St. Lucy's Priory High School

Self-lacing shoes are no longer a thing of the future

“Back to the Future: Part II” has had fans waiting in anticipation for the technology of the future for decades, like hoverboards, flying cars, and self-lacing shoes. Unfortunately, none of these advances became a reality in 2015, when the movie was set; however, one shoe company is ecstatic to announce that self-lacing shoes will finally become available this year.

In March, Nike announced that they had finally perfected the long sought after self-lacing shoe, the HyperAdapt 1.0, at a press conference in New York.

Months before, in October 2015, Nike gave Michael J. Fox, star of the “Back to the Future” trilogy, one of the first pairs of self-lacing shoes to celebrate the 30th anniversary of “Back to the Future.”

A video aired on “Jimmy Kimmel Live” shortly after, featuring Fox trying out the shoes for the first time. The video circulated rapidly on social media and got the public excited about Nike’s new shoes.

The HyperAdapt 1.0’s are equipped with actuators and pressure monitors that help conform the shoe’s cushions to one’s foot. There are also controls on the sides that allow the consumer to loosen and tighten the shoe. As if they weren’t already futuristic enough, the sole of the shoe glows to show the shoe’s power level and to act as a charging point.

Tiffany Beers, Nike’s senior innovation chief and the project’s technical lead, explained, “When you step in, your heel will hit a sensor and the system will automatically tighten.”

The self-tying shoes are being released this year after a long period of research and testing. Nike first attempted to apply the self-tying function to snowboard boots. In 2009, they filled a patent for an “Automatic Lacing System.”

In 2014, Nike started to produce prototypes, and after hundreds of trials, Fox debuted the sneakers on television on Oct. 21, 2015.

Nike chief Mark Parker commented, “We started creating something for fiction and we turned it into fact, inventing new technology that will benefit all athletes.”

The shoes are engineered to provide athletes with the utmost comfort and versatility. They are intended to prevent slipping and pressure problems that often occur with laces.

“They are an important step, because feet undergo an incredible amount of stress during competition,” said Beers.

The shoes are scheduled to come out on Nov. 28, just in time for the holiday season. They will be available in three colors and only at select stores.

In order to buy the HyperAdapts, the buyer must be a member of Nike+, the company’s fitness app, and make an appointment to buy them at a Nike store. Nike has yet to release pricing details on the sneakers.

Don’t stress over not getting the shoes this year, Nike will be releasing more self-tying shoes in the future.

“It is a platform, something that helps envision a world in which product changes as the athlete changes,” hinted Tinker Hatfield, designer of various Nike shoes such as Air Jordan.

–Gianna Ceccarelli

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