Want to enjoy the advantages of running or walking barefoot, but prefer some protection? Minimal shoes might be your new best friend. I’ve tried this Finnish brand called Feelmax.
I prefer running barefoot, but when doing other kinds of outdoor training in winter time sometimes I need more warmth. I tried the Feelmax Aapa minimal shoes in all seasons this year and tested their comfort, the extent to which they resemble barefoot, their looks and some other things..Here are the results.
Resembles barefoot experience:
With the thinnest sole worldwide (1mm), you do feel every change in surface, to the tiniest stone. Still, it doesn’t compare to the barefoot experience in my view: there is something about feeling where you put your foot with your skin itself. Which means no shoe can make that happen.
Some people say the shape of Vibram 5 fingers helps them to really use their toes, as they are separated by the toe-shaped shoes. This resembles the barefoot experience and you don’t get that in the regular shaped Feelmax.
I’ve heard about Vibram 5-fingers shoes that they aren’t comfortable for everyone, since they have a very specific shape. The shape of the Feelmax shoe is quite wide, so I trust they will fit any kind of foot. They can be used for both walking and (trail)running.
Safety and protection:
Very safe, since the whole foot is covered as opposed to some other brands. It is said they are not fully waterproof since the sole and fabric are so thin, but I’ve used them in heavy rain for 2 hours and my feet were still dry. Maybe not very useful for a multiple-day hiking holiday in, say, Scotland.
It doesn’t show so much on the picture but the shoe has a wide nose that I don’t find so pretty, in the sense that I wouldn’t wear them on non-sport occasions. For training I have lower aesthetic standards and those are absolutely met by these shoes.