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Xero Shoes Minimalist Sandal Reviews
Here are some of the people who love their Xero Shoes.
These shoes did not seem like they were going to handle much when I first tried them on. A few cleverly placed straps, some thin yet comfortable material for the sole and nothing more. Forty-five days of daily wear, which included hiking over various terrain — beach sand, river crossings, rocks, gravel, manicured city trails and a few trips off into the woods with no path at all — proved that not only do these shoes hold up to the abuse, they have become my favorite light shoe. The compact, minimal design, allows them to fit into the smallest pack, and washing them was as simple as a quick spray-down with a hose. The Z-Trek could be used as trail shoes and still look nice enough to wear with a skirt at a barbecue.
— Shelby Pratt, Livestrong.com Senior Customer Support Manager
Minimalist, economical running sandal that is made of a thin, cupped rubber sole pre-punched with two reinforced ankle holes and an intricately threaded lace. An almost-barefoot feel, but with some protection. The 4-mm-thick sole (about 5/32 inch thick, including lugs) of soft, pliable rubber provides barefoot-like balance, letting you feel every contour in the road or trail but without the momentary stabbing pain of a sharp pebble. It’s so light — 4.3 ounces in size 9 (compared with about 6.5 ounces for a Vibram Sprint) — that you hardly feel it. The slightly cupped, curved-up toe and heel zones keep feet from catching on the ground; the soles can be custom trimmed with scissors. I ran a 5K in them and appreciated the extra protection (and speed) over the course’s rougher sections. (Complete Review here)
Winner – Grovie Award for Best Huaraches! “This was really the year of the huarache. We saw tons of new sandal companies crop up, all with great new innovative designs. The big two companies (Xero Shoes and Luna) also put out some great updates to their original models. But Xero Shoes took that innovation to the next level. They went out and got a former Nike shoe designer to make the FeelTrue sole of their Connect and Contact huaraches. The result is a powerhouse of a sandal that has no real apparent weaknesses.”
As a barefoot runner I’ve heard lots about huaraches but it wasn’t until Steven made me my first pair (I have two) that I understood how much fun they are to run in. My feet feel like they’re completely bare and the world feels like it has a nice layer of rubber all over.
–Scott McLean, marathoner
I was extremely surprised and delighted by how well the Xero Shoes fit my feet. I’ve walked, run and hiked up Colorado mountains in these huaraches and they’ve held up great. In all of the minimalist shoes I’ve tried, they come the closest to going barefoot without actually going barefoot. I can feel the ground, build up foot strength and all while these huaraches protect the pads of my feet.
–Jessica Lee, President of runBARE company, the nation’s largest barefoot running school.
My recommendation- If you are a barefoot runner or plan on running barefoot, you need a pair of huaraches! If you do fall in love with them, you’ll have found a dirt-cheap shoe solution that will last for years.Huaraches… so simple but yet so complex. For some barefoot runners, they are the perfect shoe. For others, they are a source of endless frustration. I’ve tried making my own pair, which put me in the latter category. I had given up on huaraches… until I met Steven Sashen of xeroshoes.com. After testing his custom-made huaraches, I’m firmly ensconced in the former category.
The shoes basically fade away, and you feel like you’re barefoot all the time. I’ve put hundreds of miles on them, both walking and running, and have never wished for another shoe. They’re so small that you can easily stash them in your backpack. Or in your pocket, as I did when skiing last year. I’d walk to the Gondola in the sandals, then put on my socks and boots on the way up to the mountain, rather than robot walking the whole way there.For now, these are the best barefoot shoes you can get.
There is no other shoe in the minimalist footwear industry as truly minimalist as the huarache. The Xero Shoe Huarache running sandal with the kit is easy to make, durable, long-lasting, easy to personalize with a choice of lace color and lacing style as well as extremely economical.They are as close to being barefoot as you can possibly get with a shoe with only the slightest width of rubber protection on the soles of your feet. Your feet are free to move in the most natural way with no fabric upper to impede or constrict foot movement in any way.All initial reservations about comfort, fit, or suitability for running were quickly dispelled after my first few walks and my first run in them, which was absolutely fabulous. They are a pleasure to walk and run in and every pair can be perfectly customized to the needs of your feet.
Xero Shoes are the closest thing that I have seen to actual barefoot running. They’re based on the famous “huaraches” that the Tarahumara Indians wear when they run. Putting them on made me feel like a Native American warrior! The first few times I went running in my Xero Shoes, I had a little trouble getting the laces tight enough to keep the sandal on my foot without over-doing it and making them too tight. Once I found the sweet spot, however, the Xero Shoe felt great.I’ve found that the I-shoes are great for my strength training workouts as well as running. Check out this youtube clip of me working on muscle-ups in my Xero Shoes! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QoBet76oG6g
Thank you for sharing your GREAT shoe invention with me. They are good for practicing my barefoot running and they look Really Cool. My PE Teacher didn’t understand my shoes or my goal for barefoot running. I like how flexible they are on my feet. They feel great. I wear them everywhere, I LOVE the Shoes!!
–Faith Riggs, 8 years old, 3rd Grader at Bear Creek
Thank you for making these amazing huaraches. I love how they feel. I forget they are there so much so I have worn them to bed a few times!! LOL. They are the closest thing to Bare as you can get with a small layer of protection for your feet. I love how flexible they are and can move with my foot. I hate wearing shoes and this is perfect for those places that I am “required” to wear shoes. I ran the Turkey Trott with them and got my own personal best time… 2 minutes better than the time I ran WITH shoes. Thank you for sharing your shoes with us!
Running in my Xero Shoes is really enjoyable – they maintain almost all of the fun barefoot feel, and give me enough protection to take on more challenging terrain than I might try with naked feet.Besides, anything that makes me look a little more like a Tarahumara is going to score pretty high marks in my book.
(We like how Sofi picked mismatched colors to match her outfit! Happy Birthday, Sofi… and we just got a note from Sofi’s mom: “If she’s not wearing them, she carries them everywhere. Her sister tries to steal them constantly. A very big hit and thank you so very much!)
These are soooo cool!! It really is like running barefoot, but with a little protective mat under your feet. Your foot is completely free, unlike the Vibram FiveFingers where you have your toes confined in fabric.I love the simplicity of the design and the fact that the huarache style has been around since pre-history, yet Steven uses modern materials (the rubber sole and nylon laces) that work so well.
–Joy Frantz – Read Joy’s complete review at Run2Joy.com
“From the moment I’ve put these on my feet – I never looked back. They are simply awesome. They just feel super-comfortable, giving you an almost-fully barefoot feeling, while still protecting your feet from any of the modern ‘obstacles’ on the streets (broken glass, etc). I love it how the toes spread naturally with them, it reminds me of the time I spent with the rural barefoot Pounongs in the mountains of Cambodia. Do yourself a huge favor and buy a pair of these before you get caught up in your busy life and the thought leaves your mind. Thank me a thousand times later. They are the most comfortable thing you’ll ever wear. I promise. Prepare yourself for many curious looks and smiles in the street as well 😉
“Xero Shoes have changed my life. After a little while you really do forget you’re wearing them, and I feel much stronger and healthier barefoot or in Xero Shoes. As I bonus, these shoes are so small I can just slip them into my bag and go fully barefoot any time I like. For a minimalist and traveller this is ideal. As an anti-consumerist I also love the fact that they are good for the environment, since they use minimal materials, last a long time, and the laces can be replaced if needed, instead of having to chuck a pair of standard flip flops as soon as the straps snap. Well done Xero Shoes – you’ve made the ultimate sandals!”