By Catherine Bertram
You’ve seen them on TV and in advertisements in magazines and catalogs. You may have even heard Joe Montana sing their praises. But, as USA Today reports, some doctors are coming out against so-called "rocker" or "toning" shoes. They say the shoes can easily inflame wearers’ Achilles tendons by forcing the heel to rest lower than the ball of the foot.
MBT, one manufacturer of the shoes, claims they help with knee and back problems, neck tension, and joint pain and tone your abs, glutes, calves, and thighs. However, the preliminary studies they cite are not double-blinded and don’t actually conclude that the shoes lead to demonstrable benefits.
Johns Hopkins University’s Dr. Barbara de Lateur, professor of physical medicine, said the companies’ fitness claims are "utter nonsense." Other physicians quoted in the story agree and especially cautioned anyone with balance issues not to wear the shoes.