Coming from a high fashion shoe background where style predominantly won over comfort, my uninformed impression of five fingers was predisposed to be undesired.
I believe impressions are formed by the environment you are surrounded by and your experiences. After working in retail for four years, my environment included the eclectic style of Jeffery Campbell, the sophistication that Toni Bianco brings to the shoe table and my experiences revolved around people buying into an image through fashion, in particular their shoes.
Although working in fashion manifested adoration for beautiful shoes within me, it also exposed me to the damage wearing the wrong shoes can do to your feet – I have seen many a bunion over the years.
My new employment with Willis Street Physiotherapy encouraged me to keep an open mind with regards to health and well-being, particularly five fingers. So I thought I owed it to the shoes to give them the benefit of the doubt.
Initial impression after receiving my first pair of five fingers – the new KSO Evos.
Visually they are more appealing than I initially thought they would be, the colour blocking of grey and pink is vibrant and youthful – similar to the colour blocking of Nike’s big hit “Roshe Runs”.
When I put my KSOs on for the first time, my toes did not know which pocket to call home; they took me a few minutes to get on. Once on they felt quite strange. After wearing shoes where my toes were restricted in such close proximity, they now had their own individual compartments to roam free – a good feeling once you move past the unfamiliarity.
My colleagues (who are extremely knowledgeable about Five Fingers) advised me of the importance of gradually transitioning to Five Finger shoes to avoid injuries.
I have always been active and am an avid gym goer. I generally do circuit training in the mornings and weight training in the afternoons. What better way to trial these intriguing shoes than to incorporate them into my gym routine?
KSO Evos and circuit training
My first circuit session using Five Fingers was mildly uncomfortable. My right big toe began to ache part way through the session and continued to bother me until I got home and took them off.
On the other hand I loved the flexibility they gave me, particularly holding press up form and using the step. I felt far more controlled and stable than I do in my other sneakers, which give me far more cushioning but less grip and balance than the Five Fingers (particularly on carpet). After the first week wearing them the pain began to subside and the Five Finger appeal began to grow.
KSO Evos and weight training
Wearing these shoes for weight training was the biggest surprise for skeptical me.
I originally thought that the Five Fingers would be uncomfortable for weight training. I had the impression that with less support and cushioning between my feet and the ground there would be more pressure falling on my heels and balls of my feet.
To the contrary I felt far more grounded and stable, my form was good and I was even able to increase my weight load for squats and dead lifts. Whether this is down to the shoes or if I was just having a good week could be debated. However, there is something about being able to feel the ground under my feet that really made me feel in control of my own body weight and the additional weight I was holding. The shoes gave me no pain or discomfort during weight training. After just one week of using these shoes I can safely say that the KSO Evos are quickly becoming my favorite shoes for weight training.
How was my first time??
Overall my first time was apprehensive yet exciting; mildly uncomfortable yet eye opening; a new discovery and something I would love to keep persevering with.
Stay posted for updates on my Five Finger experience.