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Getting Into Step

ImageThe fact that the Swiss footwear technology MBT promotes health and fitness is obvious: MBT improves posture, firms up abdominal, leg and buttock muscles and aids in weight loss. One of the most effective body shapers in the world is available by the pair in the European sizes 33 to 49 and is based on a discovery as simple as it is astounding.

ImageAt the beginning of the 1990s the Swiss Karl Müller discovered that for the Masai people, shoes and back pain are unheard of – and that there is a causal relationship between these two facts. Because they walk barefoot on the natural, soft, uneven ground of their East African homeland, the Masai activate the very muscles that degenerate through walking in conventional street shoes on hard, even surfaces.


Müller’s discovery marked the beginning of “Masai Barefoot Technology,” or MBT. The Swiss engineer started by developing a sole construction that would let everyone in the Western world enjoy the benefits of walking barefoot. After years of testing and development work, extensive research and a large number of scientific studies, the first MBTs became available in Switzerland in 1996 – and now, a million pairs of the innovative footwear have been sold in some 20 countries.


Anyone who wears MBTs not only enjoys a pleasant feeling similar to that of walking on a sandy beach or mossy forest floor and averts problems typical in our modern society; the internationally patented sole construction surrounding the shoe’s heart, the Masai Sensor, also passes on all the positive effects of walking barefoot to the entire body. And these effects include many that promote fitness, athletic performance and well-being: MBT works like a training device in strengthening and toning up leg, abdominal and buttock muscles. MBT reduces body weight, because training hitherto-unused muscle groups increases oxygen intake and thereby calorie consumption.


ImageBy strengthening foot, leg and back muscles, MBT supports the entire musculo-skeletal system and greatly contributes to reducing joint strain. In addition, one’s gait is altered by wearing MBTs – it becomes more erect, attractive and natural, and the improvement in one’s posture is evident.


A quotation from a study done by Sheffield Hallam University: “MBT shoes promote less forward lean during locomotion suggesting a more upright posture. (…) This, in conjunction with the lower hip moments experienced in the MBT condition, may suggest reduced loading of the lower back.” This reduced loading explains the distinct reduction of back pain reported by MBT users. The conclusion of the Sheffield study: “(…) MBTs alter certain gait characteristics and that with frequent use they may reduce or prevent the incidence of some musculo-skeletal problems.”

MBT is physiological footwear – the first footwear that has a positive effect on the entire body. The many benefits of MBT are not only substantiated by numerous scientific studies; they are also being enjoyed on a daily basis by more and more health- and fitness-conscious people who improve their physical fitness by merely wearing this physiological footwear. Doctors and physiotherapists recommend MBTs as an effective therapeutic tool, and top athletes like Benni Raich and Michael von Grünigen use their MBTs as mini training and regeneration centers. Actors like Glenn Close, Teri Hatcher and Sharon Stone and star models such as Heidi Klum and Gisele Bündchen wear MBTs not only to improve their fitness and health but also to enhance their appearance.


Masai Barefoot Technology

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