Vibram FiveFingers

If you are a regular reader of Mark’s Daily Apple you are probably well aware of those funny looking Vibram FiveFingers by now. They’ve been mentioned in our barefoot running post, featured in a Top 10 Ultimate Fitness Gadgets post and showcased in Mark’s sprinting video. What can we say? We’re huge fans! The only thing FiveFingers hasn’t got is its own post. It is high time this performance footwear we love oh so much got the attention it well deserves, so here goes nothing.

How can these foot protecting oddities be described? I suppose if Toe Socks met Combat Boots, fell in love and had a shoe baby you would have Vibram FiveFingers.

Or maybe if Bunny Slippers wooed Climbing Shoes with her undying charm, and also somehow managed to birth unconventional hybrid foot-protection offspring you would end up with Vibram FiveFingers.

Flip flops and waters sock?

Ballet slippers and cross trainers?

You get the picture. They are the best of both worlds. They provide the physiological benefits of going barefoot with the advantage of having some level of armor against the elements. You don’t have to worry about stubbing your toe, or cutting your feet on glass or other sharp objects you are bound to come across in your travels. And you also don’t have to fret over the damage years of sneaker wearing would invariably do to your feet.

They take some getting use to, and Vibram warns you as much. Most people’s feet have been wrapped in leather, supported by padding, constrained by laces, and pampered since the day they were born. Since when was the double-stitched, steel-toed, double-buckled, laser, orthotic boot a prerequisite to human locomotion? (I just threw in the laser for fun. Though, if you know of a shoe with lasers please comment below. I am very interested.) Not long it turns out. Our feet developed without all this stuff, and they are better off without all this stuff save for minimal and basic defense.

You are bound to get some looks and see some heads turn if you walk around town in these. This probably isn’t of much interest to all of our trend-setting and trailblazing Mark’s Daily Apple readers. Besides, I am sure they are looks of envy rather than utter confusion or concern anyway.

Seriously, though. FiveFingers are light and malleable, yet durable. It’s as if Dr. Scholl went crazy and let his foot gels creep up around the heel and toes like a mutant foot-protecting demon. That’s it. FiveFingers are like a mutant demon that protects your feet. Yet also like your grandma, soft and protective.

Sorry. Back to serious. It should be clear at this point that Vibram FiveFingers are multifaceted, and a perfect gadget to help live the Primal lifestyle. If there is any criticism I can offer it is that they are a bit difficult to get the right size via post. They are adjustable and Vibram does offer pretty detailed guidelines on picking the right size, but best case scenario would entail you trying them on in-shop before purchasing. Also, if you have webbed feet these aren’t for you.

Do you have FiveFingers? How do you like ‘em? Hit us up with a comment!

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180 thoughts on “Vibram FiveFingers”

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    1. Sorry but those are just too butt ugly to use..they might be good, but…….pass.

  1. $70

    I just bought my boss a pair.
    He walks the beach a lot and is on his boat on weekends. He loves them. Although you should have seen the look on his face when he opened his birthday present.

  2. Alas, if you don’t have webbed feet but do have a longer second toe than big toe, they’re not going to work.

    1. Terra Plana makes a similar product that is more of a conventional shoe, but only has a 3mm thick rubber sole – so they act as the Five Fingers do. So all is certainly not lost.

    2. My right foot: oddly short 2nd toe and long 3rd toe AND my feet still feel great in the Vibrams 🙂

    3. Actually you’re supposed to measure for your longest toe, so they actually would still work, your big toe pocket would just be a bit big…. Which could be a bit annoying.. But on their website it tells you to measure for your longest toe, so it is still possible to wear them…

      1. I have been considering buying these for a while. I read somewhere (can’t find the article ANYWHERE) that some people have had success with buying these shoes fitted for their big toe, the stretching the second toe with heat and a pair of pliers until they got an appropriate fit. I’m one of those aliens with the second toe that is longer than the first, so I was wondering if anyone had heard of this or tried it.

        1. I’m trying the lighter and the socket wrench trick. It’s my fourth toe that is too long for my Sprints and it makes me so sad because the next size up is far too large.

    4. Incorrect. As stated on the VFF shoes website, if you have a second toe longer than your big toe, measure your foot from heel to the tip of your longer toe. That measurement accommodates fine. Try the new lace up style VFF (Vibram Five Finger)if you’re worried about the shoe fitting sloppy.

    5. Morton’s toe, the condition that is a longer second toe, is fairly common, and not a disfiguration. I’m surprised Vibram didn’t take this into consideration when designing the forms for these ‘shoes’.
      One of the ladies at my CrossFit class wears these sometimes, but she says the absorption of foreign objects is limited at best. Our cold climate, plus uneven sidewealks, stones, small and large, are some of the hazards we face, plus the inflated price Canadians pay for products that aren’t made here.
      I’m still going to look at them, just to see if they would be workable for use at home (at least).

      1. They come in several thicknesses of protection under your feet. At the gym, she is likely wearing the thinnest. I have three pairs, each with a different thickness of sole.

    6. I have the elusive “Monkey toe” as my wife calls it. The way Vibram says to measure you go to your longest toe. I just got a pair and love the fit.

    7. Thanks for mentioning this. I have what I’ve read described as “the Roman foot”. Don’t know if that’s accurate or not but it is sometimes a problem.

    8. I have a longer second toe on both feet, and still Virams work great. Sometimes it’s the only shoe I can wear comfortably (I have plantar fasciitis.) Walking barefoot is the other thing I can always do, so I got Vibrams to approximate barefacedness when I have to go outside. I do not run in them, only walk.

  3. I have a pair, love them to death although it seems my left little toe doesn’t appreciate them. I walked 6 miles in them round town and now I have a black toenail! 🙁 I think it was catching on the top bit of the shoe inner.

    I’m hoping I might be able to wear them again sometime soon. Plus it’s getting cold in the Northern Hemisphere and I don’t fancy freezing my toes off.

    Didn’t find any problems with sore muscles in my feet/legs since I spend an awful lot of time training barefoot in martial arts.

    1. There is a new style called the flow that is specifically for cold weather and water

    2. The same thing happened to my toenail and I hate to tell you that it might fall off (this could also be because I stubbed my little toe really hard while wearing them). Your little toes WILL get used to it so don’t let it discourage you!

    3. i have the same problem with My KSO’S But My Treksports stopped hurting aafter a while,i did crouch down on one knee with my toes bent hard on the ground for a few seconds .it seemed to help. i ;love these, shoes!

  4. Karen:

    I wondered about the longer second to but according to the Vibram webite there is a little “wiggle room: (pun intended):

    Standing with your heels against a flat wall
    Slide ruler under each foot and measure the longest toe
    Take the longer of the two measurements
    If your foot length varies by more than .4cm, it will be difficult to get a precise fit for both feet.
    If your second toe is more than .4cm longer than your big toe, it will be difficult to get a precise fit.

  5. have a par – Classcs -and love em – should have got the sprnt ones cos gong fast n the classcs s not easy. F you want to sprnt get sprnts. Szng -go to the snuggest sze you can manage eg my shoes are usually Euro 43 but my choce was a 42 and they are perfect. PS am worng on a eyboard that has 2 eys broen the letter after h and the ltter after j – am not a moron or dyslexc

    1. This is either serious comic genius, or simply the best ‘actual’ post by a person with 2 broken keys! Laughed ’til I cried.

  6. My wife and I each got a pair each this summer and love them. They have been super for trail running and it is such a different feeling running in them as opposed to my Nike Free’s. The calves get an incredible work out when I run in the fivefingers. My wife feels it more in her adductors. Amazing how our individual structures call on different demands than from others.

    If you can get to a place where they have them in stock, i’d recommend you try them on for size and walk around in them to get a feel. We drove 90 minutes to the nearest dealer but it was well worth it.

  7. Got mine about 2 months ago after reading the original post here. After doing more research, I went with the Five Fingers Sprint. Such a good choice. Had to order them from the US because they still aren’t carried in Canada (MEC in Vancouver is supposed to carry them eventually), but it was definitely worth the extra money for shipping.

    I’ve been trail running in them and they are incredible. I felt the extra strain in my calves at first, but it wasn’t bad stress… just the feeling of muscles that weren’t used to being called on. My little toes definitely required some coaxing to appreciate them, but my feet are used to them now. I definitely get some strange looks wearing them as well.

