Vibram Five Finger Shoes

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Oct 01, 2009 7:13 PM GMT
    So, having read a number of extremely positive reviews, I decided to purchase the above footwear today. I've only had them on for an hour or so but despite that (and having hit my toes on furniture twice already) I rather like them.

    Does anybody else own these, do you use them at all and if so during what activities do you wear them?
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    Oct 01, 2009 7:21 PM GMT
    I am very interested in these. Please let us know what you think after going for a jog or two.

    I hear they are kind of awkward down hill.
  • Timbales

    Posts: 13993

    Oct 01, 2009 7:27 PM GMT
    what if you have abnormal toes?
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    Oct 01, 2009 7:39 PM GMT
    Well, my toes aren't exactly uniform (largest small toe is longer than my big toe, several small toes pushed in and turned slightly by wearing dress shoes, etc). Putting my feet into the shoes when trying them on at first was a challenge, but having taken them off a couple of times I'm already finding it easier to shoehorn them in. Once they are in my toes separate and feel extremely comfortable.

    So far my only complaint is that my automatic reaction is to put my feet on the furniture with them on, since they don't feel like shoes.
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    Oct 01, 2009 9:26 PM GMT
    Well, I just had my first run in the new shoes. I ran for six miles over a variety of surfaces (cobbles, paving, grass, loose dirt) and encountered some broken glass. Some random thoughts:

    - I stopped over pronating almost immediately and now have a nice, neutral gait
    - My feet hurt like hell at first, but by the end of the run they felt a little numbed
    - Whilst it definitely doesn't feel like running barefoot, there is sufficient sensitivity for you to be very aware of what sort of surface you are running on. The closes analogy I can think of (involving sex, of course) is dry humping whilst wearing jeans vs fucking with a condom vs bareback (I hope everyone can workout which represents trainers, the five fingers and barefoot running)
    - My calves hurt. I think that's because my stride became shorter and so my calves were being worked harder...
    - I think I might be getting a blister on my left heel. Given that I couldn't feel any friction between my foot and the shoe I'm not sure how that has come about... maybe I'm wrong
    - There was no 'slapping' sound as I ran... my movements became a great deal more delicate
    - I was able to keep my normal pace (with my legs pumping a bit faster, of course)

    Any questions? icon_surprised.gif)
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    Oct 02, 2009 1:07 AM GMT
    I'm no doctor/podiatrist, but I've played high-impact footstrike sports most of my life and have at various times dealt with things like shin splints and plantar fasciitis.

    I would think that you should NOT buy these shoes and immediately go for a six-mile run in them as you describe. Wear them to walk for a couple hours a day the first week, maybe do some light jogging/walking splits for short distances, then gradually increase the time/distance/intensity over a 2-4 week period to let your muscles, ligaments, joints, arches, etc. adapt to the shifted stresses.

    Even if you accept the theory that shoes create an artificial and unhealthy gait/footstrike and your "natural" gait/footstrike is automatically going to be the most healthy/efficient, you still should give your body a little time to transition from its lifelong "unhealthy" motion to the newer "healthy" motion, to avoid the risk of repetitive stress syndromes like shin splints, MTSS, or PF.


    That being said, I know people who use them for running, snorkeling, volleyball, and rock climbing, and absolutely love them. Keep us posted on your experiences
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    Oct 02, 2009 3:19 AM GMT
    Rodden,

    Congrats on the new shoes. Yeah, I agree with Sporting that my own experience was that I had to ease into them (and when I did a 10k walk in them I paid for it for about a month) but I'm sure it's different for everybody.

    There was a long discussion about this over here too:
    http://www.realjock.com/gayforums/503572/

  • FredMG

    Posts: 988

    Oct 02, 2009 3:44 AM GMT
    I have a pair and love them, but not for hiking. I'll wear them for walking around town, some bicycling, and short shifts at work. I'm not a runner so i have to respect anyone who can do 6 miles in five-fingers.

    They do encourage me to do more chimp like things, like pick up stuff wuth my feet (which has to be done using my big and first toe, instead of "grasping" like i do bare footed.). They are also fun bouldering.

    And I actually seem to catch my toes on furniture less than when I'm bare footed.
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    Oct 02, 2009 4:24 AM GMT
    Jury is still out on these, I don't know of any real serious runner that is used them up to 500 miles. Would be nice to see if it sets off a chain reaction.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Oct 02, 2009 4:39 AM GMT
    I have a pair but would never use them for running - very uncomfortable for that. Walking around is fine and using at the gym - believe it or not - they come in handy (squats, leg press).

  • Webster666

    Posts: 9217

    Oct 02, 2009 6:49 AM GMT
    Couldn't they have made them just a little uglier ?
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    Oct 02, 2009 7:10 AM GMT
    I picked up a pair for hiking. I do all of my cardio outdoors on the trail. I haven't attempted to carry any significant weight yet, but hope to do lightweight backpacking in them next year. I really like how they feel and my body just feels better after a long hike in them. There's nothing like walking over rocks in them. In boots, I hate the rocks, but in Five Fingers, it's the best foot massage ever! icon_smile.gif After (and sometimes during) a good hike, I get lots of muscle and joint releases and see increased mobility, especially in my left ankle (which tends to be more locked up than the right). I really dig them. That said, prolonged walking on pavement sucks. I don't think I'd wear them to the gym or on the track. But for hiking and trail running, I think they're great.
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    Oct 02, 2009 7:12 AM GMT
    SportingChance saidI would think that you should NOT buy these shoes and immediately go for a six-mile run in them as you describe. Wear them to walk for a couple hours a day the first week, maybe do some light jogging/walking splits for short distances, then gradually increase the time/distance/intensity over a 2-4 week period to let your muscles, ligaments, joints, arches, etc. adapt to the shifted stresses.


