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-   -   Vibram vs Nike Free vs running shoes (https://www.bikeforums.net/triathlon/585990-vibram-vs-nike-free-vs-running-shoes.html)

smittie61984 09-17-09 07:24 PM

Vibram vs Nike Free vs running shoes
 
I've heard a bunch about the Vibram 5 fingers shoes. I was a huge skeptic of them at first but now I'm thinking of getting some. My buddy got some along with a few people at his work and they swear by them. I tried them once and felt they were pretty affective and would probably help in training (not looking to race in them) but they were a little big for my feet. There are youtube videos about them if people are interested in learning more.
http://www.vibramfivefingers.com/

I then heard about the Nike Free shoes. Suppose to be more "basic" but aren't as broken down as the vibrams. I do not know much about those shoes but wonder how they would compare to the Vibrams.

Or do some feel they are just gimmicks and not to waste your time or money with them and get normal running shoes?

sirious94 09-17-09 07:48 PM

we went through years of development to create a lightweight running shoe with enough shock absorption so that we would not get knee injurys, learned that we could get better performance if we used less padding but that would be too dangerous to train in, and you are asking me what now?

SemperFi87 09-18-09 10:25 AM

I use the vibrams for shorter runs and for lifting/crossfit workouts. The flat sole they give you is great for lifting and xfit stuff, and you get a great feel for the ground through the thin sole. I find that anything over about 3 miles is kinda rough in them. It starts to really wear on the ball of my foot. The one downside to them is that they were originally designed for kayaking, so they are neoprene. They hug your feet great, but don't really let much sweat out (at least with the heavy ones that I have, but I really wanted to straps, so I had to get that model). This can create some spots that rub a bit when you are on longer runs or doing long workouts. Also, I would not recommend running with them on pavement, it just seems a bit too hard on the feet.

The whole point of using them or frees is that they help you with your running form in terms of how to strike with the bal of your foot. A lot of people that advocate POSE or Chi running love them because they basically naturally make you follow that type of running style while giving you extra foot protection.

All in all, I love my vibrams, but I use them as a training tool, not as my only running shoe. Whenever I am doing longer runs or runs on hard surfaces, I stick with the normal trainers. My running form has gotten a lot better since using them though, and my leg turnover has increased with the new style of running. The other thing is that they take some time to get used to. Like two or three weeks. My calves we so sore for the first few weeks that I was taking two days off in between runs, so I wouldn't just start using them heavily when a race is on its way.

Triguy 09-18-09 05:21 PM


Originally Posted by sirious94 (Post 9695564)
we went through years of development to create a lightweight running shoe with enough shock absorption so that we would not get knee injurys, learned that we could get better performance if we used less padding but that would be too dangerous to train in, and you are asking me what now?

As I just said in another thread. I know none of us are necessarily Norman Stadler. However, I always wonder why people think that if they do something different than what 99% of people who have set world records in running are going to benefit.

Go to a running store, and ask them to fit you to a pair of shoes. Running more is one of the best ways to run faster. The other really good way to run faster, is to run fast often.

WR3K 10-07-09 01:35 PM

triguy, the world of world records does not mean it is for everyone. they are extreme atheletes, paid to wear thing small lightweight shoes that are hardly there, and bio mechanically have near perfect joints and muscles for track running.


having said that, we were born without shoes, and our feet are far too often not strengthened enough to be able to run without the restriction of that shoe.



buy the vibrams for training, your form will become perfected, your muscles will get stronger, you will feel more free, and you will run like your body was designed to run.


when competing though, and for long runs, it is true that the vibrams make you almost hold back to keep from over stressing the parts of your foot. thats when some padded shoes might be nice

Triguy 10-07-09 02:53 PM


Originally Posted by WR3K (Post 9815464)
triguy, the world of world records does not mean it is for everyone. they are extreme atheletes, paid to wear thing small lightweight shoes that are hardly there, and bio mechanically have near perfect joints and muscles for track running.

