Feiyue Shoes: The Poor Man’s Vibrams

I’m cheap and just don’t want to pay $100 to run “barefoot” in those funny Vibram shoes even if everyone I know swears by them. So, I run . . . barefoot. In two years of actual rather than Vibram-mediated “barefoot” running, on both concrete and dirt paths, I have yet to even get a scratch.

But there have been a few times when I’ve encountered a particularly gravely path. Ouch. On those occasions I’ve been experimenting with slipping on a kind of Chinese martial arts shoe called Feiyue. Think of them as the poor man’s Vibrams as they cost less than $20.

Are they durable? More than you’d expect for a $15 shoe, but they won’t last forever. Are they attractive? Not particularly. And wearing them around makes me want to bust out a few parkour moves for our next book signing.

Thanks to Elon Shoenholz for the tip on the shoes and parkour moves. 

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  1. I *love* these! We are entertainers so I spend most of my time on fairgrounds. I can’t be barefoot there, both because of the image we need to maintain and because of the usual ground hazards of a fairgrounds. These really are almost as good as barefoot. The only thing I could wish for is a wider toebox.

  2. That was just plain scary! However, I am impressed. When you start doing that, at least charge money and let me know, as I want to see that in person. How can I afford to come there? I don’t know; I am still working on it. Use shoe glue when the shoes come apart.

  3. My husband and I both run in Vibrams and love them, but we also both run completely barefoot and love that too! Ever since our stop at the Tempest Freerunning Academy in LA, Drew has been all about learning more parkour moves, so I might have to see about getting him a pair of these shoes! 😉

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