One of the most important things to any parkour athlete is a quality pair of shoes that not only are comfortable, but will supply them enough grip, traction and durability to be used in the rigorous and demanding sport of parkour. There are hundreds of different types of parkour shoes on the market, click here for our ultimate parkour shoes review guide, but in this article we will strictly be talking about split toe shoes for parkour!
- 1 What Are Split Toed Shoes and Why Are They Good For Parkour?
- 2 Fila Skeletoes Split Toed Parkour Shoes
- 3 ZemGear Mens 360 XT Split Shoes
- 4 Qansi Breathable Barefoot Parkour Shoes
- 5 Vibram KSO Evo Cross Training
- 6 Shoe
What Are Split Toed Shoes and Why Are They Good For Parkour?
I’m sure you have seen split toed shoes around, they are quite unique looking. Split toed shoes started as hiking and camping shoes that eventually made their way into being more athletic and fast paced shoes. These shoes are form fitting around your foot, and each of your toes is split and has it’s own section. This mimics the feeling of running barefoot but gives you enough protection and grip to keep you safe and comfortable.
These shoes are great for parkour because of how lightweight and comfortable they are. These shoes mimic running barefoot, which for some athletes is the most comfortable way to run. This allows you to be closer to the ground, and it’s also been proven to be good for your knees and ankles because the mechanics are more natural. Along with this, these shoes provide enough comfort and protection for your feet, which makes them a great choice for parkour or free running! That being said, below I have reviewed my 4 favorite split toed shoes for parkour, and I’m sure you’ll find something you love!
Fila Skeletoes Split Toed Parkour Shoes
The first pair of shoes we have on our list is created by Fila who is known for their athletic apparel and shoes. These shoes are extremely close to being barefoot which makes them extremely comfortable and natural. These shoes were originally designed for runners and hikers, but they make great parkour shoes. These shoes are extremely tough and have a layer of extremely tough rubber on the bottom that is designed for jagged and rough terrains while hiking.
Along with this, these shoes are extremely comfortable and don’t take long to break in. A great feature of these shoes is that they are completely waterproof! That means you can just as easily wear them when you’re out training, as you can with a day at the lake! That being said, these shoes come in a handful of different colors which makes it great for style as well as practicality.
Pros of Fila Skeletoes:
- Fila is a big name brand who is known for having high quality apparel. You can really stand behind the craftsmanship of these shoes without having to worry about them falling apart!
- Because of the rubber bottoms on the Skeletoes, these shoes have extremely grippy bottoms, even when running in wet surfaces. I have never felt like I was going to slip or fall when wearing these. That being said, it also makes these shoes a great choice for those who also enjoy hiking or running and want to use these shoes.
- These shoes are more natural with your running mechanics because you are closer to the ground. Studies have shown that split toed shoes can actually reduce the risk of ankle and knee injury while running.
- These shoes come in eight different color styles which makes it great for those who are looking for a specific color or pattern!
Cons of the Fila Skeletoes:
- Some can argue that you are paying a few dollars more for the Fila brand, but that being said these shoes are some of the cheapest on our list!
- A few people have mentioned that the first few times they wore these shoes they felt a slight rubbing on one of their toes, but after wearing it 3 or 4 times the rubbing stopped and the shoes became much more comfortable.
Overall these are a great choice for shoes for someone who is looking for split toed shoes that are not only comfortable but they also are extremely grippy and durable!
ZemGear Mens 360 XT Split Shoes
The next pair of split shoes on our list is manufactured by ZemGear, who has made quite the name for themselves in the split shoe market. These are a great pair of parkour shoes that really is design for action sports such as parkour and free running.
These shoes are extremely light weight and weigh only 2.6 oz! These shoes are designed with PORON performance cushioning which helps to absorb shock and punishment while still keeping the shoe extremely lightweight and comfortable! Along with this, these shoes are great for running mechanics because it is so similar to running barefoot with minimal over excessive rubber on the soles of the shoes. This will not only help you train more efficiently but it also can keep you safer!
Along with this, these shoes are extremely flexible which makes it form expertly to your foot, and provides an extremely comfortable wear. That being said, just because it’s comfortable and flexible doesn’t mean it can’t get the job done! These shoes feature Lite Phylon and Gecko-Grip outsoles which make them extremely durable and grippy. I always feel like I am in complete control when I’m wearing these shoes and I don’t have to worry about slipping or losing traction. Along with this, these shoes feature foxing bands and rolled edges along the shoe to help enhance foot protection. Another little nice safety feature of these shoes is the reflective EVO 1 tech-bands which will help cars and pedestrians see you in dark environments!
Pros of the ZemGear 360 XT:
- ZemGear was originally started for parkour and free running athletes. They know what parkour athletes need in shoes, and they know what will keep them safe!
- These shoes are extremely close to a barefoot feel, which keeps you in more control and in better running mechanics. People have actually reported feeling less knee and back pain after switching over to these minimalistic shoes!
