Is it possible that what we wear on our feet can do as much for our bodies as hated lunges and squats? Can shoes really shape your leg and butt muscles?
First there were MBTs. Marketed as the anti-shoe. The makers claim the following benefits: helping solve knee and back problems, relieve neck tension, ease joint pain, “and more or less in passing help to tone and shape firm buttocks and thighs,” burn more calories when standing and slow running compared to regular shoes. And they claim scientific research to back it up! I tried on a pair once. They felt very strange, wobbly, but not in a bad way. I could see that you would need to stabilize yourself as you walked. But they were quite bulky and unattractive and I could not imagine spending $250 dollars on shoes I might not like. $250!!
Now suddenly you can find lots of cheaper mainstream shoe alternatives. Sketchers makes them. ” Tone your muscles, promote healthy weight loss, make it easy to get in shape.” Easy? And Reebok has jumped on the band wagon. “Tone and sculpt the legs, encourage muscles to work as you walk and simply stand.” Really? Can shoes do that?
When I was growing up we wore Dr. Scholl’s Exersoles. That was a low-tech shoe. A slab of wood with a small strip of leather across the toes. To keep them on you had to grip with your toes as you walked. Was that exercise? Did it tone any muscles? I am sure we didn’t care; we just liked the shoes and could buy them for very little money at the drug store.
All these years I thought that I had to exercise to tone muscles. Now I am told I can simply change my footwear. Dare I believe it? And what should I think about the fact that these shoes come with an instructional video?