Most of us are born with two feet. What do we really know about them other than we use them to take us places, we can kick things out of the way, or they are good for pushing off and landing? I especially like the fact that I get to dress them up with really WOW shoes! Today we will explore our feet and discover some fun human feet facts.
BONES AND SWEAT
Wow, each cute little foot has 26 bones. That amounts to nearly a quarter of all the bones in our entire body. Such a small part of our body and so many bones! Even the brand new baby foot has all these bones. Although, have you noticed that the baby foot doesn’t quite look like an adult foot?
Even though babies still have 26 bones in each foot, they don’t seem to have arches.
There is a fatty pad that will protect the nerve endings of the baby foot till it toughens up at about age 2 1/2 years. Then we start seeing a more familiar shape.
Before you know it, those cute little tootsies turn into growing adolescent feet. Watch out now. Enter a new interesting event; sweat glands, yep, a throbbing crazy 250,000 of ’em. And, what do those 250,000 sweat glands do? Yes, you are correct, they sweat, up to a half pint of sweat in a single day. Now just think about that. Somewhere in this world there is a research scientist who is tasked to measure foot sweat.
This would be why boys have such stinky shoes and socks when they take them off after a hot basketball game! Their shoes and socks trap odor-causing bacteria caused by the sweat. Just what bacteria love, dark and damp environments.
THE PERFECT PAIR
Are all feet alike? In my early years, I was working in a nail salon and I specialized in Pedicures. I will tell you right now, all feet are not alike! Though similar in performance, every foot has its own personality. There were definitely categories or styles that I noticed and they seem to fit the personality of the person whose foot I held in my hands.
I am giving you an example of three foot styles. If you are interested in learning more, check out
Let’s Read Our Feet author Jane Sheehan
Which foot style do you fit? I used to do simple “foot readings” (like palm reading I guess) for my clients in those days. It was fun and sometimes right on the mark.
Following the above diagram:
1. The most common foot shape of all, belongs to someone who enjoys being pampered. This person likes to be taken care of, and appreciate nature, beauty and art.
2. People with the first three toes in alignment tend to be outgoing. They find joy in discovering new cultures and new surroundings .
3. That long second toe tells of a sporty and creative person. There are leadership qualities here and perhaps a flair for the dramatic.
Feet are wide and narrow. Some have high arches and some are flat-footed. I doubt there is one pair that looks the same as another. But, they all seem to have similar functions and similar abuses.
Historically, a method of corporal punishment called foot whipping took place. It is like flogging or caning. It is not intended to create injury, but to create intense pain for the person being punished. Why is this so terrifying?
The sole of our foot has more sensory nerve endings per square inch than any other part of the body. It seems to be the most sensitive part of our body. I don’t recommend a foot whipping, so just take a feather and tickle someones foot. I dare say, since it is the most ticklish part of our body, it will feel like a punishment!
With new technology tracking our steps, we calculate that the average person can walk around 110,000 miles in their lifetime. Since our feet are the natural shock absorbers for our bodies, you can imagine how each foot feels with the weight of your body as you walk. My Podiatrist (Foot Doctor) explained to me that when you run, your feet feel your weight by five times. That is a lot of pressure.
With that in mind, let’s think about shoes and how important they are in todays world. In a natural state of being, our feet touch heel and ball. When I walk barefoot on the beach sands, the footprint left shows two parts, the heel imprint and the ball of the foot with toes. Our toes need to spread and flex. Barefoot seems so much more natural and comfortable.
In fact, humans started out without shoes. I read once that the first leather shoe was discovered around 5,500 years ago in an Armenian cave. It really was a long time before we began the discomfort of ill-fitted shoes.
Growing up, I never liked wearing shoes, till I became a teenager and wanted to wear heels. They made me feel so adult! However, it is really difficult to LOOK grown up when you can’t stand up or walk in the silly things.
Centuries ago, the high heel was designed for men not women. During the 10th century, horse riding Persian men wore heels to keep their feet in the stirrups… 10th century cowboys! By the 18th century, women took over the high-heeled shoes.
Since I am from Kansas, I must share this little nugget of information: Dorothy’s shoes from the Wizard of Oz (strapped heels) sold for $660.000.
Feet, though relatively small in comparison to the rest of the human body, are tasked with providing our strong footing and supporting our balance as we master the art of walking, running, jumping, and dancing. I put in dancing as I believe every pair of feet should learn to feel the joy as well as the pain of dance. I’m betting if you are a dancer who has experienced many partners on that dance floor, you know exactly what I speak of.
How well do you understand and appreciate your own feet? Many of us never pay much attention to them until they begin to ache and throb. These perfect feet that we have are probably the most unappreciated parts of our body. As women, we give in to fashion and punish our feet with 5 inch heels and pointy toes.
Athletics foot attacks our toes because we don’t allow our feet to breathe. Our feet suffer from corns, bunions, and blisters because we don’t get good shoes that fit our feet.
As a result, our general health can disintegrate. Pain in the feet is often a signal of more serious health issues within our bodies. Knowing a few facts, may make your day brighter and your feet happier.
As always, I would love to read your comments about this article. What do you think about human feet facts?
Get Happy Feet,