Why do Japanese wear wooden sandals?

Why do Japanese wear wooden sandals?

Geta are wooden sandals that are distinguished primarily by their "teeth".  Pieces of wood that lie underneath the sole and are usually two in number. Geta was worn by samurais and geishas in the Japanese culture

You may find geta`s with one tooth or none at all. It allows you to be elevated in order to avoito to your beautiful Japanese kimono or yukata from being dragged through rain or snow.

You might compare them to the platform shoes of the 1970s, and they were not originally designed for fashion. 

In this article you will learn :

  • Why do the Japanese wear Geta?
  • How to wear traditional Japanese shoes?
  • Where to buy traditional Japanese wooden sandals?
  • How to choose the right size for the traditional geta shoes?
  • Are geta`s are comfortable?

Why do the Japanese wear Geta?

japanese sandals nameGeisha shoes with whit Japanese socks

In Japan, the tradition is to take off your shoes in front of the door before entering someone's house. 

This is why is so easier to wear those japanese shoes, The geta sandals are open and easy to put on.

During the Edo Period, the traditional geta shoes were worn on seasons and occasions. Today, it's common to wear geta`s at events, traditional ceremonies and festivals. 

However, one thing remains the same: with their shape somewhat similar to flip-flops, these Japanese sandals are still comfortable! And unlike the plastic beach flip-flops that we are familiar with, geta sandals are very beautiful and practical.

How to wear the geta?

old japanese wooden sandals

Sushi Geta

Merchants and sushi chefs traditionally wore extremely high man geta`s to keep a certain distance between themselves and the remains on the ground. Sometimes these men even wore the geta with only one tooth, called tengu-geta, positioned in the middle of the sole.

Geisha shoes

There are also special geta`s worn by geishas in training that are sturdy with the toe tilted forward. This type of geta is sometimes worn by young girls during traditional celebrations. They are called pokkuri or koppori (if you say these words out loud several times, you will find that they are named after the sound the geta makes when they clap on the ground to the rhythm of the steps).

Tabi Socks

To keep your feet warm even in winter, there are Japanese socks specially designed to be worn in geta`s.

These socks, called tabi, have the particularity of separating the big toe from the rest of the toes in order to slip the strap of the sandal into it. Traditional tabi were not elastic and closed at the back with metal fasteners, and the sole of the sock was thicker to act as a bootie inside houses after taking off the shoes.

Where to buy geta`s?

japanese wooden sandals getaGeta sandals for every season

If you wish a geisha costume cosplay or look like a samurai or Japanese ninja the most important thing you need to know is that you can wear geta`s every time because there are geta for every season...

Some Japanese wooden shoes have a small coating to keep your toes dry during the wet weather.

For summer, we recommend Japanese clogs not very high up as zori for instance

The Ama-geta can be raised up to 18 centimeters and are made specifically for the rainy season. You can also find special snow geta made with metal plates under the sole to prevent slipping.

Geta are still an integral part of Japanese culture. Designers have from time to time redesigned them into more Western shapes.

But for casual outdoor use, the standard shape continues to be a practical and stylish that can be worn almost any day.

How to choose the right size for Japanese sandals?

tall-japanese-sandalsSamurai Shoes

Japanese tend to have slightly smaller feet than Westerners, but that doesn't stop you from getting a pair of Japanese sandals or tabi socks. Especially since geta are usually worn smaller than the size of the foot, with the heel protruding slightly at the back. There is a good reason for this, your foot should be well above the wooden tooth or teeth fixed under the sole so you don`t lose balance.

Geta shoes are casual shoes, they keep your feet cool in the summer and give you an ideal posture to relieve back pain. They are designed for comfort and practicality - even if it's not what you might think at first - and those made in Japan have a special aesthetic that can't be found anywhere else.

Are geta are comfortable?

Geta has three parts which are:

  • The "Dai" which is the wooden platform on which the feet rest;
  • The "Hanao" which corresponds to the strap holding in place the feet while you`re moving;
  • And the "Ha" or teeth, which represent the wooden bars that support the base of the sole.

The geta`s goal is not to be comfortable but to be useful first. And there are 3 important reasons to wear Getas:

  • It's good for your feet
  • Eco-Friendly shoes (made of wood)
  • Being cool

If you want to test the comfort of these wooden sandals for yourself, have a look at our collection of Japanese geta sandals.

geta sandals from japan