Can you use the Vibram FiveFingers as running shoes?
The Vibram FiveFingers shoes are a style of footwear which was released in 2004 and was developed to fit the feet just like a glove having a pocket for each toe, just like the gloves. These were initially somewhat low key however they grew to become well-liked in the boating and yachting communities since the nature of the product and its structure ensured the shoes were well suited to that particular environment. During 2009 when a barefoot running novelty was growing, these footwear had been widely embraced by those touting and trying barefoot running because of the really minimalist nature of the footwears design. It was believed that the structure of the Vibram FiveFingers was so minimalist that running in them was basically the next best thing to running without running shoes since there was nothing in the design that interfered with the natural movement of the foot, so the footwear were believed to imitate barefoot running. The shoes grew to become quite popular.
The Vibram company embraced the barefoot running trend and greatly publicized their shoes and barefoot running being a worthwhile alternative to running in the more common cushioned running shoe. The company began generating a number of advertising and marketing claims with their shoes such as a reconnection of the feet with the earth and enabling your feet to feel every change in terrain. They also alleged how the footwear offered a reduced stride length as well as a lighter step. Most regrettably, they echoed the false claims that people who have been pushing barefoot running making the assertions that if you began running in their footwear you would get less injuries. This was at a time that health care professionals were dealing with a substantial increase in injuries in athletes because of barefoot running. There was no research at that time (and there still is hardly any today) that without footwear running or using the Vibram FiveFingers resulted in decreased overuse injuries. This resulted in a class action lawsuit against Vibram for all those untrue assertions that they made a decision to settle out-of-court rather than go to trial. Into later 2013 the barefoot running fad started to end and the sales of the Vibram FiveFingers dropped off significantly from that point.
The Vibram FiveFingers are still on the market, mainly used by a smaller serious group who are immune to the cracks regarding how un-fashionable these shoes are and appear. You will discover people still running with them. If someone does wants to run in them, then it's the kind of issue that considerable time is needed to slowly get used to using them. The muscles in the feet will need to be strengthened and as the footwear cause you to run having a slightly unique technique, then time is going to be needed to adapt and transition to these kinds of shoes.
With that said, runners have all but completely dropped interest in the footwear. You hardly ever view a runner in a pair of these at any running event or running race. The Vibram company is apparently organising a major relaunch of the Vibram FiveFingers brand in the later half of 2021.