Monday, June 28, 2010

Going Barefoot: Part 2: Can a flip-flop recreate the sensation of going barefoot?

In Part 1, I discussed Vibram FiveFingers, a glove like shoe designed to be almost like walking barefoot. Now, Crocs, a brand previously discussed, has come out with the ABF flip, a flip-flop designed to be even better than walking barefoot.

The shoe is designed to have a “ergonomic fit and feel, like you are almost barefoot,” according to Croc’s website.

The interesting part is that this supposedly good for you shoe has a flip-flop design.

Part of the danger of flip-flops is that their thin rubber soles offer little support (Marshall, 2008). The molded bottom of the ABF solves this problem.

However, these shoes cannot solve the flip-flop effect. The piece that comes between the toes means that the person must grip the shoe to keep it from falling off. This alters your gait and strains uncommonly used muscles. Furthmore, the affect can be lasting. A recent study found that frequent flip-flop wearer walked differently even in sneakers (Marshall).

Thus, it seems that the ABF may still have problems and may not be better than walking barefoot.  

Related Posts:
Going Barefoot Part 1: Would you run barefoot?


Crocs. (2010). ABF™ flip women. Retrieved June 28, 2010 from,default,pd.html?cid=001.

Marshall, M. (2008). The dangers of flip-flops ... in footwear!. CBS News. Retrieved June 28, 2010 from

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