An expert in foot health from Staffordshire University has contributed to Julia Bradbury’s new book 'Walk Yourself Happy'
Our chapter aims to educate readers on the importance of podiatry in supporting their walking journey and enjoying the many benefits it brings.
Dr Helen Branthwaite is a Senior Lecturer at Staffordshire University’s Centre for Biomechanics and Rehabilitation Technologies (CBRT) specialising in the effects of footwear on foot function.
As Musculoskeletal Lead for the Royal College of Podiatry, Dr Branthwaite was invited to contribute to the television presenter and nature advocate’s new book published by Little, Brown.
'Walk Yourself Happy' explores the transformative impact of walking on mental and physical health. The book tells how maintaining healthy feet is crucial for individuals to engage in regular walking, a practice that can significantly enhance both mental and physical wellbeing. The book also provides valuable insights into foot care, common conditions, and encourages individuals to prioritise their foot health for a happier, healthier life.
The Royal College of Podiatry provided expert clinical advice for the book and Dr Brathwaite worked with the author on Chapter 7: ‘Fancy Feet’, which focuses on walking and the importance of good foot health.
Dr Branthwaite said: "Foot health is an integral component of overall wellbeing, and we are delighted to contribute towards Walk Yourself Happy to hammer this point home. Julia is one of the most popular and well-known writers and broadcasters about the benefits of walking. Our chapter aims to educate readers on the importance of podiatry in supporting their walking journey and enjoying the many benefits it brings. We couldn’t refuse the opportunity to raise awareness about the critical role of podiatry in overall wellbeing at a national level."
Julia Bradbury said: "Our feet are amazing! It was enlightening to talk to Dr Helen Branthwaite about them for my book. Thanks to the Royal College of Podiatry for its valuable contribution: feet are so overlooked (really) when it comes to our health but they are the foundations of our body architecture."
The chapter draws on footwear research conducted by Dr Branthwaite and Staffordshire University’s Centre for Biomechanics and Rehabilitation Technologies (CBRT), which has investigated the impact that footwear choice, style and function has on normal walking.
She added: “Footwear choice influences the movement, muscle activity and balance whilst walking and this is dependent on the individual relationship between the shoe and the foot. From our research we have extended the understanding of how choice can impact walking and this body of work can now support podiatrists in guiding patients on the correct footwear style for the walking activity they are involved in.”
'Walk Yourself Happy' is available in all good bookstores and online. This book serves as an essential resource for anyone interested in improving their health and happiness through the simple act of walking and provides a gateway for people to learn more about what podiatry is, and how podiatrists can improve their health.