Minimalist shoes are a relatively recent invention spurred by the realization that walking or moving barefoot was in fact much healthier and better for the human body. The natural movement permitted by these types of shoes is aimed at lowering pressure on our feet and legs and preventing pack pain or poor posture. Minimalist shoes traditionally have a much thinner sole and little or no offset (offset is the tilt between heel and toe, many shoes have a sizable difference between the height of the heel and the height of the toe).
If you have been wearing the traditional sneakers for a long time, making the switch to barefoot shoes can be somewhat unnerving. The extra toe room, flexibility and overall 'minimalization' of the entire shoe is relatively unheard of. The movement only began gaining ground a few years ago as people started to realize some of the downsides associated with conventional runners.
Despite the fact that running was the primary driver to create a more natural style of footwear, there are now shoes for casual and work use that provide the same benefits and positive effects. Since we don't spend the majority of the day running (unless you're a professional marathon runner), it makes sense to invest in a pair of shoes that we could be wearing upwards of eight hours a day.
Although humans have been walking barefoot for thousands upon thousands of years we made the switch to shoes mainly because of the dangers of living in an urban area. Sharp rocks, glass, paved roads etc. were all much more common as humans drew together and started living in massive civilizations. The Romans started wearing sandals which led to different qualities of shoe or sandal. This in turn allowed fashion to start affecting footwear which is when the serious foot and back problems began.
Although we may have lost the ability to go completely barefoot in a heavily urbanized area, modern technology has brought back the value of the past. We're rediscovering our natural style of movement. Traditional runners can often cause us to land with a thud on our heels sending large amounts of pressure and strain up the back of our legs and into our knees or the base of our spine. Minimalist footwear helps to return some of that tactile sensation that our feet would provide if barefoot as well as to distribute the weight more evenly across the entire foot.
All in all minimalist shoes are starting to rise from obscurity into mainstream society. The truth is you'll be able to stay mobile and active much longer if you treat your body correctly. Using footwear that works with the natural motion of your body rather than against it is a valuable step you can take in ensuring that you can keep running and walking far into your old age.
Minimalist Shoes are the way of the future, we need to get back to our roots and start treating our bodies the way nature intended them to be treated through thousands of years of evolution.
Five Finger shoes are one of the best Barefoot Minimalist Shoes that can effectively exercise the muscles of the feet and calves, thereby improving running posture and better preventing injuries.