OOFOS OOriginal Thong Sandal

(No, it's not a typo...)

MSRP: $39.99
Who is it for: Athletes looking for comfortable recovery footwear

How much can an injection-molded piece of foam footwear give you? I found more than you would expect. The OOFOS thong sandals are designed to be recovery footwear offering support, cushioning and impact absorption. They feel much more solid than your average foam flip flops: I would describe wearing the OOFOS as standing on large firm marshmallows. Just don’t eat them!

OOFOS put nearly 3.5 cm (1.4’’) of foam under the heel and 2.5 cm (1’’) of foam beneath the ball of the foot so there is a lot of give before you feel the hard floor beneath the sandals. I’m 75 kg (165 lbs) and had to really jump in the size 12 OOFOS to fully compress the foam. Most other foam sandals I’ve worn compress nearly all the way beneath the heel when just standing in them. The underside of the OOFOS has a wavy grid pattern with two intersecting channels. This provides adequate traction for a foam that has a texture between an eraser and a plastic watchband.

I’ve had a few episodes of plantar fasciitis and can say these flip flops would have aided in the recovery process. I don’t think they would have sped up recovery, but they bring enough cushioning to greatly reduce the pressure on any foot “hotspots”. Some users claim the flip flops helped relieve knee, hip and even back pain. I actually developed a minor knee injury while running but did not feel much relief after putting on the OOFOS. These are not magical flip flops that cure any injury, they just do a great job at providing a cushioned surface to walk on.

One big selling point to the OOFOS is the arch support. I did a quick measurement and found the arch support rises up about 1 cm (0.4’’) from the edge of the of the foot. As a comparison, the Nike Air Zoom Elite 7 shoes have a similar amount of arch support and they are sold as a cushioning shoe. The arches also have no direct contact to the ground, they just hang a little over the sole of the shoe.

The OOFOS footbed is simple. No gel patches, no unexpected bumps, just a light grid pattern from heel to toe. This makes the footbed easy to keep clean (did I mention they’re also machine washable?), but you might find your feet getting a bit sticky with no bumps to aid in air circulation. The footbed of the OOFOS also slightly cradles your foot in the concave surface. It’s enough to keep the edges of your feet from wandering off the edge. As a tip, the sandals run small, so be sure to start with a size higher than what you’re used to. My biggest complaint with the sandals is they don’t run in half sizes.

Overall, I’m pleased with these thong sandals and would recommend them to anyone that wants a simple and comfortable sandal.

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