    I’d highly recommend the Injinji socks with them. I found the top of the Vibrams would chafe and the Injinjis stopped that right away.

    My ONLY complaint was that the only colour they had available in my size was red on black. Otherwise, one of the best fitness purchases I have made.

  8. Oh, and my second toe is slightly longer than my big toe and they fit fine. I guess it depends on how much longer it might be…

  9. @Dave C and Derek B,

    Toe two is .8cm longer than toe one, and toe three is .6cm longer than toe one. I guess I’ll have to wait until they start making them for monkeys.

    1. This sounds like a math question, are we to answer with the correct measurement of toe one?

  10. Wearing the Vibram shoes makes me feel like a kid again.

    I haven’t used them for running, but love them for most of my exercises, plus great for hiking on the trails.

  11. I am curious to try them but I’m a little apprehensive because I’ve had some serious problems in the past with plantar faciitis, and I’ve relied on orthotics since ’91. Also, back in my days of running 50-60 miles a week, I was definitely a heel striker. Landing on the balls of my feet might be one trick this old dog would have trouble learning. But I would like to see what they are like for just taking a walk (I do my interval workouts on a bike).

    1. These actually caused my recent bout of plantar fasciitis. I had no running injuries EVER. I was running although the time and starting to bike all the time as well (5 days a week). I’ve been doing this much physical activity for many years.
      They I saw these VFF and bought a pair of sprints. I absolutely loved them. Perfect biking shoe. Did only small amounts of running in them. Used them mostly for walking and lounging. I thought they were a bit nerdy but I received a dozen comments in the 2 week period I wore them, and they were all POSITIVE!!
      HOWEVER, and it’s a big however… after 2 weeks I one day felt a slight slight tightness in my achilles tendon. Did not even notice it until the next day around 2 pm… I stould up and it felt like my left foot was broken. I hobbled around in sooo much pain for a couple days before I self diagnosed myself with plantar faciitis. It came on so suddenly, from repetitive use and had every single symptom of P.F.. I had to stop wearing the VFF and taped my ankle for a few days, then I bought heel inserts for my shoes…and 10-14 days later my feet are feeling perfectly fine again.

      Although I loved those shoes, I am scared to start wearing them again. Nothing feels more debilitating than having plantar fasciitis.

      1. The PF might have been from biking in incorrect shoes. The stress that your foot gets from having just the ball of it on your pedals is tremendous. That’s why stiff biking shoes are best (with or without arch support). VFFs are good for running, biking, working out… NOT for cycling.

      2. PF NEVER comes and goes THAT fast. NEVER. You do not have PF. It’s something that comes on over time, many have it for months or years.

        1. Actuaally I am a long time patient of PF. I CAN come and go so quickly; however, the going is usually just a dormit state until t returns. He story is quite possibly true.

      3. I actually second that entire story – from the two weeks of loving them to the plantar fasciitis development. I’m going to work on changing my strike a little more, but if this horrible feeling keeps up, it’s back to asics.

      4. I actually tried the VFFs BECAUSE I suffered from PF. I needed to learn to run very differently. I do not walk in them at all (or stand around since my tendency is to lean back on my heels), but when I go for a run, they are all I wear. The key for me was learning to strike on the forefoot instead of the heel. Once home, I’m back in my custom orthotics and Saucony’s.

        It may sound crazy, but for the first time in my life, I can RUN. 🙂 LOVE the VFFs!

        1. I also developed PF from my VFFs — and mine is confirmed by medical evaluation. I was wearing mine for everything (I have both a set of Sprints and a set of Performas) but after almost 9 months of wearing them exclusively, I developed severe heel pain through the bottom of my foot. It would be almost unbearable to put any weight on my foot if I got up in the middle of the night, and for the first 1/2 hour of my day or so — and then it would feel better, but get worse again as the day went on.

          I started wearing special orthotics in sneakers, and have some relief now, though I still run into problems when I try to go barefoot around the house. My doc said that it’s because I was wearing them when I was SOOOO heavy (I’ve lost over 100 lbs in the past year), and that it’s likely that if I can get past this hitch, I should be healed and able to go back to my VFFs within 6 months. I can’t imagine NOT going back to them… as soon as I get cleared, I’ll definitely be back in them. I will also start paying better attention to my tendency to pronate, though, since that’s what my orthopedist says causes my PF — noticeable pronation, especially of the right foot.

        2. I also got PF soon after getting five-fingers. I took a couple weeks off, it went away, and it hasn’t come back. It was all part of the process of learning to run correctly and not land on my heels. And building foot strength.

          You have to start off easy with these things… keep it to a mile or less and run slow. Don’t listen to music or anything that will distract you from paying attention to your feet. It sounds strange, I suppose, but once I started to concentrate more on my running form, I had plenty to keep my mind busy.

          After a couple months of building up foot strength and running form, I was up to three or four miles. I still get some knee pain (I always have) after long runs, but then, I don’t run very often. Still I have been using Five Fingers as my workout and jogging shoe for over two years, and wouldn’t go back. (Sneakers field weird now.)

      5. I’ve heard of VFF’s helping with conditions of plantar faciitis and was considering getting a pair. Between my PF Flyers, Keen sandals and my Sketchers I have got plantar faciitis. I also have peripheral neuropathy and thought these might help with my foot sensations. We’ll see.

      6. I have had the same experience with these. I wore my Five Fingers for years as a kickboxing instructor and loved them… but recently I decided to start training in running in them, and after 3 weeks I have my first bout of Plantar Fasciitis I’ve ever had, and it is one of the worst, most debilitating feelings I’ve ever had. It is causing me to miss games in my present soccer league and I am heartbroken over it with no end in sight.

        Love the Five Fingers, but they should come with a serious warning. They’ve destroyed my feet.

      7. you can get rid of plantars faciitis easily by foam rolling the posterior tibialis and the arch.….

        in the end, it’s a posture issue.

        1. been running barefoot style for a year and then developed PF for the first time ever. still strugling with it. haven’t run foer 5 mths and is just getting worse. going to try the trigger point & foam roller – any other ideas welcomed!

      8. I have PF, and it’s the only shoe I can wear. I’ve had PF for two years now. I can either walk barefoot, or wear VFF. The podiatrists scratch their heads. It goes against their theories, because they want to put you in orthotics. But they also admit that I’m not the only one like this. I wish this would provoke curiosity in them to go study it, instead of just telling me “That’s goes against our theories.”

  12. Coop,
    That “feeling like a kid again” certainly describes the overall sensation we’ve felt with the FiveFingsers. A renewed playfullness if you will.

    Dave C.

    Check out the web page from their site. This may be able to answer some of your questions. If you’ve had problems in the past with plantar fasciitis then i believe they would recommend you slowly work your way into to wearing them. Do you have high arches, or flat feet? Both can result with variations of plantar fasciitis. If you still have questions, give them a call and speak to someone one on one.

  13. I’m also a fan – I use them instead of flip-flops in my backpack (I’ve been travelling almost non-stop for 20 months now) and wouldn’t go back to flip-flops.

    Mine have walked the streets of Venice, trails of Slovakia and even most of the West highland way in Scotland.

    My personal review is here and there’s also a flickr group for them:


  14. Paul: Thanks for the link. Looks like I have a couple of things going for me. I have high arches, and I have a neutral gait so I haven’t had to use “motion control” shoes. Mark sent me an email about these in my Apple infancy that I thought I had saved but can’t find. I *think* he said something to the effect that using them could be beneficial in the long run with my PF problem. My main concern is the transition from a 55 year old heel striker to a more flat footed approach. I guess I’ll head to the beach and try it barefoot in little doses and see how I adapt.

    Thanks again!

    1. I was a runner and when I ran barefoot on the beach I found my running style changed automatically without my even trying. You may find it’s easier than you think! 🙂

  15. Dave: Easing into it sounds like the best approach. Additionally find a reputable PT or Massage therapist who can work with you on specific ways of opening up the lower legs and the bottom of the feet. With high arches, there are usually ways to speed up the process of creating more ease in your step.

  16. Got ’em! Love ’em! Especially like the looks I get when I wear ’em. I call ’em my “MonkeyFeets!”

    I did notice that my FiveFingers aggravated my ingrown toenails on my big toes at first – and still after prolonged sessions they still do. But mostly this was solved by splurging on a quality pedicure.

