I was recently told by a podiatrist that to stay pain-free I would have to use orthotics indefinitely, due to hypermobility of my joints. However, having come across the barefoot approach, I couldn’t understand how putting an orthotic into shoes that prevent proper functioning of the foot and gait could really be a solution to anyone’s problems. So I’ve started on a course of sensory motor exercise, focusing on single stance short foot work. The results after four weeks are a revelation. I can feel muscles engaging and working that I haven’t felt before and periods of time spent walking in my new ‘barefoot’ shoes have been free of symptoms I previously got when walking without arch supports. I now believe that it’s not just about ‘weak arches’; it’s a whole system of alignment and muscle use. Can’t believe my podiatrist sent me away with orthotics and no reference to the short foot exercise!