    Very good advice. My Rolfer turned me on to them. He suggested that I start with some walks and work my way up to the bigger hikes. He just ran a 50 mile trail run in his. I'm doing pretty long hikes in them now. Next step is adding the weight vest back into the routine.
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    Oct 02, 2009 11:37 AM GMT
    You're absolutely right, I shouldn't have gone for a six mile run when I first got them, but I'm young, foolhardy and walk around barefoot quite a lot. Certainly, aside from slightly sore heels, my feet are absolutely fine today. My calves are sore, though.

    Since winter is coming in London I have ordered some toe socks to wear with the Vibrams. If nothing else they should improve the aesthetics a little since the very open look is odd when worn with jeans and a sweater (as I have worn to work today).

    The one odd thing that I have noticed is that my abs are sore today. I'm not sure if that's an odd coincidence or if my abs were more active in stabilizing me whilst I was running.
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    Oct 02, 2009 1:08 PM GMT
    My friend Mike wears these all the time.... I'm embarrassed for him.
  • Menergy_1

    Posts: 737

    Oct 02, 2009 1:57 PM GMT
    My gym trainer wears them in the gym (and I've seen another trainer with them now, too), and chatted with me about them upon my questions as to their benefits and comfort, if any.

    He raves about them -- the KS0 (I think that's the name of the model) with the stretchy mesh covering the midfoot/arch and with a velcro fastened strap across the instep and around the back of the heel) in black. He felt the basic Five Fingers Classic was "too gay" looking (sort of like a ballet slipper with toes, you know?) -- and went for the other versions.

    He wears them on the gym floor while training clients, walking and running long trails, outdoors on pavement, in his house, etc. He swears by them for everything now.

    I finally succumbed and bought a pair with the webbing and strap -- my experience so far: comfortable once on (my advice: you definitely need to try them out in the store, not just order some on-line, wiggle your toes into the shoe, and help push them into the "toes" -- Sizing may be one European size up or down, depending on the model of the Five Fingers - they don't all fit the same way, I found)

    I don't run, so I can't comment on that -- but my trainer does run and likes the feel of the running surface, the agility, sensitivity to what your feet are doing, and the extra "self-support" of ones' muscles in the legs, feet, and core to the difference from having running shoes or other shoes on the feet and doing physical things. It makes sense, and it seems lots of you guys on here have been positively impressed, too, with the shoes.

    They're not cheap though - for a pair of rubber molded monkey feet! But a nice change from regular shoes, I'd say.
  • Celticmusl

    Posts: 4330

    Oct 02, 2009 2:55 PM GMT
    I bet they really confuse guys with a shoe/foot fetish.
  • swimbikerun

    Posts: 2835

    Oct 02, 2009 2:58 PM GMT
    Celticmusl saidI bet they really confuse guys with a shoe/foot fetish.
    Why?


    BTW, these are my current most favorite sandals of all time. I wear them everywhere (just about):

    Z/2® Vibram Unaweep

    CHZ2UN2MN-BLK.tif?op_usm=0.5,1&wid=374&h
  • Celticmusl

    Posts: 4330

    Oct 02, 2009 3:05 PM GMT
    swimbikerun said
    Celticmusl saidI bet they really confuse guys with a shoe/foot fetish.
    Why?


    BTW, these are my current most favorite sandals of all time. I wear them everywhere (just about):

    HTTP ADDRESS GOES HERE


    um.....'cuz it's a shoe that looks like a foot. Don't get me wrong, if they are actually comfortable I would wear them, but for a guy with a foot fetish they are comparable to a dildo. Their slogan could be "The dildo of shoes!"
  • swimbikerun

    Posts: 2835

    Oct 02, 2009 10:36 PM GMT
    I should just break down and get a pair, lol... I'd be a little self-conscious about wearing them but if I see cute guys wearing them, then I'll do it.
    Should jut let my freak flag fly!
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Oct 02, 2009 11:12 PM GMT
    I bought my first pair about 2 weeks ago. Getting the toes into place is a real bitch. On my first short walk the heels must have been loose, so they hurt for days afterwards. My first run in them ( 2 miles) ended with blisters at the bases of both big toes, but my running felt great. No rolling over the outside as I do in running-shoes. No back problems afterwards, but my calves were very sore for a couple of days. To bad that there are not more unpaved trails around.

    Oh, yeah, I bought the 'Sprint' model, they are blue and have a strap over the arch and are ugly as hell.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Oct 03, 2009 11:15 AM GMT
    Well, when I woke up this morning I could barely walk as my calves are killing me. Oops.
  • swimbikerun

    Posts: 2835

    Oct 03, 2009 4:14 PM GMT
    RoddenShaw saidWell, when I woke up this morning I could barely walk as my calves are killing me. Oops.
    Oops. icon_cry.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Oct 06, 2009 4:52 AM GMT
    RoddenShaw saidWell, when I woke up this morning I could barely walk as my calves are killing me. Oops.


    I'm sorry to hear you're having difficulty. When it comes to sports and exercise, I've often been a victim of my own irrational exuberance, so I know how you feel.

    417px-the_tortoise_and_the_hare_-_projec
  • swimbikerun

    Posts: 2835

    Oct 18, 2009 8:54 PM GMT
    Tried on a pair today but had trouble getting all my toes inside the shoe. The sole seems thicker and more durable than I had imagined.
    They seem to be getting popular but not sure they're for me.