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HUFFPOST SUPER USER
MercedesGabriella
05:15 PM on 08/09/2010
I wear the MBT shoe, the original "masai" shoe which Skecher and Reebok copied. The MBT cured my plantar fasciitis. With the MBT shoes, I walk 2 miles a day. Without them I can barely walk to my mailbox at the end of my driveway. The New York Times had a fastiduous walker test five different kinds of these shoes. The MBT was deemed the best. I love it.
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Victoria-nola
There is no way to peace; peace is the way.--Muste
06:55 PM on 08/09/2010
Actually, the MBT shoe is a ripoff of the Earth shoe brand. I only wear Earth brand because of back issues. I've known many people with back issues who tried them and won't wear anything else.
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HUFFPOST SUPER USER
MercedesGabriella
07:08 PM on 08/09/2010
I remember the Earthshoe... from the mid 70s! Very bad for my feet, since I need the heel MBT supplies. I honestly don't think Earth shoe and MBT shoe are that alike.
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HUFFPOST SUPER USER
happycat
No bio needed. My cuteness speaks for itself.
04:57 PM on 08/09/2010
Old Happycat says that they do work. I walk all over the place while wearing them. I definitely see a difference in my calves. I bought a very nifty looking pair of them. The sneakers are also great for chasing my kids around the park.
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HUFFPOST SUPER USER
MetrointheWoods
04:54 PM on 08/09/2010
Who would own such hideous shoes?
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05:45 PM on 08/09/2010
People with back problems.
07:57 PM on 08/09/2010
They're also a choice for plantar fasciitis and heel spurs. Unlike with Nike Airs or even orthotics, I can walk a long time in these and still walk relatively painlessly the next morning.
04:21 PM on 08/09/2010
How come no one mentions the fact that Skechers was Awarded the Seal of Acceptance from the American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA)?
The ACe study was done on 12 (!) "very fit" women--hardly the target audience....
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HUFFPOST SUPER USER
goodmarina
Most People use Religion to justify their bias!
10:20 PM on 08/09/2010
All good points ...

But I have little faith in any of these medical associations / societies. They would stick their stamp of approval / endorsement for a nice chunk of money.

I think actual owners of these shoes would offer the best & most reliable feedback.
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HUFFPOST SUPER USER
BKearney
Life is funny, skies are sunny, bees make honey
04:20 PM on 08/09/2010
I'll stick with my Keds, they help me run faster and jump higher.
04:20 PM on 08/09/2010
these shoes remind me of the episode on Seinfield...when Kramer wears those funny shoes and talks funny and they think he's mentally challanged, LOL
04:16 PM on 08/09/2010
Is this supposed to be breaking news, some sort of surprise? duh.
03:20 PM on 08/09/2010
If you want, you can read the full ACE study here:
http://www.acefitness.org/getfit/research.aspx
It seems legit, but I have several criticisms of their stated methodology:
“For the exercise response study, researchers recruited 12 physically active female volunteers, ages 19 to 24 years. All study subjects completed a dozen five-minute exercise trials in which they walked on a treadmill for five minutes wearing each type of shoe.”
My criticisms:
1) Twelve is too small of a sample size to measure any small benefit from wearing toning shoes, and it is only a small benefit that is being claimed.
2) The chosen test subjects, “physically active female volunteers ages 19 to 24,” are the least likely subjects to receive a noticeable benefit from wearing toning shoes. I think they should be testing inactive men and woman in their 30’s, 40’s and even 50’s.
3) Five-minute exercise” intervals seems too short a time to test the impact of wearing toning shoes, especially for “physically active female volunteers ages 19 to 24.” I doubt if the test subjects even broke a sweat.
Looking at it another way, if I wanted to design a study that would be least likely to show a significant difference between toning shoes and running shoes I would design the study the way they did.
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04:43 PM on 08/09/2010
Well said, fanned.

The group says the performed a second test for muscle activation using 12 21-27 year olds.
I believe that your same criticism would apply equally to the second group. 12 is way too small
a sample size and the age group are least likely to show improvements as you suggest.

Looking at the American Council on Exercise's website, it appears that they are far more interested in people using their sponsored fitness trainers than people purchasing shoes from independent companies.