Following the unveiling of Adidas’ new Springblade range last week, it seems that spring-filled shoes are suddenly all the rage. But a new offering from Yorkshire is also introducing bouncing technology in their kit – although in a slightly less hi-tech fashion
Say hello to the Preston – not exactly the most snappy name, (makes us think of Wallace and Gromit or the Ordinary Boys) but with some seriously British ingenuity behind it.
Named after the University of Central Lancashire where the shoe was designed, the Preston features miniature mattress pocket springs in the soles – unsurprising as it is the brainchild of a Yorkshire-based mattress company (yes really), and a biomechanics professor, who hope their product will significantly reduce the risk of injury from running.
The Preston uses the same technology as a pocket sprung mattress, with lightweight micro springs meaning significantly more shock and pressure can be absorbed, as well as an increased uplift as you push back off the ground.
Research leader Professor Jim Richards teamed up with mattress company Harrison Spinks to use a version of one of their high end pocket springs, called the eSpring into the sole of a trainer.
Professor Richards said: ‘Despite the advances in running shoe technology, there is a still a huge problem of injury. What’s different about The Preston, is the spring technology combined with the damper.
‘If you had a car suspension with just a damper and no spring in it then you’d have a very bumpy ride. Therefore, having a shoe that incorporates both provides a much improved shock absorbing system.
‘We will also be able to tweak the arrangement for each individual runner, which is particularly important because everyone has a different running style and physiology that impacts on their risk of different types of injury.’
The shoes will hopefully be launched to the UK market later in the year, with Intersport already signed up, and although their retail price has not yet been finalised, Professor Richards hopes that said they will not be too much more expensive than competitors.
And if you fancy trying out these ingenious shoes, a prototype of The Preston running shoe will be available for members of the public to try out for themselves at The Royal Society Summer Science Exhibition.
[Via Mail Online]