I found out about OOFOS on a runner’s group on Facebook one day a few years ago. Someone was asking about a good recovery shoe for runners and about 95% of the comments back were in favor of OOFOS. Ever since then, I’ve wanted to try them out but I’m on a budget, and races and running gear often are not part of that budget, so I have to pick and choose. When I finally had the chance to test them out for Run Oregon, I jumped right on the OOFOS bandwagon!!
There is a lot of lip service in regards to “recovery” and so many options available now that a lot of runners don’t know where to start. What sets OOFOS apart from the rest is the revolutionary OOfoam™ which was created by a chemist and researched extensively. OOfoam™ offers 37% more impact absorption than EVA, which is traditionally found in athletic shoes. What this means is that OOFOS lessen the demand on your ankles and knees and the bearing on your body is reduced by more than a third. They are scientifically proven to make people feel better, (the mission being to “make yOO feel better”) and what other shoes can make a claim like that?
Even better, the people at OOFOS care. OOFOS donate 3% of the proceeds from each pair of shoes sold on OOFOS.com to breast cancer research. They have contributed over $250,000 to the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, a significant amount.
How do you know when you’re starting to develop plantar faciitis? For me, it’s when I’m laying in bed at night, the bottoms of my feet tingle a little. In the mornings and when starting out on a run, I feel like my feet are hyper-sensitive and nothing can get them to relax. Recently, I’ve been massaging with a golf ball and stretching my feet every chance I get, and when running I’m extra mindful of not being too heavy on my heels, but there’s still a tightness there. So the timing for me to try out OOfos was perfect.
The OOmg Low Shoe ($119.95) is a sort of casual slip-on shoe. The shoe looks good with jeans and can be worn with or without socks, but looks sporty enough you won’t feel too awkward shopping for wine in your running capris, tank top, and OOmgs. There’s nothing inside that created friction when you wear them without socks. I do recommend that you try them after a long run or a long day on your feet, and go with the size you wear in running shoes and not street shoes. This gives your foot room to spread out inside the shoe and makes the stretch more effective.
OOfos can help runners with PF, and if you’re like me and have had PF before, they should be part of your routine to prevent it coming back. The soles are slightly curved, so your fascia is stretched ever-so-slightly with each step, and the extremely light-weight shoes have heavenly cushion inside. I have worn them recently on 3-mile walks with a friend (average walking pace of 17:00 min/mile) and post-long-run, recently for a mile-and-a-half to meet my family and the past couple weekends for all my usual weekend tasks.
I was happy to try the OOriginal Sport flip flops ($49.95), as going with the classics never seems to steer me wrong. I love that they are easy to transport in a bag, they look like “real” flip flops, and that they, of course, feel amazing.
I tried the OOFOS for the first time after a 13 miler that pushed me harder than I had intended. My feet felt pretty beat up, and once I got the OOFOS on, I didn’t take them off the rest of the day. I went house-hunting in them and was on my feet a lot of the day, but my feet never hurt. Many flip-flip style shoes make my heel ache or rub between my toes too much or both. This is not the case with OOFOS. The OOfoam™ feels like a dream and my feet immediately felt less tired when I slid them on.
The shoes are super lightweight as well, which is not always the case with recovery shoes. I went with the color black so they’d go with everything, but they come in other colors also. They look like regular flip flops, which is a feature I like, but they work like a recover shoe should. There’s plenty of cushion and they cradle the feet well. They mold to your feet in such a way that you won’t end up tripping over them (if you’re graceless like me) so long as you get the right size, which I found to be pretty accurate.
I am looking forward to taking these shoes with me to races for that post-race reward.
While you should be able to find OOFOS in some specialty stores, the OOmg Fibre High Shoe ($149.95) is a website exclusive. It’s really quite an interesting take on a recovery shoe – somehow morphing technology together with an understated functionality. What that means to me is that it can promote health AND doesn’t actually look much like recovery footwear in the process. They are super comfortable and my feet feel supported every time I wear them.
In addition to the OOfoam benefits listed above (i.e. offering 37% more impact absorption than EVA), this shoe also has added Fibreflex material to “provide a uniquely comfortable experience in a closed-toe style.” To me, as a 200 pound runner, it means that I should be able to reduce some of the wear and tear on my body and joints from the continually pounding of the pavement.
But all of that wouldn’t matter as much if I was too scared (i.e. embarrassed) to leave the house in them. While they aren’t a pair of Oxfords, they actually don’t look much different than a typical black casual shoe. I have worn these with jeans numerous times and haven’t felt out of place in them. The toe box is a little wide, but it’s not really all that noticeable out and about. Highly recommended!
I have seen Oofos sandals at race expos and races, but like Nikki, hadn’t taken the leap yet. Most times I have been wearing Birkenstock or Crocs as recovery shoes and to protect my temperamental heels from hardwood flooring. The OOahh Slide Sandals ($59.95) immediately jumped to the top of my list of favorite comfy shoes! The footbed is soft and supportive at the same time, without pushing into my arch too much. The curvature of the sole make it easy to walk properly without fearing losing the shoe (and if you have to clench your toes to not lose your slides, your feet get tired faster).
My OOFOS sandals currently live by my front door so that I can slip from my outside shoes straight into my inside slippers that my feet will thank me for. As the weather gets warmer, I’m sure I will wear them outside as well, especially to and from races and exercise classes. My sons are teens, so I know that the sports-shorts-and-slides look is all the rage these days!
Products & Price:
- Women’s OOmg Low Shoe ($119.95)
- Women’s OOriginal Sandal ($49.95)
- Men’s OOmg Fibre High Shoe ($149.95)
- Women’s OOahh Sport Slide Sandal – Navy ($59.95)
Specs (from website):
The OOriginal sandal features revolutionary OOfoam™ technology that absorbs 37% more impact than traditional footwear foam materials to reduce the stress on your feet and joints. This technology aids in the recovery process and creates an incredibly comfortable sandal you can wear anywhere.
- Reduces stress on sore feet, knees, and back
- Enables more natural motion
- Minimalist construction for light weight
- Machine washable, plus moisture and bacteria resistant
- OOFOS are made in whole sizes. We recommend sizing up if you’re a women’s half size.
More about OOFOS:
OOFOS was founded in 2011 by four veterans of the footwear industry who saw an unmet need for footwear that could help fitness enthusiasts and athletes recover from repeated workouts on hand, man-made surfaces. They worked with a foam chemist to develop a breakthrough foam material, what we call OOfoam™ technology. Our revolutionary OOfoam™ technology combined with a biomechanically engineered footbed to create OOFOS: footwear that can truly make our hard-working feet and body feel better. OOFIS is scientifically proven to help you recover faster.
Thank you to OOFOS for providing us with a sample pack. Please read our transparency page for info on how we do our reviews.