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How do you gain confidence? Some people get it from the clothes they wear, others get it from exercising. However you gain it, confidence is close to an elixir; it’s deeply personal and insanely powerful.
This was the guiding (and fairly big) question adidas Running’s design team devoted themselves to answering as they developed the latest BOOST sneaker. The adidas SOLARBOOST is their answer.
BOOST, of course, famously started as a technology originally developed for the athletic community and urban running crowd. It then found a double life attached to silhouettes that became objects of beauty, desire, and stock market valueations among sneakerheads. The name, therefore, carries a certain amount of weight (and for a full measure of its historical impact, check this out).
However, the new SOLARBOOST represents adidas’s commitment to that first, original group. It’s been created with the stated desire of empowering runners around the world. So whether you’re a signed up member of the global adidas Runner community or just that guy who found themselves signing up to their city’s fun run this year and needs the right shoes, the SOLARBOOST is for you.
The sneaker was developed and tested with adidas Runners in key cities around the world. By harnessing the kinetic energy of a person’s movement and coupling it with the support and comfort gained through state-of-the-art materials, adidas’s approach to BOOST sneaker construction has been described as akin to NASA engineering in its process. Nothing is unnecessary; everything serves a purpose. As such, all excess weight has been progressively removed in making the SOLARBOOST to create a shoe that weighs 15 grams less than previous BOOST models—a guy’s 9.5 US sneaker now comes in at 295 grams (10.4 ounces).
The result of all this, hopefully, is a greater amount of self-confidence. Of course, this is all great but means nothing if you can’t get a handle on the tech that’s been poured into this thing. So we gave it to Highsnobiety’s Life editor, Daniel Pearson (who, fyi, is also training for the Berlin Marathon), and adidas Runner Christiane Hartfeldt to test them out in the German capital. Scroll through the map below and click on the waypoint markers to see Pearon’s thoughts. Scroll even further for a closer look at the sneaker’s key components.
The SOLARBOOST includes the use of a brand new, lightweight symmetrical construction known as the energy rail. Working in tandem with BOOST tech in the sole, stability in the SOLARBOOST is improved tenfold—stability being the key to movement, obviously.
A major element to note, apart from the namesake tech that makes up its sole unit, is adidas’s new approach to fibre placement across the sneaker. Labelled as ‘tailored fibre placement’ what this means in a practical sense is the application of fibres within the shoe to better support the runner. Materials used include adidas’s groundbreaking (and environmentally conscious) Parley material—which recycles ocean-bound plastic to create the fibres—which is applied according to data gathered from ARAMIS motion sensor technology and then applied across the midfoot.
The heel counter has also been given a design boost (pun only slightly intended here) with a construction that’s light and protective. As a result, the Achilles tendon should enjoy a greater degree of movement while the fit is accommodating yet remains snug and supportive.
The technology synonymous with The Three Stripes, the highly responsive space-age material makes up 85% of the midsole giving superior lightweight cushioning that literally boosts the runner from the ground up. It also catapults the SOLARBOOST to the very top of the current technical sneaker market, beating competitors in terms of energy return according to independent external testing (and our own editor).
Of course, whenever you have BOOST, you have the accompanying black stretchweb on the outsole that gives each BOOST silhouette its trademark look. Crafted from rubber, the outsole continues to provide superior grip that adapts to the runner’s foot stride, harmoniously moving reacting to BOOST energy return for a firm and powerful ride.
“Gradually, stride-by-stride, they won me over.”
The adidas SOLARBOOST drops today, May 17, at select adidas stores today across the US and Europe, with a wider global release June 1.