Vibram five fingers (vff), the greatest invention in the world of footwear in my opinion at least. The first time i've ever heard of the guys at vibram were good at was making soles. You know, those things that you put under your shoes for traction. Well anyways my mum heard of the vff's from a magazine that she read about. I thought these were a laughing stock, because at that time i was rocking a pair of nike frees. But after i tasted the sensation of barefoot shoes like vffs, i was hooked.
This is a list of all the vff's i have ever and still owned...
KSO stands for "keeps stuff out", hence the mesh like fabric on top of the shoes. These pair was the first and the best vff i've ever had. I picked this out in Singapore. After my mum read about them in the magazines, the first shop we hit when we arrived in Singapore was an outdoor/ shoe store in Novena. All of my family members; mum, dad, and my sister bought a pair of vff's. I opted for a KSO because the shop keep said that i can use this for ANYTHING.
And anything i did, i ran with my KSO, i walked on rocky terrain ( even though they were such a pain in the foot for the 1st month), stepped on puddles, go to the mall, even go for a dip with them. I was in love allover again, i ditched my pair of nike frees and rocked my KSO's everywhere i go.
But not anything last forever. Because of my hardcore usage of my KSO, a big gouging hole formed on my big toe-sock area. I tried stitching them but the hole just became bigger and bigger. And the soaky rainy days when i stepped on puddles? It made my vff's turn into an atomic stink bomb. The smell was horrible ( according to witness testimonies)
But thankfully, i had that trip to Singapore with my classmates and my parents and sister happens to be in Singapore for a uni survey for my sister in Curtin. And my mum bought me a new pair of vibrams; the Komodo sport.
The komodo sport was at that time, the latest vff engineered for running and mostly indoor gym activities. I was thrilled to test drive them out in Universal studios Singapore and they fell great. The soles on the komodo are made into a groove like shape, unlike the foot-like shape on the previous KSO.
They were hella comfortable but they have a minor downside; versatility and durability. Like i said before, these vff's are made for cross training and running, but i used them just like my old KSO's. The thicker fabric makes it harder for the shoe to dry off after a dip in water, wetness means dampness, which then leads to my foot stench. Next, the shoe has an inner sole inlay cushion which in time, the glue will weaken and then you get that unwell sensation of loose fabric in your toes.
But still, the komodos were a good change of scenery, at least i dont have a big hole on my toes pockets.
The Komodos were ok, but i still prefer the feel of the KSO. And as a matter of fact, there is another variation of the KSO which is engineered for watersport activities. Because of this they use a neoprene ( wetsuit material) for the shoe. I wanted to try these out because they have a sole similar to the KSO but a different material.
As you know vff's are hard to come by from a legit distributor in Jakarta, and my mums friend is going to Singapore, i managed to slip a pair of FLO in the "shopping list" that my mum gave to her friend. I was psyched to get try them on as soon as they arrive home, but alas my mums friend bought me THE WRONG SIZE. I wear vffs size 44, and vff's are true fit so a 45 would not fit me and they would feel sluggish.
My foot would feel awkwardly weird each time i wore them because of the size problem. Because of this i stopped wearing them for the first 4 days and have not tried them again since. I still keep them around just in case my dad wants to wear them (he wears 45) or maybe when i grow up.
4. The Classics
The classics, my current vff. The classics are actually the first ever vff ever made by vibram, even before the KSO. When my mum bought me the Komodo, she bought herself a classic and i was eager to try a classic too. Because of the "open" design, i mostly use them for walking around and for casual wear. Although the teachers at school sometimes mind me wearing them, i wear them to school anyways just for good measure.
Now, i bought a smartwool classic. Smartwool is the material, its actually just normal wool but with a catchier name. Now smartwools tend to be tighter the first time you bought them. When i first bought them and tested them out on the streets of orchard, they were a pain, even though i am an experienced vff user. After a quick research to birthdayshoes.com , the smartwool classics tend to be 1 size down than normal vff sizing. But with a quick heel inversion technique, the classics stretched a bit and my feet were feeling better than before, with the few occasional slags however.
What about you? are you a vff user? whats your favourite vff?
If your not a vff user than i highly recommend you get a pair right this instance, do a google search though, because i heard that there is a new 2013 model coming up next spring which is a mix of the KSO and the classic, my two best vibrams ever!