Barefoot shoes or minimalist shoes are shoes that are designed to be as light and thin as possible. They usually have a flat sole, very little or no padding, and no arch support.
The design of barefoot shoes is based on the principles of barefoot running, which is a form of running where people run barefoot or in minimal footwear. Proponents of this form of running claim that it can help improve general health, lower injury rates and reduce stress on the body.
Minimalist shoes are popular among runners who want to experience the benefits of barefoot running without actually going barefoot. There are many different types of minimalist shoes for different purposes: for example, some have a small amount of padding for comfort while others have none at all.
Why go minimalist?
Minimalist shoes let feet be feet. Your toes are supposed to flex, extend freely, and grip the ground. Primarily, your feet need to be free to grow naturally and healthy. They also want to feel the movements and textures, which conventional shoes typically prevent.