One of the biggest trends in fitness is “functional fitness.” That is, using your body in a natural way, with natural movements rather than adapting your body to the design of some weight lifting machine.
Any activity that requires you to stand, walk or run obviously starts with your feet. And if your feet can’t move naturally and freely, that can affect the way the rest of your body moves.
Traditional shoes, despite decades of design, simply don’t allow for natural movement. With all the padding, motion-control, and stabilization, they immobilize your feet rather than let it move the way nature intended.
Further, the padding eliminates any sensation you can get from the ground. These sensations are what our body naturally uses to adapt, change, and conform as appropriate. Ironically, removing that feedback from the world on which we’re moving is what requires shoe companies to come up with ever-changing forms of control.
Think of this example: If you have a rigid sole on a shoe, and you step on a rock on the outside edge of your foot, the sole won’t bend which makes your foot and ankle twist. Shoe companies respond to this by adding ankle support. Instead, if you were barefoot — or close to it — your foot would simply flex around the rock… or reflexively jump off of it. Either way you would be safe and sound.
Xero Shoes Original Barefootware sandals give you the fun and benefits of being barefoot, but with a layer of protection, perfect fit, personalized style, and an affordable price… along with a 5,000 mile warranty.
Xero Shoes are a modern take on mankind’s oldest footwear. Co-developed with the former lead designers from Nike and Reebok, Xero Shoes give you total freedom and natural movement, but without the problems that come with most sandals and flip flops.
Over 30,000 people, ages 1-91, in 87 countries, enjoy Xero Shoes for walking, hiking, camping, yoga, weight lifting, Crossfit, kayaking, paddle boarding, jogging, and even running 100-mile ultramarathons.
Every day, more and more research describes the benefits that can come from being barefoot, feeling the world, and using your feet naturally. Xero Shoes give you the closest experience to barefoot, but without having to worry about things you step on (or in!). Plus, you can have that barefoot feeling in places like restaurants that don’t normally allow bare foooted patrons.
Personally, I went from having life-long flat feet and wearing expensive orthotics in my shoes to having arches and no longer needing insoles.
I think the best advice is put them on your feet and enjoy! Imagine how much fun kids have when they run around barefoot and how much they often hate shoes. Or just remember your own childhood.
If you want to recapture that fun, try Xero Shoes.
If you’re transitioning to running or some other sport, though, there are guidelines for doing that safely. It’s not just a matter of swapping footwear. When you switch to a truly barefoot/minimalist product like ours, you’re learning to move differently and, hopefully, more efficiently. The simplest advice in this case (we have more detailed instructions on our website) is: Start SLOWLY and use your sensations as a teacher. If something hurts, rest and recover, then try again but move a bit differently. In general, you want to not land hard on your heels, and you want to place your feet closer to your body rather than reaching out with your feet. Walk “over” your feet instead of behind them. This engages the “prime mover” muscles — your glutes and hamstrings.
Two of my favorite features of Xero Shoes are that they fit, and that you can express yourself with your shoes.
No matter what your foot shape, you can trim Xero Shoes for a perfect fit.
With different colored outsoles, 9 lace colors, dozens of lacing styles, and decorative beads and charms, you can create something ultra-minimalist, or totally blinged out and fashion forward.
The majority of our customers buy Xero Shoes as a do-it-yourself kit, and make their shoes in just a few minutes (I call this “developing the super-power of knowing how to make shoes!”). And for people who don’t want to put in that bit of work, they can send us a tracing of their foot and we’ll custom-make their Xero Shoes for just a few extra dollars.
Finally, since Xero Shoes are about having FUN… check out Channel Xero, our barefoot comedy channel at www.xeroshoes.com/barefoot-comedy
Feel The World!