Happy to have the opportunity to share a fascinating subject, the human foot. The foot is supremely deft at carrying the body about in a variety of gates and strides as well as facilitating climbing, crawling, swimming, kicking, jumping, height extension and aiding balance. The foot adapts to what ever demands we place on it. Having a history in martial arts I used my naked feet in ways most people do not often consider. From kicking above with the top, ball, heel, toes, and sides in striking to using them in grappling to hook, trip, push, and even strangle. Our feet have a lot of demands placed on them and they will adapt to whatever you want them to do but there are some special considerations one should apply to them. To understand these considerations lets first examine the structure and composition of the foot.
Consider the foot as a combination of several dimensional variables of strength, durability, sensitivity, and finesse. All of these variables can be increased though some take time for the foot to adapt.
There are 26 bones connected through 33 joints in the human foot. These bones are very stout with lots of surface and knobby ends to connect more than 100 muscles and tendons to them.
The movement of the foot including the toes is done through tendons leading to muscles in the lower leg. The foot. Just look at all that tendon.
The muscles in the foot works to absorb impact rather than to articulate limbs.
Tendons are slower to regenerate and strengthen in response to stress than muscle. Because the foot has such a large proportion of bone and tendon relative to other body parts it generally takes longer for it to become conditioned to new stress. Because the feet are so durable they will tolerate abuse through poor form longer than other body parts. This can lead to a false sense of progress in an endeavor until the foot finally gives in to injury and pain or worse injuries up the leg and body cause by the poor form. Feet are amazing and they will do whatever you want them to do. It can take a bit more time than other body parts so a steady incremental approach, special attention to good form and plenty of consideration for recent progress is called for.