Those Five Finger Shoe kind of things: Love'em or Hate'em?

I am seeing more and more people wearing those Vibram five finger shoes. At first I pointed and laughed, then I remembered how I love walking barefoot…everywhere. Then I remembered how often I stub my toe, or step on something sharp…Now I am thinking these would be awesome for hiking, fishing, trail running etc.

But, they are still kind of…dorky, for lack of a better word. What do you think?

I haven’t tried a pair, but I can’t see how they could possibly be as close-fitted as you’d need to let the foot function as bare. I’ve had custom-made soft leather boots that almost did (though they lacked separation between toes)–but these things are mass-produced. How can they account for people with the same foot length having different lengths of toes, or different ratios between toes, or any of the other ways in which foot shapes vary? It seems to me that the separate toes have to be more gimmick than functional.

My SO has 2 pair; he loves them. He wears them hiking, and anytime he’s not at work. His love for them is making me lean towards trying them out. I don’t know if they look dorky, but more like he’s wearing only socks on his feet.

Are you suppose to stuff your toes into the little toe areas?

In other news, look for an increase in big foot sightings due to the footprints left.

I wear them and I have severe over-pronation. They don’t fit perfectly, but they fit surprisingly well, and the toe separation is actually pretty cool. I would recommend the KSO rather than the Classic for flat feet, though.

There must be some evolutionary impetus for us to have 5 individual toes on each foot and it seems contradictory to nature by eliminating the individual function of each toe by essential fusing them in the conventional shoe.

I would certainly give them a try.


I am seriously tempted to get a pair as I see people wearing them around more and more. I love walking barefoot, but there are relatively few places around where it’s really safe to do so.
I actually saw a woman running in them yesterday; I noticed her gait was odd for a jogger, then took a look at her shoes. It looked a little funny, but she seemed to be enjoying it.

I voted oddly appealing. I have a pair of Treksports. Once I manage to get them on, they’re great; they’re the grippiest watershoes ever. They’re solid on slippery rocks for stream crossings or actually hiking in streams and creeks.

New users need to take it easy when starting out–you can really do a number on your Achilles tendon if you’re not careful.

I think her gait would probably be more down to the thin sole of the shoes. It takes some getting used to versus normal leisure or jogging shoes (I haven’t worn fivefingers but I’ve tried sprint shoes).

Regarding my opinion: I think they look pretty cool. A little bit cyborg.
And if the toes can splay out a little as you run, I could even believe that they may actually have a positive effect.

Those are the ones I like too, and I happen to have in my possession a gift card for REI. :slight_smile:

As for the flatfoot vs arched…I need to consider my feet as they are relatively flatfooted, so I’ll take a look at the KSO’s. I am mainly looking for traction and grip…

They seem kind of neat, though I won’t be trying them myself. I have flat feet and walking without arch support is just asking for pain and suffering.

Yep, actually that is what the salesman are saying…that your toes do “splay” slightly.

They are incredibly ugly, and yes, I would wear them. But then, I walk around in Crocs, so don’t follow me for fashion. I love to look at fashion, but for day-to-day I’m all about comfort.

I don’t know what it is about them but I think they’re possibly the creepiest article of clothing I’ve ever seen*.

(*Not really, but I can’t think of anything creepier at the moment.)

Dumbest looking things ever. No, I would not wear them.

I have a pair - the Classic in black - and love them. I cannot wear them to work (I tried, was told no) and TheKid says I have ape feet in them, but I don’t care. I wear them as much as possible.

Not as ugly as Crocs. I give a friend of mine a really bad time about always wearing Crocs, which hasn’t dissuaded her. (She didn’t listen to me about the tattoo, either.)

But, whatever. I’m going to point and laugh at people in ugly shoes, but really, they can wear what they want.

I also have flat feet and love my KSOs. And I’m pretty sure I want the TrekSports (good for hiking?)

The major downside is that strangers will come up and ask you about your footwear. You will have many, many, many conversations about your shoes. If you don’t like talking about your feet, don’t get these shoes.

Other than that, they’re pretty great.

I voted ‘oddly appealing,’ but that’s just due to context. As the only people I’ve seen them on have been outdorsey hiking/mountain climbing type women, I’ve only seen them at the bottom of very nice, usually bare, legs. Judged on their own, I can see where the ‘creepy’ vibe comes from.

Design-wise, I think they’re cool. Ninjas would love them.

They should come in black and red, with the rubber parts chromed. FEAR MY EVIL CYBORG FEET!!