Hiking Despite Osteoarthritis in Barefoot Shoes

Hiking Despite Osteoarthritis in Barefoot Shoes

I recently got the above photo from Ron. Ron is a 60+ guy who was diagnosed with osteoarthritis in one knee—after some 32 years of running.

What follows is his story about what the doc's had to say about how he should handle the news, and as you might guess, some FiveFingers came into the picture:

I call this my victory photo.

Last year, at age 60, and after 32 years of running, I was diagnosed with osteoarthritis in the left knee. It hurt to walk, let alone, run. My general practitioner doctor suggested minimalist footwear as part of a program that included stretching and strengthening. [Meanwhile, both the] knee specialist and the physical therapist said to back off and use orthotics.

I took my general practitioner's advice.

Well, here I am a year later, relaxing at over 14,000 feet on the top of Mount Bierstadt in the Rocky Mountains. This was just one of several hikes I took during a 6-day vacation. I totalled nearly 35 miles of hiking and every step in my Vibram KSO Treks.

I proved to myself that I wasn't too old to make such a big change after 32 years of walking and running in the most expensive and most cushioned shoes. Of course, I still have osteoarthritis in the knee, but I am back at it, thanks to the therapeutic value stretching, strengthening, and minimalist footwear.

(I go barefoot alot, too!)

Ron A.

Fantastic to hear, Ron! And kudos for following your intuition and having success despite adverse conditions.

Hope you have many more successful hikes!

  • minimalist sandals!

    Xero Shoes - Barefoot Running Sandals

Pants on the Ground? A cheap and quick fix to stop jeans from dragging behind your heels while wearing Vibram Five Fingers and other Minimalist Shoes.

A side-by-side comparison of me wearing jeans with my KSO Vibram Five Fingers.  These jeans would be the right length for normal footwear, but with KSOs, they drag behind the heels.  By using an S-Biner, I'm able to keep my pants off the ground!
A side-by-side comparison of me wearing jeans with my KSO Vibram Five Fingers. These jeans would be the right length for normal footwear, but with KSOs, they drag behind the heels. By using an S-Biner, I'm able to keep my pants off the ground!

A common problem for those who have switched to wearing minimalist shoes such as Vibram Five Fingers or Terra Plana Vivo Barefoots is that the wearer quickly discovers that lacking the lift provided by the copious heels of their regular shoes results in their pants or jeans dragging on the ground behind their heels. Next thing you know, your jeans are covered in dirt, wet, and fraying.

This can be an annoying problem*. Though it's great to feel the ground beneath your feet, it's irritating to feel the hem of your pants under-heel.

Fortunately, there is a cheap solution — under $5 — that's accessible to anyone.

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CEO Tony Post talks about the Vibram Five Fingers Bikila, Women's KSO Trek, Increased Production, and Sales Growth

The Vibram Five Fingers Bikila in the grey and red (tween the toes) color combination for men.
The Vibram Five Fingers Bikila in the grey and red (tween the toes) color combination for men.
The Vibram Five Fingers Bikila in the grey and bright green (tween the toes) color combination for women.
The Vibram Five Fingers Bikila in the grey and bright green (tween the toes) color combination for women.

Above, two previously unseen stock photos of the Vibram Five Fingers Bikila in grey/red for men and grey/bright green for women!

05.06.10 - The Vibram Five Fingers Bikila is out!

The CEO of Vibram USA Tony Post published a note on facebook yesterday concerning "Product Availability, the Bikila, and What's Next." Good stuff from the super nice You may recall meeting Mr. Post last summer when he gave an impromptu interview at Vibram HQ to Raw Food World.

Anyway, go read Tony's message, or just check the highlights:

On the Availability of Vibram Five Fingers

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An Introduction to ChiRunning®A Natural Running Form

Guest post by David Stretanski of EnerChi Fitness

In the fall of 2005, I was injured, frustrated and confused. Nagging injuries had affected my running program for over two years and I was running with the fear of my next setback. Then a fellow runner suggested I get this book called "ChiRunning". With the help of a few ChiRunning principles, I have been running injury free ever since while enjoying greater distance and speed with limited recovery. ChiRunning has also allowed a steady migration to less and less shoe over time as I improve technique.

ChiRunning ("chee-running") is incredibly simple. It applies some basic principles for a dramatic increase in efficiency while reducing discomfort, aches/pains and injury.

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Weekend Link Love 3/28/10

I'm mixing up how I've previously tracked new reviews of Vibram Five Fingers (As in, my "Latest Reviews" posts). Each week that goes by brings more and more reviews with it. As these reviews come in, I will be regularly updating this page:

Vibram Five Fingers Reviews 'round the Web

That way, anyone can find every review out there on Vibram Five Fingers in one place in an orderly fashion.

Meanwhile, on Sundays, so long as I can manage it, I'll post links to Vibram and natural/barefoot running related articles and reviews of note from around the web. The goal here is to point the VFF community to interesting stuff around the net. Therefore, if you find any articles that you think might interest the barefoot-powered community, drop me an email at justin at birthdayshoes dot com with a link and any relevant information about the article (quotes, thoughts, whatever). I can't promise I'll post everything submitted, but all submissions will get consideration!

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Vibram Five Fingers Reviews 'round the Web

Below is a comprehensive list of Vibram Five Fingers reviews found both here on Birthday Shoes or around the web. The list is organized by publish date (most recent being at the top) and VFF model.

This list is regularly updated. Note that reviews prior to 2009 have been discovered months after their original post date — if you are aware of a review that is not on this list, please contact the administrator! Also, if you find any links are broken, please let me know.

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