Damien over at Adventure in Progress had his “barefeet to the ground” and happened to notice a tweet by @inov8uk — it has since been de-tweeted (deleted) — that included a link to a photo on yfrog of a new minimalist / barefoot shoe, the Inov-8 Evoskin* (Inov-8 website). The Evoskin appears to be the first five-toed alternative to the original “barefoot alternative” — Vibram Five Fingers (Note: I don’t consider the fake five fingers to be true alternatives to Vibrams as they are just counterfeits produced out of China).

Here is the yfrog photo (it’s still online despite the deleted tweet) of the Evoskin:

Inov-8 is rumored to be coming out with several minimalist shoes in 2011; per a runner over at Barefoot Ted’s huaraches Google group, Inov-8 is working on the the Evoskin, Bare-Grip 200, and Road-X:

A “foot glove” made of silicon. A sort of second skin that fits like a glove with individual toes.

This looks awesome! Zero differential, zero cushioning and no midsole. Has an aggressive grip, so I think it’s made for the wet, muddy, boggy and harshest of trail conditions.

They’re bringing out a range of road shoes! All shoes are neutral with a new anatomical last and no support etc.

Looks like the range has been designed to allow a gradual transition from cushioning with a
little differential, to very little cushioning and differential, eventually working towards the Evoskin.

Needless to say, seeing another five-toed shoe (if you can call the Evoskin that) conjures up some weird feelings. Yet I figure something like this was bound to happen eventually. So what do you guys think about this photo? Not a lot to work with, but off the cuff I wonder how the Evoskins will breathe.

What say you?

Thanks again to Damien of Adventure in Progress for finding this!

* If the Evoskin conjures up thoughts of a “foot condom,” you’re not alone.