Nike’s HyperAdapt 1.0 Self-Lacing Sneakers

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Noor Kamal

Among the myriad of technological innovations hitting headlines nowadays is the Nike HyperAdapt 1.0, the first pair of sneakers with adaptive lacing–a breakthrough in fashion technology.

Tiffany Beers, Nike’s Senior Innovator and technical lead in the project, recently revealed the mechanics of the sneakers in a press statement. Instead of the owner of the sneakers tying the laces themselves, the HyperAdapt does it for them with adaptive lacing. She explained that when a foot is placed into a HyperAdapt sneaker, the laces automatically tighten with the help of built-in sensors. The person wearing the sneakers can press two buttons on the side to adjust accordingly. If the person wants to make small changes, like trying to relieve pressure or reduce slippage from loose laces, manual adjustment is available on the fly. With these features, the sneaker fits snugly on the person’s feet without much trouble, which is different from traditional sneakers where the person sometimes has to constantly make adjustments. 

There have been mixed reviews detailing the benefits and hindrances of the HyperAdapt sneakers. Ward Melville sophomore Hayley Brodsky thinks highly of Nike’s new product. “They look cool,” she says. “The sneakers are a benefit because athletes do not have to worry about having to retie their sneakers during practice, a game, or a meet.” Leah Sugrue, a Ward Melville sophomore, has a different opinion: “I don’t like it. The new sneakers limit the person’s ability by simply relying on the sneakers’ capability rather than on the person’s performance.” Will Jin, another Ward Melville student agrees, saying, “I think it’s unnecessary. Tying shoes isn’t a big issue and it’s sort of a waste of money.” Student Julia Hu thinks that it is built for lazy people. “These self-tying sneakers seem more frivolous than functional,” she explains. “They probably attract only the most loyal of Nike sneaker heads.”

So far only Michael J. Fox–who played Marty McFly in “Back to the Future,” a movie that featured the concept of self-lacing sneakers–and Cristiano Ronaldo–the all-star soccer player who is the frequent face of Nike advertisements–have worn the sneakers. Now, it’s your chance to buy them this year as Nike plans to sell the sneakers exclusively to Nike’s Nike+ community during the holiday season. See for yourself if this revolutionary product lives up to its hype.