Hang a crystal on a string around your neck. Grab a lucky charm. And put on your sandals?
Earth Runners, a San Jose, Calif., company sells sandals with touted metaphysical effects. Conductive metal inserts in the footbed “ground” a wearer electronically with the Earth, allowing “access to the Earth’s harmonizing effects,” the brand cites.
Add to this a minimalist design that mimics the hurachas worn by the renowned runners of the Tarahumara tribe in northern Mexico and, well, you have yourself a $69 pair of something special.
We got a pair to test. My first impression was that the Earth Runners could use a little more refinement. The sandals come with instructions and need some tinkering with the laces out of the box to get the right fit. While simplistic in design, the sandals have a definite home made aesthetic that required a fair amount of adjusting and puzzled looks. After re-lacing the sandals a few times I finally got a comfortable fit with minimal chafing on the ankles.
A “conductive” front strap passes between the big and second toes. Copper inserts that ostensibly balance out the charge between your body and the planet are visible under the toes.
Walking in the sandals was good. They are extremely flexible and offer little support other than skin protection. All around, they are a nice basic sandal that will break in over time to become a favorite for flipping hacky sacks around the drum circle.
As for the metaphysical effect – well, let’s just say my life hasn’t changed overnight.
The theory goes that regular rubber shoes and sandals “insulate” wearers from the Earth and its natural electrical charge. Earth Runners owner Michael Dally claims improved sleep patterns and overall better health are the result of wearing the sandals.
The company provides all sorts of theories on its website.
We’d love to see another flourishing USA-based manufacturing business get off the ground but this one might be a little too far on the fringes to leap into the mainstream.
However, if the idea of getting grounded sounds good, you can pony up to help the company get going. Earth Runners launched a Kickstarter Campaign this month to purchase manufacturing equipment to scale the company, which is currently run out of Dally’s San Jose garage.