Author Topic: Barefoot running review and Vibram 5 Fingers shoes  (Read 2207 times)

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Offline TylerDurden

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Barefoot running review and Vibram 5 Fingers shoes
« on: April 24, 2017, 11:27:15 pm »
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21622635

Virbam 5 Fingers, a palaeo way to wear minimal shoes while mimicking barefoot advantages to some extent:-

http://www.builtlean.com/2012/10/17/vibram-five-fingers-review/

I will be buying a pair in September and will report on them. Until then, I'm wearing flip-flops or going barefoot during the summer. Note that the 2nd article details how the palaeo movement is growing. If anyone finds online a cooked palaeolithic diet board or single forum, they should ask to add a raw, palaeolithic forum as well, so as to add to the choices available.
“The best index to a person's character is how he treats people who can't do him any good, and how he treats people who can't fight back.”
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Offline Eric

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Re: Barefoot running review and Vibram 5 Fingers shoes
« Reply #1 on: April 25, 2017, 03:19:53 am »
I tried 5 Fingers years ago. I thought they were terrible. I have no idea why they took off the way they did. Mine fit fine, but they got terribly stinky and because of their style of construction they are very hard to clean. Their soles also wore out much faster than I would have expected for a shoe that cost upwards of $100 US. Finally, when walking in grass or leaves I had to constantly stop to clean bits of veg out from between the toes. It was bothersome. Vibram 5 Fingers = bad idea, bad investment.

I recently acquired a pair of Skinners, which I find to be far superior to Vibram 5 Fingers in every respect. You can read a review of them here, and the link in the previous sentence takes you to their website. They are not yet available at major retailers, but will be soon. You can purchase a pair by visiting their Indiegogo fundraising page, and pledging support. They cost $40+shipping, and it will take a few weeks to get your order because demand is far outstripping supply right now.

If folks want, I can write up a review of my pair.
Eric Garza
Personal website: EricGarza.info
Podcast: A Worldview Apart

Offline TylerDurden

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Re: Barefoot running review and Vibram 5 Fingers shoes
« Reply #2 on: April 25, 2017, 04:01:18 am »
Please DO write a review of your pair of Skinners, preferably having been used on mountain-trails!   There is nothing more useful for members than contradictory posts on rawpalaeoish topics. The only catch might be that I might  try anything other than Vibrams in September 2017. I will anyway write a review of my wholly-barefoot hiking in the autumn of 2017.
“The best index to a person's character is how he treats people who can't do him any good, and how he treats people who can't fight back.”
? Abigail Van Buren

Offline Eric

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Re: Barefoot running review and Vibram 5 Fingers shoes
« Reply #3 on: April 25, 2017, 04:56:17 am »
Hiking legitimately barefoot is fun too. I summited Mount Mansfield here in Vermont a few years ago barefoot. People looked at me as if I were crazy. My feet were exhausted after the trek was done, but I got through it without any cuts or other injuries. I often hunt barefoot in the fall, even in colder weather as it gives me better ground feel. When walking around town I do prefer something on my feet though, to avoid bits of broken glass and so I can walk into shops that prohibit entry without shoes of some sort.
Eric Garza
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Podcast: A Worldview Apart

Offline djr_81

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Re: Barefoot running review and Vibram 5 Fingers shoes
« Reply #4 on: April 25, 2017, 07:52:13 pm »
I'm going to add my two cents here as I've been wearing all sorts of minimalist shoes for years now.

Vibrams were too stiff a sole. While mimicking the shape of the foot they inhibited true movement of the toes. They also start to smell bad quickly as most will not buy "toe socks" to wear with them. I gave mine away and would not recommend them.

I've had two pairs of Softstars. I had a mesh pair and a solid leather pair. Both were a good shoe with a nice wide toe box which allowed proper splaying of the toes. The mesh pair lasted a number of years but eventually wore out from abuse. The suede pair was used for work as they were much more presentable with a suit. These have just started to break along crease lines and were just replaced. I probably got 5-6 years of mixed use out of them. Note the soles on both, while "minimal", were still too thick for my liking as I got used to a thinner sole. Mine were 5mm I believe. They also had a minimal amount of tread so traction could be an issue.

