Vibram's reduce a bunion?

Answered on September 12, 2014
Created September 01, 2011 at 3:57 PM

I have a bunion at the base of my left great toes and hallux valgus of the left great toe. So my arch and muscles holding it up on the left side are weak. I've tried a few things, namely rolling a golf ball under my food to release adhesions in the plantar fascia. So far, no change in the bunion. It doesn't bother me, but it I do have stiffness in the joint with end range extension of the great toe.

Bunion seemed to start when I started doing a lot of distance running in college. I'm a reformed distance runner, having trained for several triathlons and a marathon, this is the only problem I've had with knees, hips, feet. Workouts these days are Crossfit 3x/week.

I just got my first pair of Vibram's. I'm hoping that by going barefoot, I'll be able to strengthen my foot muscles so that they can better maintain my arch and hopefully reduce the bunion. Anyone have similar success with barefoot/Vibrams? I am asking too much of a pair of shoes?



on September 01, 2011
at 07:02 PM

There are anecdotal reports of bunions being fixed by VFF's, but it really depends on how far along you are. If the bone has fully fused, there's not much you can do outside of surgery.

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7 Answers


on September 01, 2011
at 04:33 PM

You're asking too much of shoes. I should know, I had bilateral bunion surgery a year ago. Bunions sucks. Before having surgery I tried everything...yoga toes, vibrams, etc. Wait until you are in pain everyday and then go get surgery. Find a bomb surgeon.

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on November 07, 2011
at 04:45 PM

Bunion removal's a big task for minimalist shoes, but my Vibrams have been therapeutic indeed, even though that was not my intent in buying.

Sprained my left ankle 5 years ago, trail running. Went through the standard RX, got back to running including with no impairment, but a continuing arthritic sort of ache that led me to assume: "Ok, it's probably true what they say, this will be my 'weak' ankle from here on out." Then I got Vibrams, began wearing them for running and walking alike.

The effect has been to strengthen not only my left ankle but to use more of both legs/feet: calf muscles, bones, tendons, ligaments, the whole 9 yards. I can honestly say I would not know which ankle had been sprained if I didn't remember. No hint of favoring either; both feel in top shape.

It's one of the best, biggest "wins" of my life, actually - because running has been big for me since college days.

I would do a commercial for Vibrams. Hey, I think I just did...


on November 07, 2011
at 04:34 PM

I just bought Vibrams the other day. I have one foot with the bunion removed and the other foot still has the bunion. The shoe does straighten my toe, but since my toe is still trying to arch underneath the second toe, it is a little uncomfortable. I'm going to continue to wear them to work and see how it does in a few days. I might just have to wait until my next surgery before I can really enjoy these shoes though.



on September 10, 2011
at 11:52 PM

The comments from this facebook page has someone saying that wearing VFF's reversed their bunions. There are a few other comments on his wall about the same result.




on September 01, 2011
at 04:51 PM

I am 48 & have bunions on both feet, below the big toe. I started to be in pain daily 4 years ago, until I started getting in the habit of wedging the big toe from my other foot between the big toe and the next toe when I sleep.

Obviously, I don't stay in this position all night, but it is easy to get back into it when I sleep on my side and now it is automatic.

Basically, I am doing what night-time orthotics would do.

After about 3 months of doing this, I noticed I no longer have any pain. I still do it every night.

I notice that there is now a gap between my left big toe & the next toe. Before doing this wedging trick, it was overlapping the next toe slightly.

I am barefoot all day at home and dance barefoot twice a week, otherwise, I wear Keens which allow plenty of room for my toes.



on September 10, 2011
at 10:31 PM

Instead of jamming your other toes in between (I tried shoving my heel in so am just as guilty) try Bunion Bootie (www.bunionbootie.com) - it's a thin sock that can be worn day and night - walking and sleeping for consistent straightening of the big toe. Working like a charm and am ordering them for my mom and grandmother who also suffer from bunions.



on September 10, 2011
at 01:30 PM


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