Adidas recently introduced a new minimal shoe called the Adipure Trainer. At first glance it may appear that they are jumping on the minimalist performance shoe bandwagon (yes, such a thing exists) but after taking a closer look, the Adipure Trainer is marketing their shoe for a whole other, and possibly wiser purpose.
The Adipure Trainer is just that, a trainer. It is the first barefoot training shoe designed specifically for the gym. Adidas does not call this a performance shoe, they are promoting it as a way to build strength and harness the body’s natural bio-mechanics. These are the elements that the other minimalist shoes promote as well. However, our feet need time to build up strength before we take them out of a stable shoe and take off for a run. This is why many people are getting hurt in minimal shoes, they are performing in them without proper preparation and their unadapted feet and body are suffering.
The Adipure is designed to take those gradual steps in training the body. The Adipure Trainer activates and strengthens muscles, builds balance and promotes dexterity. The shoes have independent toe separations and a quarter-inch profile. They are designed so that the foot can be close to the ground for optimal speed, balance, and agility during a conditioning workout. The shoe is supposed to mimic the foot and create a natural feeling that will still protect the skin and provide traction.
The shoe is promoted as a gym shoe. While other more traditional running shoes, cleats, or high-top shoes are promoted for performance.
“The Adipure Trainer is for athletes who want to maximize their workout in the gym to get better for game day,” said David Baxter, Adidas America vice president of sport performance.
With so much controversy surrounding the minimalist movement, Adidas was very wise in how they introduced their product. They yielded to the science of barefoot athleticism, yet took a very strong stance on our culture’s limitations, as we have been in stable shoes since infancy and our feet aren’t strong. Smart move.