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    Xero Shoes - Barefoot Running Sandals

Golfing in FiveFinger Sprints

Jeff Erno demonstrates by video that you can golf in Vibram FiveFinger Sprints:

[video:youtube:UOcFeotkz2U]

I was wondering if anyone had tried this. It's good to see VFFs being incorporated into more and more activities.

Sidenote: I've added a YouTubes plugin to the sidebar that rotates through a number of fivefingers videos on YouTube. If you find a video that you think should be shown there, please let me know!

Walking on Clouds: SkyDiving in Vibram Five Fingers KSOs

SkyDiving in Vibram Five Finger KSOs - walking on clouds
SkyDiving in Vibram Five Finger KSOs - walking on clouds

Not only can you hang glide in Vibram Five Fingers, but Bobby (@ultrajumper on twitter) snapped this photo of a friend skydiving in his black Vibram fivefinger KSOs!

Before I started swooping, I jumped barefoot, and if I still did I would definitely wear my KSOs. After introducing some skydiving friends to the FiveFingers (which I wear to strengthen my feet for ultrarunning), they went out and bought their own and now they jump in them, hence the picture from this weekend. ...

The picture was taken above Skydive Delmarva in Laurel, DE. I have a video and a still camera mounted on my helmet, so when I am out there in a group making formations (in this case we were "freeflying", or flying vertically, to make our formations), I sometimes get interesting pictures like this one. I purposefully was trying to get a close-up shot of his feet in freefall since he was wearing his KSOs and the sky was looking extra nice that day. I'm pleased with the end result. Kinda gives a new perspective on the whole "freedom" aspect of VFFs.

A fantastic photo. And if you're like me, and don't know much about skydiving, you might appreciate the explanation of "swooping" that Bobby provided:

High performance landing in skydiving is called "swooping" and basically involves initiating a hook-turn that builds up speed so you "swoop" across the ground at 60mph or so, just inches above. Sometimes needing to put a foot down as a brake, and with divots in the landing area, I am more comfortable with regular shoes for jumping just in case.

Thanks for sharing with us, Bobby! Also, see Bobby's flickr photostream!

Bulldogs and Blue Vibram Five Finger Sprints

Bulldogs and Blue Vibram Five Finger Sprints
Bulldogs and Blue Vibram Five Finger Sprints
Bulldogs and Blue Vibram Five Finger Sprints

In the mailbag from "Otiosity" comes these photos of Vibram Five Fingers Sprints in blue. They are featured alongside some bulldogs from an English Bulldog Meetup in Edmonton, Alberta that took place this past weekend on May 23.

Thanks for sending in the pics!

Hang Gliding Barefoot or in Vibram Five Fingers: Interview with Davis Straub

Davis Straub Hanggliding in his black Vibram Five Fingers KSOs.
Davis Straub Hanggliding in his black Vibram Five Fingers KSOs.

Davis Straub Hanggliding in his black fivefinger KSOs
Davis Straub hanggliding over Bald Hill in Australia (From Ozreport.com)

Name:Davis Straub
URL:http://ozreport.com
Birthday:August 12, 1947
Age:61
Regular shoe size:10.5 EE
VFF shoe size:44
Feet are:friends

What prompted you to get Vibram Five Fingers?

I normally hang glide (4000+ flights, 2009 US National team member) barefoot, but I can't in Australia and west Texas where the terrain is too harsh. I went to Scheels in Sparks, Nevada to check out wrestling shoes (I needed small thin soles to fit in the hang gliding harness), but they didn't have EE widths. The shoe sales guy brought me wrestling shoes, then said try these (KSO Five Fingers) when it was clear that the wrestling shoes were too tight. Five Fingers fit great right away and felt great.

At over 4,000 flights, you clearly love flying, how did you originally get into hang gliding?

I guess the desire to fly was always there. At 38 when I talked to a guy at a weddding reception and he was talking about hang gliding I talked to him for a couple of hours. The next weekend I was on the training hill.

