Yanni Papastavrou, (Barefoot Runner and Research Medical Physicist from University College London Hospital, London, UK) got in touch with us to talk about his love of Vivos.
"Running barefoot lets me train for and run marathons without the chronic and painful knee injuries I suffered when wearing trainers. In my experience, barefoot is best. When I am not running I wear Vivos: they're the next best thing to being barefoot.
I got my first pair of Vivos when I was adapting to running barefoot, in the autumn of 2004. I used them as a means of stimulating and strengthening my feet when not running.
The ultra thin, puncture-resistant Vivo Barefoot sole allows me to feel the ground for feedback and allow my foot the full range of natural movement. Whenever I wear rigid-soled shoes, my movement seems lifeless and awkward, compared to the liberating, stimulating and agile experience of being barefoot.
As well as allowing me to feel the ground, my Vivos conform to the shape of my foot. In contrast, it feels like traditional shoes try to force my foot to conform to the whims of the shoe designer. In this aspect too, I appreciate the way that Vivos work with, not against, the natural functioning of the foot.
Lacking any raised heel, my Vivos naturally encourage me to walk fully upright, like a modern human is supposed to walk, unlike the stooped walking of our ape-like ancestors. Most other shoes, with their raised heel and rigid sole make walking upright a challenge: they're a clumsy step backwards through millions of years of evolution, simply by wearing the wrong shoes.
I have worn many different Vivos over the years. At the moment, I particularly like the Root, both for the comfort and also for the relaxed look. I've removed the inserts to make the shoes even lighter and more comfortable. I'm really looking forward to trying the Vivo Barefoot sandal next summer."