April officially marks National Foot Health Awareness Month – which means it’s about that time to get those feet of yours back into shape.

Here’s a question for you. Why are your feet so important? Think about it, just for a second. Your feet touch the ground whenever you’re standing, most of the time when you’re sitting down, walking or running; they are the extensions of the legs which, uh… help you move in general. Your feet are pretty much the foundation of the human body, which means keeping your feet happy and healthy is SO important.

When designing shoes here at Lems, we base all of our decisions on this fact alone. Our goal is to keep your feet happy, healthy and in the most natural state that they can possibly be in. If you’re familiar with our shoes, you know the three characteristics that we live by: zero-drop, lightweight and natural shape. Why you may ask? Take a look:

Number 1 – Zero-Drop:

Did you know that traditional footwear elevates the heel on average of 14-24mm, which is equivalent to about 1/2 to 1 inch? Doesn’t seem like a lot though, right? Well, little did you know, elevating the heel of the foot throws off the alignment of the spine and forces an unnatural heel strike. Does your back ever hurt after a long day while wearing traditional, elevated footwear? That would be the reason why. We design our shoes with this zero-drop platform in order to help alleviate strain on the lower back, forcing you to walk with a healthier mid-foot to forefoot strike. Hooray zero-drop! Which this basically means flat like a pancake. And who doesn’t love pancakes?

Number 2 – Lightweight:

On average, a person has a stride length of approximately 2 to 2.5 feet. That means it takes easily over 2,000 steps to walk one mile. And 10,000 steps to walk five! Are you impressed with my math yet? I am.

Think of how much you walk in a given day. The average American takes over 5,000 steps a day – that’s a lot of lifting each foot off the ground, one after the other. Now, think of adding the weight of your shoes onto each and every one of those steps. Not good, right? The way I see it, when you’re at the gym lifting weights, how many reps do you usually do, 10-15, max? Granted you’re not carrying around 20 pound weights on your shoes (or maybe you are – kudos) but that adds up, faster than you think. We pride ourselves in developing footwear with the most durable and lightweight materials that we possibly can. For example, our Boulder Boot weighs only 9.9 oz. What? Yep, you read it right. That’s like 59.4 grapes… YES more math skills right there! + – / *

According to Steve Perna, he says that the best thing about lightweight shoes is that… “They’re light”.

Number 3 – Natural Shape:

Traditional footwear usually forces you to scrunch your feet, which means squeezing your toes together and not providing an adequate amount of foot room. Unfortunately, that means most of us have experienced foot deformation, whether we choose to believe it or not. Don’t get me wrong, I love my Chucks – but after wearing them for a day, my feet are barking. Yes, I said barking. Woof.

We strive to create and develop different styles of footwear that mirror the natural shape of the human foot. We also always recommend using Correct Toes (which can be worn inside of our shoes) in order to naturally spread the toes. Correct Toes also cure many foot ailments including bunions, hammertoes, plantar fasciitis, etc. This product is great as Correct Toes restore foot balance and proprioception; enable natural arch support, assist in ankle and knee stability and so much more. Visit their website to hear more on Dr. Ray’s story and development of this killer product.

As you can see, we take feet here [very] seriously. Can you imagine how self-conscious, and guilty I feel walking into the office NOT wearing Lems? It doesn’t happen very often, but when I do, I get the look…

In all honestly, before I started working here at Lems, I really didn’t care much about my foot health nor fully understand what the whole minimalist movement was about – but wow am I thankful for it! You know that feeling when you get home and can’t wait to take your shoes off? It doesn’t feel like that when you wear Lems, believe me. Lems really did change my life – in more ways than one. Woooo Happy National Foot Health Awareness Month… and go Lems!!!!

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Tomorrow, Thursday April 7, we will be releasing our all new and improved Mariner (Gen. 2) in color Sonora! As the weather warms up, this new and improved Mariner style will without a doubt leave your feet happy and healthy.