Minimus VS Maximus Shoes – Hoka One One And New Balance Double Review

Note:  This is a review of the Hoka One One Maximus Shoe & the New Balance Minimus shoe done by a senior citizen and avid walker, not a doctor, or a qualified health care provider. 

The discussion here seems to be around “walking” shoes, and the author wants you to know that he believes humans should use footwear that supports good health, not footwear that is appropriate i.e. Sunday church footwear, or fashionable i.e. something that matches my outfit.

My Background In Fitness

As a retired elementary school teacher, who worked in the area of sports,  I felt the need to protect my students and learn as much as I could about exercise.  I knew that the shoe a person wears is important to one’s overall health. 

hoka one one review

Your feet affect your entire body.  There are over 70,000 nerves meeting in the soles of your feet. 

I use to tell my young students that they needed to wear shoes that were not only comfortable, but shoes that gave them the support and added foot strength. 

If they were playing basketball, they not only needed arch support shoes for jumping, but they needed ankle support shoes, for stop and go, and twist and turn movement. 

If they were running races, or doing a variety of aerobic exercises, they would benefit from a cross trainer. 

There were lots of different kinds of runners available in the stores, and prices were going up.

Hoka One One Women's W Challenger Atr Astral Aura:Flame Running Shoe 9 Women US review

After I retired from my teaching job, I decided to become a fitness instructor at my local YMCA.  I took the instructors’ course required, and learned much more about exercise and my feet. 

As instructors, who were involved with a wide variety of different exercises daily, such as weight training, high and low intensity aerobics, and cycling (spin) classes, the shoes we wore got complicated. 

We were also told by our fitness instructor professor, that even if our shoes didn’t appear worn, dispose of them after 6 months and buy new shoes. 

Teaching fitness at my local YMCA as a volunteer became quite costly because of the different types of shoes I needed, and how often I had to get new ones, so I decided to research and find out what the experts were saying about footwear for “active” men and women today.

Paleo Lifestyle

I discovered a new movement in health called the “paleo lifestyle” which had its own paleo principles for exercise and diet. 

The bottom line for this way of living was to try and stay as close as possible to the “natural” way of living.  Eat organic, and include food stuffs grown locally whenever possible.  Exercise meant moving as much as possible, and in as many different directions as you could.  No matter what your age, try and move as a 5 year old. 

Barefoot Walking – The Minimus Philosophy

new balance shoe review minimus

But what about the shoes?  The “Minimus” footwear by New Balance was the answer, if you had to have shoes on your feet.  Otherwise go barefoot whenever you could. 

Barefoot walking and running showed that the heavily-padded footwear that we were used to, actually caused us to walk and run in unnatural ways, creating more injuries, not less. 

Scientists discovered that more cushioning for your feet, such as adding a thick sole to the heel, put your body in an unbalanced position. 

New Balance Women's WT10GG3 Minimus Trail-Running Shoe

Maybe this is why the science of chiropractic has become so popular in modern times. 

So many people need adjustments because of poor posture, and your shoes contribute to this almost as much as your couches, your cars, and your computers. 

The Minimus brand shoe by New Balance takes a little getting use to, but you only really need to buy one pair, and wear it for every occasion.  Here is a look at this type of shoe in video form.

I am well into my senior years, but still exercising and moving as much as possible, even when I don’t feel like moving.  

I still spend a few hours every day at the YMCA, or some fitness facility.  I have noticed that many of my peers have hip and knee problems. 

It is almost understood that around age 70, you will be getting one of those body parts replaced, if not more. 

I am still wearing my Minimus shoes, and still teaching my fitness classes at age 69.  My knees do ache at times, but I feel that my Minimus Runners do help me with my overall health.

And now for another shoe that I think everyone should know about…

Maximus Shoes – Hoka One One Walkers For Men & Women Review

Hoka One One!!  What is this?  Could it be a new dance?  Maybe it’s a popular hotel in Hawaii.  Wrong again!!!  It is an athletic shoe for people who have “bad” knees!!!  Well, according to my stats, that’s everyone almost, over the age of 70.

A Toronto newspaper called the “Globe and Mail” featured an article about the Hoka shoe entitled, “Which running shoe is right for you?  It was written by Alex Hutchinson, and published on Sunday Jan. 04, 2015.  Let me share a little of what I learned from this article.

Hoka One One Bondi 4 Women's Running Shoe review

Hoka One One appears to be the opposite to the Vibram Minimus shoe, that simulates the “barefoot” experience.  We can call the Hoka shoe a “Maximus”. 

It has extreme support and cushioning, and maybe this is what our feet need for long and extreme walking or running environments. 

Back in 2012, there was more than $400 million spent on the “Minimalist” approach. 

Peter Larson, a biologist and running scientist in New Hampshire, back in 2013, decided to try really hard to figure out which shoe was best for us. 

Hoka One

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New Balance Women’s Wt10V1 Minimus Trail Running Shoe, Black, 8 D Us

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He produced a blog called, “”, so he could share what he had discovered about our feet and our shoes, and he wanted feedback from his audience – the public.

Hoka One One Men's M Mafate Speed Running Shoe review

Peter Larson discovered just what all of us value in life – balance. 

I think he believes that each of us is different, and depending on our own personal genes, stress will be placed on the joints in our bodies that are weak for us, when we wear a particular shoe – be it a Minimus or a Maximus. 

We know our bodies best, so let’s try and find the shoe balance that is right for us.

His research seemed to indicate that the extra cushioning of the Hoka One One, seemed to be best when the terrain was rough, especially if the person was involved in a long walking or running event. 

People’s bodies generally tire after a lot of exercise, opening doors for stress to affect their weak spots. 

Brian Martin, a 36-year-old ultra runner and doctoral candidate at McMaster University’s

Department of Kinesiology in Hamilton Ontario Canada, discovered that he needed to transition from the “Fivefinger” Minimus shoe, to his extra padded Hoka shoe, the longer he was on his feet. 

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If a person is wearing the traditional runners of the past, and wants to try either the Minimus or the Maximus shoes of today, it is suggested that a slow transition into this different footwear is the way to go, about 9 months to a year to make the change. 

Your feet need that much time to develop the added strength in the foot. Drastic change in most situations is probably not a good idea, and could cause injuries you don’t want.

The Minimus shoe could be thought of as a shoe that will strengthen your foot.  You want the contact with the ground, to happen in the middle to front of your foot.  This will reduce impact on the rest of your body. 

Hoka One One Women's W Huaka Running Shoe review

This should also strengthen the muscles in your legs, such as your hamstrings and quadriceps.  The Maximus Hoka shoe can be thought of as the shoe that protects your body from impact, because of the extreme cushioning.  You need both. 

The newspaper article suggested that maybe the Minimus shoe should be used by beginners and the elderly, since this shoe promotes one’s natural walking or running motion.