On the importance of jumping in puddles

Blog entry posted by Christian Barefooteur, Jun 6, 2011.

When I was a kid, 3 or 4 years old at best, it rained a lot during certain times of the year in Bellevue, near Seattle. This was not a problem for me, since getting wet was part of the fun of being a kid. One day, after a typical Northwest monsoon, I asked permission to go play with the neighbor's kids, and my mother agreed, on the condition that I wear my rubber boots. Fine. A little while later, the neighbor called, wondering if it was normal that little Christian was over at their place, wearing boots but nothing else !

These days I've inversed the clothing equation when enjoying a good run on a rainy day. Few experiences can match the primality of running barefoot through puddles. Caveat for fledgling barefooters - barefooting on rough, wet surfaces can generate a world of hurt on your feet, temporarily, so watch your step. The more efficient your stride, the less friction produced by your soles. I annihilated months of trained skin, generating deep painful blisters, by attempting a wet 10 mile run, but likely you have more sense than I do...

At any rate, I rediscovered the joys of puddle-jumping last winter, in minimalist shoes (kigo edge and ZEMgear) because frankly, these types of shoes are veritable sponges. Naturally, as my barefoot confidence rises, I've been seeking out all available puddles during my runs. Shame that Paris hasn't had any rain in over two months...


So when rain finally fell, I knew what to do! As I explained to my surprised barefoot running companion, puddle jumping nurtures the kid locked inside all of us adults. A little kicking up of barefoot heels heals even life-hardened grown-ups... So this is a “toes” to a bit of salutary silliness !

Christian "Barefooteur"
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