Lace Anchors 2.0

February 27, 2013 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Footwear, Footwear Products, Sports 

Some of you may have heard of Kickstarter.com. Kickstarter is a crowd funding website where people pitch ideas and others pledge to fund them. I follow the ideas and have pledged on a number of ideas. Yesterday I found Lace Anchors 2.0.

Lace Anchors are a plastic strip that goes onto your shoelaces and secures them so you don’t have to tie them. No bows means no laces coming untied.

Here is some of the text from their Kickstarter project.

Are you tired of your shoelaces? It seems as if it’s a never-ending cycle of tie and untie.  How about those of us that double knot, that makes for some fun challenges sometimes doesn’t it? Usually it’s my kid’s shoes. Shoelaces also have a mind of their own, coming undone at some of the most inconvenient times possible. It’s fun to know that you can cheat the system of tying your shoes and never have them come undone again. You may be thinking I can just tie a knot and slip my foot in and out without untying my shoes every time, while this is true, you won’t have the same consistent solid fitting shoe day after day that Lace Anchors 2.0 provides!

It seems to never fail. Just when you get warmed up and your going strong, it happens, your shoe comes untied! I may have put on a few pounds over the winter so far, but I’m a fairly frequent runner. I have put over 250 miles on a pair of my running shoes with Lace Anchors installed and the results are flawless. Your shoes always have the same consistent fit and your laces never come undone!

Lace Anchors 2.0

Lace Anchors 2.0

Installation is so easy!  Our packets will include step-by-step instructions with pictures on the back, or to make it even EASIER just watch the video below! Make sure to install the Lace Anchors 2.0 with your foot in your shoe as shown in the video, that will allow you to find the perfect fit that your looking for. This is the type of product that you will use not even realizing how simple and comfortable they make everyday life with your shoes, until you go without them.  Once you use them in one pair of shoes, you’ll be hooked!

Two questions in their FAQ section are important. First, can I run with Lace Anchors 2.0 installed? Absolutely, I ran 2-4 miles everyday for 2 months straight with my Lace Anchors 2.0 installed. For those of you that have struggled with heel slippage problems throughout your life, watch the “another option” video in the above section.

Second, are Lace Anchors 2.0 adjustable? Yes, they allow you to find the sweet spot when installing.  This means you will be able to find the fit you desire and how tight or loose you decide to make your slip-ons.  For my regular everyday use, I like my shoes to slip on and off extremely easy, for my running shoes I prefer a snug fit.

Whether for you or your children, check out this Lace Anchor Kickstarter project.

IceSpikes for your Footwear

February 15, 2013 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Footwear, Footwear Products, Sports 

I spotted a small ad in one of my magazines that looked interesting. The product was IceSpike. They are a system of patented composite-material, cold-rolled tool quality steel, heat hardened ice spikes, which provide superior grip and long lasting durability. Their tagline is, “The ultimate non-slip shoe system, for all outdoor activities.” Of course, since it relates to footwear, I had to check it out.

IceSpike

IceSpike

IceSpikes are rated to last 10 times longer than commonly used sheet metal screws. Average runners will get 500 miles out of a set of IceSpikes. The terrain and conditions will affect the life of the spikes. Unlike other traction products, these are low profile under the shoe. The thread design is fine and sharp. The design has a wider and deeper slot to promote self-cleaning of ice and debris. Extra wide washers offer better stability on the sole of the shoe and their locking serrations that firmly anchor them to the rubber of the sole to prevent loosening of the spikes. They will not break or crack with intense cold or use.

The suggested installation is three on each side of the heel and three on the inside ball of the foot side of the shoe or boot. A tool is available to make installation easy or use a ¼ inch hex bit in your drill.

An IceSpike

An IceSpike

A package includes 32-patented IceSpikes. The deluxe package includes the installation tool. With each shoe getting 12 spikes, you’ll have eight extra spikes for replacements. Heel spikes tend to wear faster.

You’ll find that IceSpikes are a semi-permanent traction system that can be mounted on any running or walking shoe, hiking or work boot.

In case you are wondering why not just use sheet metal screws, think about this. Sheet metal screws are made of a softer material and will wear out many times faster and decrease their traction ability. The slots in sheet metal screws fill with ice and debris faster and are not self-cleaning, which affects traction. Sheet metal screws have a rough thread design.

IceSpikes received an Outside Magazine 2010 Gear of the Year award.

This is the kind of product that makes me want to find snow and ice for a run. Unfortunately, California’s central valley gets neither. If you live in a region where they make sense, I encourage you to give them a try.

New Running Barefoot Findings

February 2, 2013 by · 2 Comments
Filed under: Footwear, Health, Sports 

The Washington Post article caught my eye, “Minimalist running style may be undermined by new findings from Kenya.” The January 21 article by Lenny Bernstein on the web was about a new study published at PLOS One.

Bernstein starts the article with a figure that catches your attention, Americans spent $59 million on “minimalist” running shoes last year, on the premise that the most healthful way to run is the way people have done it for thousands of years: barefoot.

Years after runners everywhere were introduce to running barefoot in 2009 in Born to Run and a 2010 study of Kenya’s famous Kalenjin distance runners, the new study may cause some to rethink how they run.

In the new study, a group of George Washington University researchers tested a different population of barefoot African runners and determined that most of them naturally strike the ground with their heels.

The study at PLOS One is Variation in Foot Strike Patterns during Running among Habitually Barefoot Populations.

The study measured subjects running along a trackway at least three times at their self-selected (comfortable) endurance running pace, and three more times at a faster pace. The track had a plantar pressure pad placed midway along its length.

Close-up images of subjects using a rearfoot strike (A) and a midfoot strike (B).

Close-up images of subjects using a rearfoot strike (A) and a midfoot strike (B).

The article quotes Kevin Hatala, a doctoral student in anthropology at GWU, and how they expected the group’s study of 38 Daasanach subjects of northern Kenya to support Harvard researcher’s Daniel Lieberman’s conclusions about the Kalenjin. Hatala said, “Instead, we found the opposite to be true. In the group we were looking at, the majority of them were rear-foot striking at their preferred endurance running speed.”

Bernstein wrote, At higher speeds, some of the Daasanach switched from a heel strike to a forefoot strike, but even then, heel-striking was more typical. Hatala was reluctant to speculate why his findings differed from the prevailing wisdom. In addition to the effect of speed, running style could be the result of information that is culturally transmitted from generation to generation. Or it might have something to do with the predominant surface where each group lives. Hatala and Lieberman are at the early stages of comparing their data.

“I guess what we found really interesting about this is it directly shows that there is not one way to run barefoot,” Hatala said. “We have a lot more to learn about how people who are barefoot run and what might be the best way to run barefoot.”

The abstract for the study says, “Our data supports the hypothesis that a forefoot strike reduces the magnitude of impact loading, but the majority of subjects instead used a rearfoot strike at endurance running speeds. Their percentages of midfoot and forefoot strikes increased significantly with speed. These results indicate that not all habitually barefoot people prefer running with a forefoot strike, and suggest that other factors such as running speed, training level, substrate mechanical properties, running distance, and running frequency, influence the selection of foot strike patterns.”

Sales of minimalist shoes are up 303 percent between November 2010 and November 2012, compared with a 19 percent increase in running shoe sales overall in the same period.

Are you a barefoot runner? If so, what is your foot strike pattern when running – forefoot, midfoot, or rearfoot? And importantly, does your foot strike change as your pace changes?

  • Subscription Form

    Enter your email address:

    Delivered by FeedBurner

  • Recent Posts

  • Categories

  • Recent Comments

  • Archives

  • Pages

  • Circulation

%d bloggers like this: