Grounding Shoes Round Up & Benefits
What is Grounding/Earthing?
Grounding is the ability to expose yourself to the natural magnetic frequencies of the earth, to connect to the earth and receive negative ions from the earths energy. Grounding releases positive ions from your body which can build up from being near a computer, exposing yourself to electricity, being on a plane, living near cellphone towers, Bluetooth, wi-fi and pretty much majority of things we use and do in the modern era. (I say this as I write from my laptop while on a plane with my phone on my lap, all are turned on airplane mode to limit how much energy I absorb and believe me I am in a for a huge grounding session after this flight).
Now before we get all hocus and pocus. Grounding is a real thing. Look at your outlet, it likely has 3 holes. This is because if there is a circuit break or fall, the excess electricity is absorbed into the ground to prevent electrocution. So the concept of grounding clearly exists in the world, but the question is how can humans benefit from it and in what ways. We also went ahead and tested to see the current in the body and once grounded properly that the current goes down to zero. This does not prove the health benefits though so I suggest reading this article and doing your own independent research as well.
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The most common and easiest ways to ground are.
Exposing your bare skin to earth
Immersing yourself in a natural body of water.
Walk outside after a lightening storm
Wear grounded shoes or conductive clothing
Use grounding products which connect to the electricity in your home such as pillow cases, blankets, mats etc..
Understanding that we are electric beings who live on a electronic planet, all of your cells transmit frequencies and your neurons fire up, for example; your heart, immune system muscles and nervous system. None of this is hocus pocus, even though some may be skeptical. There is constantly a current going through our body, that is not up to debate. The real question we have to ask is what are the health benefits of exposing yourself to it?
1. Reduced inflammation
2. Increased circadian rhythm.
3. Increased blood flow
4. Increase healing and pain reduction.
5. Higher quality sleep.
6. Decreases stress response
**Notice the copper plugs**
The most famous use of grounding or grounding sleeping bags is with the tour de France cyclists who were biking vigorously for hours on end and obviously as elite athletes would do anything to recover. Video here
We did a small study at my training facility. We did not test the affects of grounding since this obviously requires more extensive research over time. However assuming the health benefits are real we tested if you can actually ground in shoes. In other words, if wearing shoes or sandals that claim to be grounded are the same as being barefoot on earth.
Here we are testing to see if touching a pet or animal who is on the earth will ground you. This is totally serious, no Charlie's were harmed in this experiment.
Before we dive into shoes understand something about the different type of grounding products.
There are 2 types of grounding products. There are products which connect to an outlet in your wall specifically to the grounded port of your outlet and mimic the energy the earth gives. Then there are products which are made of natural materials and will usually have a copper plug or something similar which will allow you to ground and connect to the earth even while wearing them but are not connected to an outlet. Most grounding shoes and sandals fall into this category.
The experiment we conducted was as follows.
One foot was placed on a non conductive foam mat on artificial grass. the other foot was placed on my herb patch (bare earth). In one hand we held a cable which was attached to electricity. In the other hand we held the end of a grounding cord which was placed into the ground. when both feet were on the mat we had between 3.5-7.5 volts of electricity going through our body. The little green device shown in picture tests how much each time. We tested 3 brands that claim to have grounding capabilities as well as one sandal with a rubber non grounding sole for a comparison (bottom right). In the photo below you can see how grounding each shoe it, full grounding is '0'.
Because we are discussing footwear we will be addressing the brands that offer grounding options.
1. Earth runners (top right photo above) are one of the more popular mainstream ones. Earth Runners feature a thin minimalistic sandal with a thong strap, they all come with a small copper plug which is attached to copper within the strap itself to allow you to be fully connected.
They come in 3 models the Alpha which is 12mm, the Circadian which is 9mm, and the elemental which is their thinnest model at 8mm. We particularly like them due to their thong strap and their minimal negative affect on gait and function. Their company IonSync is also looking to additional models of grounded footwear as opposed to just sandals.
Earth Runners's grounding system is a copper plug with copper lacing that goes all the way through the thong strap. It did not completely bring the voltage down to zero but reduced it by around half.
For a full review of earth runners click here.
TBSR can get you 10% off.
For the earth runners website click here
2. Groundz shoes (bottom left photo in grid above) Groundz took the classic Yemen slipper and added a copper plug to it for an elegant look while still getting the grounding benefits.
They have men's slip-ons and woman's sandals and slip-ons at the moment but are expanding eventually to men's sandals, sneakers and a wide variety of grounding shoes and apparel.
This one had the highest voltage reducing affect. While it did not cancel it out completely it brought it down to nearly 1 from 7. I suspect because it is completely made from natural materials as opposed to the rubber sole of the previous one.
For our full Groundz review you can check it out here.
TBSR can get you 5% off.
Can access their website here.
3. Softstar (top left in grid above) has a few models that claim to be grounded. According to their site the models that are grounded are the ones with leather soles and no rubber or synthetic layers between your feet and the ground. As quoted on their site
" We do not claim to be experts about grounding, but several of our customers have tested our leather-soled shoes for conductivity and reported successful results. We have consistently heard that while our shoes show a weak connect when new, they developed strong conductivity after a few days of wear (presumably because the leather absorbs moisture over time). This applies to two kinds of soles they offer: the bullhide leather sole available on some of the adult shoes listed below and the soft suede sole used on all of their cozy Roo moccasins. A few of their shoes are only natural materials specifically their sheepskin slipper, Roo Mocccasins , ballerina flats and dash run Amoc leather models.
Unlike the above models they do not include a copper plug, but rather are as thin as possible and use only natural materials to avoid anything which would block out the current"
Unfortunately the sheepskin insole did not ground at all, but.. the interesting turn of events was the moment the floor was slightly wet it reduced the voltage by half similar to earth runners. Even without a copper plug. The body is more receptive to wet ground.
Can access their website here
Raum- similar to Groundz, Raum offers grounding slippers. They also offer men's slip-ons dressy lace ups, and woman's slip-ons.
Can access their website here https://raumgoods.com/
We did not test this one but assume it is similar to Groundz as it is a very similar model.
Plugzz was a small company which rebranded now as Harmony 783.
They have a large variety of men's and woman's shoes and sandals as well as various grounding products. The major con I see here is that their shoes are not minimalist or barefoot friendly. I would rather wear a proven benefit which is a minimalist shoe or take my shoes off than wear something with only one benefit of grounding.
Their website can be accessed here
you can use code grounded15 to save 15% on your order.
Adama Sandals- these are a small business sandal made locally here in Israel and the material they use is conductive. However, the brand does not market their sandals as grounding since after the research they did one's body has to be 75% or more exposed to the earth to be considered grounded and just the feet aren't enough.
We also did the following.
We discussed the concept of grounding and its health benefits with an electrician, and a barefoot runner who also served as a elite sapper and bomb demolitions expert, and tested the above shoes for grounding.
The electrician completely agreed with us about grounding and said it makes perfect sense. When dealing with electricity they intentionally wear rubber or non conductive materials to avoid getting electrocuted.
The sapper agreed with this as well and said when approaching a IED they ensure they are completely grounded to avoid setting off the device by accident.
On our own studies, exposing our own bare feet to earth or even touching things attached to the ground like trees and plants lowered our voltage to near zero or near zero, whereas grounding through artificial turf or concrete was significantly higher.
Grounding in shoes with grounding capacities varied based on the thinness of sole
So how can I start grounding today?
Wiggle your toes every day in the dirt/grass for 5-15 minutes, for extra points walk barefoot in the sunshine while doing so.
Spend more of your time grounded by wearing any of the above mentioned shoes advanced. Aim to immerse yourself in a natural body of water several times a week. for bonus points do it in the winter.
Spend most or all of your time grounded by incorporating grounded wristband, or sleep on a grounding mat, or on the bare earth. Or next time you camp just sleep straight on the ground. Lie with as much body exposed on the earth as possible
The bottom line is that while more research and science does need to be done, and if you google it you will see scientific research on it as well as studies saying it is pseudoscience and grounding products are a waste of money and then a minute late that grounding is the greatest discovery ever made, but if we still haven't convinced you, there is absolutely no harm in taking off your shoes and going outside ;)
Sean, Sara, and Charlie
Scientific Research on Grounding.