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Not sure what I am doing wrong with my new Vibrams..

by (50)
Updated about 21 hours ago
Created March 17, 2014 at 6:13 PM

So I bought a pair last weekend and I've been using them to walk around the city (San Francisco). There is a lot of concrete and not really any soft ground. (Also a lot of hills)

I am experiencing a lot of pain in the ball of my foot and part of my toes. I decided to go for vibrams in the first place because my crappy Target tennis shoes were SOMETIMES causing small discomfort throughout my foot when I walked for long periods (30 minutes +). I got these five fingers on sale so I can't even return them, but I'm thinking of giving up on them. What is going on?

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17412 · March 18, 2014 at 9:17 AM

Wear them in the house on the weekend and a little bit outside at a time. Try to get as much movement while wearing them as you can. Take breaks often, and eventually shorter and shorter breaks.

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17412 · March 18, 2014 at 9:16 AM

+1 that's exactly what it is. Had the same issue with my Fila Skeletoes - the thinner "water shoe" style (they don't make Vibrams in my size).

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50 · March 18, 2014 at 2:10 AM

Yeah I think the mistake I made was going on long errand trips right away instead of easing into them. I live in the exelcior so to get to the grocery mart, bart, school, doctor, hair, etc I have to climb up a few hills. I'm thinking of starting beach sprints with this nice weather so I hope that helps.

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26182 · March 17, 2014 at 6:27 PM

you may not have doms, you likely strained a muscle or ligamint. Recovery can be minutes to days depends on the stress.

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50 · March 17, 2014 at 6:21 PM

Wouldn't this mean I have soreness in my foot the next day though? I'm only feeling pain when I walk and about 15-20 minutes after I get home

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4 Answers

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5650 · March 18, 2014 at 11:52 PM

probably just sore from changing from regular tennis shoes to vibrams. i was in so much pain when i first started wearing them. i remember i was a cashier and had to work the day after i wore them the first time. i couldn't even walk and asked my boss if i could sit in a chair at the register.

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0 · March 18, 2014 at 1:15 PM

switching to a minimalist shoe should be gradual. A sudden change like this can be damaging to the intrinsics of the feet, especially if you're using them for a long period of time. However, vibrams and other minimal footwear is not for everyone especially over pronators who should really have a more rigid heel cup. What does the wear pattern look like on your old tennis shoes?

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208 · March 18, 2014 at 12:31 AM

Is the pain mostly on the downhill? You just aren't used to walking almost barefoot on concrete. It will take a lot of time to get used to that. I'd do just a few minutes a day, carry another pair of something that you can change into. It took me a lot of time to get to the point on those hills that old ladies weren't blowing past me. I miss it - don't live in SF anymore. Go out to the beach and walk in them for practice and building up your feet/legs.

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50 · March 18, 2014 at 2:10 AM

Yeah I think the mistake I made was going on long errand trips right away instead of easing into them. I live in the exelcior so to get to the grocery mart, bart, school, doctor, hair, etc I have to climb up a few hills. I'm thinking of starting beach sprints with this nice weather so I hope that helps.

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26182 · March 17, 2014 at 6:19 PM

if you have never lifted before, and you sit down and do a 5x5 routine, the next day you will feel like your arms are going to fall off. This is called DOMS, but is analogous to what you are feeling.

You are asking your body to react in a way that it is not trained to do. You are using muscles, and putting load on joints that are new to them. Give it time, and take it slow. Do 30 minutes of vibrams one day, 40 the next, and so on so your body can slowly build up the muscular support it needs.

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50 · March 17, 2014 at 6:21 PM

Wouldn't this mean I have soreness in my foot the next day though? I'm only feeling pain when I walk and about 15-20 minutes after I get home

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17412 · March 18, 2014 at 9:16 AM

+1 that's exactly what it is. Had the same issue with my Fila Skeletoes - the thinner "water shoe" style (they don't make Vibrams in my size).

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