I am a barefoot runner and believe it or not I love shoes. I like shoes that do not interfere with my barefoot form. Shoes affect not only your feet but the whole of your bodies posture. The time in your day that you wear shoes should not cause stress and discomfort.
The VIVOBAREFOOT shoes encourage and allow your feet to move and work the way they were designed to. This is a welcome change from high heels and stiff leather.
The black Kalis carried over into the Spring 2011 line due to their popularity, by looking at them its obvious why! The black Kali has been joined by new colors including a beige with purple highlights and a pinkish salmon color with purple highlights. I am not a pink person but the salmon color is really pretty.
When I first received the shoes I was pleased immediately with the look as well as the confirmation that they are indeed flat soled and lightweight. Photos of minimal shoes are deceptive and its hard to tell from a photo alone the minimal qualities of a shoe. Its not as easy as one would think to get a fashionable casual shoe that does not have a raised heel. VIVOBAREFOOT has many styles for men and women to choose from and they offer shoes for kids!!
The fit of the Kali is true to my usual size of 41 and I like the way they feel both in width as well as length. This is fantastic since I usually find that one or the other is off in fit. The fit of the Kali is customizable depending on if you leave in or take out the insole but more on that in a minute.
The upper is made of Nappa Leather and the collar/paneling is athletic mesh. The sole is the original VIVOBAREFOOT sole with the honeycomb pattern and a little knob in the center of each hexagon that provides great traction and yet is very minimal in weight and thickness being only 3mm. I have worn them in both wet and dry conditions and felt that the traction was great in either.
The Kalis come with a removable and washable recycled memory foam insole. I found the shoe to be surprisingly comfortable with and without the insole. I usually take out the insole and leave it out however this shoe is a walking shoe for me as well as for work of which I spend most of my time on my feet. The added padding is welcomed.
There is no added support in the arch and they have a zero drop heel. When wearing them without the insole the ground feel is exceptional and promotes barefoot style movement. The insole reduces the ground feel yet still allows for natural foot movement.
I like to take out the insole when I wear socks and leave it in when I don't wear socks. The option of not wearing socks is great with summer coming and the ease of cleaning the removable washable insole.
There was one downside that I found with while first wearing the Kalis. There was a "break in" period with these and something I had forgotten about since not having worn shoes that had this downside for quite some time. I used to not notice a break in period with new shoes since it seemed par for the course when wearing new shoes. Now though my feet are not accustomed to it and had to take it slow. Wearing socks helped to loosen up the leather without discomfort. It is not something I expected since the leather seemed soft and pliable.
I did not get blisters but just a sore uncomfortable spot on the outside of my ankles right under my Lateral Malleolus ( the big knobby bone). The leather softens with wear and the problem is gone now and only took a few times of wear to loose the discomfort. A friend of mine recommended the Kalis because of the lack of break in time so this isn't the case for everyone.
As you can see from the photo of one of the shoes rolled up that these are incredibly flexible which means that they allow your foot to move freely and naturally in all directions. They are versatile in style and priced at $110 I think they are certainly worth the money. My experience with Terra Plana has been that they make quality shoes that will last many years and the Mary Jane style of the Kalis will never go out of fashion! To purchase click on the VIVOBAREFOOT image on the sidebar to the right.
VIVOBAREFOOT is not just shoes. It is also about education and training your body to move naturally.
I am a big fan of the Terra Plana company in general and encourage you to look into their information section at their website.
"As with all Terra Plana products, VIVOBAREFOOT footwear is produced sustainably using recycled, locally sourced materials, with efficient and eco-friendly production techniques, in independently monitored ethical factories."