NYTimes Suggests Science Behind Ass-Toning Shoes is…Well, Ass

Remember that whole epic fail of an ad campaign in which Reebok aired ridiculously sexist ads (see below) claiming their EasyTone shoes could “make your boobs jealous” of your legs and ass?

Well the NY Times has exposed the science behind the shoes, and pretty much dismisses these claims as bunk.

“To support the claims, the shoemakers each offer company-financed exercise studies suggesting that the shoes produce a higher level of muscle engagement, at least in a controlled research setting.
But the studies don’t show whether more engagement leads to meaningful changes in muscle tone or appearance over time. Nor is it clear whether the high level of engagement continues once the walker becomes accustomed to the shoe.”

Further, the claim that the shoes offer muscle toning is backed by a single, unpublished study involving just five people.
In fact, it looks like the most effective thing these shoes do is act as a placebo:

“The real effect may come from simple awareness that they are wearing a muscle-activating shoe, causing them to walk more briskly and with purpose.”

Yeah, I’m pretty sure I can do that without throwing down a hundred bucks for a pair of sneakers. Looks like Reebok needs to Re-Back their claims.
Sorry- I tried to resist the urge to pun, but the silliness of this entire ad campaign sort of begs for my ridicule. I’ve got more. How about this one: EasyTone? More like SleazyTone. Also, my boobs may not be jealous of my ass, but my ass sure is jealous of Reebok…it’s used to being the only one full of shit.
Ok, I’m done now. I apologize for the crudeness, and perhaps more importantly, the corniness. But hey- it’s Friday folks! So if you share my silly mood, add your sneaker puns to comments :-)

Brooklyn, NY

Lori Adelman is a writer and advocate focusing on race, gender, and sexual and reproductive rights. In addition to serving as an Executive Director at Feministing, Lori is the Director of Global Communications at Planned Parenthood Federation of America. Lori has previously worked at the United Nations Foundation, the International Women’s Health Coalition, and Human Rights Watch, and has written for a host of print and digital properties including Rookie Magazine, The Grio, and the New York Times Magazine. She regularly appears on radio and television, and has spoken at college campuses across the U.S. about topics like the politics of black hair, transnational movement building, and the undercover feminism of Nicki Minaj. In 2014, she was named to The Root 100 list of the nation's most influential African Americans, and to the Forbes Magazine list of the "30 Under 30" successful people in media.

Lori Adelman is an Executive Director of Feministing in charge of Partnerships.

Read more about Lori

Join the Conversation