So as mentioned Marilyn and I were at our first ever virtual conference a couple of weeks ago and had the pleasure to listing to Dr Simon Bartold who has been at the cutting edge of the running shoe industry design for years.
One area he addressed was the evolution of so called “super shoes” aimed at elite performance runners, reducing energy loss and shock reduction. Largely this is achieved through carbon fibre plates, PEBAX soles to replace EVA and variations in heel hight and sole profile. It is actually pretty amazing geeky stuff. In a recent article Dr Bartold refers to some recent research.
Metabolic and performance responses of male runners wearing 3 types of footwear: Nike Vaporfly 4%, Saucony Endorphin racing flats, and their own shoes
Journal of Sport and Health Science Available online 29 November 2020 In Press, Journal Pre-proof
The nuts and bolts of this basically says the there was a consistent measurable reduction in energy use in the runners tested. Which ultimately means you can run longer and faster! However that technology does come at a considerable price.
As Dr Bartold reminded us the response to these technologies are unique to the individual runner, you may love or hate the feel but they do make a difference in performance for a proficient runner.