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Review of the FiveFinger Spyridons

by Paula IJzerman » on Mar 12, 2012 15

Yesterday I finally got them: my Vibram FiveFingers Spyridon LS! I had been waiting for them for so long that I had to try them immediately.  I’ve spent a solid day with them and wanted to share my review with you right away!

FiveFingers Spyridon LS

The VFF Spyridon is the model designed for trailrunning. They have a 3.5 mm thick outer sole and a very sturdy pattern on the bottom, so you have enough traction on both even and slippery surfaces. This model has the unique feature of a mesh ingot under the arch of your foot to protect you from any sharp objects you may step on.

On the inside of the shoe there is a 3 mm inner sole and anti-bacterial sockliner that give you a fairly smooth feeling.

The upper part is made of a sturdy fabric in vibrant colors (mine are the orange and grey ones you see in the photos). The fabric is elastic, breathes, and the LS version has a speed-lace. This version is meant for people with a high instep or wider feet. I don’t have either, but my Spyridon LS still fit like a glove.

I’m a long-distance trailrunner and I’m quite demanding on what my ‘shoes’ should feel like and how they should behave on heavy trails.So yesterday evening I joined in the perfect event to test the Spyridon: our monthly Full Moon Trail Run! Exciting trails in the dark, no possibility to anticipate anything because nothing is visible until the last moment.

Full moon - photo made by Jan Roos

The VFF Spyridon require some putting-on-skills, but once on they feel very soft to the feet. Even though it was a bit cold yesterday evening I had no problems keeping warm. We started off on a dark trail with lots of roots. No problem whatsoever for my Spyridons! Then a long flight of stairs, followed by a long descent on a sandy path. The Spyridon provide more grip than my normal choice for trails, either KomodoSports or TrekSports. On the following shell paths they behaved beautifully. Sandy beach also was no problem. We ended the trail on a singletrack winding MTB-path with roots and rocks. Bumping my toe hurt, but not in the amount I expected. The very last bit was on paved road and that felt like it was cushioned. I guess that’s caused by the heavy pattern of the soles.

VFF Spyridon sole

All in all the VFF Spyridon are everything I hoped for. Although I’m strongly biased and love VFFs, I tried to make objective observations of the new Spyridons. They have enough traction for medium/heavy trails, but at this point I’m not sure how they would do on real heavy trails. I plan to take them to the Alps, though, I’ll let you know how they did afterwards!

Do you plan on getting a pair of Spyridons?  Let us know in the comments!

Submitted Comments

  1. claire says:

    I am so interested in your writing and the shoes are so beautiful. I want to try all of them. Thanks for sharing it. Now I want to share some fashionable 5 finger shoes, too. Hope you will like it.

  2. russell says:

    just got them today. feel amazing. and yes they are a challange to get on atfirst but i love them.

  3. loren says:

    I bought a pair last weekend. I’ve love VFF and have been trail running in KSOs for several years. I love the sole of the Spyridon and the extra thickness in the sole let’s me run a lot faster than normal. My only problem is that I’m getting a very sharp pain in my feet right at the top of the ball of my foot that I’ve never felt before. This happens on roads and trails and at this point I’m pretty nervous about putting more than a few miles on them. Last night I actually took them off mid-run and walked home barefoot because of the pain. Anyone else have this problem? Do I need to just break them in? Adjust my form? Or is there something else going on with this shoe?

  4. Paula says:

    Hi Loren,

    Do you have this pain only when running in Spyridon? And if you take them off, can you see redness anywhere on your feet?

    Kind regards, Paula

  5. loren says:

    Hi Paula…No the pain is unique to the Spyridon. I decided to do a 10 mile trail run in them yesterday and it went much better. The pain was still there a little bit, but it was definitely tolerable. The day after, my foot feels less sore than when running my KSOs the same distance. It’s just a different shoe and I think it will take a bit of time for me to adjust to. Overall I can move much faster on trails with the Spyridon than the KSO so I’m going to stick with them.

  6. Jonathan says:

    I have been looking for a review of the Spyridons by someone who (1) runs trails and (2) runs long distance on trails. This was perfect! I am considering running my first 50k this fall and I want to get a pair, but I didn’t know how my feet would handle that distance in VFF. In fact my choice is between the Spyridons and a pair of Altra Lone Peaks. I feel like adding more stack height underfoot might add *some* cushioning but at the expense of less ground feel (and less of what I already know, which is running in VFFs and Trail Gloves). Thanks for the review!

  7. Tim says:

    I’m a long time vff lover but I also have issues with the spyridons,pain in my toes and balls of both feet after anything longer than 3 miles and the paint used on top of the toes crack and flake off after just a few runs making them look old and haggard .

  8. John Lane says:

    I own a pair, I’m going to run Twin Cities Marathon in them. Love them!

  9. Jesus says:

    i’m so pissed that most new models don’t come in small numbers! before i have classics, sprint and kso to chose from and now Vibram is taking them out and the only option left for me is kso! and all these new models come un at least 2 numbers to big for me (that is almost 1/2 an inch)

  10. Brian says:

    I currently have a pair of VFF that I use for trail running. I don’t kn

  11. Brian says:

    I have a pair of VFF that I use for trail running, I love them. I don’t the style but now that I read your review once my current ones wear out I am getting thoughts!

  12. Toby says:

    OMG, i think they’re really cool! reading your review, i’ve decided to get a pair…

  13. Ruello says:

    I have Sypridons since about 2 months now, and I just love them. I have been running in Bikilas since last year, with a marathon last october, but I was switching to “regular” shoues for trails :-( Now I found my happines: Bikila for road, Spyridon for trail. I ran the first trail last month (28km, 1500mD+) and it just felt wonderful :-) perfect grip, no rock pain… it felt I was going much faster downhill on muddy rocky trails than I used to in shoes. Now on to the next level: in 2 weeks I’ll run a 64km 3500mD+ here in Beaujolais, France… sounds like fun ;-) It’s my longest distance ever… wish me luck.

  14. Tristan says:

    I have been running in Spyridons since January and it has changed my running life forever in my view. My ankles, calves and achilles are stronger, my peroneal muscles/tendons (which caused constant problems from scar tissue) have become more defined and the pain has disappeared.

    My only one problem is blisters caused by the seam that runs across the bottom of the big toe inside the shoe. Defies logic as to why it was designed that way. Poor manufacturing?

    In my experiance the grip is good to go on all surfaces. I have also found my feet occasionally slip inside the shoe once sweat forms when on sharp turns or when running around cones.

    Despite this I highly recommend the spyridon

  15. h says:

    how much do they weigh in OZ

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