Now that I think about it, I’m a little surprised I haven’t actually posted about this yet. I’ve managed to rave and carry on about it in comments on other blogs, but I think it deserves a proper post here. And, of course, I’m talking about:
Ok, they aren’t the most stylish things around. Not by a long shot. But I can forgive – and maybe even love – their not-so-flash appearance because of their absolutely brilliant comfort and wearability.
I first found out about them a few years back when my mom read an article in the paper about them. Since I have a fair amount of joint issues (thanks gymnastics, dance and cheerleading!) she thought I might be interested in trying them out. And I was – until I saw the $265 USD price tag!
Months passed and I read another article about them and was interested again. Being the savvy shopper I am, I ended up checking out Ebay to see if there were any pairs for sale there. Of course, you can get anything on Ebay and I found a heap of MBT shoes. After a good look through the different sizes, designs and prices, I finally settled on a “new without tags” white pair – the same as the above picture. Including shipping, it came to about $120 Canadian. Score!
When they arrived, I immediately put them on and started prancing around my apartment. I quickly realized they really aren’t like normal shoes and I was finding it hard to walk around in them. Thankfully, the shoes came with an instructional DVD (ridiculous sounding, I know, but it was helpful with these!) which I popped in and, following along with the video, learned how to properly wear my new shoes.
It took me about 3 days before I felt like I was walking normally in them. And, like a lot of shoes, about 3 weeks before they were fully broken in and felt molded perfectly to my feet. Within 1 month, I was absolutely addicted.
I’m now on my second pair. I literally wore right through the sole of the first pair – probably because I wore them as my main pair of shoes for the better part of 3 years. When I went to replace them, I actually bought a knock-off version. Shame on me, I know! Bad call. The knock-offs looked a bit like the MBTs, but that’s where the resemblances end. They didn’t have the squishy heel that minimizes any impact from walking. They weren’t as padded and comfortable. And within 2 weeks, they had started to come apart. I realized it was worth the extra bit of money to get the real, genuine thing and spent the next couple weeks browsing Ebay again until I found a pair I liked in my size. Including shipping to New Zealand, it cost me about $100 USD.
I would – and do – recommend these to absolutely everyone. I used to get bad knee and hip pains after walking 45 minutes or so. Because these shoes minimize impact, I can now easily wak for hours without pain. I’m far more likely to stop walking because I’m tired or I’ve run out of time than I am because of any joint pain. Plus I love the fact that I can rock back and forth on the curved sole when I’m just standing still. I like feeling the various muscles work as I shift my weight to different parts of my feet.
If you’re thinking about getting them, my advice would be:
– go to a store that sells them and get fitted so you know what size to order. You want them to fit well and if you’re ordering off Ebay, chances are you can’t return them if they don’t fit right.
– take your time getting used to them. Wear them for 20-30 minutes each day for the first little while and increase the time spent in them as you get used to them. You use new muscles wearing these shoes, so you want to give them time to adjust and minimize any sore muscles.
– don’t make any quick decisions. They aren’t fashion forward or cute. They feel weird. You rock when you stand still and you roll when you walk. They aren’t like any shoes you’ve worn before. Like any other new thing, they’ll take a while to get used to. Wear them a little each day for a few weeks before you decide whether or not they’re for you.
Have you tried MBT shoes? If you have, what do you think of them? If not, would you be willing to give them a try?