We’ve all seen the commercials, a familiar celebrity confidently walking in sneakers that promise to improve the muscle tone in our legs and burn calories. Some of us have purchased these sneakers in the hopes of substituting every day errands for extra time at the gym. Unfortunately, some people who purchased Sketchers Shape-Ups, and similar shoes made by other companies, have discovered that these promises are false. Rather than improving their health, the shoes have been a detriment to them – causing ankle, hip and other bone fractures.
Ironically, Skechers’ claims that their unique, elevated bottom is the reason the shoes are helpful to a person’s fitness goals, claiming that the “ rocker bottom design keeps you a little off balance [allowing the use of] underutilized muscles to retain balance and proper positioning while standing or walking. This instability is what allows Shape-ups to do their job.” While Shape-Ups purchasers point to the instability as the cause of their injuries. Lawsuits are being filed throughout the country by Shape-Up wearers who suffered injuries, including torn tendons, muscle tears, broken bones and other injuries. Some of these injuries are minor and some are quite serious – some have been diagnosed with dangerous pelvic fractures that require surgery and rehabilitation.
These unfortunate incidences are just examples of the dangers of some everyday products. They are an important reminder to check for product safety reports before purchasing such items. Product safety reports can be found online at consumer help websites like Consumer Reports (www.consumerreports.com) or The Consumer Product Safety Commission (www.cpsc.gov) or (http://www.saferproducts.gov).