Pros: Minimalistic, barefoot feel, stability
Cons: Soreness, not very comfortable
Best Uses: Running, training for barefoot running
The truth is that no matter how much we like our shoes, what we actually want is the feel of running barefoot. Unfortunately, for a variety of reasons, that usually isn’t possible. For one, you’ll have to step out of the safety and comfort of your shoes. You have to give up all that protection for yourself and your feet. With the Merrell Vapor Glove, it’s as good as going barefoot, only with a little bit of cushioning and some protection from the elements.
These shoes are probably most useful to those who are actually making the transition to barefoot running. Such transitions have to be gradual, and shoes like the Vapor Glove are great for preparing yourself for the change. They serve as an intermediate between traditional running shoes and actually going out with nothing on you feet. It comes with uniform cushioning from the heel to the toe, absorbing all impacts but, at the same time, letting your feet land flat on the ground as you run. This simulates the natural way of running such as you would without any shoes.
The materials used in the shoe are synthetic leather and mesh. The mesh makes the shoe breathable while also lending stability and support to your heels. The great thing about minimalistic shoes like these is you’ll be able to feel what’s on the road underneath your feet, and you can bend over what’s in your way instead of balancing on them, as you would with a more traditional running shoe.
As you get used to these shoes, you will realize that your biomechanics are changing too. Your stride will be a little shorter, but the rhythm of your run will be faster. Your posture will be more upright and there will be a spring in your step that wasn’t there before. The run that you achieve is the kind that we were made for, as nature intended.
All this natural running means that you are going to end up with a lot of stiffness, especially at first. Muscles that you never knew you had will be making their presence felt. Do yourself a favor, take lots of hot baths and let yourself get used to the change in your shoes and your running style.
But, if you’re looking to get into a more natural style of running, the Merrell Women’s Vapour Glove Trail Running shoe will help you do just that. It’s a high-performance, durable shoe at a very reasonable price and comes highly recommended by us here at Best CrossFit shoes!
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