By Gregory Han
The UltraBOOST line has proven to be a very successful – and profitable – silhouette for adidas, with numerous expressions of the performance running shoe released as a regular part of the German sportswear company’s seasonal rotation. Now the triple striped shoe brand has unveiled the Laceless UltraBOOST, a performance running shoe eschewing a lacing system completely for a sleek and minimalist profile for easy slip on, slip off comfort.
As someone with a small collection of UltraBOOSTs in his shoe closet, I have to admit after a few months of regular wear and connected with my first careful cleaning, I normally remove the included shoelaces and wear the shoes as slip-ons. The results are similar, though not exact in fit and fashion as these new Laceless UltraBOOSTs. I discovered the absence of laces permits the slightly narrow fit of adidas footwear a more accommodating feel while connected onto my slightly wider feet (sans laces, my preferred shoes to wear while flying, thanks to their flexible fit). There’s admittedly a loss in control/fit when the laces are removed in a shoe designed to work with them secured. With these editions specifically made to be worn sans laces, that compromise is eliminated.
Like previous iterations of the Ultra Boost silhouette, these adidas UltraBOOST Laceless wrap the wearer’s feet in comfortable and easy-breathing engineered Primeknit yarn. In lieu of a lacing system the Primeknit here is executed a little tighter; worn sans socks the fit is responsively comfortable and accommodating whether walking, running, or while stationary. Unlike the softer sock-like ankle collar of previous iterations of the UltraBOOST, here the wearer’s ankles are secured with a more finely textured and firm collar construction. In combination, the absence of laces doesn’t register as a subtraction, but an addition in feel and lightweight mobility.
From Stephan Schneider, Senior Product Manager of adidas Running:
In removing laces, such a fundamental component of the silhouette, refinement of the remaining core elements was paramount. We reimagined the Primeknit architecture, making it more supportive and compressive to enable runners to feel released and empowered to achieve their full potential. What we have created is the most intuitive UltraBOOST yet and a new chapter in the history of our family.
The UltraBOOST Laceless feature the characteristically cushioned and forgiving ride offered by the Boost sole, a feel further enhanced using data culled from the company’s integration of motion tracking technology software to optimize the shoes springy feel. Admittedly, most targeted UltraBOOST Laceless wearers are unlikely serious mileage runners, but the shoe is dependably ready to go fast and far if the need or intention arises.
The adidas UltraBOOST Laceless are scheduled for official availability online and in stores on September 1st.