  17. I own the Kayakshed and we’ve been selling them for a couple years now (I think we were one of Vibrams first stores) Since then, I’ve purchased both the five fingers classic as well as the sprints for myself. I can’t tell you how much I love ’em! They were not what I expected. I thought I would only use them for water applications (Kayaking obviously). Turns out I use them more for all sorts of things including yard work. They are tough to fit. We have a sizing chart on our site that works well. However if you’re in between 2 sizes. Buy both sizes and return the one that doesn’t fit. They are tricky to fit and they do get easier to put on after you have put them on 2 or 3 times. Good luck and enjoy!

    1. love your website
      delivery charges is a bomb over to KL and we don’t have any distributors here

      been dying to try those shoes, just really costly at this part of the world

  18. I’ve been running in mine for about a month, and found them to be a great training tool. I spent years trying to visualize a softer footstrike, quicker foot turnover, avoiding heel strikes, etc. to no avail (I’m just a slow learner I guess!) After the first week in the Vibrams, all of these form faults improved automatically… I’m proud to say that I no longer look like a combination of Pipi Longstocking and a sack of potatoes falling down a staircase when I run down hills. 🙂 Also, no more ITB pain.

    I had no problems with sizing following the website guidelines, but perhaps that is because I wear them with the Injini socks.

  19. Just got a pair after watching the beach sprint video and receiving my copy of Primal Blueprint. Already wore them around some this evening and I am loving them!

  20. Mark,

    Hey man I am so about to get a pair of these, go with the Sprints ya reckon or the Vivo ones?

    I ran sprints on a rubberized track (and some on grass) on Sunday and my calves are killing me, whew am i sore! But i have not run like that barefoot in awhile, used to all the time when i lived on the beaches of Australia, and try to as much as possible here in houston, but nevertheless think I over did it a bit! 😉

    I guess best is to alternate running barefoot and with Vibrams to strengthen feet, bones, ligaments, etc and for protection on some surfaces aye!?

    Why do u wear em on the beach sand? I love to feel the sand and water on my feet!



  21. Great dog in heaven, I love my FiveFingers. I’m so pleased to see you picked these up, Mark. It will do them a great deal to have them touted by someone promoting an anti-fad lifestyle, less someone mistake my FiveFingers for Crocs (RAT B**TARDS!) 🙂

    It’s only a damn shame that I’m not sure if I can legally wear them to work (Even though I’ve got the KSOs). I’m not entirely certain now Starbucks or the Indiana Department of Health feels about mesh tops.

    1. Get the Vibram Speeds! Search for them
      On or They have laces and as far as the mesh goes, would they say anything about you wearing nikes? That’s my logic on it.. If i get my toe run over its not gonna hurt any less because im wearing MESH TOE NIKE’s!!! I work in retail and my manager said “are those legal?” and I said, legal? Uhh yeah, I’ve never heard of a law against shoes.. LOL. I just acted like I didn’t know what she meant, but if you look at your dress code policy, I’m guessing it will say closed toe and closed heel…. Which all vibrams are both of those. And the speeds are even more so like a tennis shoe. They are the look of a basic sort of mesh tennis shoe with laces…. And toe pockets!!! I believe according to most dress codes, there’s nothing wrong with them, unless you have to wear dress shoes, or certain color shoes…

  22. I wonder if anyone has tried using Injinji toe socks with Vibram FiveFingers. I love my FF shoes, but there’s a seam that catches the tips of my big toes and rubs them excessively. I’ve considered trying to find a very thin toe sock to ease some of the rubbing, but as form-fitting as the FiveFingers are, I dunno how well that’d work…

    1. The socks are ok, unless your vibrams fit very snug… Then they are a bit annoying or even painful… But the socks help with the smell for sure!! Haha!

  23. Love my Five Fingers!!! I got a pair of classics in April and have worn them ever since. Now my Plantar Facitis is pretty much gone! I no longer have foot pain. I am not a runner but just wear them as my everyday shoes. I get questions almost everyday about them and I can’t say enough good stuff. If you don’t have them – buy a pair!

  24. Well, I gotta say that based on my experience this afternoon these shoes are deeply dubious.

    Inspired by what I read here I set out in Seattle to the headquarters of REI to try on a pair and see for myself.

    The department had them and the salesman got a couple of pair in different sizes.

    First of all, they are extremely EXTREMELY difficult to put on. Even after reading the instructions on the box and with the aid of the REI salesman (whom I assume is trained in such things) it was impossible to get them on.

    Second to that, while trying to put one pair on the pair — new and just out of the box — split between the mesh and body of the shoe.

    Not an advertisement for the construction of the shoe in the first place.

    All in all, a wasted ten mile round trip for a substandard bit of footwear.

    I’ll take recommendations like this a bit more carefully in the future.

    1. Don’t judge so easily… I’ve been wearing mine for months straight and nothing has messed up at all… Except getting dirty… Once you own them and WEAR them for a few or even only one week, everyday of course, they get much easier to put on. Your toes will even start to move apart easier. Mine NEVER moved apart.. Till I wore these… Now all I do is push my pinky toe over, and they slip right in… Many times, I don’t even use my hands, they just slide on! I guarantee you the ripping was ABSOLUTELY not normal… Unless they were fakes, which I hope not, since u were in a store!! They’re not that bad! I promise!! That’s why you heard so many good reviews! Cuz they’re right!!!

  25. Vanderleun, getting the shoes on is definitely an acquired skill that takes several wears to master. Sometimes I still find it rather tricky to get my uncooperative littlest toe into place.

    I hafta assume that the construction issues you reported are a fairly isolated example since this is the first I’ve heard of that sort of thing on the FiveFingers.

  26. By the way, I succumbed to the temptation and bought a pair of Injinji toe socks to wear with my FiveFingers.

    They’re great socks, but the added bulk – even though they are fairly thin – makes my FiveFingers uncomfortably snug on each of my toes. They’re fine with normal shoes tho.

    But as always, your mileage may vary…

  27. My boyfriend just bought them after reading Born to Run and loves them! His runs are a bit slower as he gets used to it but he feels himself working muscles he never has before. He does get strange looks from people, but he doesn’t mind. (It would probably bother me)

    He does have to use BandAid Blister Blocks and Dr Scholls Moleskin with them though. They cause blisters, but I think he needs to let them heal and the skin will toughen up and then he should be fine in just the shoes.

  28. I just got a pair of the sprints and after walking around campus with them all day the tip of my big toe on both feet is killing me! I tried on both size 39 and 40 and both were a little snug at the store in the big toe area, but since the 40s had so much extra room everywhere else I went with the 39’s, but am now worried that they might be too small. Do these normally fit really tight at first? I’ve heard they stretch out, but how much?

  29. Danika,
    This may sound like a funny question, and maybe it is, but how long are your tonails? Do they extend past the end of your big toes? This may cause a jamming of the nail back into the toe.

  30. I’m going to buy a pair for every day walking, gym training, and sprinting. I’m not sure whether I should get the Sprint or KSO variety. Can anyone please advise?

  31. I’ve had the FLOW model for about 10 months now. For those having trouble, you really just need time to get used to them. It’s a big change for your feet. At first my toes hurt, everything was sore. Now they are so comfortable and natural I can do anything in them. I wear them with and without the Injinji socks depending on temperature.
    For men, don’t be afraid to try the women’s models if you are having difficulty getting the right size. They have some in-between lengths that may fit better.

  32. Paul,
    nope, not that long. I did a little trimming to them once I got the vibrams, but I can only go so far, you know, haha. They are getting a little better so far. I think it just takes some stretching out and being active in them. The more I run in them, the easier they become to wear.

  33. Hi guys,

    Does any one know a website that delivers Five Fingers to New Zealand?


    1. Try

      Just got a pair of FLOWS. Awesome. Only niggle to date is joint pain in my little toe as it gets used to be straightened out rather than wedged in & twisted. I think the FLOWS are probably best suited to the NZ climate if you want a year round VFF without owning multiple pairs.

  34. I’ve got webbed feet and i was so desperate for a pair of FiveFingers but obviously i couldn’t wear them 🙁 I then went on a mission to find something the webbed toes could fit into but still give me the same benefits of going barefoot. I found Feelmax! And have never looked back! I’d deffo recommend anyone to try these out as an alternative to FiveFingers!

