Canadian Transport Agency Rejected Request to go Barefoot

For a Canadian resident, Anemone Cerridwen, “Embracing a barefoot life has led to legal skirmishes with transit authorities in Vancouver…Montreal…and Ottawa, her hometown.” Her request was somewhat unusual but, according to an article posted in January 2013 in news.nationalpost.com, she said that shoes made her feet ache and bleed. However, the Canadian Transport Agency (C.T.A.) rejected her request to allow her to travel barefoot and determined, “Overlapping toes, bleeding heels, corns, calluses, blisters and squeezed toes—are common, relatively minor and, in most cases, easily addressed by people and usually without medical intervention.”

Despite having big-boned, wide feet with squared toes and extra-long fourth toes, poor-fitting footwear from an early age probably contributed to the damage to Cerridwen’s feet. If you take a look at children’s feet, they are narrow at the heel and wide at the toes. Their toes, except for occasional abnormalities developed in utero, are straight and flexible. Educated parents take care when buying shoes for children. They look for footwear that has a wide toe box with room for the toes to wiggle. According to information published by the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, “A finger's breadth of extra length will usually allow for about 3-to-6 months of growth.”

As we age, we tend to ignore this advice. An article in altrarunning.com noted, “Most people's feet unfortunately start to look like the shoes they wear, tapering at the toes rather than continuing to splay. This change in foot shape is similar to Chinese foot binding.”

Fashion footwear is okay for rare occasions; however, finding the right footwear for every-day use is critical for the optimal function and well-being of your feet. If you need help determining what is right for your feet, Toronto podiatrist, Sheldon H. Nadal D.P.M. can give you his professional advice to help prevent long-term damage.