25 Jul Barefoot for foot health ?
Having seen the growth of weird and wonderful training shoes over the years, now looking more like clouds on our feet than anything. Is it time to really look at your feet and how they may NOT be functioning properly?
I have worn the Five Finger shoes for years now, in the gym and out on my day to day and have found it quite amazing how much more function my toes, shins and calves have. We have incased our feet in these pointy contraptions for years and have basically narrowed the functionality of how our feet should actually work. Can you lift your pinkie toe? Probably not right ? That’s because it has become ineffective due to the crushed nature shoes bring.
Your feet and toes are all bone and muscles just like the rest of the body and we are missing out on key elements to our movement patterns by locking our feet in these cloud like shoes. Comfy, fashionable but not what we should be wearing.
With the Five Finger shoes we open up the feet for far more Dynamic range, especially in the gym environment with the likes of squatting and lunging in particular.
Body mechanics can get quite complicated. Especially when it all starts with your feet. The Vibram FiveFingers shoes are a minimalist or “barefoot” shoe that improves your body mechanics by letting your foot work the way it should and not the way it does in a shoe. They try to mimic going barefoot while providing the protection of a shoe sole. The problem with most shoes is that they push your outer toes in. So your pinkie toe is almost never used. It may be small but it can do a lot. The FiveFingers not only let you use your pinkie toe but they kind of force you to. To make things even better the Vibram FiveFingers are topped (or bottomed) with the legendary Vibram rubber sole perfected for rock climbing and other such activities. This means the shoes fit your foot like a second skin and have an incredible grip. It is almost like having gecko feet.
From a personal point, they say you can run in these, I am very sceptical on that side of the coin having ran a few 5ks and not a pleasant experience, however. Walking everyday, be it to the shops, down the river or a forest walk, these are fantastic and allow your feet to functions as they were intended.
I recommend the more trekking style as the soles are bit thicker and the overall shoe is more sturdy for those wishing to try Five Finger shoes for the first time.