What?
A. I admitted that the top athletes aren't always completely applicable to "the rest of us"
B. a lot of the top people aren't that extreme they just train a lot and using the right equipment they can train in these increased amounts without injury so they train more consistently as well.
C. Most top runners/triathletes(a bunch of sub 10:00 IMers, 2 sub 2:20 marathoners) I know of train in standard running cushioned/stability trainers 10-14 ounce. Not "thin small lightweight shoes", besides Vibrams and Frees are "thin small lightweight shoes" which is what I'm completely against.
D. track running? I'm talking about triathlon, not track runners. Mechanically perfect? Ever seen Hillary Biscay?


having said that, we were born without shoes, and our feet are far too often not strengthened enough to be able to run without the restriction of that shoe.
Are you saying it's natural to run without shoes? I think thats what you're saying. Well, it's not natural for humans to race. It's not natural to run on cambered roads, paved roads and uneven sidewalks. Running shoes, the ones I know most runners use in training, are made to keep people injury free with larger amounts of running than just "health benefit" running on surfaces that are less than ideal.


buy the vibrams for training, your form will become perfected, your muscles will get stronger, you will feel more free, and you will run like your body was designed to run.
How much stock do you own in Vibram anyway?
As I said above, human bodies are not designed to race. Your claims are just soo ridiculous.
I said run more and run fast more often. You say run in Vibrams.
One sounds like a quick fix thats too good to be true to me. One sounds like a logical way to get better at running.


when competing though, and for long runs, it is true that the vibrams make you almost hold back to keep from over stressing the parts of your foot. thats when some padded shoes might be nice
I'll again affirm what I said previously:

Go to a running store
Find a shoe that fits and keeps you injury free because it fits you
Run more than you were last month
Run faster more often than you were last month
Repeat.

sirious94 10-07-09 04:27 PM


Originally Posted by WR3K (Post 9815464)
having said that, we were born without shoes, and our feet are far too often not strengthened enough to be able to run without the restriction of that shoe.

buy the vibrams for training, your form will become perfected, your muscles will get stronger, you will feel more free, and you will run like your body was designed to run.

We were also born without clothes, but Russians still wear several layers in the winter. We humans happen to have evolved with very little naturally, no claws, no fur coats, no fangs, but we do have really really really big brains so we can actually make knives, clothes, cook things, and make shoes that protect people from being injured.

I fail to see the muscles in our feet that help us run. generally the muscles that actually give us propulsion are in our legs, with tendons connecting to our feet. Yes there are muscles in our feet, but they are relatively weak compared to our calfs, quads, and hamstrings.

Even if the elites were not paid to wear running shoes, they would probably pay 200+ dollars every few years to keep themselves from getting injured, and able to compete.

Buy the vibrams for training, and you will get injured, or you are very lucky indeed. No your from will not magically improve for the better, and your workouts will not train you to do anything better.

Feeling free does not prevent you from injuring yourself. Do what science has proven and wear real shoes.

Pendergast 10-08-09 01:43 AM

Vibrams are fine, but you'd better be careful with them. They provide enough protection to the sole of your foot that you may be inclined to do too much too soon in them, and that may cause injuries due to you not being used to the change in running form. Barefoot running provides a self-limiting factor that eases you into it--do too much too soon and you'll get blisters.

Here's an article I ran across examining shod and barefoot running and injuries:

http://www.sportsci.org/jour/0103/mw.htm

Vibram Five Fingers are discussed quite a bit in the barefoot forum at Runner's World. http://runnersworld.com/community/fo...f-0f12bf559034

WR3K 10-08-09 10:34 PM

sorry guys, i don't mean to sound like vibrams are the only way.

but i am a believer in them, i pronate, and with asics shoes fitted to me, i seemed to just get shin splits all the time.


when i picked up vibrams, all of that went away as they told me every aspect of where my form needed improvement.

and yes you are right, we aren't born to run on pavement. and everyone is different so my story may not apply to you.


i will tell you however, that trying them on may just bring a whole new aspect to training that you may love. and ever since i started wearing them, i actually pronate less, as it parts of my foot and ankles strengthened up.


but they come at a horrible cost.... you start hating to wear shoes when you don't have to favoring being barefoot in a non barefoot friendly world

CCrew 10-09-09 11:19 AM

I'll stick with Zoots thanks.

DrPete 10-09-09 11:36 AM

I tried a pair of Newtons this season and I'm hooked.

JeremiahW037 10-12-09 12:51 PM

I tried a pair of Biom shoes and although very different they felt more comfortable on the pavement. very close to the ground.

Haagenize 10-19-09 05:52 AM

I know this one guy who trains on Vibrams, and he just ran 13 marathons in 8 days, a total of 332 miles, his goal was 400

His goal was to run from Washington DC to Cleveland Ohio which is where he will run a Leadership Seminar right after his arrival

He says when he first got it, he went for a quick 7 mile run, which he felt fine, but for the next week or so, he could barely walk due to all the muscles in his feet being sore, he had to walk on his heels

This guy is truly amazing, he made six figures in High School, and now he's in his 20's and a multimillionaire, and a Life Coach

Anyone know who I'm talking about?