  35. I purchased my Vibram KSO’s just a few weeks ago. The first time I ran in them I really felt it in the calves but the following time my calves did not hurt near as much and I pushed it on my time as well. I look forward to wearing them more and running further distances. For around the house and working out, they are great as well.

  36. Very interested in these “shoes” and plan to get a pair this week. Still debating between flows and kso’s. Then I saw the picture of the high tops at the top of the article. What model are those!?! Those really look awesome for eatly season kayaking as well as all-around winter-wear. It looks like those would be much better suited to winter runs in several inches of snow. Are those available anywhere?

  37. I’ve been wearing my KSOs since late summer but in all honesty, it’s just gotten too damn cold here in New England! Does anyone have any experience with the KSO Treks? Are they even available yet? With or without Injinjis? Snow?

    Happy primal new year!

  38. I have had a pair of the classics since last summer. Mostly wore them for water sports activities, but recently planned to start wearing them at the gym for cardio (treadmill and elliptical) sessions over the winter. The first time I wore them at the gym (national chain), one of the staff came over and said they were not allowed – something to do with a safety issue, if weights or were dropped on your foot or something. As if a normal running shoe would protect your feet from a dumbbell impact…

  39. I own the sprints and the flows – and REALLY wish they made the kso treks for women!
    I’ve worn the sprints around NYC and for crossfit – BIG fan! I’ve gotten them wet several times.
    I’ve worn the flows around in cold weather (though 20F with severe windchill is not recommended – I’ve done it, and my ankles were cold!), and I used them for the Coney Island Polar Bear Plunge.. I had to go up a size for these, and even so, it’s harder to get my feet in and feel comfortable.

    I did try on both the classic and KSO, and found my high arches to be a problem… with the classic, my arches were above the top of the shoe, and with the KSO, it was really hard to get the shoe on without my calf cramping up.

    My friend has the treks and loves them – she (large feet = mens size) wears them everywhere in NYC during winter, but has yet to get them wet.

    I totally didn’t ease into them like the manufacturer suggests (I spend a lot of time barefoot – dancing, around the home, etc., walked on gravel and rough pavement barefoot as a kid – even walked around the Stanford campus barefoot for a day as a teenager), but I had no problems other than feeling the muscles work after a LOOONG (longer than intended) day in them.

  40. Absolutely love my Vibram Sprint. I wear a 43 and after a week of wearing them, it felt like a second skin.
    Never had a better shoe for trail running and climbing. Make sure to keep your toenails short to prevent soreness. I would highly recommend them.

  41. Just got a pair of these funny shoes… im not sure if they fit right. How tight are they supposed to be? I wore the shoe thingys around the house for about 3hrs and when i took them off i had the markings of the elastic on the tops of my feet. Is that too tight??


  42. Howdy! I’ve got a pair of the sprints and have been wearing them on and off, building up to trail running. They’re pretty comfortable, but walking around town I’ve noticed that on my left foot, the joint of the middle toe that attaches to the ball of my foot is getting quite sore. Not sure what to do about this. My left foot is also a tad bigger than my right, and all of the toes on my left foot feel just a smidge cramped in vibrams, but don’t appear to be forced into a non-natural position.

    Has anybody else experienced that same type of pain in the ball of their foot/metatarsal joint?

    1. Hi,

      I just bought a pair of sprints, and I have the same soreness on my right foot, at the metatarsal/2nd toe joint. Has yours improved at all?

  43. I’ve had a pair of Classics for about a month and love mine. I workout in them, wear them around the house, and even out and about. If I need to wear “shoes” I put on my Chucks. But that usually only happens about once a month.

    I’d like to get a few more pairs. I want to try the KSOs or sprints I think.

    How often do you all wash yours? Mine get kind of smelly after about 2 or 3 days.

  44. I have a pair of KSOs. Love them. Will probably get a pair of flows for colder weather though.

    And I always wear mine with toe socks, so much less smelliness.

  45. I have a pair of Kso’s I’ve had them for about 3 months now. I run about 3 -4 times a week in them took me a while to get up to 4+ miles without my calves wanting to die. You can wear them if you have a morton’s toe (your second toe is longer than your big toe) they do stretch a bit in the toes.

    My friend has a webbed toe and he owns a par, he just cut out part of the toe and restitched them. I thought they looked hideous before but with his webbed toe he just looks hysterical.

  46. I love getting close to nature, but not too close. Toe shoes are great, but Gistwear has one with a zipper; keeps the dirt of my feet. All the benefits without the drawbacks! It’s not Fivefingers though but I love my Gists.

  47. Great minds must think alike.

    I started using Vibrams a few months before I even knew about MDA or the Primal Blueprint.

    I wear them everywhere, and, yes, people look at you.
    But they also ask you about them.

  48. Actually, I have a 2-3 syndactyly (second toe webbed to the third). Any relief?

  49. My Favorite Five-Fingers moment to date:

    Walking into a local coffee shop in my Five-Fingers as a mother and her son (about 4 yrs old) were walking out. The boy notices my shoes and says quite loudly: “Mom, that lady has FUNNY shoes!” The poor mother (who had not seen my shoes) was obviously MORTIFIED and hustled her child off before I could laugh and clarify – it’s ok, they are funny shoes! 🙂

    Needless to say, I wear my five-fingers all over the place and love them.

  50. My second and third toes are webbed on both feet. I got a pair of Fivefinger Sprints, and I just took a scissor to the cloth in between the corresponding “toes” on the shoes. It worked great and I wear them now everyday. This is especially fortunate, as I live in China and, while Fivefingers are available here, Feelmaxs seem not to be.

  51. I’ve had the KSOs for about 2, maybe 3 months now. I’m having trouble getting my form down.

    I’ve had a problem with blisters on my big toes and on the balls of my big toes. I got iniji socks which helped a bit, and after consciously experimenting with different running forms, I can run 7 miles without blisters. But afterward, they still feel more tender than I’d like as I want to match the mileage I get in normal running shoes.

    I’ve also noticed pain in my left little toe, like maybe I’m impacting too hard on it.

    Lastly, and this may be what contributes to blistering, but I have a VERY hard time running downhill. In normal shoes downhill is liberating, easy. While high-impact, I can ride my momentum. In Vibrams I feel like I’m constantly breaking. I have to run slower because I can’t absorb the impact, and my toes start rubbing much more.

    Any advice? I’ve looked online for proper forefoot form, but I really need details. Should my feet be pointed out? straight? In? Should I be leaning forward like I’ve heard? Do I land on the balls of my outer toes and sort of roll in? Can too severe of a roll be the cause of my problems?

    Thanks in advance for any advice.

    1. Jeff,

      Maybe you need to slow down your progression with VFFs. First, it sounds like you’re not so confident about your ability to control your run downhill. Why are you breaking?

      How about gently running down a soft, grassy downhill, incrementally increasing the distance as well as the grade?

      There is a gentleman in the UK who runs that has instructional videos on how to run better barefoot and in VFF. I cannot find the link to his videos done with a journalist … maybe you’ll have more luck in your Google search.

  52. I use the KSO’s and they are friggin’ awesome. I train MMA and the calf workout I get just from running during the first few weeks was more intense than even doing calf raises and lunges.

    Definitely a worthwhile investment.

  53. I just got some KSO’s. I ordered them directly online from Vibram’s web site. I’m not really sure if they are too tight or not yet, I think they’ll be okay. I don’t like how short the strap is though, it isn’t long enough and leaves a lot of exposed scratchy velcro. I think I should have gotten the basic ones, but I was worried about running. Vibram’s site sucks for contacting them, as they have a 160 character limit on messages!

    On another note… Running seems intuitive. However, how do you train your body how to WALK in them? I feel SO weird just trying to walk, that I almost want to just run everywhere instead.

    1. Hopefully you had the right website! There ARE fake websites for vibrams that are very convincing, but the shoes they sell are lower quality and don’t fit right and can rip or tear easily, or even hurt the wearer! Go to for a list of counterfeit sites and real ones too! I believe the real Vibram site has a map at the beginning that you have to click on your country, if the home page of the site isn’t that one, then it’s a fake.. Just go to and compare your websites photos to theirs.. Assuming they didn’t copy and last the real thing onto their site, thats one way to spot fakes. Not saying yours are or anything, but it’s certainly possible.. They almost got me! Rule of thumb, I they’re cheaper than the usual 100 bucks, (with exception of occasional online sales), then they’re fake!

