When it comes to parkour footwear, you may not immediately think of shoes made for martial arts. But why not? Both need to be durable, so as to absorb repetitive impact. Both must also be flexible so that the durability doesn’t end up interfering with the user’s use of their foot. The awkward angles common to both practitioners also necessitates a shoe with the grip to keep its wearer stable and safe. Lastly, the shoe needs to provide a degree of comfort and protect the foot from the rigors both sports demand.
When you look at these commonalities, martial arts footwear actually makes a lot of sense. If you consider a shoe like the Feiyue martial arts shoe, it becomes an even more favorable prospect. This beloved brand of shoe won’t cost you more than thirty dollars.
The shoes themselves are quite simple in their design. Its top is covered in canvas with a conventional lace up. On the bottom is a lightly padded, thin sole with enough tread to provide a comfortable amount of traction.
Of course there is one major difference between the urban jungle and a dojo: it doesn’t rain in the dojo. The major drawback to these shoes is that running after a storm will need to wait until the sun’s done its job. The Feiyue martial arts shoes are not designed to handle wet surfaces, much less the puddles you can come across running after rainy weather.
Along the same lines, although the shoe can withstand some precarious wear and tear, it isn’t designed for the specific challenges parkour brings a shoe up against. The price tag may mean you don’t stress over replacing them, but constantly doing so may also become inconvenient. Your best bet may be saving for a single pair and testing them out. If your brand of parkour breaks them down too easily, then you learned a cheap lesson and can move on to something better. On the other hand, if they are able to withstand what you put them through, you’ve made quite the score for your budget.
Whether or not the shoe can hold up to the paces you put it through is one thing. However, even if it’s successful, it won’t mean much if your foot hurts for it later. The Feiyue martial arts shoes provide a very thin sole that leaves you feeling almost barefoot. Its protection comes in the way of very light padding, so you feel as though your real foot has just received extra padding. Again, a lot of this will come down to personal taste, but there are some things each person will need to consider. Less padding will give you better feel and grip and generally mean the footwear is more flexible overall. Flexibility, obviously, helps with climbs, planting a foot at awkward angles and landing from an unorthodox direction. While this is great and can do a lot for your parkour game, it’s not worth it if you don’t feel like you can walk the next day. Take into consideration how many high vertical drops your parkour game involves. How often do the shoes you wear now leave you wishing there was a bit more protection?
The last issue you’ll need to deal with is finding your shoe size. If you are ordering this footwear online, know that Feiyue martial arts shoes do not come in American sizes, so you’ll need to find a chart and convert yours. It would also be worthwhile to search the internet for reviews from Americans who ordered their converted size and whether or not it fit.
In the burgeoning field of parkour footwear, there is still a lot of room for personal preference. With this fact in mind, the Feiyue martial arts shoes deserve consideration for a lot of the positives they bring to the table. If nothing else, their price tag warrants a closer look. Many of their competitors which you might consider for your preferred parkour shoe will run you at least twice as much. Consider how much the sports of parkour and martial arts overlap and you can begin to see how a shoe made for the latter might work well for the former. Of course, there are also several differences to take into consideration as well.
Overall, these shoes score a 7/10.