he Vibram Five Fingers Flow
features a closed top design whereby the fabric on the upper of the shoes is 1.2 mm of neoprene — the sort of material used to make wetsuits. Like it's close cousin the KSO
, the Flow also has a 2mm insole, which provides more insulation in colder temperatures. By extension, the Flow is best suited for water sports
or winter-wear (Jump to posts on the Flow below!
). Also, the neoprene's added thickness gives the Flow a stiffer overall feel compared to other Vibram Five Fingers models, and also makes the Flow feel very
snug against your foot, with the fabric gripping closely to your toes.
The Flow is not waterproof (nor is any Vibram Five Fingers model), but it does lock moisture inside the toe shoes — this being a feature of neoprene. This moisture-control makes the Flows warmer, but it also results in them being uncomfortably warm for indoor wear (and your feet can get a bit sweaty).
The Five Fingers Flow has no arch support and a minimal amount of cushioning or padding — its sole is thicker than the Classic and Sprint due to the Flow having a 2mm insole. Though this the diminishes barefoot feel of the Flow, you still get a great deal of ground feedback.
The Flow is seen most often for winter running.
Here are the technical specifications of the Vibram Five Fingers Flow straight from Vibram:
A 1.2mm Neoprene lining and 2mm EVA insole provide the thermal insulation and protection. And our new IdroGrip performance rubber (available only in black) is razor-siped for added slip resistance over a variety of surfaces.
FLOW IS BEST FOR: Light Trekking, Cold Weather Running, Water Sports
The standout features of the Flow include:
- Using a thin neoprene upper, the Flow is the warmest Vibram Five Fingers model available, making it popular for winter wear and water sports. The flipside is that the Flow can make your feet uncomfortably hot for indoor wear.
- Featuring a closed top that has a small opening at the ankle, like the KSO, the Flow "keeps stuff out."
- The Flow has a 2mm insole, which reduces "barefoot feel" as compared to the Classic or Sprint.
- The Flow uses a two-strap velcro mechanism to lock the toe shoes onto your foot — one strap over the top of the foot and the other at the heel.
Sizing and fit
If you've never sized your foot for Vibram Five Fingers, you need to consult the Vibram Five Fingers sizing chart (image) and measure the length of your feet as presecribed. Vibram sizing does not correspond to standard shoe sizes!
If you've sized in Vibrams before, note that Flows size slightly larger than the same size in the Classic or Sprint models. So a 43 Flow will fit larger than a 43 Classic or 43 Sprint. For this reason, Vibram prescribes you size down in the Flow compared to the Classic or Sprint models.
Generally, it is better to size up if you're in between sizes — you don't want your toes bending out of lack of room! Also, the Flow's closed-top design means that if you have particularly high arches or "high feet" the Flow may not fit properly and you might consider the Sprint or the Classic.
Read (and see!) more about the Five Fingers Flow via these reviews:
Okay, I want some Flows. How much are they? Where can I get them?
The Flow retails for around $90 and can often be purchased with free shipping from most online retailers. Find the Vibram Five Fingers Flow in stock via the Store or subscribe by email to inventory alerts.
Looking for something else? Try one of these other Vibram Five Fingers models:
Of course, there are other barefoot shoes worth checking out!
More Vibram Five Fingers Flow posts below —