Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Tone Up with Shape Ups?

Sketchers have produced a new show that is said to “tone, burn calories, increase posture, and help joint pain". The idea that a commercially made shoe would have these effects is exciting; however, some precautions should be taken when makeing such a fundamental change in footwear.

The shoe design is made to essentially have you walking on a balance or “wobble” board. The effect of putting yourself on an unstable surface will make you more aware of your posture and have you work harder to maintain proper body alignment. However, these shoes also put increased stress on your hamstrings and glutes. This may be great for some people who are already conditioned, but for people who may be deconditioned may lead to muscle strain or injury. Should you purchase a pair it is best if you choose to wear these is to slowly increase the time you wear these shoes. Initially wearing them around the house and not necessarily every time you run or exercise is a good place to start.

These shoes claim to have many different health benefits; however, there is little research at this time to show validity of this product. The shoes do promote better posture and cushioning for walking by creating instability at the ankle. Caution should be used wearing these shoes long term or on anything other than a flat even surface.

For more reliable health information, or to schedule a consultation for physical therapy, feel free to contact us at 518-690-4406 or visit our website at or email us at

William Milhizer, PT, DPT

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