Muddy Paintball in FiveFingers

Muddy Paintball in FiveFingers

This is the muddiest photo of FiveFingers I think I've ever seen.

What's the story? Enter Michael, who picked up his pair of TrekSports as an all-purpose pair of toe shoes though he specifically planned to use them for paintball:

I've been trying to paintball regularly for a year or so now, something more active then my usual regime of computer games and TV. I'd scoffed at Vibrams the first time I saw them, but the more and more I spotted people wearing them the more I wanted to at least try them on.

Once I started paintball I figured I'd finally had a real excuse to have wear them passed the novelty so I was on a mission to eventually own my own pair. A few months ago I was able to venture to my local Hikers Haven and try on as many pairs as would fit, finally deciding that a pair of KSO Treksport would be the best for the job (as well as seemed to be the only pair that would fit my APPARENTLY abnormally tall dorsal area of my feet). Unfortunately they were lacking on my perfect size and I was lacking in actual funds.

Skip ahead a few months and a new job gave me the opportunity I needed to snag me a pair. They instantly turned into the comfiest and most expensive pair of slippers I'd ever owned.

Eventually I got the chance to head back out for paintball. I generally try to go on dry days, as I hate getting mucky (a bit of an oxymoron when paintballing), but of course that morning was a downpour, leaving the field a minefield of puddles and mud. Within the first 15 minutes of arriving, we had to walk about 50 meters through a river of inch deep mud. At that point I tossed my inhibitions to the wind and had a great time being a mudder. It was of course still winter and the puddles were cold, but the pair of Injinji socks I was wearing were able to keep me warm enough.

I'm convinced that I was more agile, less tired, and much more happy wearing the Five Fingers than I would have been wearing my usual clunky Merrell sneakers, which would have been impossible to clean.

I'll be bringing my Vibrams with me to every paintball day, and hopefully will start doing more things to wear them more often.

Michael T. - Toronto

Glad you've found some use for them!

All that talk about mud reminds me of Stuart running his 255km jungle marathon in Spyridons.

Thanks for sharing, Michael!

New Women's Vibram Five Fingers Sprint Colorway Available at CitySports!

Light Grey-Blue Sprint
Women's Light Grey-Blue Vibram Five Fingers Sprint

We've just learned that a new Light Grey-Blue (The color combination is called Colorway) Vibram Five Fingers Sprint for women has been released and is, surprise, available for purchase from CitySports!

The Sprint is one of the original Vibram models and has the signature open-top with a single strap. Also, like it's strapless cousin the Classic, the Sprint has no midsole (The KSO has a 2mm midsole), so it's the most minimalist Vibram that is suitable for outdoor wear. In this summer heat, open-topped Vibrams are the way to go!

Historically, the Sprint has been the preferred model for women and I'm glad to see this cool (sorta icy!) new color.

The sizes available (as of right now) are 36 - 42 and they sell for 80 bucks! Remember: you can get free shipping on these by using the coupon code BIRTHDAY. Go to City Sports!

Official Vibram Five Fingers Bikila Microsite: You Are the Technology dot com

Vibram has just (via an 8AM press release today, July 26, 2010) launched a Vibram Five Fingers Bikila micro-site at the domain YouAreTheTechnology.com! I didn't make that link active for a reason:

Before you go madly rushing off to YouAreTheTechnology.com, let me tell you just a wee bit more!



I'll be "brief:" it's an awesomely provocative website: bold, brazen, edgy, and bare. For you office dwellers: it's NSFW (Hence, the warning). I'll show what I mean via a screencap of what you'll find at YouAreTheTechnology.com after the jump!

Note: The screencap is also NSFW, but at least a little smaller, so office dwellers proceed with caution!

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Mizuno Wave Universe 3 Racing Flats Initial Review

Wave Universe 3
Mizuno Wave Universe 3 racing flat.

Guest Post by Lindsey

Racing Flats as a Minimalist Alternative

I'm no marathoner (far from it!), but lately I've been looking for the best alternative to Vibram Five Fingers. I've been running in VFFs for several months now and throw in a little barefoot running as well.