  54. Wish I Were Riding,
    It does feel strange trying to walk in them at first. If you are accustomed to the heal strike then this will make for an uncomfortable jarring pattern. Try shortening your stride and allowing the foot to gently land more all at once.

    Focus on relaxing the foot and not pulling the toes up so hard before planting the foot.

    Walking barefoot or in fivefingers also lets one quickly discern whether or not one has adequate movement in the pelvis/hips/back.

    Explore slight movement of the pelvis side to side. This takes much of the impact out of the spine. If this is difficult, you may want to look at ways of opening up your abductors.

    Next explore a gentle rocking front to back movement of the pelvis. As a leg swings forward a balanced pelvis will exhibit a gentle lengthening down the lumbars, then as the leg goes back, an arching of the lumbars occurs.

    Finally play with counter rotations of legs and arms. If all of this is a little challenging to comprehend, you may want to contact a local Rolfer or Structural Integrator. They can help you with this.

  55. The Vibram size measurer indicated I needed a size 39. When that size became available, I tried it on but both little toes felt very scrunched. I purchased a size 40 Classic but now when I walk on forest trails up and down hills, my left little toe hurts horribly. I am so disappointed because I have so many foot problems and really wanted these to work.

    1. Get them snug… They will stretch… That’s my experience anyway. Started with a treksport 41, cuz they felt better than a 40… Now I wear them less than my others, cuz they stretched and the heel has a sort of folded in spot.. I now buy size 40 since I know how they fit… 🙂

  56. Both REIs in my area are chronically out of these (they claim they sell out in 1 hour when they get a shipment), so I stood on their officially Vibram Fivefinger foot-shaped size-measurer and it told me I was a 42/43. I went ahead and order the 43 and when it arrived several weeks later it was comically small. I could barely get it on, and when I did, my feet were bunched and my toes were curled up. It was like trying on a little kid’s shoe for laughs. So I sent them back and ordered 45s. I just got these and I’m worried that they’re too small too. They seem just about long enough, but they are VERY snug in the toes. I wore them around the house for about 15 minutes and then took them off and my toes were beet red.

    I’m afraid if I go up another size they’ll be took loose in the heel. How much will the toes stretch out?

  57. I would absolutely go for a bigger size if they are hurting your toes. I had the same problem when I got mine and just thought they needed to stretch out a bit, which they did, but never quite enough. I eventually ended up having to stop wearing them because they were giving me pretty bad blisters after about 3 miles when I ran because of being too tight. I plan on getting a new, bigger pair at the end of the summer though

  58. I’m pretty sure Nike makes these “natural” fitting shoes now.. I forget what they’re called tho. My buddy bought a pair though and he said he loved them.

  59. I just got my fivefingers in the mail (of course our REIs didn’t have them in stock) and was able to run 3 miles with some speed work, no problem. I was already landing on my midfoot — the Vibram shoes forced me to shorten and increase my strides per minute. The Nike Free might also be OK, but I tried the Terra Plana shoes when I was in London and it was extremely difficult to find the right size and they were very expensive. I would stick with the fivefingers.

  60. i ordered a pair of the sprint’s, and can’t seem to get them on! my toes seems to be too stubby and curved under. any suggestions?

  61. Susan,
    I had difficulties at first too. You may want to try this approach:
    Start with getting the toes in first.Don’t pull the heel on until all the toes are in each pocket. I start with the big toe getting it in line, and only partially inserted, then the next, all the way down to the pinky toe. Once all toes are lined up, I spread the toes and pull the the mesh (just above the toes) back towards the heel. Then I grasp the bottom of the toes and pull gently back. Finally I put the heel on. The better one is at spreading their toes, the easier this becomes.Good luck!

    1. thanks paul, i will try your suggestions. my left foot seems to be easier than the right for some reason!

  62. Are these shoes good for high arches? because I am a cross country runner in high school so if someone could answer my question through my email I would appreciate it.
    [email protected]

  63. a7twin,
    Going to the official website may get you more information about appropriate wear for runners with high arches. One of the chief concerns for high arches is that there may be a shortness and rigidity to the feet (plantar fascia) that does not allow for a natural springiness in the feet/arches. If this is the case, it may create certain challenges. You will want to look into making sure the feet and calves (the calves create much of the integrity of the feet) become more supple and very gradually work your way into wearing five fingers. I have a fairly neutral gait with medium supple arches and after my first run in 5 fingers (only 15 minutes long at a moderate pace) my calves were sore for two days.

  64. I am very interested in trying some fivefingers but am not sure if they will work for me. 8 yrs ago I tore my plantar fascia due to repetitive stress from soccer mostly. It took over a year to heal (lots of casts but no surgery) and my feet have been coddled with orthotics since then. My PF finally seemed completely gone until last year when I was teaching on a hard tile floor. My foot pain recurred and one ortho doc said that the fat pad on my heel has become too thin and I must wear even more cushioning. Now, when I teach, I actually wear these cumbersome anit-fatigue mat strap-on shoes on the bottom of my boots. So, can anyone advise this gal with a supposedly thin fat pad if 5fingers would be a good idea?

  65. I just picked up a pair of the classics and the trek sports.
    Broke my ankle (trimalleolar fracture) May 2nd, and have been wanting to get the ole’ calf muscles back. The classics wear a bit tighter than the kso treks do, and I’m not certain I’ve got the right size, as my big toes come all the way up to the end of the toe bed. I figure I’ll see if they stretch a bit before I take them back though.

  66. Hi Mark, Thanks so much for your comments and all the comments after. I have been wearing orthotics now for the past 4 years and recently got a pair of the Vibram Sprints. In the last 4 years with the orthotics, that supposedly are correcting my foot biomechanics I ended up with plantar fasciitis in my right for about a year and then eventually a stress fracture in the left for all the compensation with the first injury. In the year I had the P.F. I did everything they told me to do- no running, jumping, exercises on the toes, wear supportive shoes with orthotics all the time, etc. Needless to say it took forever to heal and now I am starting to feel that foot begin to ache again. So I taking a different approach this time. I have not work the FF’s too much since I got them, but now I am wearing them as much as I can and my feet can handle. My foot feels better in them then shoes with the orthotics. Ceasing the running for now, but still throwing in some plyometrics with my interval training and continuing with spin a couple of days of week. I agree that my feet are now as strong as they should be as they are always being supported by shoes/orthotics. For years I never wore orthotics and was just as active with no injury. Hope this new approach works!

  67. I ran Tabata sprints in mine today after doing a hard and fast P90X legs and back yesterday…I’m guessing my calves will hurt tomorrow, but I haven’t worked out wearing shoes of any kind in years (except running and biking) so we’ll see. In any event, they were a blast to run in and I felt a lot faster in them than I do in shoes (I’m quite slow either way).

  68. I just got some.. the flow model. I am trying to break them in by wearing them around the house and such. After two hours of them on (day two) my little toes are RIDICULOUSLY sore to touch and perhaps bruised.
    My little toe tends to curl into the toe next to it, my bones probably veer inward instead of straight forward. The 5fingers are forcing them to align and spread, its killin me!
    Slowly I will break them in!!
    I am a dancer and and I dance barefoot all the time, so I am fine everywhere else.

