Vibram FiveFingers: First Impressions

Picture 2I finally got my Vibrams yesterday!

Last week I wrote about these crazy-ass FiveFinger shoes as an alternative to wearing expensive cushion-y running shoes.  I found a store in town that carried them, and picked up a pair late last night.  If you’re looking into getting some, I would HIGHLY recommend finding a place near you that sells them if possible so you can try them on before hand.  You can search for locations that carry them on Vibram’s site here. According to the sizing chart on Vibram’s site, I was between a 42 and 43.  After trying on a pair of each at the store, 42′s couldn’t even fit my toes, and 43′s fit perfectly.  Call around to the different stores and see if they have your sizes. Even if they don’t have the color you want, get the size right and then go home and order online.

Picture 3I went with the Black KSO’s (“Keep s*** out”). If I had to describe how these things feel; it’s like wearing a wetsuit on your feet.  Very snug, but somehow still extremely mobile.  Looking down and running around for a few minutes, I can’t decide if I feel more like a Ninja or a gorilla.  Maybe a ninja gorilla, which is absurd – there’s no way humans would still be in power if ninja gorillas existed…but that’s neither here nor there.  Oh, and I also tried to do the thing like the person in this picture, but my toes aren’t nearly that spread apart yet.  Maybe one day. 

Running in Vibrams is DEFINITELY going to take some getting used to: I ran through the parking lot on the way to the gym, and I felt like a jackass because my running style had to change completely.  Instead of the long strides and heel-toe style, now it’s short strides, lands on the balls of your feet, and keep pushing.  I can see my calf muscles absolutely KILLING me after just a small jog, but that excited the hell out of me.  I have skinny legs so I figure making my calves strong as hell isn’t a bad side effect.

In the gym, I felt odd. And not just because of the weird looks I got from everybody in there, but because I really felt like I was walking around barefoot.  I only did three exercises at the gym because I only had 30 minutes – each felt slightly different compared to when working out in sneakers.  Doing deadlifts, I felt more in balance and actually managed to lift a new personal high.  Then, I did some (standing) shoulder barbell presses and felt a little wobbly with my feet, but I’m confident my feet and ankles will grow in strength along with the rest of my muscles.  I then ended with few sets of pull ups, and did a few more reps than normal.  I think doing pull ups in the vibrams really showed me how much fun these shoes are: it really felt like I was exercising in bare feet.

I’m already a convert. I’m actually looking forward to running this weekend, and I hate running.  Whenever I put on my FiveFingers, I just want to jump up and down, climb things, do some free-running, and then compete on Ninja Warrior.  Want to know how versatile these shoes are?  I typed this entire blog post with my feet while wearing them.

Okay that’s a lie, but that would have been cool, right? Check back next week when I write about my first running experiences.  I won’t be blogging on Monday because it’s a holiday here in the US, so see you Tuesday.

-Steve

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  • http://www.divergentshadows.com/ Evan

    You might want to spend some time with the jump rope – I know it’s definitely improved my balance when barefoot, and I think the foot movement might be similar to that of barefoot running.

  • http://www.divergentshadows.com Evan

    You might want to spend some time with the jump rope – I know it’s definitely improved my balance when barefoot, and I think the foot movement might be similar to that of barefoot running.

  • Jordan

    Someone please make a game where I can play as a ninja gorilla… or maybe a NINJA GORILLA ROBOT?!?!?!?

  • Jordan

    Someone please make a game where I can play as a ninja gorilla… or maybe a NINJA GORILLA ROBOT?!?!?!?

  • Clint

    These would be perfect in alot of martial art gyms were they want you to be barefoot, shoes can tear up all the wall to wall mats. I would go barefoot but it always grossed me out . Walking in other dudes foot sweat that rolled thru the athletes foot he has between his toes, is not a pretty picture. But these look like the answer . I hope they become more accessible up here in Canada.

  • Clint

    These would be perfect in alot of martial art gyms were they want you to be barefoot, shoes can tear up all the wall to wall mats. I would go barefoot but it always grossed me out . Walking in other dudes foot sweat that rolled thru the athletes foot he has between his toes, is not a pretty picture. But these look like the answer . I hope they become more accessible up here in Canada.

  • http://www.nerdfitness.com/ Steve

    Whenever I can actually afford to start doing some Capoeria and Muay Thai i’ll be wearing my vibrams. Can’t wait!

    -S

  • http://www.nerdfitness.com Steve

    Whenever I can actually afford to start doing some Capoeria and Muay Thai i’ll be wearing my vibrams. Can’t wait!

    -S

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  • Jacob Lee

    I'm know I'm resurrecting, but Clint: check out their new model, the Mocs. They're a lighter shoe, designed for inside wear only, made of kangaroo leather, with just a little bit of sole on each toe, the ball, and heel.

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  • http://twitter.com/daetanbhuck Daetan Bayar Huck

    Some Seattle traceurs have been using these for a few years. I will buy a pair soon myself, because I've completely change to the POSE running system in the past year (definitely took me a few weeks to get used to the calf-muscle-focus). The Mizmo racing flats that I've been running in are a similar thickness to the Vibram. My only concern has been durability, but it hasn't been a problem with my current shoes. Go crazy! POSE: http://www.posetech.com/library/pp-SIB-0001.html

  • NerdFitness

    I hear ya on the calf muscle thing. Running in my vibrams on the first day
    had my calves sore for like a week afterwards. Definitley need to break
    them in. I've done some general reading on the pose method, but I
    definitely need to dig deeper. My running style has changed dramatically,
    but there's still room for improvement. Would love to start getting into
    parkour as well; it just feels like something you should do when wearing
    these shoes!

    -Steve

  • http://twitter.com/daetanbhuck Daetan Bayar Huck

    Some Seattle traceurs have been using these for a few years. I will buy a pair soon myself, because I've completely change to the POSE running system in the past year (definitely took me a few weeks to get used to the calf-muscle-focus). The Mizmo racing flats that I've been running in are a similar thickness to the Vibram. My only concern has been durability, but it hasn't been a problem with my current shoes. Go crazy! POSE: http://www.posetech.com/library/pp-SIB-0001.html

  • NerdFitness

    I hear ya on the calf muscle thing. Running in my vibrams on the first day
    had my calves sore for like a week afterwards. Definitley need to break
    them in. I've done some general reading on the pose method, but I
    definitely need to dig deeper. My running style has changed dramatically,
    but there's still room for improvement. Would love to start getting into
    parkour as well; it just feels like something you should do when wearing
    these shoes!

    -Steve

  • http://www.vibramfivefinger.us/ five finger shoes

    Ugh, I liked! So clear and positively!!

  • http://www.Wisdominthemind.com/ Wisdominthemind

    I really like this type of XX too, can you help me look at which one has higher price point? http://www.Most-modern.net

  • http://twitter.com/jaixom Jai Ignacio

    They finally got these in stock here in Hong Kong with a proper local distributor, so I went out and bought the same black KSOs that you have… gotta say I love them a lot, and that's just from the commute to work alone, can't wait to try running in them.

    Can't say that I fancied the massive price premium buying them here in HK costs compared to getting them from the US, but ah well!

    Gonna go for a light jog, otherwise I'll prolly have my legs caning me for weeks from what I've been reading above!

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