“Shoes do no more for the foot than a hat does for the brain.”
—Dr. Mercer Rang
Michael Luongo, creator of Luongo Footwear, realized he was onto something when he first read Born to Run by Christopher McDougall. How was it that the reclusive Tarahumara Indians could run barefoot over hundreds of miles over the roughest terrain in Mexico and be healthy, immune to disease, and happy? We commonly think of distance runners needing special socks that have moisture wicking properties, soles adapted for issues like over-pronating, orthotics, and having more the one pair depending on the training. Time, expertise, and money is involved in attempting to avoid repetitive motion injuries from improperly fitted shoes.
Michael was fascinated by the Tarahumara story and the science as to why barefooting is good for running. He wondered why it wouldn’t apply to workouts. First, he wanted to test minimalist footwear (barefoot would not provide the cleanliness needed in an indoor gym environment) in his own workouts before he recommended his clients try it. The options out there at the time were Vibram and VIVO, but they were not “bare enough.” Michael wanted even more minimal footwear to get as “barefoot as possible.” So, with two friends and a sewing machine, he created a pair he loved. But, says Michael, they were ugly. Function was great, but he wanted them to look good too, and he figured, so would his customers.
Next Michael sat down with two architect friends and together they designed the look that became Luongo footwear. The footwear is ideal for indoor workouts, lifting weights, Crossfit, treadmill running, elliptical training, circuit training, TRX, and Kettlebells. Michael envisions an outdoor version for running in the future.
Meanwhile, if you are interested in knowing more about the science behind Luongo footwear training, click here. They can be ordered online . If you’d like to try on a pair, come see us at BodyRefinery in Encintas or at any of the following locations:
You may or may not find yourself running like the Taramuhara (but who knows!), but we think your feet will be happy in a pair of Luongos. We love them around here.