A really early '2nd skin' experiment


I'm pretty certain I wasn't the first or the only barefoot running enthusiast to take a pair of socks (or pair of shoes) and MacGyver a minimal 2nd skin.

It was the summer of 2003 and I was still getting used to the heat of Ft. Myers, Florida. Without question a mecca for year-round running. There was only one problem. The long summer made unshod running on the skillet hot pavement too much too handle. My running was limited to a frustrating 20 minutes.   So...

I took a pair of basic low-cut cotton socks and painted several coats of liquid latex rubber on the sole, toes and heel.  (I wish I had a pic).  Imagine an ultra thin poor man's version of the FiveFingers. But alas, FiveFingers were yet to make their way to Robert Fliri's sketchbook. I named my new invention 'Flexsocks' and began running in them around my community.  They lasted no more than about 30 miles before they started to fall apart. But for only $4 it didn't really matter.

It become apparent very quickly that these rubber socks of mine would not revolutionize running. So I put my idea on the back burner for a couple of years.

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  • By Tim Foreman

    I literally thought of this a week ago when I was trying to run down my icy street...that feeling of termites eating my feet didn't take long and I thought if I just had some latex to dip my feet in. I am now more confident in ever that your shoes will be for me. I look forward to more sketches.

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  • By Andrew

    You should go onto this Google group and keep people update about your status and and answer questions. There are about 2000 people in the group that are very interested in minimalist shoes.

  • Hi!
    Here in Sweden we have something called "sockiplast", socks-in-plastic. It works! I run in sockiplast, it feels great.
    A B

  • By Ken Ng

    Aloha! Have you checked out Sockwa (originally for beach volleyball)! Minimal is happening! Still, feet are lovin' LA this Spring! Feets don't fail me now!

  • By Oscar Chu

    I actually tried adhering felt onto a pair of Injinji toe socks (after I put them on). Unfortunately, it rained the first day I tested them and realized they don't do well when wet. Twigs also tend to get stuck in them too. The felt also made the soles very hot. Still, on a dry day, they are much more comfortable than even VFFs! Please shape these shoes to fit bare feet like a pair of socks! That's the key! No pointy-toed, high heeled, too-much-arch support, motionless-control junk! And please remember the wide footed and flat footed people like myself! Many of us go barefoot because we can't find wide or flat-footed shoes!

  • Hey, pretty exciting, I’m looking forward to checking the new Skora shoes. I would love to add my name to the list of testers. Thanks. Wilhelm.

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