AngrySaki 10-19-09 10:29 AM


Buy the vibrams for training, and you will get injured, or you are very lucky indeed. No your from will not magically improve for the better, and your workouts will not train you to do anything better.

Feeling free does not prevent you from injuring yourself. Do what science has proven and wear real shoes.
I'm just going by what I've found on the internet, but looking around all I've found are mentions that there's no evidence that shoes prevent injuries (like pendergast's link). Have you seen any scientific evidence that shoes prevent injury? (besides stuff like "stepping on broken glass", unless that's the kind of thing you're referring to?)

briandelmo 10-19-09 11:39 AM

I have vibrams and i love them, but I did end up having a previous knee injury surface. Not sure if its from running in those or over training

Spender1330 10-24-09 11:56 AM

A lot of nonsense
 
It is not often that I post to forums but there has been so much nonsense spoken here that I felt I HAD to say something. My background? A physiotherapist with a MSc in Science of Sports Injury and teaching Masters level sports physio. I only state this as a means of verifying that I have seen some of the "science" that is being talked about here. Am happy to be shot down by someone with more experience. Opinions should not be touted as fact in my opinion.

So here goes:
"Most top runners/triathletes(a bunch of sub 10:00 IMers, 2 sub 2:20 marathoners) I know of train in standard running cushioned/stability trainers 10-14 ounce" - and how many of those remain injury free? Injury stats suggest that 90% of non-elite runners will sustain some type of lower limb injury in their running "career". Injury stats for "barefoot" runners comes in at under 5%, and many of those are puncture/laceration injuries from not having protected soles.

"Find a shoe that fits and keeps you injury free because it fits you" - there is NO evidence that ANY type of trainer can reduce liklihood of injury. Trainer companies have development budgets in the region of millions of dollars and they have not been able to "prove" this vital fact. If you dont believe me, find the advert from ANY trainer manufacturer that suggests their footwear reduces liklihood of injury - they dont say it because they cant prove it.

Finally:
"human bodies are not designed to race" - says who? How would humans have ever managed to track and hunt for meat if they could not perform extremes of running abilities? And why are they not designed to race? Isnt that what training is for?

Sorry to moan on, but there was just too much nonsense to ignore.
Facts:
We were born without shoes
Humans ran for millions of years without shoes (huntingm, outrunning companions when chased by predators maybe?)
Humans raced in non-cushioned shoes for hundreds of years without "controlling pronation" and shock absorption
Everyone of us is different, so running barefoot may be the "magic cure" for some people


Just some thoughts

Spender

coffeecake 10-24-09 12:15 PM

^^ Interesting. What is your opinion on having flat feet and going barefoot/wearing a "barefoot"-style shoe? Am curious, as I have flat feet and am considering trying a more "natural" shoe type. Currently wear insoles I get from the physio. (not orthotics).

Triguy 10-24-09 12:48 PM

Spencer -

I think one of the keys to being a good athlete is consistency. I can't give you my friends' exact injury rates but I can tell you that I can't remember the last time one of them missed a race due to injury.

I guess using the right trainer in my experience and those around me has caused me to make the assumption that a good shoe keeps a person running. However in a quick pub med search I found this:
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/1...ubmed_RVDocSum

which may suggest you're on to something.

3. I stand by my assertion that competitive running is not natural. We may have to agree to disagree on this one.

I guess I'll just keep running in my trainers and let other people make up their own minds. The day a guy passes me in a pair of Vibrams maybe I'll give it a second thought, though I don't see that happening any time soon.

Spender1330 10-24-09 01:06 PM

one day maybe...
 
Hey Triguy - sorry if I seemed a little "on my soapbox" before and thans for taking my comments in the manner they were meant. Glad to stimulate the debate. Am happy to agree to disagree re racing, after all that what makes life interesting no? If you are interested, and it sounds like you may be, have a look at "Born to Run" by Christopher McDougall. Great book, a mix of story (really good story) and science (in not-over scientific jargon). I read it in three days and that was only because I had to go to work in between starting and finishing. It really is food for thought - like the Norwegian sailor who ran something like Paris Moscow (forumers who have read it - dont shoot me down if I get this wrong I loaned it out so cant check the specifics) in 14 days at 130 miles a day - and as this was the 1800s, he certainly wasnt wearing high tech shoes. Great readin (in my opinion). There is a precis here (http://www.ijamming.net/?p=1596) - and I DONT have shares in him or his publisher honest.

