This week’s article is going to be a review and it is going to be on a pair of shoes from the company Vivobarefoot. They were kind enough to send over to me a pair of their barefoot shoes, the Aqua Lites, and I put them to the test last weekend to see if they were any better than my Chuck Taylors I have been training in.
When I originally saw the pair I wanted online the shoe looked more black, however when I got them, they were blue. The blue was not really bright blue or annoying colored blue. Which I did not mind, but with my normal wardrobe (all black) it did look awkward.
The main thing for me is comfort of the shoes, just like any other shoe wearer. I have been wearing the same kind of shoes for almost ten years now, and usually when I wear anything else the shoes are very uncomfortable. However with the Vivos, it was really comfortable from the start. I really did not have to ‘break it in’ or anything, it felt almost like I was wearing slippers. It is definitely a shoe you could wear around your house and go out and do parkour in.
I ran through some basic training movements with the shoe; vaults, cat climbs, precisions, strides, jogging, etc. They were very comfortable throughout the session, and compared to the Chuck Taylors, it was easier to land properly during vaults. The shoes have a little amount of plastic between your foot and the ground and they bend very easily, therefore my foot can move in the directions it needs to a lot smoother. During cat climbs and climbing up things, the grip of the shoe was fantastic and has a lot more grip compared to my shoes. This made a lot easier to go up walls, climb up walls, and hold my position on walls. Jogging is the same as landing, I was able to move my feet more freely, because the Vivos are able to bend with my foot.
One of the drawbacks of the shoes is its $130.00 (+S&H) price tag. However, through one training session, I was convinced that the shoes were worth the amount of money, and there was really no wear-n-tear and I think they will be able to last for a good while without having major issues (tears, holes, etc in the shoes). The cost is what everyone looks at first, and I think if you are serious about your parkour and/or free running training and want to take your training to ‘the next level,’ you should get them. I do not mean to shell out the money if you want to get better in parkour, your parkour abilities are through you; not through shoes. However, if you want to possibly increase your ability through them, I would recommend purchasing them if you have the money. The second drawback is that they are nice look shoes, and the worse thing about it was getting them dirty (not really a drawback, but I did not want to get them muffed up!).
All in all, they are great shoes and the companies itself are really cool people, and on a scale of 1 to 5, I give them a 4. The price tag is a little steep for me, and probably for a lot of people out there who simply just do not have the money to pay for shoes for parkour.
Vivo’s website: http://www.vivobarefoot.com/us/