2020 is set to be a year for pushing running shoe design to the limits and Hoka One One has set the bar high with the TenNine, a trail shoe focussed on the downhills.
The new shoe may look like something the Spice Girls might have worn circa 1997, but the design incorporates technology focussed on minimizing the impact on the heel, offering improved stability and grip, particularly on softer surfaces.
That massive heel extension, along with Meta-Rocker technology, has been created to allow for a smoother transition to the midfoot, forefoot and toe-off, adding more stability in the midsole.
At 360g, the added tech in the 'concept shoe' comes at a price and those athletes that will benefit from the new design may be a relatively niche group.
According to HOKA ONE ONE, the TenNine is for runners attempting events up to and including the most gruelling of ultra races and is designed to accommodate extreme mileage.
As well as the heel and midsole, the TenNine features a high-abrasion-resistant mesh upper, an Ariaprene tongue for breathability and water management, an adjustable Lycra vamp to aid foot swelling over long distances and a wider platform designed to maximize ground contact.
According to Gretchen Weimer, Vice President of Product for HOKA ONE ONE: ‚ÄúWith the TenNine, we wanted to provide a solution to the problems that often come with serious ultra distances. Helped by our new midsole geometries that offer maximum ground contact and comfort, the TenNine is designed to create the smoothest experience and create the feeling for runners that they can cruise forever. It‚Äôs not about the speed, it‚Äôs about the journey, and it‚Äôs about getting into a rhythm and a state of mind to go forever in a continuous flow.‚ÄĚ
The TenNine is available in the US now priced at $250 and will be available in the next few days in the UK priced at ¬£220.