Foot whipping describes a form of corporal punishment by beating the soles of the feet. A common technical term is bastinado.The undergoing person is required to be barefoot. The beating is typically inflicted with an object in the type of a cane or a crop and repeated over a varying number of times. It is usually targeted at the vaults or arches of the foot but sometimes the heels and balls of the feet can be targeted also.It is also referred to as foot (bottom) caning or sole caning. The particular Middle East method is called falaka or falanga, derivative from the Greek term phalanx. The German term is Bastonade, deriving from the Italian noun bastonata (stroke with the use of a stick), in former centuries it was also referred to as Sohlenstreich (corr. striking the soles). The Chinese term is jiao xing.The first documentation of bastinado in Europe dates back to the year 1537, in China to 960. References to bastinado are found in the Bible (Prov. 22:15; Lev. 19:20; Deut. 22:18), suggesting the practice since antiquity.Bastinado is usually associated with Middle and Far Eastern nations, where it is occasionally executed in public and therefore covered by reports and photographs. However it has been practised within prisons, reformatories, boarding schools and similar institutions in Western countries as well.In Europe bastinado was a common form of corporal punishment particularly in German areas, where it was routinely carried out to enforce discipline within penal and reformatory institutions, at this used extensively during the Nazi-Regime. In several German and Austrian institutions it was still practised during the 1950s. Although bastinado has been common practice within Western penal institutions, it is usually neglected as it was not directly adjudged for criminal acts, but typically performed to sanction infractions or misconduct in different custody situations. Also the practice of foot whipping appears not as spectacular as other methods of corporal punishment and was not performed publicly so it usually came to be witnessed only by the persons immediately involved.To this day bastinado is used for punishment of prisoners in several countries (see below). As it causes a high level of pain for the receiving person while physical evidence remains practically undetectable, it is often used for interrogations and torture in oppressive regimes as well.