Can we just call technology what it is? We’re lazy creatures, not sloth lazy, but we invent things so we can work less.
That is not the premise of Powerlace’s self-lacing shoes. They lobby we’ve not updated the shoe in decades. [Sit down, Nike.] For the most part, this is true if you don’t consider that abomination called Crocs.
The P-ones are the low-tech wearables for your lifestyle and fitness that you never considered, but should get.
What Powerlace nails with these shoes that the esteemed team at Nike fails to grasp is, not everybody wants to wear moon boots when they’re exercising. The P-one offers simple design elements, is easy as all get-out to use, but will take a beating longer than other kicks.
In this context, unique is not code for bizarre. It’s the simplicity of the P-one that sets it apart from its contemporaries. Unique, because it’s not bizarre.
They look like, well, a pair of normal sneakers. Some might even say they look a little old school.
Somewhere around the mid-nineties, athletic shoes took a right turn at Albuquerque. Heels lofted to second story heights. We went full-polymer with our design molds.
Some of what passes for athletic wear today looks more like space wear. For the record, we like the Nike HyperAdapt shoes, but not everybody wants to stand two-inches taller when rocking a pair of sneakers.
In fact, there is a whole school of thought that mandates we stay as close to the ground as possible when moving.
The P-one, because it uses no motor, springs, batteries or high tech parts, does not require a motor housing crammed under the sole of the shoe, as do the HyperAdapts.
You activate the self-lacing feature with just your bodyweight. Timeless, but simple mechanics, blended with modern textiles does the rest.
Heck. You even have six different color options from which to choose.
Easy to Use
Setting up your P-ones is the hardest part. You have to bend all the way down to set the laces for the first time. Once they’re set, then you simply step in to tighten them.
The laces don’t tighten over the top of your foot they way most shoes tighten. From to a slim pair of actuators on both sides, the whole tongue retracts, closing your foot in until you want it out. That’s it.
Unless you want to refine the tightness, you don’t even have to bend over again. This means you will always wear them the right way, even when you slide them out to take out the trash.
Getting out of your P-ones is equally easy. There is a small lever on the heel. You step on it with your other foot, then pull out.
It reminds us a little of the way one gets in and out of ski-binding, except way less bulky. The only way these kicks could be easier is if they put themselves away in your closet. Maybe in the 2.0?
Part of what destroys our shoes is wearing them incorrectly. We slide them on and off without unlacing them, or worse, lace and tie them so they are loose when on.
All the infractions incurred from improper lacing disappear with a self-lacing system. Add to that, the Powerlace crew hasn’t skimped on materials.
These aren’t those laces that break in a couple of months. These are kevlar laces. In case you’re not familiar with kevlar, that’s the stuff they use to make bulletproof jackets.
Yup. The P-one is bulletproof, at least in the laces department. You’ll wear through the souls before you break a lace.
Because they have no electronics, there is no concern for getting them wet either. Go ahead. Stomp in puddles.
We hate to say it, Nike, but Powerlace knocked this one out of the park.
Where the HyperAdapt does a great job massaging our science fiction movie fantasies, the P-one delivers in a more simple design. There is less muss and fuss with the P-ones.
You can get in on the ground floor with the bad boys by supporting their Kickstarter, which is already on its way to crushing its goals. With that money, they will fund production but also new shoe styles, like casuals and golf shoes.
To find out more about Powerlace’s shoes, check out their site or watch this video.