going to solve.
Healthy feet don't need supportive shoes, unhealthy feet do.
So if we put healthy children's feet into supportive shoes, we're doing them a disservice.
To see the whole interview with Tim Bransdon, Click Here