Also, you mention you typically hang glide barefoot, which seems somewhat unconventional. Was it awkward to ditch footwear while flying?

I hang glide barefoot in Florida where most of the fields that you land in are pastures. I didn't hang glide barefoot in Washington state where I started. I will be wearing my Five Fingers in France at the World Championships later in June.

In Florida I go around barefoot all the time, so it was no issue to just go hang gliding that way also.

Have you had any issues while flying barefoot or while sporting your KSOs?

Once I landed in a field with prickly pear. Still I came out fine. I was barefoot.

A few weeks back flying in Georgia with my KSO's on I landed in a rough (plowed, stubbled, not planted) field and got a deep cut in my right big toe from the top down. It was sliced open.

That toe injury sounds bad - something pierced the fivefinger sole or the outside fabric?

Outside fabric. From the top of the toe. Hard to believe when landing, but there was plenty of "litter" in the rough field. I've decided to stay away from those kinds of fields. :)

Do you use your fivefingers (or go barefoot, for that matter) for any other activities?

Nope (on wearing the fivefingers). I'm usually just barefoot (and put on shoes when I have to). I would wear them at the beach though. I really want them to work for flying as that is where I really need these small foot print shoes to fit inside my harness. I don't want to wear them out and they seem flimsy on the top surface. I want to save them for flying.

I have had my wife sew them up, both from the cut and from other tears.

Have you had any surprising or unusual experiences while wearing them?

My wife says that my gate while wearing them is the same as when I go barefoot. She can see the difference between wearing them and wearing shoes.

Every hang gliding flight is an unusual experience. A struggle to tap into the invisible power that surrounds you.

Finally, how does going barefoot (or opting for mimialist footwear like VFFs) fit with who you are as a person?

Going barefoot is pretty much a part of me. People are surprised whenever they see me with shoes on as they associate me with barefeet.

I love my bicycle shoes (which are size EE) and I went to a lot of trouble to find bicycle shoes that fit.

What kind of biking do you do?

Road. I average 23 miles/day. I have a mountain bike also and ride it when I am in appropriate places (say the Tetons).

Thank you, Davis!

Here Davis shows of true barefoot hang gliding

I didn't realize it at the time, but I first read about Davis Straub a long time ago via Richard Nikoley, another hang gliding enthusiast (and VFFer — interview) in a post about Straub flying 365 miles over Texas in 2005 (Straub's account of the flight), which as incredible as that sounds to me, was shorter than a 407 mile flight in 2001. Davis currently holds a number of world records in flying.

It was fun corresponding with Davis for this interview. His site, The OZ Report is a major resource for the hang gliding community. Anyone else want to fly now?

Black VFF Classics at Fenway

Black VFF Classics at Fenway

Pictured above, Marianna shows off her black fivefinger Classics at a Red Sox game (See the Green Monster to the left!). Marianna writes:

Hey!

Here is a photo of my sleek-ass black classics at Fenway Park last week ... when Big Papi hit his first homer of the season! The guy sitting next to me said they looked like they were made for "the woods".

I like your site!

Five Fingers and Fenway Park. How could you go wrong?

Also Marianna has created a VFF livejournal community for all you livejournal users. You can find it here.

Thanks, Marianna!

Black KSOs in Santa Monica

Black KSOs in Santa Monica

Jesse sent in these birthday shoes shots where he's donning his new black fivefinger KSOs in Santa Monica, California. Here's what Jesse had to say:

Hi,

I bought these KSO's online at REI.com, waited a while for the backorder to come in and slipped them on as soon as they were delivered to the store. They are size 41 and I am showing them off while lounging in Santa Monica, CA. Nobody stared but I did get a double take from a short lady. Go figure.

Thanks!

As any VFF wearer will tell you, the jaw-dropping, eyebrow-raising double-take is a pretty common, humorous occurrence, which as Nathan put it in his VFF interview, "it's the second look that you have to wait for cause that is the one where they really get hooked!"

Hope you enjoy them, Jesse!