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#1 Mike McGowan SOC

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Posted 14 July 2012 - 01:48 PM






I would imagine I’m not the only one who occasionally has sore or tired feet. If I have a big stair day my glutes tend to get sore, a lot of running and I’ll have sore quads, a lot of backing up, sore calves and a long holding the rig day (like say a live event) and my shoulders (traps) are pretty tired. But no matter what kind of day it is, if I use the rig for any length of time my feet are usually pretty run down.



I would say that my posture is pretty good, I stretch regularly, work out several times a week, use quality socks and switch shoes at least once a day if not more. When shooting ‘Step Up 4’ (in 3d) I would some times wear 4 different pairs of shoes in one day. I use a combination of running shoes and high tops with different insoles. I particularly like Spenco and Super Feet. Muscle fatigue is pretty much part of the job.



When I’m not working, I go bare foot as much as possible. When I’m shooting on the beach, I’m usually bare foot as well. But bare feet are not really a great movie set choice and they are for sure not OSHA approved. But letting your feet ‘do their thing’ is both good for performance and good for your body, you just need to be careful with them as they pretty much make your mortgage payment.



So I saw (on this forum I think) a post about toe shoes (the shoes that have pockets for your feet). I have since seen a few people (not on movie sets) wearing them. Everybody that was using them had good things to say about them. I went ahead and got a pair of the Fila’s and wore them around the house for a day. I really liked the way they felt and I really liked the added control you get from actually using your whole foot as it was designed to be used.



I then decided to wear them to work and try them out on set. I had a commercial on Friday and a commercial on Saturday. I brought (as I usually do) a few pairs of shoes and socks so I could change as soon as I thought the toe shoes were not cutting it. I also found out late Thursday night that my Friday call was a hard night so I would basically be going from 4pm Friday night to 6 or 7pm Saturday night. Both jobs were all steadicam, all day. The second day was actually a 60 second steadicam 1er that ended with a step on to a crane for an up, up and away.



I started the first shot (long fast back up down a hall way) with my new toe shoes and was immediately impressed with the extra control I had wearing them. Now there is virtually no ankle support (which is kind of the idea, letting your body parts do their job) but it not only didn’t bother me, it actually felt really good to let my feet do their thing. I also quickly noticed that my feet were not as tight and crampy as they would normally be after a few shots. If I were to make a critique of the shoes it would be lack of padding on the soles. They have a true sole with a really nice tread, good and sticky and thick enough that you could step on glass and not cut your feet. There is just almost no padding so the soles of your feet (particularly carrying a steadicam on concrete) really get a work out.



I ended up wearing the shoes straight through for about 36 hours. It was the best my feet have every felt after a long steadicam day and felt as mobile as I do when I’m bare foot on the beach. I now wear them pretty much all day every day at work. So far they are super kick ass awesome. I highly recommend everybody that does this for a living getting a pair. Even if you can’t or don’t wear them all the time, they are an excellent way to give your foot a break, even if it’s only for a shot or two.



My 2Cents.


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#2 David M. Aronson

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Posted 14 July 2012 - 02:42 PM

I almost always wear toes shoes when I operate. I use the Vibrem five fingers komodos. The only time I don't wear them is when it's wet outside since stepping in a puddle will kill all your traction and leave you with VERY cold feet.
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#3 William Demeritt

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Posted 14 July 2012 - 03:40 PM

I've considered investing in a pair to try out, but this thread has pushed me to just do it (sorry Nike). Very good to read.

I also wear North Face light hiking shoes on set with their "Boa" lacing system, with a knob in the back to lace/tighten the shoes. I really like them, but always up for new things.
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#4 brooksrobinson

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Posted 14 July 2012 - 06:34 PM

I can’t summon up the courage to wear those on set, but I have been wearing several pairs of the New Balance Minimus MT10 Trail shoes for the past two features with great results. Like the individual toe shoes, these are designed to feel like you are barefoot, allowing you to better “feel” the ground, which for me, is great for steadicam work. They don’t provide much (if any) ankle support, so I wouldn’t do running shots through the woods with them, but they are great for stage or mild location work. My feet feel much less tired at the end of the day, and I’m not plagued by sore feet from standing as I once was.

Brooks Robinson
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#5 Afton Grant

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Posted 14 July 2012 - 07:40 PM

I've been a fan of the "barefoot-like" movement for quite a while now. Probably since the Nike Free line of shoes came out. This will be a debate that outlives us all, since it's so entirely subjective. I think the best thing one can do is just try a bunch of things out. You never know how you might feel.

I will caution those in the barefoot movement to use the argument that we evolved barefoot. It is true that we evolved without shoes, but we also evolved without cameras and especially Steadicams.
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#6 Osvaldo Silvera SOC

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Posted 14 July 2012 - 08:24 PM

Great post. I've seen those for a while, a cousin was wearing them for crossfit a couple of years ago and loved them, I also saw a behind the scenes glidecam op with those on a MV I was on. he loved them. I got a pair of Inov 230 in black/black crossfit shoes after a good friend who owns a crossfit studio in LA told me about them.
Very very light and excellent for live events I feel. I still have yet to try out those skeltoes, but I probably will, thanks for the heads up on those.!!!

