Around the same time I began to question my running method and look into barefoot running resources, I received an email from Vibram FiveFingers asking me if I would like to try a pair of their barefoot running shoes. This is my Vibram FiveFingers Sprint Review.
At the time, I was also dealing with a hip misalignment, due to weak hip and gluteal muscles, so the timing was perfect. I opted to try a veteran shoe from the company’s barefoot running line, the Vibram FiveFingers Sprint. I selected a blue and gray color scheme, to match my racing outfits.
Vibram FiveFingers Sprint Review
Vibram Five Fingers Review
Before I get into my personal review of the barefoot running shoes, here’s a description of the shoes from the company along with their purpose and intent:
About Vibram FiveFingers
“Our goal at Vibram FiveFinger
Vibram Five Fingers Sprint
I did not had any issues or pains wearing the Vibram FiveFingers Sprint, even when I increased my mileage, walking 3 to 4 miles in the shoes. The only time I had any discomfort in the shoes was when I put them on right after work one day.
My feet were already sweaty and swollen from my dress shoes and it was very humid out. I walked about 2 miles and my feet began to get a few “hot spots.” I will attribute this to the state of my feet and the weather that day, rather than the shoes.
The first few times you wear the shoes they are a bit challenging to put on prior to running. Basically your toes want to do one thing and don’t realize where the shoes is.
I had trouble with my second toe trying to get into the third toe’s “pocket.” I can assure you that if you try Vibram FiveFingers Sprint your toes will get used to them eventually.
Vibrams FiveFingers Review
I attribute my lack of adjustment (ie. no pains or problems) in the shoes to the fact that I walk barefoot in our home 24/7. I had read reviews from other runners online and even heeded the advise of the representative I worked with – don’t run too much in them too early.
Ease your way into the shoes, they said. The first time I walked about 1/2 mile. The second time I ran just over 1/2 mile. The third time I walked about 3 miles. After that, I was comfortably running 8 miles per week in the shoes.
Vibram FiveFingers Sprint
That is what has stood out foremost to me about the Vibram FiveFingers Sprint product. The price of the shoes can be daunting. The price will depend on which model you select.
I was pleased to find strong stitching in the shoes, tight seams and solid bonding of the rubber sole to the fabric. In all a high-quality product.
Barefoot Muscle Use
The shoes do fit very flat to the ground. There is not much of a heel. Just a bit of fabric in the heel of the shoe. You will feel your muscles and tops of your feet working in new ways when wearing these.
Is that good or bad? From my perspective I don’t think it can be bad. I don’t see any “harm” in this type of footwear, when used in moderation.
Vibram Barefoot Shoes
I am not sure I advocate these as a 24/7 running shoe just because of the potential to get sore from overuse of lesser-used muscles and tendons.
I have heard too many stories of folks who used the shoes too much and then found themselves laid up. However, I was able to run in the Vibram FiveFingers Sprint while on a treadmill and continued to run in the shoes moderately.
Have you tried barefoot running?
Disclosure: I am not compensated for product reviews, unless otherwise stated. I was given a free sample of the product in exchange for writing a Vibram FiveFingers Sprint review. All opinions and thoughts here are my own. Some links within this post are affiliate links.
*This post was originally published in 2011 and has been updated and republished for accuracy and comprehensiveness.