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Thread: Talkback: Why Change To Minimalist Shoes?

  1. #1
    Widdler
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    I made the change, too... but I went as close to barefoot as I could by getting running sandals. Actually, I made my own using the plans at http://www.InvisibleShoe.com. I made my first pair for a few dollars with some scraps I had lying around the house, but then I spent a few more bucks to get one of the Invisible Shoes kits.

    TOTALLY changed my stride, and my knee pain that I had for the last couple years disappeared almost overnight.

    I highly recommend going minimalist!

  2. #2
    Übermensch
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    I've got a mate called Lazarus ..

  3. #3
    Initiate woozle's Avatar
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    Great article. Of course very few on here are ever going to believe a word of it but a good article all the same .
    Why is it minimalist seems to be all about running? Whenever you hear of minimalist it's always in association with running never hiking or lifestyle. However I've gone barefoot and now hike barefoot and have had nothing but amazing benefits. I did it over three months. Next step for me will be minimalist which would increase my 'range' more (scalding stones in the summer is not pleasant and frosty ground is not as fun as it sounds after an hour or so).
    As usual I am though totally in awe of the gaul of these companies on the minimalist bandwagon to charge significantly more for a lot less product. It's not as if there's really any need for ground breaking research into this imo, it's just a case of remove the bloody padding Simon. Much rather get a pair of barefoot Ted's huarache sandals which seem a more honest price.
    But I suppose fashion will out one way or another.

  4. #4
    Ultra King Martin Carpenter's Avatar
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    Can we please avoid this decending into long lectures?(previos history on such topics not last post!)

    (the cost will presumably be because they'll sell less & have some R&D costs to defray.).

    But there is a good point here - how well does all of this relate to walking and not running? Its a serious question because they're really not quite the same thing and an awful lot of the published research etc does seem to relate to running.

  5. #5
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    dont forget the dog shit and the torns i mean prehistoric man didnt have a choice we do its like an article i read on here about ankle gaiters i tried that what a load of crap useless for the sake of 35grams but im shure the fashionable folk will be up for it drive the range rover up to the campiste and hike barefoot to reduce the carbon footprint

  6. #6
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    dont forget the dog shit and the torns i mean prehistoric man didnt have a choice we do its like an article i read on here about ankle gaiters i tried that what a load of crap useless for the sake of 35grams but im shure the fashionable folk will be up for it drive the range rover up to the campsite and hike barefoot to reduce the carbon footprint

  7. #7
    Initiate woozle's Avatar
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    I'd be curious to know if anyone has ever just gone out and bought a pair of minimalist shoes put them on and gone running/hiking in them and whether they managed to keep using them. Surely if everyone is used to heavily cusioned shoes changing to shoes that have no cushioning and bend and flex in ways the feet are not used to would result in discomfort.
    I think this can only go one of two ways: either people will try it based on the attractiveness and purported benefits and quickly give it up as too uncomfortable and the fad will die out, or people will make a choice after doing a minimum of research into the subject so that they take the thing seriously enough to stay the course.

    Despite the heated arguments from the minimalist sceptics minimalist does seem to gradually be gaining acceptance. Too many people (who approach it seriously) seem to be finding benefits and the profit oriented shoe companies would seem to be taking more than a passing interest in the phenomenon which is perhaps more telling than the research.

  8. #8
    Widdler
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    Great article indeed. First thing that comes to mind is barefoot running. Study shows that barefoot running has a great effect in our body and health benefits are just amazing. Then, here comes the minimalist running shoes in which it mimics the feeling of barefoot running plus with added protection.

    Here's another great article that is related to this post - "Barefoot running vs. minimalist running shoes" link: h t t p://bit.ly/aQtX3p (remove spaces between http)

  9. #9
    Ultra King Mikel el Bastardo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by woozle View Post
    Great article. Of course very few on here are ever going to believe a word of it but a good article all the same .
    Actually, a large percentage of folk on here have been wearing 'minimalist' shoes for years. You maybe thought you were still posting on the Trail forum.

  10. #10
    Super Moderator Jon Doran's Avatar
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    But there is a good point here - how well does all of this relate to walking and not running? Its a serious question because they're really not quite the same thing and an awful lot of the published research etc does seem to relate to running.

    On the blog section of the site, there's a Q&A with Chris Macdougal who wrote 'Born to Run' and I asked him exactly that question, his answer was:

    'Sure. Walking and running are two different movements, since running is a series of jumps while walking is a shifting of body weight, but the key principles still apply: you want to be light on your feet, with a short, quick stride. You want to keep your back straight, lift your foot up instead of swinging it in front of your body, and most of all stay very, very relaxed.

    'We've already seen the dramatic evolution in trail- and hiking shoes over the past few years as the sports industry subtly takes this into account. Remember how thick and stiff hiking shoes used to be? Now, they're becoming as light and flexible as racing flats.'


    So basically yes, similar principles and minimalism is starting to trickle down into walking footwear though not as fast as on the running side - Merrell has barefoot shoes this spring btw.

    Why the difference? Runners change their shoes more often for one thing? Born to Run, which is a key factor in kicking the whole thing off is about running. Running Shoe brands are more geared up for technological innovation maybe because their market expects it?

    I think what'll happen is that minimalist walking shoes will become more widely available and you'll be in a position, as a walker, to make your own choice based on what works for you. Soime people will still prefer traditional heavy boots, some people will go for something that's still very structured but much lighter like Salomon's Wings Sky or maybe a Haglöfs Grymm, others will take it further go more minimalist.

    That's effectively what I've done with running shoes. I don't run barefoot, but I now wear a lighter shoe than I used to and, as per the article, I've alterned my running style as a result.

  11. #11

  12. #12
    Widdler
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    What will they think of next? Will our decision making process ever be able to catch up with the emerging technology and advancements in ergonomics? Maybe, maybe not. Until then we rely on very good information like this. Another great article I found on trail running shoes and which are the best for specific people: http://www.blueridgeoutdoors.com/cur...us-vs-maximus/

  13. #13
    Ultra King Imperial Dave's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike fae Dundee View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by woozle View Post
    Great article. Of course very few on here are ever going to believe a word of it but a good article all the same .
    Actually, a large percentage of folk on here have been wearing 'minimalist' shoes for years. You maybe thought you were still posting on the Trail forum.

    absolutely Mike

    I wore my last pair of walking boots back in the mid eighties.

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