Take care and if the runner behind you has Vibrams on or is barefoot, you wont hear their pitter patter till its too late!
Cheers
Spender

Spender1330 10-24-09 01:16 PM

Orthotics
 
Hi coffeecake

In my opinion orthotics CAN be useful, but should be a means to an end. I hardly ever use them. If your second pair of orthotics is more "supportive" than the first then I would query the logic in using them.

SOME barefooters report an improvement in their arch shape form barefooting, but it can take time. Others report no improvement in their arch shape, but an improvement in the symptoms they thought were from the flat arches. Interestingly (possibly) southern islanders (Western Samoa etc) often have very flat feet, but done always have any problems with them.

As for the mechanics of the arch - one of the strongest structures around when loaded from ON TOP - consider this: When was the last time you saw a useful architectural arch that was supported from underneath?

As has been mentioned earlier, the gluts/hammies and calves are much stronger than the intrinsic muscles fo the foot (though they do help the arch maintain some elasticity on landing (if you arent wearing rigid orthotics)), and any physio rehab program for arch/shin/running problems should have gluteal/quads exercises as they help.align the leg on top of the arch.

Try this:
Stand with feet shoulder width apart and relax
Gently clench your buttocks and relax and try and get your thigh to roll slightly out and in as you do it, leaving your feet relaxed on the floor.
Now look down - your arches SHOULD be raising and lowering (or bowing out and in) as your thigh rolls out and in. If the arches are static and dont/cant move with the thigh, then the liklihood is that orthotics may be your only hope. If the arches move, then rehab ofr the gluts and quads etc can get you a better position for your arches when you run ,and you may be able to get rid of the orthotics for good.

Hope that helps - sorry its tricky to explain in words, I normally flash the ankles and do a demo. Maybe I should youtube it!

Spender

AngrySaki 10-26-09 08:27 AM


^^ Interesting. What is your opinion on having flat feet and going barefoot/wearing a "barefoot"-style shoe? Am curious, as I have flat feet and am considering trying a more "natural" shoe type. Currently wear insoles I get from the physio. (not orthotics).
This is just my anecdotal experience, but I have fairly wide and flat feet and have had a few problems with my feet in the past. I have to take the insoles out of my cycling shoes or else my feet hurt really bad. In the past when I did kung fu, I couldn't do it in shoes because it would make my feet hurt bad, I was able to do other sports in shoes though. I've been told I should get orthotics, but I've never tried them. I've recently changed to minimalist track shoes for running and stopped heelstriking, and I haven't had any problems yet (besides needing to get my calves stronger), but it's only been a couple of months.

Old Army 10-27-09 09:12 AM

Here's more anecdotal experience:

I started serious running in my late 30's. I immediatly developed anterior shin splints (or more accurattly a soft tissue injury at the the periosteal interface). I visited several running stores and went through a number of pairs of jogging shoes, but nothing worked. So I visited a local sports podiatrist, Dr. Stephen Pribut. In about 10 seconds he diagnosed serious overpronation in addition to overtraining and suggested a pair of motion control shoes. I ended up with Brooks Beasts which did the trick. I ran a 1/2 mary in them just a few weeks later with no issues (other than being woefully undertrained).

Flash forward to the present day: I decided I'm tired of running with the 5lb beasts strapped to my feet. So I did a bit of investigation and discovered forefoot running for long distance. Keeping with the shoes I had, I slowly transitioned to a mid/ forefoot strike, much the same as I have used in short distance track work. A couple of weeks ago, I decided I was far enough along to switch shoes. I took an intermediate step and have a pair of Nike Free 5.0's. I'm still slowly adding distance and intensity, but have had no problems except some calf soreness in the early days.

So I've gone from one extreme to the other. Both worked for me but I like the lighter shoes and midfoot strike better. But who knows. I may end up back at Dr Pribut's with a raging case of Achilles tendonitis and it'll be back to the Beasts.

But as for the Free's, they work for mid and forefoot strikers. But due to a high heel, they are not as "barefooty" as a pair of flats. The big thing they have going for them is flexibility in the soles and light weight. But if you are a heal striker with underlying pronation issues, this is not the shoe for you.

Another note about the Frees: The number supposedly denotes the amount of support that the shoe provides. The lower the number, the less the support. IIRC there are Free 3.0, 5.0 and 8.0.


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