"Ninja" Tabi BootsVendor
You've seen them in movies, you've seen them on the web--- have you ever seen them on a traceur's feet? I bought these for a costume around Halloween, and have gotten plenty of use out of them since then, and been pleasantly surprised, to say the least.Flexibility
By far standing out to be the single most flexible piece of footwear I've ever owned. The split toe allows your foot greater freedom of movement-- making landings and rolls easier in general. There are claims that this split is used for rope-climbing, but I doubt that using these specifically for that purpose is ever likely to end well. You're better off clamping your feet around the rope for support, than going through the effort of sliding the rope between your toes.Comfort:
Again, I was surprised. After some initial discomfort (the 'split' is partially hardened rubber) I broke these in and found them comfortable for walking, running, and they maintained a reasonably consistent temperature. The fabric is cotton, and is easily soaked when walking in wet environments (which I do not recommend) and the rubber sole is adhered solely to the bottom of the boot, offering no protection from the elements beyond the ground itself. Nonetheless, I found them easy to walk in and plausible for daily non-rainy use. Their sizing is true (I would recommend buying them in the same size you usually wear) but be prepared for a slight shifting, which is easily remedied by wearing thicker socks. =PGrip:
To give a frame of reference, I've been using 5.10 Daescents for quite awhile and I would easily give Stealth/Mystique/Phantom a 10/10 rating. These tabi adhere to a wide variety of substances easily, while being especially effective on none. They will grip wood, laminate, concrete, stone, grass, etc. safely and effectively but have little traction in muddy environments (which is not unexpected, or a detractor from the score). Their first day of use was for the Halloween parkour event in DC, and performed well on the damp, slick walls and concrete.Style:
+5 for awesome ninja-ness for a total of 10/10. However, don't expect to be picking up too many dates wearing these, as they aren't exactly typical streetwear. At the same time, depending on your circle of friends, you might be hailed as the all-conquering hero. Still, they don't stand out too much at first glance-- so many people will gloss over your eccentricities.Durability:
I don't have or foresee any particular issues with durability. The fabric is cotton, and has few significant stress points that I feel are likely to ever rip or tear. The rubber sole is fairly tough, and is likely to withstand quite a beating without wearing down.Conclusion:
The tabi are simply designed and effective in both day-to-day and training use. However, their most significant detractor is modern taste. I would easily recommend these for training, as they are inexpensive and surprisingly useful.
General scale, for reference:
10%-30%: Clearly something is wrong, and you're trying a wallrun with ice-skates or something.
31%-50%: Is that a badger tied to your foot?
51%-69%: Good enough for day to day wear.
70%-90%: Effective for parkour, easy to recommend.
91%-100%: Practically designed for parkour/climbing, comfortable, and snazzy enough for daily wear.