“Shape-Ups” are a type of walking shoes made by Sketchers. Although there are other similar products available on the market, Shape-Ups are the most predominant type of walking shoe on the market as of 2010, due to the widely known brand Sketchers. Sketchers, like a popular piece of designer jewelry worn by Hollywood starlets, is also a trendy brand, with its target market focused on teens and young adults.
The benefit of Shape-Ups lies in the sole. The rest of the shoe looks like a normal shoe, but the sole is thick and contoured to fit multiple walking areas, from a sidewalk to a dirt road. The sole is a type of wedge that contains shock absorbers that are designed for long-term walking without joint straining.
At first the shoe can make walkers feel off balance, due to the thickness of the wedge. Your walks will be more challenging than a regular shoe, but maybe not quite as dangerous as walking in six-inch heels. The more you walk in them you will increase your overall balance. This also helps you build core muscles to a certain degree. The shoes are also designed to tone your calves, glutes, and quadriceps.
Walkers should get used to these shoes before wearing them over long periods of time. Failure to do so can cause knee pain and muscle strains. Also make sure that you stretch before and after use. Avoid heavy use if you are new to the shoe.
Although this walking shoe may have its benefits, it is not designed for trained athletes, but more for individuals who are newer to exercise and want to get a kick-start. If you do decide to try out the shoes, do not wear them for long distances to start. You may need to break them in, just like any other shoes. Discontinue wearing if you feel strain in the knees or experience extreme muscle aches.