Why You Fell For Barefoot Shoes, And Why You'll Never Fall For Them Again

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Complex Original

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We live in a world where people love to take shortcuts. This particularly applies to the health and fitness industry. Instead of putting the time and effort required to achieve one’s personal fitness goals, we oftentimes turn to products designed to give us that “edge” to succeed. Unfortunately, as we’ve found out in recent years, not everything you’re being sold by performance footwear and apparel brands has been proven to work. Take Vibram for example.

Just this month, the brand who claimed its FiveFingers shoes have a bevy of health benefits associated with them was forced to shell out millions of dollars back to the consumer for basically false advertising. The problem? Outside of their own funded studies, their dubious claim was never proven to be true.

So why is it that we the consumer keep falling for the FiveFingers and Skechers Shape Ups of the world?

As industry insider Matt Powell puts it: “The whole sports category is both aspirational and inspirational. “It’s intended for people to think their game is better -- whether it's running or golf or whatever -- if they just get this new kind of equipment.”

So let’s take a moment to recap we’ve learned: (1) there are no quick fixes when it comes to health and fitness (2) don’t always believe the hype for the sake of having the “latest and greatest” gear (3) something that works for one person isn’t necessarily going to work for the masses (4) proper form will generally benefit you more than the “right” pair of shoes will.

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