Monday, May 31, 2010
There is a lot of hype going on regarding toning shoes. Many claim that they will work you out while you wear them. Fit Flops claims the following: “Get a workout while you walk”, “Firm your legs and bottom”, “You can reduce stress on your body”, “You can re-energize your feet”, and “Wearable relief for sports warriors everywhere”. Another company, Sketchers, has Shape ups. “designed to help you strengthen your muscles, including your back, abdomen and calves”, “will help you lose weight and improve your circulation, creating a healthier you”, and “Get in shape without setting foot in a gym”. And MBT the Anti-shoe “ the body's entire musculoskeletal system is activated and exercised, the muscles in the buttocks, stomach and back are strengthened, posture and gait are kept relaxed and upright; and stress on the joints;and back is relieved. Not only does the anti-shoe increase the fitness levels of its wearer with every step, it also has sustainable health benefits.”
I have worn all three. Of the three the MBT’s seem to me to be the most beneficial and scientifically built. While I feel a slight “workout” mostly I feel better postural alignment and stress reduction on my low back and knees. I enjoy teaching in these as well as taking walks. These are definitely worth the investment and live up to their promises.
As far as flip flops go. Flip flops in general are the worst shoes you can possibly wear. They offer no arch support or shock absorption and cause a great deal of pain in the body after wearing them for long periods of time. That being said both the Fit Flops and the Shape ups are the most comfortable flip flops I have ever worn. They offer great arch support, lots of shock absorption, and I actually feel good after wearing them for a good deal of time. However, they aren’t going to tone my gluts, things, and hamstrings; cause me to lose weight, or keep me out of the gym or from doing actual exercise. These are not a quick fix or a replacement to proper diet and exercise, sorry to tell you. They do feel great though after a long run or workout!
My advice is don’t go firing your personal trainer or giving up your gym membership. But if you’re looking for a comfortable pair of flips flops or shoes that will help ease your pains and help your posture you should definitely give them a try.