As folks are coming in looking for minimalist footwear, I thought I would share one my favorite shoes in this class. This is the Inov-8 Talon 212. This is a great shoe for strengthening the foot, getting in some trail speedwork, and with its amazing lugs, is a great trail racing shoe at 7.4 oz.
There is literally no support in this shoe so you will need to rely on your own body mechanics to have an efficient gate. The Inov-8 philosophy is to look to the natural function of the foot for inspiration and guidance whenever they design footwear for the high performance athlete or the recreational runner.
Personally, I love to climb hills in these shoes as I feel like the flexible forefoot of the shoe allows my foot to really "bite" into the hill, get traction, and slingshot me forward.
As with any "barefoot" style shoes, you need to break your body in gently. At first, using these shoes only for shorter runs and races until your body adjusts to a relatively new style of running.
But, if you are interested into the barefoot running scene, I think this is great place to start.
Anyway, we have a good selection of "barefoot" styles in the shop now so come on by and check em' out.