It is the first continually updated performance product from Nike due to the near-symbiotic relationship between the shoe’s digital app and the shoe’s opt-in firmware updates.
When a player steps into the Nike Adapt BB, a custom motor and gear train senses the tension needed by the foot and adjusts accordingly to keep the foot snug. The tensile strength of the underfoot lacing is able to pull 32 pounds of force (roughly equal to that of a standard parachute cord) to secure the foot throughout a range of movement, Nike explained about the working of the shoes on its website.
"We picked basketball as the first sport for Nike Adapt intentionally because of the demands that athletes put on their shoes," says Eric Avar, Nike VP creative director of innovation. "During a normal basketball game the athlete’s foot changes and the ability to quickly change your fit by loosening your shoe to increase blood flow and then tighten again for performance is a key element that we believe will improve the athlete’s experience."
The Nike Adapt BB was put through a gauntlet of tests, including impact tests, intense temperatures, end-of-life tests that lasted tens of thousands of cycles long, waterproof tests to simulate the sweatiest feet and more.
“Bill Bowerman’s original insight was that fit is the foundation of athletic performance. The Nike Adapt BB helps the athlete find their custom fit and provides uncompromising lockdown, feel and traction throughout a game, but we knew it would only be validated once the game's best players tried it out," said Avar.
"Being one of the first athletes to wear the shoes and being picked as a representative of the future of Nike basketball means a lot. That the app allows the ability to put the shoe on and touch the button, change the colours, see the percentage on the battery... it's just cool," said American Basketball player Jayson Tatum on wearing the Nike Adapt BB.
"Shoes in our Nike Adapt platform — of which Nike Adapt BB is the first — can update and evolve after purchase, letting consumers opt in to provide you with new services and features through smartphone-like technology," said Michael Donaghu, Nike’s VP of innovation.
"We’ve finally added firmware to footwear, letting us continuously improve the product you’ve already bought, responding as need be to changing preferences and environment. Our long-term vision for innovation at Nike is a world in which intelligent products adapt at the speed of sport to improve an athlete’s performance," concluded Donaghu. (RR)
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