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August 04, 2009 by Terra Plana


Barefoot Running: Not just for bums and hippies.


It’s All So Confusing!

The world of running, and especially running shoes, can be a confusing one. And now that many of us are considering running with minimal shoes (shoes that are close to running barefoot), it can become overwhelming. I’ve done a fair amount of research over the past month or so and want to provide you with what I’ve learned. Hopefully this will bring some clarity to you as well.
My aim with this post is twofold. First, I want to clearly outline the benefits of running barefoot, or at least with minimal shoes. Second, I want to provide you with a list of minimal shoes that are currently on the market. I hope this will help you save some time, or at least amuse you while you’re here. As always, please provide feedback and additional content you feel I should include on the page in the Comment section below.

Minimal Shoes

There are numerous running shoes out there, and a growing number of shoes that claim to be like running barefeet. Many companies, including Nike, are trying to jump on the barefoot bandwagon. Be wary of marketing spin. Don’t purchase any shoes without doing your research and ideally giving them a test run first.
Before we look at some specific shoes, let’s review a couple of definitions. First, barefoot running is just that, running with nothing on the feet, even socks. Running in minimal shoes means wearing something on your feet yet still allowing them to flex as they would if they were completely sod-free (no significant padding or arch support).
Here are some shoes I consider to be minimal:
Vivo Barefoot White and Blue
Vivo Barefoot by Terra Plana
Root Sport Leather model shown.
These are arguably the most beautiful minimal shoes out there. They are at once fashionable and functional (though I have not tried a pair on). Of all of the minimal shoes I’ve seen, these win hands down for aesthetics (I drool over the keyboard every time I see them). The Root Sport Leather model also comes in white and green. An added bonus is that the shoes are made of much recycled material.
> Living Barefoot took the Aqua’s for a spin and wrote up a review.
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