September 3rd, 2010 9:11am - Posted By: Kara
To Rock or Not to Rock
Rocker sole or “toning” shoes are the rage everywhere these days. It seems every shoe company has a variation on the theme. Millions of devoted customers believe these shoes eliminate pain, tone muscles and even shed pounds. Here, at the Good Sole, I get asked every day if the claims are true.
The answer is yes and no. The thick, rounded soles on toning shoes do simulate an unstable surface which tends to work different muscle groups in the feet and legs and reduce fatigue from being on your feet all day. And by working unfamiliar muscles, you help tone your legs and buttocks. However, every human body is unique. Rocker soles work better for some than others.
And contrary to some claims, no one will shed pounds and build a perfect body with no effort just by wearing these shoes. Sorry.
So should you try them? The truth is that many people can see benefits from rocker soles. But it depends on how you wear them and which shoe you choose. At the Good Sole, we have looked at dozens of rocker sole brands and selected a few that we believe go beyond the hype and offer true benefit.
My personal favorite is a proven winner – Dansko. The Dansko folks are true pioneers in rocker soles and have refined their design over many years. If you’re a teacher, nurse, waiter/waitress, chef, bank teller or have another job that requires you to be on your feet for hours, you should seriously consider Dansko. We have more loyal Dansko fans than any other brand. Several customers have actually told me they would have quit their jobs due to back pain if they had not discovered Danskos.
We also carry MBT which is another pioneer and the best known toning shoe. MBTs are great shoes for walking and also good when you’re on your feet all day. But they are not for everyone and they are not cheap!
Most recently, we added the New Balance Rock-N-Tones. These are probably the best shoe for walking and incorporate New Balance’s decades of expertise in athletic shoes. I live up in Weimer and love doing my morning walk around the “loop” in my Rock-N-Tones. But I would never run in them and neither should you. Rocker sole shoes are not made for running.
To find out which (if any) toning shoe is best for you, stop by The Good Sole. We’ll ask you some questions, evaluate your gait and recommend the best shoe for your body and your lifestyle. There is never a charge to tap into our expertise in fitting you with the perfect shoe.