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Curved sole the key to ASICS energy-saving running shoe

Japanese sports group ASICS has unveiled a new running shoe that it claims can boost running efficiency by reducing the amount of energy that is lost at the ankle joint. 

It has labelled this shoe, which it calls Metaride, as one of its “most important innovations in seven decades”. It has been designed with the sole purpose of making it easier to run longer distances. 

Metaride is the result of more than two years of work by a team of scientists and designers at the ASICS Institute of Sport Science (ISS) in Kobe, Japan. 

Their work centred on minimising movement in the ankle joint, with the group citing research carried out at Loughborough University in the UK that showed that reducing energy loss at the ankle joint by around 20% could offer significant benefits for long-distance runners. 

To reduce energy loss and boost running efficiency, ASICS has created a precision-shaped curved sole that works by shifting the body weight forward, helping to propel the wearer forward. It calls this technology Guidesole. It has been incorporated into the Metaride shoe. 

Asics has said that this product optimises all three phases of the gait cycle. As well as reducing energy loss at the ankle joint, it offers improved static fit and grip to reduce ankle movement during each stride. This also encourages stability and durability. 

Announcing the development, Kenichi Harano, senior general manager of ISS, said: “The Metaride concept and new Guidesole technology are fundamentally different to any other shoe we’ve ever made or that’s on the market today. We looked at run efficiency in a uniquely ASICS way to provide a new ‘feel’ whilst maintaining our promise of performance and protection.”

ASICS has said Metaride is the first product from its new energy-saving franchise. It intends to make the same concept and technologies available to runners at different price points. 

Image credit: ASICS.

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