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World’s biggest sportswear firm Nike unveils self-lacing sneakers

Innovation gets personal as the world’s biggest sportswear firm Nike unveiled its first shoe that ties itself and will go on sale at the end of 2016. Sports lovers are in for an amazing and innovative self- lacing sneakers this holiday season with the HyperAdapt 1.0, confirmed the US sportswear giant at its ‘Innovation 2016’ event on Wednesday.

According to Beers, the laces tighten when your feet hit a sensor built into the shoe. There are two buttons on the side to loosen and tighten them for the perfect fit. 

“We’ve entered a new era of personalised performance,” said Mark Parker, Nike’s president and chief executive officer. “Today, athletes want more than just a dash board. They want a relationship.” 

The self-lacing shoes have been designed by legendary sneaker designer Tinker Hatfield and Tiffany Beers, Nike’s senior innovator, who’s worked on the Nike Air Mag and Nike Air Yeezy.

HyperAdapt 1.0 is the first performance vehicle for Nike’s latest platform breakthrough — adaptive lacing. The shoe translates deep research in digital, electrical and mechanical engineering into a product designed for movement.

It challenges traditional understanding of fit, proposing an ultimate solution to individual idiosyncrasies in lacing and tension preference. Beers was tasked with figuring out how to engineer self-lacing sneakers to meet “Back to the Future’s” fictional release day last year.

Nike made one pair of the self-lacing Nike Mag kicks for Michael J Fox — the actor who played Marty McFly in the film — which they are planning to auction to support his non-profit organisation for Parkinson’s. The potential of adaptive lacing for the athlete is huge, Hatfield said, adding that it would provide tailored-to-the- moment custom fit.

“It is amazing to consider a shoe that senses what the body needs in real-time. That eliminates a multitude of distractions, including mental attrition, and thus truly benefits performance of the wearer,” Hatfield explained. 

“Could it take you even tighter than you’d normally go if it senses you really need extra snugness in a quick maneuver? That’s where we’re headed. In the future, product will come alive,” he added.

HyperAdapt 1.0 is the first step into the future of adaptive performance. It’s currently manual (i.e athlete controlled) but it makes feasible the once-fantastic concept of an automated, nearly symbiotic relationship between the foot and shoe. It will be available only to members of Nike+ beginning Holiday 2016 in three colours.
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