Choosing the Right Anti-Gravity, Shape Up, Tone Up Shoe: The best Rocker Bottom Shoes Reviewed


With every shoe company hopping the gravy train that is rocker bottom shoes (anti-gravity shoes that shape up and tone up your legs, improve circulation, burn calories, and helps you “lose weight”), how does the savvy consumer decide on which shoe to buy?

First of all, the shoe that is shaped like a banana or a boat wins for being naturally unstable, forcing all your leg muscles to intrinsically work to keep you from falling over or losing your balance. The CON to these shoes is that they are clunky, often heavy, and somewhat dangerous to wear (going down the stairs or in rainy weather.) Shoes in this ROCKER BOTTOM Category include shoes such as MBTs (Masai Balance Technology), Shape Ups from Sketchers, AVON’s Curve shoes, and Kmart Therashoes (Rip offs of MBTs) and Champion Rocker Bottom Shoes. Which shoe should one choose from all these brands? I personally prefer MBTs– they are durable and the heel bumper is excellent. CON: very expensive. The other brands don’t offer as much instability and activation of muscles to balance the body. They are lighter weight and less durable. On a budget, however, a pair of AVON Curves shoes may be a good choice– for a few months. I’ve worn a pair of MBTs for over 1 1/2 years and they were 270 bucks when I bought them, but well worth the money.

I have flat feet and unstable, weak ankles, and yet these MBTs have never failed me. So for Budget: Avon Curves. For a splurge, MBTs. For style: Sketcher’s Shape Ups. They are pretty cute.

The shoes with three bumpers or so (EASY TONES from Reeboks and Champions has a flimsier pair), the bumpers just don’t offer as much instability as the shape of Rocker Bottom shoes. These shoes are narrower, less heavy, and I guess they are safer for people who are afraid to walk down stairs with a clunky pair of Rocker Bottoms.

So hope this helps you, savvy consumer. Before you buy a pair of Rocker Bottoms, note this fact, they will not help you lose weight. They may, however, tone your legs, correct your posture, increase your blood flow in the legs, improve balance, decrease risk of varicose veins and DVTs (deep vein thrombosis, blood clots). It depends on how much and how long you wear these shoes. Fair warning, once you wear a pair of special shoes, you may become addicted to them. Walking will never feel the same again!

Happy Walking! Please submit any questions you have to the Lady Shoe Expert here as a comment.

This article was written by a licensed physical therapist/lymphedema therapist.

8 thoughts on “Choosing the Right Anti-Gravity, Shape Up, Tone Up Shoe: The best Rocker Bottom Shoes Reviewed

  1. The Skechers Shape Ups have made a huge improvement in the posterior tibial tendinitis I have struggled with since 2006. I wore them an hour the first day, a few hours the next, working up to wearing them all day at work. My feet have not felt this good in four years. It’s been ten days now, and I am nearly pain-free.

    I go home, put on my “normal” shoes, and the pain is back within an hour.

    I wear my orthotics in both cases.

  2. My feet hurt MOST of the time especially in my heals. I am changing shoes throughout the day hoping something would feel better. Would MBTs or shape ups help?

  3. I have had my MBTs for almost 3 yrs and they are still in great shape. I am an RN and walk or stand continuously on hard surfaces,plus I am getting older. These have saved my legs and when I complete my shift my legs are NOT suffering. Pay the money. They are worth it. I am about to order a second pair as I am sold on this product.

    • You might want to try the Beebe Gliders shape and tone shoes. Very light weight and comfortable and better cushion than Skechers…..also a lot lower priced.

  4. Hi i’ve just finished massage training and i about to start working as a massage therapist and someone recommended mbt’s as i get lower back ache near the end of the day. any suggestions welcome. thanks x

    • I would do posterior pelvic tilts, relaxation in supine with knees bent daily and deep breathing. as for MBTs, they may or may not relieve the back pain. I think it’s from your work that you have the lower back pain, so changing biomechanics and proper positioning may help you.

  5. I have the Champon “rocker” syle men’s shoes. The most comfortable and supportive shoes I’ve ever owned. Been looking for additional pairs, but have been unable to find them, even online. Local shoe store associate says they have been discontinued…i’m bummed. If anyone knows where i can pick them up, please reply to this thread! Thanx, John D. Canton, OH

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