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Fivefingers Reviews & Articles

Sergey Brin, Co-Founder of Google, swears by his "Crazy Monkey Shoes"!

At the recent press launch of the new Google Chrome OS, Co-Founder of the Internet Search Engine giant, Sergey Brin, was seen sporting a pair of the Vibram Fivfingers KSO shoes that, by his own admission, he has become extremely attached to.

Brin's reference to the Vibram KSO Sports Footwear as his "crazy monkey shoes", are one of the best selling lines of our Vibram Fivefingers® range which includes the top selling Komodo Sport™, the astonishing Bikila™ and Bikila LS™ aimed at the specialist Run market, or the multi-discipline TrekSport™ both equally at home on smooth or rough terrain with their increased tread sole depth.

The Fivefingers® phenomenon has gained momentum in recent years and the endorsement from such a high profile individual as Brin and other equally high profile celebrity names, is testament to the undoubted comfort and therapeutic benefits the Vibram Fivefingers® provide to runners and walkers alike. You can read Brin's own account of his radical change and the improvement to his stature and overall health from discovering his Vibram Fivefingers at http://www.crunchgear.com/2009/08/10/review-vibram-five-fingers-classic/.

Fivefingers offer the wearer the benefit of "going barefoot" without the inherent physical dangers of doing so in a 21st Century world. The Barefoot Running brigade, are a rapidly expanding group who have seen the enormous benefits the Vibram Fivefingers have brought to their overall health and running performance by applying bio-mechanical advantages and allowing their bodies to perform the way they were designed to perform.....naturally!

Barefoot athletes are not new. Ethiopia's Abebe Bikila, where the name of the new Bikila™ range comes from, strode purposefully without any footwear to Gold in the 1960 Rome Olympics and the legendary Zola Budd notoriously ran barefoot at the 1984 Los Angeles games, are two high profile names in the sport of many athletes who are reverting to the "barefoot revolution".

See the full range of Vibram Fivefingers footwear at Baselayer http://www.baselayer.co.uk/FiveFingers-cat-50

On-Line Resources, Journals & Articles




Born To Run Book by Christopher McDougall - Review


Barefoot Ted

Over the last five years or so, if you'd typed barefoot running into google, you would almost invariably have got 3 things come up as top of the search rankings:

1) Barefoot Ted's Adventures (www.barefootted.com)
2) Barefoot Ken Bob Saxton (http://barefootkenbob.com/)
3) Barefoot Running by Michael Warburton (http://www.sportsci.org/jour/0103/mw.htm)

Of course, since the rapid increase in commercial interest this is no longer necessarily the case... but these guys (pardon the pun) were the forerunners.

Ted ran several marathons barefoot which attracted the interest of Vibram when they released the Fivefingers. Ted has since run many marathons and ultras (up to 100 miles in one hit) in Vibram Fivefingers - and in his own home made "huaraches" - which is what the indigenous Mexican group, the Tarahumara, run in.

Born To Run

So this links into the book Born To Run, by Christopher McDougall.

Chris was an editor of Esquire Magazine and an avid runner. However, he fell into the 80%, or so, of runners who were regularly injured. Having received advice from various "running experts" on anti-pronation shoes, orthotics, treatment approaches and exercise approaches, Chris realised EVERYONE had a different opinion - and often disparate opinions at that. He began to wonder if, given the extreme levels of injury, humans perhaps were not designed to run. He began to look for groups that ran as a part of their culture and stumbled across the Tarahumara in Mexico's Copper Canyons.

To cut a long story short, Chris began a personal journey both to Mexico to meet the Tarahumara, and deep into human evolution, human biomechanics and this story is all neatly threaded into a journal-style account of his meeting with the Tarahumara and running in a race pitched between the best runners of the Tarahumara versus some of the very best Ultra runners the Western world could conjure up... This was the billing on the front of the book:

the hidden tribe, the ultra-runners and the greatest race the world has never seen

Born to run is a great and inspiring read, and this is why it was right up the top of Amazon's best sellers in the health and fitness categories - and even was in the top couple of hundred in the over all category last summer in the UK.

These are the current (2010) UK rankings:

Amazon.co.uk Sales Rank: 2,682 in Books (See Bestsellers in Books)
Popular in these categories:

#2 in Books > Sports, Hobbies & Games > Athletics & Gymnastics > Athletics
#5 in Books > Health, Family & Lifestyle > Fitness & Exercise > Running & Jogging
#90 in Books > Health, Family & Lifestyle > Men's Health & Lifestyle

And these are the current (2010) US rankings:

Amazon.com Sales Rank: #96 in Books (See Bestsellers in Books)
Popular in these categories: (What's this?)

#1 in Books > Health, Mind & Body > Exercise & Fitness > Running & Jogging
#1 in Books > Sports > Individual Sports > Running & Jogging
#1 in Books > Nonfiction > Social Sciences > Anthropology > Cultural

The book was released last April in hardback and is coming out in paper back next month. As you can see, the US are well ahead of us as "Born To Run" mania has spread across the US... they've even been featuring Christopher McDougall on game shows and talk shows! This has created the huge surge in sales of Vibram Fivefingers (as they're mentioned several times in the book - and barefoot running in general is a major message of the book) - as mentioned in the email sent a week ago.

Starring Role

One of the primary characters to have a starring role in McDougall's book is Barefoot Ted who turns up to "tag along" as a non-competitive runner in this "greatest race the world has never seen". McDougall is struck by the strange red glove-like contraptions on BFT's feet and is amazed at his dexterity and speed even over the most rocky of terrains. McDougall and Ted strike up a friendship in the book; a bond which remains today, both of them benefiting dramatically from Born To Run's huge success.

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