    1. I have the treksports which are mostly mesh, but I also have the flows as well and theory are EXTREMELY tighter than the treksport. I think it has to do with the neoprene that they are made out of… It seems to be tighter than the other, because they have sort of a wetsuit type fit to them… I am hoping mine will stretch just a bit in the toes to relieve some of the pressure, because I love how the flows are made AND I cant return them since they are worn now, obviously. I bought my treksports in a size 41 and they are a bit loose in the heels, but i was not aware of the fact that you are supposed to “nestle your heel all the way into the heel cup”, so i was pusing my foot forward into the toe pockets when i tried on the treksports… And they felt fine… But after a week of wear, the part that runs up the back of the heel just under the pull loop, started to sort of fold down because it wasn’t against my foot, I suppose… I really need a 40 in the treksport because of that so I went to rock creek outfitters and tried a 40 in the flow but they were so insanely tight that I couldn’t stand it! So I had to get a 41 in the flow also… Mainly because of the tightness of the neoprene toes… Honestly even in the 41 they are still a little tight, but its only been two days, and I’m hoping it gets better because i love the style and the fact that they don’t get water in them… I have walked through snow (i live in tennessee so its not 3 feet of snow or anything haha) in the treksports and because of the mesh they get wet pretty quick, but it just snowed about an inch today and I was wearing them outside walking the dog and with the exception of the bottom of my feet being pretty cold after a few minutes, my feet actually stayed dry, which is great! If you want a pair that doesn’t squeeze your toes much and has even more grip than the bottoms of most V5F’s the treksport is certainly worth looking into! Once they are broken in, they are super easy to get on and very comfy! Just make sure they fit to the heel so they don’t fold in the back like mine did. Also the Injinji socks helped with making my treksports fit a little better, but I tried them with my flows and it makes them even tighter…. My problem is that the flows rub on the backs of my heels, right in the middle,very badly and it’s extremely painful…ANYONE ELSE HAVE THAT PROBLEM WITH THE FLOWS?? I had to put band aids on the back of my heels to relieve the pain, that’s why I tried my socks with them, but they awfully tight now… I’m trying to find some super thin toe socks if anyone knows a place or a website that would be awesome! Until then I guess I’m just gonna stick with band aids!! I love em too much not to wear!!

      1. Oops! “they”‘are extremely tighter than the treksports.. Stupid spell corrector!

  69. I just bought my first pair of VFF yesterday in the hopes that I would be able to start running again. I have bad PF and when I tried to run last year ended up crippled for weeks. I am a cyclist and wonder if you have a reference site on cycling causing or exacerbating PF. I use top of the line SIDI shoes and Look cleats (under the belief that look would distribute the pressure point more evenly). Appreciate any feedback you can offer – I just want to run again!

  70. I love my VFFs and they have helped me correct my running form so my own bad cases of PF have vanished. I hope you have the same success. I’ve read that cycling is recommended for runners down and out with PF, I haven’t read anything on it making it worse. Just remember to start slow and only run a few miles with the VFFs, its easy to strain your achilles when first starting out 🙂

    1. I got a the VFF Trek, which is the trail model. So excited that I over did it the first time out (4m) Now, I am paying for it. First I had pain on the outside of my foot a few days and now it’s on the inside and feeling like the PF I had years ago. I’ve read that wearing VFF helps PF, but it doesn’t going “barefoot” actually put more stress on the fascia?

  71. Last May I ran the slowest 1/2 marathon of my life. When I finally crossed the line in 2:33, knees sore, back sore and ankles ready to explode, I was ready to call my running career over. The following month, a friend of mine turned me onto VFFs.

    I decided to give them try. After about 6 weeks of different types of pain (Calf muscles, achilles tendon soreness, etc.), I noticed I was starting to enjoy running again. The new pains were subsiding, and the old pains were gone.

    Since August, I have run 4 more half marathons, all under 2 hours with a PR of 1:51 and a sub 48-minute 10k. These are times I hadn’t seen in almost 15 years. The only difference in my life was the shoes I was wearing. VFFs deserve 100% of the credit for any improvements. VFFs Rock!!!

    1. got a pair last summer and went out and pounded out weeks of off trail backcountry, rock climbing, 14er summiting, technical climbing,winderness trekking, etc around Summit county and it was great and rather intense. Yes, it feels like you are walking the wilderness barefoot. Some heel pain, but proper preparation and acclamation is in order before doing what I did. Although I spend all my time up there. Only problem…. the space between toes is fabric and pricklies poke into the side of the toe. Would be perfect if the sole wrapped up between toes , even if thinner material, to avoid this…. also, watch out for rusty nails etc, around old mining sites etc…Not for everybody, but if you are typically more adventurous than most…. buy em !

  72. Used mine for the first time. I ran for 3 miles. Got blisters on the side of my feet and under my big toes… Will it get better? Should I still try to use them? Feel my knee a little bit and my calves a really tight!

    1. Sounds like a bit too much to be running when you’ve just got them… I think walking around in them for a few days to get used to it would be easier on your feet… Then slowly start using them more… But everyones feet are different so some people may be able to just put them on and go with no problem…. I wore mine a lot for the first few weeks, like everywhere I went but no running in them really… My feet did ok but it’s definitely an adjustment, and I think they say if you go too hard in them right off the bat, then you can injure yourself… Basically after wearing thick sole shoes your entire life and then changing to V5F’s, take some adjustment in how you walk, like landing more on the ball of your foot… So I was told, not sure. I know when I was wearin the flows I had to walk more on the ball of my foot, because it was hurting a bit… That made it better but u have to always think about how ur walking until u start doing it without thinking…. If u want a pair that may bother u less, get the trek sport… I didn’t think it was that big a difference but when I got the flows it was totally different… You can feel WAAAY more in the ones that have a smooth bottom… That’s been my experience anyway…

  73. I got a pair of the bikilas at Christmas. I eased into running in them and had been running 2 miles routinely throughout the week. I have done 3 miles in them the last 2 Saturdays, with no problems.

    However, this week I did 4 miles and the last 1/4 of a mile I starting having pain in the outer portion of my left foot. It goes from the very bottom of my little toe to the heel and runs along the outer edge of my foot. 2 days later, it has gotten better but not completely.

    I am training to do a half-marathon at the end of April and was really looking forward to running in my VFFs. I have loved every minute of them until this week. Now I’m wondering if my feet will able to take running that long in them? Has anyone else had this problem?

    1. I had some pain when I first bought my Vibrams. I would wear them while doing rounds (I’m an RA on a small College campus), and thought it was due to Vibram not making the small toe box long enough. Eventually it went away.

      After having had them for over a year now, I have done a 5k race in them (with lots of trail running) and had several hot spots at the end of the race. If you’re planning to run a marathon I would suggest a different minimalist shoe, like the RunAmoc’s made by Soft Star Shoes, a US based company. Or there’s the INOV-8 f-lite 195s, which are less barefoot feeling but still more minimalist and would correct form.

      Neither of them will give you the exact same feel as the Vibrams, but the RunAmocs (I’ve heard, I don’t own a pair) are supposed to mimic that free feel since it’s basically a perforated leather bootie with a thin vibram sole. That way you won’t have to worry about constricted toes or hot spots! Good luck!

      1. Thanks. I think I’m going to get a pair of the Nike Free’s to run in while I get better broke into with the VFFs. I probably won’t try to run the half in the VFFs for fear of not being able to finish due to the pain. It was almost unbearable the other day and I limped around for several hours yesterday.

    2. I’m not a trainer nor PT, but it is my understanding that it is important to increase the distance by no more than %10 per week. From the sounds of things, you jumped up the increase too quickly. Gradual increase is so important to allow the body to adjust and respond to the strain. We crawled first (hopefully) before we walked. This is the same principal.Good luck and be gentle with yourself.

  74. I had that pain after 4 miles too! It did go away, but I had to lay off running. When I did start running again, the pain shifted to my posterior tibial tendon. I now know I had very weak ankles and needed to break the shoes in slower. I’ve been doing ankle exercises since to strengthen the area,

  75. I use Vibrams to lift, I find that I get more of a range of motion when I deadlift with them on.

  76. I hate how expensive they are in the UK! I’d want to get KSOs or at least Sprints, but they’re over £100 ($140 or so?).

    1. Chris try doing a search for a coupon. I managed to get my sprints for £75 online with a discount coupon

    2. Heck yeah! They are crazy expensive over there!! I wanted the speeds, which WERE only sold in UK, but I wasn’t payin that crazy price! Can you payy the US price if you get some from a US website? I’m not sure how all of that works on your end… But they’re around 100 USD on,, or…. Maybe email them and ask, or go through checkout and see what it says when you put in your country, that is of course if it gives you the option of choosing a country!! Good luck!!

  77. I recently tried the VFF originals, KSOs and a sportier version I believe the Komodo. I found them restrictive on my big (size 12) feet. While length was OK, I’m afraid I might suffer from fat toes… Enter Fila Skeletoes. They fit like a dream and while not quite as flexible as the KSO, they are as flexible if not more than the Sportier versions. They also have a EZ slide, combining your pinkie and your this little pig had none toe. Overall I’m very pleased. I’m hoping to see more big shoe names enter the market as competition can only improve things for the consumer.

