Hot on the heels of the barefoot and minimalist walking and running movement comes the KEEN CNX shoe line.
Let me admit, first, that I have a certain skepticism when it comes to this fad. I can’t help but think if going barefoot was all that and a bag of chips, our ancestors would never have invented footwear.
My natural cynicism aside, as is usually the case, KEEN has managed to impress me with their work.
I’ve known for years that my stride changes significantly as soon as I get into footwear. I go from a toe-walker to a heel-striker as soon as I do. In fact, I recently had a gait analysis done, and I was reminded to walk on my forefoot rather than my heels. The bigger the heel, the more of a heel-striker I become.
Not so with these KEEN puppies. It has a low-profile heel, and in a shoe like this, I’m back to walking on my forefoot again without having to consciously remind myself. As usual KEEEN doesn’t stint on either construction or comfort. Combine that with the usual KEEN awesome waterproofing, and you’ll have a shoe that you might not want to get out of during the warm weather, at any rate.
On its website, KEEN describes the shoe as “lightweight protection for toes on the trail.”
“The Alpha WP CNX is a low cut waterproof, multi-sport outdoor shoe boasting a proprietary, lightweight PU midsole, allowing the foot to move naturally,” the description stated. “Multi-directional flex grooves on the sole enable more natural motion to better connect your foot to varied terrain and the integrated, contoured arch provides underfoot support.”
And KEEN didn’t stop with just offering a grown-up version of the shoe. It’s also offering the Breezemont CNX, which is described as “the essential KEEN fit and protection lightened up to make every step a natural connection.”
“This is a low profile, easily adjustable hook-and-loop mary jane ready for playgrounds and camping cabins. The lightweight midsole allows little feet to move naturally. Multi-directional flex grooves on the sole enable more natural motion, and an integrated, contoured arch and metatarsal ridge provide underfoot support for all day fun and flair,” KEEN promises.
If that isn’t enough, KEEN had to go out and make a watershoe version as well.
“The Rockbrook CNX is a low profile, full-coverage water shoe with great drainage and terrific traction,” KEEN crows.
At this point, I’m not in a position to argue that… but I certainly want to try that version!
To purchase from KEEN’s robust selection of CNX footwear, click here.