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A flip flop with the gym built in

Amanda Marshall

You guys have heard of FitFlops, right? The slogan goes "it's a flip flop with the gym built in; put a pair on and get a workout while you walk."

FitFlop is a U.K.-based company which sells these shoes. In 2007, Marcia Kilgore, founded FitFlop based on a technology developed by two biomechanics researchers.

Anyways so the special part of these FitFlops is the Microwobbleboard, which is found in the sole of the FitFlop sandal. This wobbleboard is made of a chemical called ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA), commonly known as “foam rubber”, which is the darling of running shoes. The sole of this sandal has three different sections. Basically the density of cushioning is different in the 3 sections. Heel, mid sole, fore foot.

It has a high-density heel section to absorb the force on the body produced by walking and a low-density mid-section “such that application of a user’s weight, during use, causes instability.” The idea behind creating this instability environment is to destabilize the foot slightly and force the legs to work harder by engaging muscles for a longer period of time with each step. Hence they claim that this footwear help to tone up legs and bums muscles.

My take on FitFlops
I found them super comfortable. The cushioning is nice. It is like wearing a sofa in your feet. It is not like a highly cushioned ‘sofa’ I mean. Rather, it is a comfortably cushioned sofa. As in the cushioning is in sync with the gait and biomechanics of the human feet. But as far as thecompany’s claim of getting fit wearing these goes, I do not think that you can get fit just by walking in a foot wear. While some say you can wear these things and feel the burn in your butt and calves, you'd have to do some serious walking in them to see results--and walking in flip flops can lead to foot problems ,warn some. Even more, experts suggest that you should only wear these things if you have the right type of feet. Surprising, I know. Cary M. Golub, DPM, a podiatrist in private practice in Long Beach, N.Y.,spoke to WebMD on the topic: "They are not meant for everybody, especially the person with flat feet," says Golub. "For these people, it's like sticking a rock in the arch, which pushes the arch up, creating calf pain," he says. He adds that he has seen patients with leg complaints after wearing FitFlops.

Do you wear these things? Have you been thinking about buying them? I have to admit, it sounds like an appealing product, but I don't think they're very cute, what about you?

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