On this week’s show, we have Asher Clark, the Co-founder of Vivobarefoot. We will be talking about the origin story of the company and do deep dive into the new Vivobarefoot ECS Tempest Swimrun shoe. (We also talked about surfing, which is awesome!) More on that later in the show. We added another thing to the list of “things the Low Tide Boyz are doing” with the first swimrun column at Triathlete Magainze! Be sure to give it a read and share it with your networks.
Welcome to episode twenty-three of the Low Tide Boyz, a Swimrun Podcast!
On this week’s show, we have Asher Clark, the Co-founder of Vivobarefoot. We will be talking about the origin story of the company and do deep dive into the new Vivobarefoot ECS Tempest Swimrun shoe. (We also talked about surfing, which is awesome!) More on that later in the show.
We added another thing to the list of “things the Low Tide Boyz are doing” with the first swimrun column at Triathlete Magainze! Be sure to give it a read and share it with your networks.
Training is about to get a kick in the pants as it appears that pools are starting to open and open water swims are now fully allowed at our usual spot. RIP to our shoulders! We also just dropped our ARK Keel Swimrun Pull Buoy Review, so be sure to check that out as well.
We wanted to give a shout out this week to Helene from Sweden. She has been sending kind words and feedback along since the very beginning. Thanks for the support Helene!
Now for this week’s interview. We’re stoked to get to chat with Asher of Vivobarefoot. If you’re not familiar with Vivobarefoot, they are a minimalist shoe company and are a staple in the Swimrun space. The company was started in 2010 with a simple idea to make shoes that allow feet to do their thing and, in effect, respect human movement.
We chatted about the origins of the company and the simple/profound idea that feet should be allowed to unleash their natural potential and the shoe should be as minimal as possible and be as sustainable as possible by using a few materials as possible. Vivobarefoot had the goal of being sustainable since the beginning. The foundation of making a sustainable shoe for Vivo is to make sure that the shoe functions to allow for natural movement. The guiding light being regenerating as a concept and not just being sustainable as a company to get closer to the ultimate goal of mimicking nature.
Vivobarefoot got into Swimrun while they were developing their Primus trail shoe. They tested the prototype of the shoe with some elite athletes in Sweden. Asher then met with Mats Skott and Michael of Ötillö in 2015 and went for a short 10k Swimrun (No wetsuit, cold water) and Asher was hooked. Swimrun to him was one of the most visceral ways to be connected with nature. It’s human locomotion over land and you hit the coast and you keep going. The first Swimrun shoe was released soon after adapting the Primus Trail shoe for Swimrun with the now iconic orange sole.
The new Tempest shoe was a few years in the making. The ESC (Extreme Survival Collection) Tempest is basically the best Swim Run shoe on the planet, for the amphibious athlete. It is inspired by nature's aquatic animals and blended with modern technology, Vivobarefoot created a lightweight organic cage to provide flexibility, drainage and protection. The sole was developed in collaboration with Michelin to provide super grip to the ground in both slick and dry conditions. The shoe sounds awesome and looks like it would work in every race condition easily.
The main caveat to using minimal shoes is that the Tempest isn’t for everyone because there’s not a lot cushioning and if your feet aren’t used to running in barefoot or minimal shoes, you can get hurt. Like anything, it’s a journey and Vivobarefoot has a guide to transitioning to barefoot-style shoes on their website to help people transition to running well in their shoes.
Make sure to check out the Tempest shoe. They are available now!
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