  78. Do you ever know about the funny vibrams five fingers and what do the vibram five fingers looks like?Do you realize the making principle and function of vibram five finger shoes? Now I am very happy to talk about vibram five fingers shoes with all of you because I just know somewhat about five fingers vibram.The rubber sole of vibram fivefinger shoes are quite soft.You may feel strange when you wear vibram five fingers shoes at the first time.But you will feel very comfortable after you wear vibram fivefingers several time.Then you are supposed to know that vibram five fingers can protect our feet to a great degree.

    1. DO NOT GO TO THIS POSTS WEBSITE!! THESE ARE FAKES!!!! As if it’s not obvious… You need to find someone who speaks better English there buddy!!! Pathetic…

  79. I just got them. Having an issue with small toe on each foot getting into the slot.

  80. I have a pair of VFF Treks that I have only worn a couple of times. I tried them on in the store and they felt great. They still feel great when I put them on. However, after wearing them very long the balls of my feet start burning. Does anybody know what would cause that?

  81. @Beth – I have the same problem with lots of my shoes. I think its the skin rubbing on the bottom of the inside of the shoe? Maybe your vibrams are too big? I have had definite issues with sizing, and ended up with ones that were too big and giving me blisters. I have since sold those and bought several new pairs in the correct size, but sometimes I’m a 40 and sometimes I’m a 41 – depending on which style of shoe it is. I sometimes get burning after a lot of walking in my Jaya’s, but never in any of the others. I think the Jaya is more flexible so my foot may move around in them more.

  82. I bought a pair a year ago (in your presence actully as you visited us at our health fair in Miami). I haven’t put on a pair of sneakers since.

  83. I love my vibrams. I first started wearing them 2 years ago before they were known around my area. I still get strange looks and asked plenty of questions about them especially from girls. (chick magnet!!) I run, workout, fish, play sports, chill, and do pretty much everything in them.

  84. Also don’t know if anybody has commented about fixing the stench that inevitably develops but I find that denture tabs dropped in a bucket of water work wonders. Soak your vibrams for a few minutes then let them dry.

    1. Go to , they have a forum I believe, kind of funny to have a forum for dealing with smelly shoes!! But it’s necessary! Actually it may be more of just a page with suggestions from people, and things they have tried… But it’s a great site too and you should subscribe to emails from them.. They send info on new vibrams and other news! Very helpful site for sure..

  85. I love mine. Like Vibram, the retailer, and this article warned me, they take a few days to get used to but I’ve been wearing them everywhere for 3 months straight. Couple of caveats for those thinking of them – first, you MUST keep your feet clean. And wash the shoes regularly. Second, when someone says “they take some getting used to” they mean at least in part that your feet will hurt for awhile as they get into shape. Your poor dogs have been useless lazy stumps at the bottom of your legs for almost your whole life and now you’re going to ask them to stand up and do their job. They won’t like it at first.

    My only and I mean ONLY serious complaint is that I wish they were less … conspicuous. I’ve talked about my shoes A LOT in the last 3 months. At first it was a novelty, over time it’s gotten irritating.

    I walk about 3km a day with my dog, ride my bike 30km to work and back, and play volleyball on grass 5 hours a week and these shoes are awesome for all activities. Love them love them love them.

    it used to be that when I was sitting, my legs would twitch. Sometimes worse than others but always. The main physical benefit I’ve had other than healthier feet is that this twitch has entirely stopped. I put it down to healthier nerves.

    1. I work retail and people never leave me alone about them because I wear my, treksports, bikilas, and Komodo sports, to work… Depending on my mood, sometimes it’s irritating! But the thing I hate the worst is when they say “what are those?” I DON’T KNOW WHAT TO SAY!! I’m sitting there thinking like Uhhh SHOES!!??!! they’re on my feet?! What do you think??!! If they say “I like your shoes” I’m ok, but its the whole “what are those” thing that drives me nuts…

  86. I tried them on in-store and was disappointed. I may be one of the rare beans who can’t wear Vibrams. Despite walking barefoot for years, my feet are flat, wide, with toes spaced close together.

    Got the largest size the store had and no luck. My feet were cramping after 10 minutes of attempts.

    1. YOu need to try the LS version of vibrams… They’re for wide feet… They have quick laces… May I suggest the Komodo sport LS… If u can buy them… I’m not sure if they’re out yet… But even still they sell the LS version in other vibrams as well… Not sure how the rest of the shoe will fit but that should take care of the width problem at least!! I hate to see anyone who wants to wear them, not be able to!! Cuz they’re awesome!! 🙂

  87. just got a pair of vibram five fingers and as some people commented, wearing them made me want to move more because they felt good. however, they seem to make me use a ton more muscles in my feet. consequently, i get some muscle fatigue and pain the the muscles mostly on top of the foot and instep. what is a good way to space out the usage of the vibram fivefingers and what inserts are available for arch suppport

  88. I was interested in these for a long time, but I have very wide feet (EEEE) and … due to not having a store around that sells them … never gave them a shot. That is until I found out a roomate had a pair of Treksports. In an odd coincidence they were the correct length according to Vibram’s website (11.5in = 45), so I asked him, tried them on, and they fit great!!

    I just got my own pair of the new Komodosport LSs from online and they fit as well! Love them so far. The feeling is great, and hopefully they will help splay out my toes a bit (years of tight toe boxes have scrunched everything together and twisted my pinky toes).

  89. All,

    I really enjoy all the content in this website, so first and foremost I’d like to thank Mark for it. The argument that we shouldn’t be eating things that our body hasn’t evolved to deal with resonates with me. However, I’m a bit puzzled about how this reasoning applies to Vibram Fivefingers.

    We live in a very modified environment, where streets are mostly asphalt. Our body, similarly to how it hasn’t evolved to digest certain foods, surely hasn’t evolved to deal with such an environment. In that case, wouldn’t it make sense to wear something that protects us from this harsh environment? In other words, when dealing with foods, we protect ourselves by not eating them, and opt for healthier choices. But when it comes to walking, by using the same argument, shouldn’t we encourage the act of adapting/protecting ourselves from the environment (e.g. shoes)?

    The whole argument for Vibram Fivefingers (or going barefoot) makes sense when we talk about hiking, or running in a forest or other natural surface, like we used to do in the past. But what about highly-modified, asphalt surfaces?

    Could anyone please clarify a bit? Or let me know if this issue has been discussed in the past.


  90. I finally purchased a pair before my trip to Maui. I have worn shoes my whole life and am a “tender foot.” I love the VFF’s and can’t wait to wear this pair out so I can buy another pair. I purchased the Bikila LS and they fit great. I prefer the laced versions as I have fairly narrow feet around my arch. The lacing provides a better fir than the velcro strap versions.

  91. Been wearing mine for two weeks now. I love them. I bought them as I’ve had PF for a while and though it’s not much better, I have gradually built up to walking 5 mile in them. However my very fashion conscious daughter won’t let me wear them out with her! But I don’t care it means I get to not have to go shopping with her!!!! Other people are freaked out by them, quite common. I’m trying to get my husband to start going barefoot running as he gets injured these days… Near 60 years old, can I get him out in flatties and some baggy shorts instead of lycra and heavy duty trainers….. I’ll let you know.

  92. Okay, so the vibrams are great. What is another alternative that works for work when you need something a little more professional and dressy?

    I work as a corporate photographer, photographing conferences, tradeshows and the like and often times semi formal cocktail parties after the event. I’m 27, have torn two ligaments in my foot and have achilles tendonitis on both feet. I’m young and in shape 5’4 105 lbs and don’t understand why my feet are hurting so much.

    need a solution that helps me be able to stand on my feet for 14 hr days, carrying equipment, sqatting and lifting, etc without being in pure agony!

    I spent $350 on shoes last week, tried out each pair for a full day at another long event and my feet are still reeling in pain 5 days later! I tried a born leather shoe, sperry black leather boat shoe, and something by aerosoles.

    suggestions! please and thank you and you are all awesome!

    1. This site has several different styles of barefoot-type dress shoes. I got a pair of the Men’s “Dharma” shoes and have been loving them when I must wear “traditional” dress shoes. They have a very similar feel to the Vibrams but without the toe pockets.

