In 2008, I was approached by a company in Dallas that sells MBT shoes, given a complimentary pair of these shoes (one pair of shoes, one pair of sandals), and asked to try them out. I agreed. When I went in to meet with the company, I was given the shoes, and told: “You’re going to love these! They lift and tighten the buttocks, tone the calves, make you burn calories just by walking, and can help get rid of cellulite.”
As C+C Music Factory Says, ‘Things that make you go Hmmmm.’
First of all, newsflash, there is something that lifts and tightens the buttocks, tones the calves, and makes you burn calories just by walking; it’s called walking. Second, according to Dr. Len Kravitz, PhD, Dr. Kravitz is the Program Coordinator of Exercise Science and Research at the University of New Mexico, “nothing, besides liposuction, has been effective in getting ‘rid’ of cellulite.” Losing weight can diminish the appearance of cellulite, but not get rid of it.
I was slightly annoyed that the shoe salesman would insult my intelligence by stating such outlandish claims to an exercise science professional, but I brushed it off my shoulder… I was getting some free shoes, after all. To this day, I refer to the MBTs as my “magic shoes,” just because of the outrageous claims the salesman tried to give them. As I agreed to do, I wore the shoes daily for about 3-weeks as a trial. I wouldn’t recommend exercising in them, but just for walking around, I found them fun- being able to rock while you walk is pretty entertaining. I also found that my calve muscles were fatigued more than wearing a traditional pair of running or cross training shoes, which I typically wear. As far as a “workout,” I didn’t consider wearing MBTs as I walked challenging enough to qualify it as any greater workout than wearing traditional shoes. If anything, the fact that the MBTs are fun to walk in may inspire people to walk more, which may help them get in shape. That was my assessment, in a nutshell, and is the testimony I sent to this company.
More and more, in the recent years, companies have released “magic shoes.” The claims are so preposterous that I wonder if people really believe that a pair of kicks could do such things. Then I remember: the weight-loss industry is a multi-billion dollar money maker that pries on people’s vulnerability and desperation to lose weight. Of course people buy it- hook, line, and sinker!
101 Legit Ways to Lose Weight gives ‘shaping shoes’ two big thumbs down. The Federal Trade Commission is on our side on this one, too.
Reebok International Ltd. recently agreed to pay out $25,000,000 in refunds to customers who bought Reebok toning shoes. The company falsely advertised that its line of toning shoes would help consumers shape and tone the glutes, hamstrings, and calves more than regular walking shoes. When a FTC-commissioned study could not produce research to support those claims, charges were filed against Reebok.
Here’s my advice when it comes to footwear: lace up a standard pair of sneakers, hit the walking trail, and lose weigh the old fashioned way!