Barefoot shoe brand Vivobarefoot has been challenging the footwear establishment with its collection of casual to performance looks that allow for more natural movement and maximum sensory feedback.
The direct-to-consumer brand, launched in 2012, offers footwear featuring a patented, ultra-thin, puncture-resistant sole that’s designed to protect the foot while running and walking.
Now, the company is taking its message to consumers with a short documentary titled, “Shoespiracy.” The film, released today, presents the opinions of a panel of medical and footwear experts including shoemakers, doctors, and bio-mechanists, about the effects of wearing minimalist footwear on the feet and body.
While these industry insiders are in favor of a barefoot approach to footwear over more traditional shoes with built-in cushioning and support, others note the trend may not be beneficial to everyone.
Barefoot & Minimalist Shoe Movement History
The barefoot or minimalist footwear movement is not new to the industry. It was introduced to consumers in the mid-2000s by brands including Vibram with its FiveFingers styles, New Balance’s Minimus styles, Merrell, and Lems.
Although the trend began to ebb, Galahad Clark, founder of Vivobarefoot, said the tides are beginning to turn with a renewed interest in this footwear category.
Experts and Insiders Have Different Views
There are industry insiders