V is for Vibram Five Fingers

November 7, 2012

Vibram Five Fingers are a favourite shoe with those who prefer ‘barefoot’ running as they offer no support and have no cushioning

Vibram Five Fingers footwear is a type of minimalist footwear designed to mimic the feeling of walking or running barefoot while still providing some protection and grip. They are distinctive in appearance, with individual pockets for each toe, allowing for natural toe movement and increased sensory feedback.

Design and Features:

  • Toe Separation: Vibram Five Fingers have separate compartments for each toe, which allows for better toe articulation and grip.
  • Minimalist Sole: The sole of Five Fingers shoes is thin and flexible, providing a closer-to-barefoot experience. It aims to promote natural foot movement and proprioception.
  • Lightweight: Vibram Five Fingers are typically lightweight compared to traditional shoes, further enhancing the barefoot-like experience.
  • Secure Fit: They are designed to fit snugly on the foot, with adjustable straps or closures to ensure a secure fit during various activities.


  • Improved Foot Strength: The minimalist design of Vibram Five Fingers encourages the foot muscles to work more actively, potentially leading to improved foot strength and stability.
  • Increased Sensory Feedback: The thin sole and separate toe compartments allow for enhanced proprioception and tactile sensation, providing the wearer with better awareness of the ground and foot placement.
  • Natural Toe Spreading: The toe separation feature allows the toes to spread and function more naturally, which some people find beneficial for foot health and balance.
  • Potential Running Form Improvement: Vibram Five Fingers may encourage a forefoot or midfoot strike pattern during running, as the minimal sole promotes a more natural gait.


  • Transition Period: If you are accustomed to traditional cushioned shoes, transitioning to Vibram Five Fingers or any minimalist footwear requires a gradual adaptation period. Start with shorter durations and low-impact activities to allow your feet and lower leg muscles to adjust.
  • Terrain and Protection: While Vibram Five Fingers provide some protection, they are not as cushioned or protective as traditional athletic shoes. They may not be suitable for rough or sharp terrains that could cause discomfort or potential injury.
  • Individual Comfort: Vibram Five Fingers may not be comfortable for everyone, as the fit can be different from regular shoes. It’s important to try them on and assess the fit and comfort for your own feet before making a purchase.

The use of Vibram Five Fingers or any minimalist footwear is a matter of personal preference and should be based on individual needs and goals. If you are considering transitioning to minimalist footwear, it is advisable to consult with a podiatrist or healthcare professional who can provide guidance based on your specific foot structure, activity level, and any existing foot conditions.


Comments are closed.