- Extremely comfortable: These shoes are designed to fit like a sock while giving you the durability and protection of a shoe!
Cons of the ZemGear 360 XT:
- Sizing: Some state that the 360XT is harder to find the correct size for, with it being a little larger than the original ZemGear 360 shoes. Some say they miss the snug fit that the originals brought. You might be able to solve this by sizing a half size down.
- Firm/Stiff: Some state that the 360 XT’s are quite stiff and rigid when you first try them on. I noticed this too, but once I began wearing them a few times they started to break in, and they became much more flexible and comfortable.
Overall these shoes are great choice for someone who is looking for split shoes or minimalistic shoes for parkour. These provide a barefoot feel while still giving you protection from the ground. Along with this, the ZemGear brand is known for providing shoes for parkour and martial arts athletes, so they know what we want as traceurs!
Qansi Breathable Barefoot Parkour Shoes
These Qansi barefoot shoes originally came about as hiking shoes. They provided an extremely comfortable and breathable shoe that allowed you to walk “barefoot” while still being protected from jagged rocks and sharp objects. The first time I saw these shoes I knew they would be awesome for parkour!
These shoes are 100% seamless and designed out of 100% polyester microfiber which gives them an extremely lightweight and comfortable feel. This makes the shoes form to your feet, and actually allows them to dry extremely quickly!
Along with this, these shoes go above and beyond when it comes to grip and safety. These shoes are manufactured with strengthened toes and toe protectors to help protect your feet incase you stub them on something. Along with this, these shoes come with an extremely unique and innovative anti-slip rubber sole which gives you a huge amount of control, even on wet surfaces! Furthermore, the soles of these shoes are quite flexible for being as durable as they are. They flex with your foot which allows for a more natural and comfortable movement which makes them great for running and training while still protecting your feet!
Pros of the Qansi Barefoot Shoe:
- Extremely breathable: The mesh design of this shoe gives it an extremely breathable design which you don’t get from split toe shoes that are built out of entirely rubber and plastic. This allows you to remain comfortable no matter the temperature.
- Flexible: These shoes have extremely flexible soles which give you a more comfortable and natural walking mechanic all while still protecting your feet!
- Grip: The grip on these shoes are fantastic! One struggle with split toe shoes is that a lot are made out of hard rubber/plastic which makes it durable but doesn’t have much grip. These shoes are built out of just the right amount of hard rubber which allows you to feel protected but still have the level of grip you need.
Cons of the Qansi Barefoot Shoes:
- Heel: Some people complain that these shoes rub on the back of their heels. I personally haven’t experienced this but I could see how it could be an issue.
Overall these shoes are a great option for those who are looking for a comfortable and extremely grippy split toe shoes! These shoes give you the ability to train parkour or go for a hike. The durable bottoms protect your feet and give them huge amounts of grip while still being flexible enough to form to your footing and feel extremely natural. Overall this is one of the best split toe shoes for parkour!
Vibram KSO Evo Cross Training
These shoes are designed with an innovative rubber grip sole which allows you to have the perfect amount of traction no matter the environment. Along with this, these shoes are some of the most form fitting shoes on our list. These are the most barefoot feel out of any shoes, which is great for those who are looking for a more natural feel in their shoes. For those who are looking to reduce injury and looking for a more natural running mechanic this is also a good option!
One of the main points that stick out in the reviews of these shoes, are how many people have fixed nagging injuries by switching to these shoes. The Amazon reviews are filled with those who have relieved their knee pain, or their ankle pain simply by switching to these shoes.
As for protection, these shoes are quite thin, but also have just enough protection. These are the type of shoes for those who really want to be in the most control possible. They allow you to feel the ground underneath you, while still protecting your feet from cuts and scrapes!
Pros of the Vibram EVO Cross Training Shoes:
- Barefoot Feel: These shoes are the closest thing to running barefoot on the market! This natural feel has led to many reviews stating that they have relieved nagging injuries related to knee pain and ankle pain.
- Flexible: These shoes are extremely flexible and help to give you that natural feel by being able to bend and move with your foot.
- Adjustable Laces: Believe it or not, many split toe shoes don’t feature any laces to adjust the fit. The EVO Cross feature laces which allow you to adjust the fit to exactly how you like it!
Cons of Vibram EVO Cross Shoes:
- Tight Design: Some of the reviews have stated that these shoes are quite tight width wise, and they can’t fit their foot fully in it comfortable. I haven’t noticed this but if you have a wider fit it could be a possibility.
Overall this is one of my favorite parkour split toe shoes. It gives you an extremely comfortable and natural barefoot feel while still giving you the protection and the grip that you need in shoes. I have never felt so natural running and training in these shoes. I felt closer and more connected to the ground, and I felt overall safer because of it. I definitely recommend you take a look at these shoes!