Doctors warn against 'Barbie foot' challenge taking over TikTok

Doctors warn against 'Barbie foot' challenge taking over TikTok
Barbie (Teaser Trailer 2)

The internet has spiralled over a certain two-second snippet from the upcoming Barbie movie – and it involves Margot Robbie's feet.

In the trailer for Greta Gerwig's hotly anticipated release, Barbie is seen stepping out of her high heels while maintaining her arched foot. In fact, it's become so "iconic" that it's birthed an entire TikTok challenge with the likes of Chrissy Teigen trying it out, and the hashtag alone has racked up over 40 million views.

While the niche trend has proven popular on the platform, doctors have been forced to step in with a warning.

Dr Jodi R. Schoenhaus, DPM, RPhs, FACFAS, and Board Certified Podiatrist at Foot, Ankle & Leg Vein Center, said the challenge "is not without risk."

"If someone attempts the pose once or twice, they will likely be ok and produce a great TikTok video," she said. "However, if attempting the pose and stride over long periods, there are some risks involved. The ankle is unstable, which can lead to ligament sprains and injuries, commonly seen with high heel use."

According to Dr Schoenhaus, the foot positioning "places more strain on your low back leading to muscle and spine problems," and can injure growth plates in younger women.

"To walk on your toes without heels isn't sustainable, and, in fact, the reality in the movie is that Barbie actually has flatfeet, along with 30 per cent of the population. Considering we aren't trained ballerinas en pointe, let's keep the fad to movie stars who have props and multiple takes to make it look perfect," she added.

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@barbiethemovie inspired me with a challenge idea!! Stitch & show me how well you can do the #BarbieFootChallenge !!! #barbiefootchallenge #barbie #foot #feet #heels #challenge #footchallenge #feetchallenge #margotrobbie

Speaking about the famous scene, Robbie told The Project that it didn't actually require as much effort as people expected.

"There’s no special effects, you’d be amazed how few [special effects] there are in this film actually," she said. "We didn‘t do that many takes of it, a couple of takes and I kind of held on to a bar so I was sturdy when I stepped."

"We just put double-sided tape on the floor so that my shoes stayed still and I did have a pedicure that morning."

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