As David Cameron is seen in some of FitFlops shoes, we inquire if the merchandise which was advertised with the fitness center constructed as the ‘shoe in’ is actually as amazing as it seems
FitFlops were heralded as the most recent fad in sports vogue when they started in 2007. Characteristics on breakfast TV and posts in innumerable lifestyle magazines started a footwear fixation, that has been fuelled by marketing slogans that were daring and appealing. “Get a work out while you walk!” and “Caffeine on your feet!” cried national billboards, as Britons rushed to buy into this new health club-in-a-shoe craze.
Since that time, the firm has run a rocky road, branching out into a broader variety of footwear, concurrently losing its position in the limelight. FitFlop has experienced income that was middling – but a hard core group of wearers stay, including it appears, our own Prime Minister, David Cameron.
A representative for the brand, Jessica Evans, described the process behind developing FitFlops. “We’ve been constantly examining FitFlop footwear because of its biomechanical effects on the human body with distinct universities and professors since our start in London in 2007 and have grown from a ‘one sandal wonder’ into an international brand with aspirations to deliver the world’s most comfy biomechanically-engineered shoes,” she says.
The statement of Ms Evans speaks volumes for the procedure that FitFlop has experienced. There isn’t any reference of the fat-burning, leg-reducing claims that were the shoes’ unique selling points upon their start a little under a decade past relaxation is focused around by the language.
“The first Walkstar One sandal was designed alongside Dr David Cook at LSBU (London South Bank University) with a triple-density technology which was engineered to help engage leg muscles more,” she continues. “Due to changes in marketing regulations both here and abroad, we no more publicise the positive consumer responses that refer to well-being states.”
Several years ago, the web site released over one hundred testimonials supporting the footwear of the company’s ‘s almost Lazarus-like abilities: seemingly, some of FitFlops could help an assortment of individuals, including sufferers of scoliosis and lupus.
Nevertheless, those testimonials are available to read. The firm has seemed to wind down the ‘too-good-to-be-shoes’ reducing claims in their merchandise of late – a move that’s coincided with the significant fines incurred by several large brands including FiveFingers and Reebok Easytone for marketing their shoes as having physical health benefits. Coincidence, or were FitFlops trading on signs that is unsupported?
The keys of the shoes are closely guarded behind a wall of technospeak. The soles reputedly use “patent-pending, muscle-loading, microwobbleboard mid-sole technology”, and among the original designers can be heard in the under promotional video using phrases for example “the feet are the gateway to exciting your whole system” – so scepticism detectors happen to be set to high.
The video goes to describe how the FitFlop “microwobbleboard” soles are divide into three sections. The back is crafted to form a “dense, contoured heel strike area”, the center is a “soft, less secure mid-footbed” and the front of the sole is tipped with a “mid-density toe cap segment”. This effect that is layered forms an unstable base, by engaging your muscles in a effort to remain erect that Fitflop promised you could tone your legs and it’s. Basically, each foot was said to be standing on a scaled-down version of a wobble board (the piece of gear used in health clubs to tone your thighs or reinforce your heart).
Private Development Trainer Scott Laidler takes issue with the notion of the ‘microwobbleboard’. “From an exercise standpoint why on earth would you need to make a regular day-to-day activity like walking more difficult, and shaky?” inquires Laidler. “How frequently does the flooring wobble in your daily life?
“Walking on a wobbly stage and using an abnormal gait does not actually support functional training principles. Training should be focused and target-orientated, that is how you solve fat loss issues, not by making it harder to walk.”
Really, a study was conducted by Professor Katherine Burgess of Aberdeen’s Robert Gordon University into the effectiveness of the patented technology of Fitflop. “We looked at lower limb muscle activation,” describes Burgess, “and tracked energy cost comparing the Fitflop to wearing barefoot, or a standard pair of flip flops. We found that there were no differences.”
Professor Burgess’ findings, published in 2012 , coincided with the obvious change of Fitflop .
It’d seem that Fitflop rebranded as a footwear manufacturer that is comfy to avert the difficulty encountered FiveFingers and by Reebok. This would describe their representative’s claims that Fitflop is now “centred on comfort and ergonomics”, despite these not being the main selling points when the shoes found in 2007.
So can Fitflops present on their claim that is new? Professor Burgess considers that “the shoes do reduce pressure on the sole, and are very comfy. By way of example, they’d not be bad for alleviating the symptoms of tendonitis. This really is how Fitflop now promote themselves – as more clinical and preventative than they initially did.”
Dr Ron McCulloch, of the London Podiatry Centre, sees both poor and good in FitFlops. “Lots of our patient’s difficulties come from your fact that they’re naturally unstable, so we’d’t always advocate a shoe that encourages uncertainty. Yet, that said, I actually enjoy them – despite them not being a replacement for a great, durable running shoe.”
“They went for a fashionable angle, when weight loss and MBT running shoes were all the rage. And it just so happened so the firm have only developed the relaxation part, and that coincidentally tons of folks purchased them for relaxation. The shoes, with their fabric that is soft, help people who have lots of heel pain – there’s a state called FitFlops and Morton’s neuroma truly help folks with that. You feel much fewer of the symptoms.”
Because of this, Fitflops seem to are becoming heroes that are inadvertent. These selling points have later dropped and focused on the relaxation component in their footwear despite launching with claims of reducing and muscle toning. Fitflops are now supplying relief for a lot of people who have problems with debilitating foot and lower leg states no matter how this change came about – And who can argue with that?