I'm on my third pair of Sockwas now. I've had a pair of G2, a pair of playa, and now a pair of G4. These are the most minimal shoe I have used and became my go-to for most activities. They're a stretchy body (lycra, neoprene, something) with a very thin (2mm?) plastic sole with very good treading. The G2/G4 are low tops with a stretchy neck to hold it at the foot, the "playa" is a high top with a velcro wrap. These were my go-to shoes in spring/summer/fall and I've worn them across the country with no issues. Each pair has been tossed purely from extensive wear. The seam at the edge of the sole gives way after years of use. I love the shoes because it feels like you're wearing a martial arts slipper but have just a bit better protection on the sole. They're the most tactile feel of all shoes I have tried and the next best thing to going barefoot.

I just picked up a pair of Xeroshoes Hanas. So far so good with these. They're fairly tactile, about where the Softstars are, but look great for work and give me almost all of the benefits of the Sockwas. You have to take the insert out of these to get the right feel.

Winter time I have neoprene arctic dive boots. Water proof with a 5mm sole. My current pair are wearing through on the foot pad. I picked up a pair of minimalist combat boots last fall to try out over the winter and they're ok but not a true minimalist shoe like I was looking for. They're more zero drop with a moderate sole.
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Offline Eric

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Re: Barefoot running review and Vibram 5 Fingers shoes
« Reply #5 on: April 25, 2017, 10:13:29 pm »
Thanks for mentioning the Hana. That shoe looks very intriguing! I looked at the Sockwas too, but the neoprene uppers didn't appeal to me. Do your feet sweat in them?

Also, I just sent you a FB friend request. No problem if you don't want to accept it though.
Eric Garza
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Offline djr_81

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Re: Barefoot running review and Vibram 5 Fingers shoes
« Reply #6 on: April 26, 2017, 01:23:05 am »
No, the Sockwas are super breathable. They actually have the opposite issue of being too cold as the temperatures drop.

FB request accepted. :)
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Offline JeuneKoq

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Re: Barefoot running review and Vibram 5 Fingers shoes
« Reply #7 on: April 27, 2017, 04:57:39 am »
I've been running with Luna Sandals for two years now, after reading Christopher McDougall's book "Born To Run" that I highly recommend to anyone who is into minimal running. They're great. The sole is pretty thick for a minimalist shoe, compared to other sport and casual minim shoe brands that I wear such as Lems or Vivobarefoot, but it's pretty convenient for road and rocky terrain, so I get enough suspension on the former and avoid too much sharp sensations on the latter. They have different models for various terrains, so they also have thinner soles if that's what you're looking for.

https://lunasandals.com/

Offline JeuneKoq

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Re: Barefoot running review and Vibram 5 Fingers shoes
« Reply #8 on: April 27, 2017, 05:11:58 am »
Also owned a pair of vibram 5, felt fine in the beginning as a first pair of zero drop running shoes, then I got tired of the restriction of movement, and the awkward fit of toe socks inside them. The look of it is meh anyways.
I then bought a pair of Swiss Barefoot Company socks (they seem to have left the market somehow), which are toe socks made of a flexible kevlar fabric. Very light and flexible, but despite the high tech material they wear of very quick if you start going for runs with them. So mine got shredded to pieces, and I bought a new pair that I only wear for wall climbing (they work fine for that). They seem very similar to the skinners, except they suck for running, but the toe splay is greater.

https://fyf.io/collections/all

Offline djr_81

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Re: Barefoot running review and Vibram 5 Fingers shoes
« Reply #9 on: April 28, 2017, 01:16:43 am »
I've been running with Luna Sandals for two years now, after reading Christopher McDougall's book "Born To Run" that I highly recommend to anyone who is into minimal running.
"Natural Born Heroes" was even better. Definitely read it if you haven't. Not quite as much about the running but an excellent read.
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Offline JeuneKoq

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Re: Barefoot running review and Vibram 5 Fingers shoes
« Reply #10 on: April 28, 2017, 02:29:37 am »
Thanks, will definitely order it  :)