[attachment=9721:INOV black on black.jpg]

after doing some research just now I think I'll be ordering these black mid hi fila's, Thanks Mike!!!!

[attachment=9722:fila black skeletoes.jpg]
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#7 Alfeo Dixon SOC

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Posted 14 July 2012 - 10:17 PM

I bought a pair of the Vibram FiveFingers from REI... I figured if I didn't like them, I could always take them back in any condition.

Was very pleased with them and also decided to try them on set... now this was in the studio all day on a thin sheet of that black dance floor the grips use and once in the rig. My dogs hurt bad, but I usually switch up between Puma's driving and soccer and Merrell's trail shoes. I still love my FiveFingers and will most likely not use them too often on set. My greatest fear is the dolly grip while wearing them.

-Alfeo
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#8 Andrew Ansnick

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Posted 14 July 2012 - 10:55 PM

....but I have been wearing several pairs of the New Balance Minimus MT10 Trail shoes for the past two features with great results....


I have also been using the New Balance Minimus Trail shoes since about April and the dogs don't bark anymore! I love the ability to "feel" each step and really believe I have a better sense of my own movements as well as the rig's, especially when it comes to the slow moves. Definitely don't miss my 993's with added arch support. With the 993's I always felt a certain risk of rolling my ankle due to the really high sole, great for the extra cushion but bad in terms of safety! Now with the NB Minimus shoes I don't have that feeling at all. They are great for any stage, black top/concrete, or mild trail work and have a surprising amount of grip. Just know that there is a break-in period for these shoes, start with a few hours a day at first and then gradually work towards all day wear. They will cause your leg muscles to be sore until you get used to wearing them.
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#9 Fabian Begnert

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 07:44 AM

Hey veterans.

I completely new here, actually I think this is my first post. I don't own a rig (if the Merlin doesn't count? Looking for a big rig if you know anyone, though) so the only time I have been able to wear a rig extensively was on the 6 days workshop in here in Sweden in May 2012. Haven't had the time to invest or train with 5 Fingers since that because of traveling, but that will absolutely be my next investment!, because the opposite kind of shoe did not work at all...

I began the workshop with normal training shoes with "ergonomically" soles, with enormous support for the foot arches. Never had a problem with these shoes before when training, but then again I hadn't worn them for 10 hours straight while under a lot of load. 2 days, then I switched to normal walking shoes with much much flatter soles inherited by my late grandfather. A million times better straight away! And the "wobbling" I think I felt in the training shoes were as good as gone too, much more stable with flat inner and outer soles.

After the switch it was only the 2 month and recently just healed stress fracture that hurted in the left foot. Hehe, yeah...

To put it simple, my point is don't wear training shoes with high arch support or anyhting like that, it hurts like hell after a long day. Especially when you have a stress fracture. On the plus side my knees and back had never felt better as after that week - if a career fails I still have to have a big rig for the workout!

Best regards to you all,

/Fabbe
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#10 William Demeritt

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 09:15 AM

I just completed my first day of steadi with my Vibrams Spyridon 5 Fingers shoes, gotta say I really liked it. Traction, feedback, comfort were all great. Also, with the thinner sole, I could step on c-stand bases and stretch my feet over the rod, normally something I have to do with my shoes off.

My feet felt strange at the end of the day, but not exhausted. More like "awake". If you're up for the experience, I recommend you try it out.
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#11 Rob Vuona SOC

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 07:02 PM

In My opinion

all y'all Monkey shoe wearing peeps is crazy . . . . . my dogs were barking more than ever before after wearing those type of shoes

Will glad to hear you you finally woke up your feet
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#12 Dean Smollar

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 08:10 PM

I pick my shoes based on location and the movements I'm going to be doing. My current favorite pair are my Keen Targhee II's w/ SuperFeet inserts. I use them for almost everything outdoors, especially if I'm going to be running. They're light and sturdy and the inserts make them really comfortable.

For indoor & studio work, I alternate between an old pair of Emerica The Leo's and my Vibrams Bikila LS that double as my weightlifting shoes. Really no rhyme or reason to it; I just sometimes get bad looks from people who don't approve of exposed toes. I get the same amount of feedback from both, and it really helps with slow movements.
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#13 Mike McGowan SOC

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 09:19 PM

If you are going to wear 'regular shoes' I also love the SuperFeet inserts. They totally rock!
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#14 Brad Smith

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Posted 10 September 2012 - 04:08 AM

In My opinion

all y'all Monkey shoe wearing peeps is crazy . . . . . my dogs were barking more than ever before after wearing those type of shoes

Will glad to hear you you finally woke up your feet



I wear the monkey shoes (Vibram 5 fingers Bikila LS )for training and running, but I wouldn't be wearing them for Steadi until I had at least 6 months conditioning under my soles. It took about two months of running in them to feel normal.
If you like the idea of having more ground feedback Merrel, inov8 and New Balance make some good options. I personally like operating in inov8 fLite195, or New Balance MT00.

My posture and footwork has improved, but it takes some time to get you feet and calves conditioned. If you like the idea of going "barefoot", "Born to Run" by Chistopher McDougall is good read.
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#15 William Demeritt

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Posted 10 September 2012 - 09:20 AM

I'm reading "Born to Run" right now; really fantastic read, loving it so far.
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