"Biking shoes are typically exceedingly stiff, and they take the load instead of the calf muscles," said Reisse, who added that he wears a leather-upper version of the barefoot shoe to work for the comfort factor.
"There could be a lot of extra stress to the lower muscles of the calf [when biking] with barefoot shoes, but that depends somewhat on the individual," he said.
Kennard, who purchased special straps to hold his feet to the pedals since he no longer has a cleat to clip into, feels he's up to the challenge.
After receiving his Vibram FiveFingers shoes in August as a birthday gift from his wife, Blair, he spent months transitioning into them, which he says is a necessary precaution for anyone making the change.
Carrying his regular shoes along with him, he would run short distances in his barefoot shoes and then switch off for the remainder of his route. He gradually increased his time wearing the new shoes and now runs or bikes his entire 4.5-mile route in them four days a week. He swims once a week and lifts weights as well.
He has also learned to pay attention to the sounds the shoes make because the "pat, pat, pat" sound means he's maintaining good form, he said.
"Ultimately, I'd like to be wearing barefoot shoes in my chiropractic clinic," Kennard said, since he's constantly on his feet at work. "I've learned to like the way they feel."