Last week, I treated myself to a pair of Vivobarefoot Primus Lite Knit shoes. They’re like heaven for your feet!

I’d been needing a new pair of shoes for training and when I’m with clients as the one I’ve been wearing recently (Inov-8 Parkclaws) have got a few more holes in them. Let’s just say I’ve had full value out of them!

Balance, mobility and strength in the feet and ankles are a huge problem for just about everyone because of our regular footwear and also because we walk around on flat surfaces.

Here’s my review of them. Be warned, if you buy a pair, you won’t want to take them off after you put them on!

What are Vivobarefoot Primus Lite Knits?

They’re sold as part of Vivobarefoot’s Performance series, meaning they’re suited for running and training. Here is what the website says:

“The Primus Lite Knit is for untapped athletes who want to feel their raw potential. An evolution of the original Primus trainer, with an ultra-thin sole and a knitted upper that moulds to your foot, giving you the ultimate flexibility. Guaranteeing foot strength and mobility for running and natural flow workouts”.

Putting them to the test

My dream way to test these was to come for a run around St Magdalene’s Hill in Perth. This is a place I’ve been coming regularly to run for since the start of lockdown in 2020, offers one of the best views across Perth and is so much fun to train. There’s a great trail and the further you go, the rockier and more uneven the path becomes.

While my intention is not to do much running in these, I wanted to see what the experience would be like with a view to getting a pair of Vivobarefoot’s trail shoes. I’m a natural heel-striker when I run and have been curious to see what difference they would make to my running. Yesterday morning, I went to find out!

The start of the run was pretty much how I anticipated it would go – my heels dropping and feeling it with every step. I soon learned and began to feel my knees lifting more and becoming lighter on my feet. Going over the rockier bits were certainly more challenging and made me much more aware of how heavy my foot strikes are right now. In my running training, I’ve done sessions designed to teach my body to run more efficiently but haven’t done much of this since Edinburgh and when you stop practicing something, you lose what you gained.

The further I ran, the more my body started to change the way it was running and the run home was a lot lighter than it was from the start! 

The results

While this was only one run, Vivobarefoot Primus Lite Knit shoes have the potential to have a greater transformation on your running than a pair of carbon-plated shoes and for almost half the price too!

Even if you don’t run, walking about in these just feel amazing and one of the best treats you can give to your feet.

What was interesting was a couple of hours after this run, I ran to see one of my Personal Training clients. My body naturally wanted to run the way it had done towards the end of the earlier run, even though I was wearing shoes with more cushioning in them.

In my training, I’m trying to teach my body to run more efficiently so I can run faster with less effort. I coach my running clients to do this also, and I believe wearing these shoes at least in training will help me achieve this.


I would highly recommend investing in a pair of Vivobarefoot shoes to help build up the strength, balance and mobility in your feet and ankles, even if you’re not a runner.

When switching to these kind of shoes, it’s important to take some time to allow your body to adapt to them. A good way to do this is to start walking around on grass barefoot and if you stay near a beach, walk around barefoot there too.

There’s plenty of guidance on Vivobarefoot’s website to help you on your journey. You’re not just investing in your own health, you’re potentially changing the way you buy footwear forever and that’s exciting!