posted by: freePOrnaoa in General on March 24th, 2010
Skechers Shape-Ups have won quite a few awards and have really cleaned up financially in a tough economic market. But I’ve never been sold on what they are. I think that a shoe should be either decorative (which means it serves an aesthetic purpose and it’s more acceptable if it’s a little uncomfortable) or extremely functional in getting the wearer from Point A to Point B, like sneakers (not to say it can’t be both pretty and functional).
The Shape-Ups seemed to be neither to me, but rather a sacrifice in both appearance and walkability. So I decided to put them through a test drive. While I don’t know whether they improve blood circulation, strengthen the back, improve posture, tighten the abs and butt and reduce cellulite (seriously doubtful), I wanted to test the comfort and walkability, as well as how cute or horrendous they looked on me.
First, I regarded the men’s shoes with skepticism. They look like big black cocoons.
Inside the store, an entire wall of Shape-ups awaited me.
On goes Pair #1, a pink-tinged pair with a high platform of support. They were cute, but a bit ridiculous looking. I had to do a walkabout.
Sadly, as comfortable as these were, I felt a bit unsteady. The extra cushioning makes you work harder, sure, but it also makes you feel slightly unsteady. In the streets of New York, who needs any more unsteadiness or perils in walking? And can you imagine wearing these while driving? You need to feel the gas and brake pedals through your feet.
This is a big shoe, but one plus is that it’s not heavy at all.
I got up, walked around the store about 18 times, and tried some of the exercises on the video that you get with your purchase. I was not convinced. If you need a shoe with really good support, you should get an orthotic with arches. If you need a training workout shoe, I think you should get a cross-trainer. This shoe is neither.
But alas, it was time to try on another, less padded version. This shoe was less comfortable and equally unattractive.
Skechers now has Tone-ups to rival FitFlops.
But no matter how many pairs there were, none of them looked appealing to me.
And those health claims? As of yet, they’re unsubstantiated. The four studies Skechers claims substantiate its claims were commissioned BY SKECHERS.
Readers, what do you think of Shape-ups? Were you as unimpressed as I was or do you see personal results?