Since I have to wear a conventional looking shoe for my upcoming military training, I needed to find something that would suit my needs. I wanted a shoe that was light, flexible, and as minimalistic as possible. I had long considered the Mizuno Wave Universe 3 flat, but its price tag made me consider other options first. So instead, I decided that perhaps cross country (XC) flats would be a good substitute as I could find them cheaper than the Mizunos. I tried the Saucony Shay XC 2 first as it met all the basic requirements. Unfortunately, I had to send them back twice for the proper size (they run small), and once I did get the proper size, I disliked the molded sole around the arch, and the general narrow fit of the shoe. I can imagine the Saucony Shay XC 2 as a great trail shoe, one that excels in its purpose, but the aggressive tread and fit of the shoe made it inappropriate for my needs.

I also purchased a pair of Saucony Kinvara on a whim. Unfortunately, these are more like reduced running shoes than actual minimalist shoes. They do promote more of a midfoot strike as advertised, but I didn't really enjoy running in them. I think they might be a decent transition shoe (akin to the Nike Free, perhaps), but they are somewhat stiff and way more shoe than I want to run in. I believe that their cushioning might be beneficial for me as a marching shoe. I found if I took the insole out, the shoe felt much flatter, more neutral, and more along the lines of what it should have been in the first place. I will be playing around with these more to see if they will fill the role of a marching/drill shoe while I am in training. Unfortunately, they just don't suit my needs as a running shoe. Nevermind the fact that that they're fluorescent pink. Yikes!

Enter the Mizuno Wave Universe 3

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"Merrell Barefoot" Shoes partner with Vibram, slated for Spring 2011

...and a special message from Vibram Five Fingers to counterfeiters!

Footwear Plus Magazine coverFirst the "select footwear" partnership with Merrell ... (or jump to the "message")

Vibram has partnered with Merrell to launch "Merrell Barefoot," a collection of "six minimalist styles for men and women" for Spring 2011 according to a July 2010 article titled Sole Mates written by Greg Dutter for Footwear Plus Magazine (Click "Current issue," page 42: also here).

According to the article, the partnership plays off of the two brands being "long-term partners in creating some of the outdoor market's top-selling shoes" with Merrell's aim being "to build on what Vibram is creating [around barefoot technology] for a Merrell audience that's potentially a little different," according to Merrell's general manager, Jim Zwiers.

That said, don't expect Merrell Barefoot to look like Vibram Five Fingers — these are slated to be mono-toed "shoes." Per the article:

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The New Fall 2010 Vibram Five Fingers Models and Colors - KSO Remix, Smartwool Classics, More!

The New Fall 2010 Vibram Five Fingers Models and Colors - KSO Remix, Smartwool Classics, More!

Major Update! City Sports just got the KSO Remix and Smartwool Classics in! Read more.

Birthday Shoes is happy to introduce The Shoe Mart as a new site sponsor and simultaneously give you a preview of the new Vibram Five Fingers 2010 Fall line-up.

The Shoe Mart is based out of Norwalk, Connecticut, and has been selling shoes since 1956. They carry the full line of Vibram Five Fingers (Depending on inventory), offer free shipping, and ship internationally and accept Paypal! As always, all stores listed on BirthdayShoes.com are checked out — you can be confident you are getting the real thing and not fake five fingers.

So without further ado here is a photo gallery of the Fall 2010 Vibram Five Fingers line-up.

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Self Defense Instructor Teaches and Trains in Vibram Five Fingers

Michael hanging loose
Michael in his Classics with instructors and students at a Detroit self-defense school.

Michael "Sifu" Banaag is quite an accomplished martial artist and self-defense instructor. He was taught by James DeMile, a student of Bruce Lee. He is also a Vibram Five Fingers fan and wears KSOs to train and teach self defense. He recently acquired a pair of Classics and removed the cord by following our Strap Removal [MOD] post. Read the rest to see what Michael says about his new modded Classics:

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