My daughter Summer is super active. We’re hard pressed keeping her still. If she’s not dancing in her room, she’ll be outside skipping. If she’s not running the ball at soccer, she’s wading through water at Nippers or fine tuning her stroke at swimming lessons. With every day being a circus-full of activity, Summer’s feet are pretty important.
Just like so many mums I know, I have always been taught to ensure that her growing feet are well supported. Inner-cushioned support, strong, sturdy soles, buckles and laces that allow me to strap her foot in tight so nothing moves around. And I have followed this advice…until I was handed a range of Vivobarefoot kids’ shoes, which come from the Clarks footwear family, for Summer to try out.
Looking at them, alarm bells went off straight away and my inner skepticism was on high alert. Each pair goes completely against anything that I had been told. They’re super soft, amazingly light and there is very little support. Nonetheless, I am a true believer in not knocking anything until you try them, so with Summer’s curious eyes already devouring the boxes, the perfect test subject was already at my disposal.
Heading down to the beach and pool for a little rockpool exploring before swimming lessons, Summer eagerly put on a pair of the Vivobarefoot Ultras. Straight away she adored the colours (pink and green) and commented on how nice they felt on her toes. Checking how they fit on her foot, they surprisingly sat beautifully with the curve of her arch, however had a lot of width and bend to them, allowing her feet to move how they naturally should be. Straight out of the horse’s mouth - "these feel so good Mum, it’s like I’m floating!"
Always one to remove Summer’s shoes before hitting the sand or water, I reined in my OCD and allowed her to just run around and do whatever she normally would (climbing rocks and exploring the water holes) but with the Ultras on. They gripped well and protected her feet from the sneaky little urchins on the rocks.
She busted out a routine of cartwheels on the sand (and half in the ocean as her coordination is still getting there) and she wasn’t restricted in any way. And the best part? Once we were done on the sand, I rinsed the Vivobarefoots (and her feet) under the beach shower and that was it. No sand was caught in the shoes or threatening to turn up later because it was stuck in the soles. She put them straight back on and off we went.