  93. I bought Vibram Five Fingers about nine months ago, and in the past five or six months have used them exclusively for my three or so weekly runs of 3 miles each. I have been having knee problems, and found the only way I could continue running was adjust my stride and not be a heal striking any longer, but run either flat footed or on the balls of my feet. Vibram’s help me to run on my toes and balls of my feet, to take the stress off my knees. THAT SAID — in the past couple days I’ve developed severe pain at the base of my right big toe. I’m hobbling around all day today just walking into work. It’s a sharp pain, as I bend my foot when I take a step. Anybody else have this issue? And if so, how to combat?

  94. So, my Sprints came in the mail yesterday. I know I have the right size… but I am feeling some pain in between a few of my toes. I’ve been wearing the shoes a few hours at a time and then taking them off. Will my feet adapt to the toe separation? Do I just need to keep wearing them?

  95. I went and bought a pair of VFF the other day. I went running in them yesterday and it felt great!
    Now that I have been Primal for a few weeks I have gotten stronger and the running was really enjoyable. Love them!

  96. I’ve had vff’s for a few months now, and I wish I had the praise everyone else does. I only use them for running, and while I appreciate the merit behind promises of improved form, my pf shows no sign of healing. I will continue wearing them when I run with hopes that they will one day be comfortable, but they don’t feel very nice after only a few miles. They most I’ve run at one time in them was 8 miles, and the last two miles were uncomfortable. I don’t have perfect feet with nicely formed, straight, correct length, toes for a shoe that mimics a perfect foot. I can see where the VFF would be a good match for people who have feet that look like the shoe, but if your feet are imperfect, as are mine, you may want to consider a minimal shoe with a nice spacious toe-box instead.

  97. Vibram is a weak company that can’t seem to figure out how to manage an inventory that includes products for the smaller sizes (38M, 39M…) Instead, we’re left with 3 models to choose from, and no choice of color. That said, I do like my KSO’s, it’s just that they’re getting worn, and even a year and a half after I bought them, the product choice is exactly the same as it was then, even though they’ve introduced 4 or 5 new styles. Weak Vibram… (and the female versions do not fit)

  98. I have ahd these shoes for just under a year now. I’ll be honest and say that I wear them on and off(more off then on), I really love the concept of being able to walk virtually barefoot, but with protection. I forst heard about them when reading born to run (which I recommend)
    As it turns out my pinky toes still KILL me when wearing them to this day. I’m not sure if they’re too tight OR working. My pinky are pretty f’d up from all the shoes I’ve tried to squeeze my feet into all these years lol.

  99. Well I reluctantly just sent back my 3rd pair o VFF’s. I measured my foot according to their website, and my first pair of kso’s were too small, so I went up a size. Perfect fit other than my pinkie toe, which happens to be bigger than the toe next to it. I could wear them a while, then my baby toe would kill me! So I sent them back for the next larger size, and they are too big in all the other toes…I found the second pair amazingly comfortable except the little toe issue. And it wasn’t like an annoyance pain, it was a straight pressure pain. Would they finally stretch that last little bit? Or am I one of the un lucky ones 🙁 I absolutely am in love with the kso’s and would love to have a few different pairs for different activities.

  100. so, I’ve read many of the comments but not all I’ve read a bit from beginning middle and most of the current ones. I’ve been wearing VFF for months now and have several pairs. I also have several pairs of “minimalist” footwear like my Stem/LEMings for work…my suggestion to get many answers for the questions I’ve seen about is check out a website called it’s a all in one place that answers many questions and is incredibly informative and full of helpful people who have been “sans shoes” for quite awhile.
    my two cents

  101. I have been wearing VFF’s for several years now, and the only issue I have had was when I stopped running in them consistently. I ran a 15k race in them after not really using them for 6 months, and boy did my feet complain! I had a very minor case of plantar faciitis in my right foot, but it went away after 3 weeks or so.

  102. What are the model of FiveFingers in the first picture? They look like a good trail boot sort of thing.

  103. Based on the info here on MDA I bought my first pair of FiveFingers a couple of weeks and after seeing the information online about counterfeit products etc, thought I would buy direct from their website. Unfortunately being in England, you need to go through the Italian website. 🙁

    Well I received them yesterday after chasing them on several occasions as to the whereabouts of them. Sadly they don’t fit and now I need to try and get them exchanged… which is an grumpy experience in itself.

    Unfortunately I don’t think I will be a repeat customer of Vibrams unless they decide to actually have a retailer close to where I live. The service from the Italian office is very poor and I just don’t want to go through it again. Which is a shame as I believe that the benefits of these shoes are there. I suspect that it will be at least another two weeks before I get my replacement shoes, if I get them. The element of doubt they have given me when I requested to return the ones I have means I am not confident that they will honour the return.

    At least I have learned a lesson to some degree.

  104. I’ve bought my first Vibrams two days ago, love them! Although I’m hesitant to wear them for work though … maybe first start with wearing them in my free time and then buy a KSO Trek Soft later on to be worn more widely 🙂

  105. Would love these, but they simply don’t make them in my size. I would need something like a women’s 42 ultra narrow (my foot is 11AAA, and I have [genetically] flat feet). The whole lateral side of the shoe is empty, my foot simply won’t fill it out, let alone come anywhere near to reaching the pinky toe. Yes, I’ve been fitted professionally. Wish there was a better option for those with long narrow feet.

  106. I feel like this is bigotry against us web-footed mammals! I demand we protest! who’s with me??! *silence ensues*

  107. I have wanted these “shoes” since I first saw them years ago. However, they don’t make them in size 15-16 US Mens and neither do any of their competitors. I am stuck with shoes I can find and barefoot at home.

  108. I have two pairs of classics (one pair I wear at work and one at home), and one pair of KSOs that I bought last week for running in. I absolutely adore them. I have very wide feet, longer second toes, and my two smallest toes are rather bent under. I had a bunion removed from one foot about 15 years ago, and have always had enormous difficulty finding shoes that fit properly. Most of the time I end up with the ones that hurt the least, rather than the ones that fit the best.

    The first time I tried on VFFs, I decided not to buy them straight away because the colours they had in my size were not to my taste. I planned to find a nicer colour online. But, on the way home, my feet were practically screaming to have those wonderful shoes back. I went back the next morning and bought them regardless of the colour.

    Yesterday I went out for my first ever run wearing my new KSOs. It felt amazing. I am not an experienced runner, and usually feel like a baby elephant pounding down the street. I felt light, and free in the KSOs and felt like I could keep going forever. I did, however stick to my schedule and heeded the advice on the Vibram website about not over-doing it until your body adjusts to the shoes.

    I just love these shoes and I can’t say it enough. I actually feel sad when it’s time to take them off and go to bed. If my partner would tolerate me wearing them in bed I probably would 🙂

  109. I got my Vibrams last summer, and I will never, ever go back to exercising in normal sneakers. Not a chance.If they were allowed at work or in the bars/nightclubs I frequent, I would literally wear them at all times. The one and only issue I have with them is that my pinky toes are unusually short in proportion to my other toes so they don’t even come close to reaching the end of their toe slot on the shoes. That, however, is very a minor, ineffectual issue completely and overwhelmingly outweighed by all the benefits Vibrams provide.

  110. I am in the market for a pair of VFFs. I tried two on yesterday. Both felt AMAZING! Now, how to decide between them? The one (komodosport) has a softer sole. The other (Spyridon) has more tread and some arch support with a hard sole on the arch for protection when off roading. I plan to use my VFFs for everyday use, from walking with my kids, going to the park, biking and hiking. The Spyridon is recommended on the Vibram website for multiuse, but will I get the full benefits of barefooting with this slightly more rigid sole?

  111. Hey guys, My name is Chris and I had a general question about shoes. I’ve spent the last few years indulging in the virbram 5 ginger world and my background includes that of collegiate track and field, personal training and have been (honestly on and off) of the primal diet. I have loved the results and noticed a huge chain regarding the comfort and strengthening of my feet. However, I recently began working in a steel company and now I’m required to confine my feet in thick uncomfortable steel toe shoes. Are there any substitutions I can make for these? If not, any precautions or rehabilitation exercises to do after work to return my feet back to their primal state?