I learned a while ago from my brother that shoes cause alot of problems for people: ankle, foot, knee and back problems among many others. The human foot has 26 bones, 33 joints and over 100 muscles/tendons/ligaments and walking or worse running in a typical shoe is like encasing all that human evolution in a fancy brick made of man-made materials and leather. Shoes create a false feedback loop, because of them you can callously slam your foot down with no deference to proper biomechanics thanks to the thick soles and cushioning. This is why so many runners get injuries often. People tend to slam down hard on their heels in shoes, while barefoot they would quickly adjust to stepping down more gingerly and hitting close to the balls of their feet. I especially remember my one and only pair of heavy steel boots, how hard I would whack the floor down with it and how it gave me injuries.
There is a Dailymail article that explains the hazards of shoes, in much more depth:
"The painful truth about trainers: Are running shoes a waste of money?"
Also there is a book on this subject titled: Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen
As a consequence in summer whenever possible, I have tried to use water shoes. But all the water shoes I could find locally are exceedingly cheap and ruin fast. They may only cost about $10-15, but they ruin so fast the low price is negated. One pair, the velcro is wearing out already and does not have much stick left and another pair got moderately ripped while mountain biking one day. So I am now searching for better quality minimalist shoes, especially since my brother won a pair of Terraplana Vivobarefoot Evo II(which retail at a whopping $160). I tried them at work and they felt pretty great, it felt even more flexible than water shoes, but it is too expensive of an option. My brother also has the shoes with separate toe slots for each toe, called Vibram fivefingers, but I have not tried them yet.
I was thinking of getting a Feelmax Niesa(I found it for $80 online), since the sole is supposed to be only 1mm thin and it looks alot like a normal shoe. Does anyone know any other companies that make minimalist shoes? Hopefully if get a good pair of minimal shoes that I can use more often than water shoes I can minimize trigger points in my foot, legs and back and it will turn into a sound investment.
I have seen a segmant on the 700 club about these shoes... I think they would be awesome! I never caught the name of them, but thanks to you, I was able to look them up.... I have always had problems finding shoes that I could wear... I cant wear traditional running shoes, because no matter how well we size them, they cause pain in my toes and side of my foot...According to my sister, this is a hereditary issue..my sister was diagnosed with the problem, they actually have a name for it..and we both remember our mother never keeping shoes on for long. Here is a link to buy the vibram fivefinger shoes...and also the link to the 700 club segmant
My favorite shoes are aerosols. I think that if you are raised with good shoes that fit properly, it is not such a big issue. If your feet are already screwed up then it is. Also, arthritis and other disease conditions can make for bad feet, and it has nothing to do with shoes.
__________________ "The nurse should be cheerful, orderly, punctual, patient, full of faith, - receptive to Truth and Love" Mary Baker Eddy
@Just me: I would not advise buying Vibrams blind from the internet without trying them on. REI, the chainstore that my brother bought it has a sale for members(it cost a one time $20 fee but after two member sale purchases it will pay off) buying in the next few days anything online(but you can pick up at the store waiving shipping fees), 30% off.
@Arrowwind09: Aerosols don't look that minimalist at all to me.
I found out about other companies that make minimalist shoes:
I am sure there are even more, hopefully more companies enter the market and you can find at least a few minimalist shoes in every brick store.
Shoes create a false feedback loop, because of them you can callously slam your foot down with no deference to proper biomechanics thanks to the thick soles and cushioning. This is why so many runners get injuries often. People tend to slam down hard on their heels in shoes, while barefoot they would quickly adjust to stepping down more gingerly and hitting close to the balls of their feet.
Also, running shoes nowadays "correct" to prevent turning your foot too far in or too far out. The manufacturers don't seem to realise that a foot is meant to rotate from the outside edge to the inside edge as you step over it. By preventing this, they also prevent your leg from rotating as it should. Not allowing your legs to rotate as you move results in stiff hips and a much greater tendency to twist and damage your knee.
P.S. I've just joined Natural Medicine Talk so this is my first post.
Thanks for posting Philip. I hope you enjoy the forum...There are some really great people on this forum!
I have started walking on a tredmill as my choice of exercise for the moment (doctor wont let me do anything else yet) but when I am on the tredmill, I am barefoot. Actually I am barefoot 90% of my days! I wear shoes as little as possible.
Philip, I am overly overweight.. I have about two hundred pounds to lose... As of three months ago, I was also borderline diabetic and my blood pressure was fairly high.. I think my doctor was afraid of me stroking out or something. I talked about the beginning of my weight loss journey in a post called mary's project. I think its here in the general discussions area, but Im not sure... I started September 1 and as of this past friday, I have lost 31 pounds so far... long way to go, but its a start! Im suppose to go back and see my doctor this month, so hopefully she will let me add some type of exercise.. even if she says no, I will at least start the oxycise program, and possibly something to strengthen stomach muscle. I know squats are probably what I need to do, but I so dislike them!
I am pretty sure I will order a pair, since like I said before, swim shoes that you find at department stores and such don't last at all, while these seem better quality, but still flexible, minimalist and very affordable. Not to mention they are quite waterproof, you could run in the snow as the article shows.
I see they do have a mesh upper. I would otherwise have a problem with perspiration, then fungus. How would you know what size when ordering? That is always my problem. I see the site has limited sizes. Otherwise, a very nice shoe.