The release of the new adidas Ultraboost has sent a shockwave of excitement through the running community. So, Wiggle grabbed a few minutes with the company’s global director for footwear to find out why.
Stephan Schneider has led the company through a number of high-profile launches, but the latest Ultraboost is shaping up to be something special.
According to Stephan, the latest iteration of the shoe is hugely adaptable, designed to handle the demands of runners at all levels.
But it’s the addition of recycled plastics and recyclable elements that has really got the industry talking.
So, with a few minutes to spare from his chats with the global press, Stephan made some time to share his thoughts on the new shoe with Wiggle.
But before that, here's James with his view of the shoe.
What can we expect from the new Ultraboost?
"The latest Ultraboost is our most holistic boost shoe ever. As well as fusing the design aesthetic of the original Ultraboost with the latest technological advances, it is also our most sustainable Ultraboost, using PRIMEBLUE in the upper – a high-performance recycled yarn containing at least 50% Parley Ocean Plastic. We believe that UB21 is the perfect shoe for everyday runners."
How does the Ultraboost compare to its predecessor?
"The main change that you will see in UB21 is the amount of BOOST which has been optimised by 6% to provide a greater level of cushioning and comfort. We have also completely redesigned the torsion system and replaced it with the adidas LEP (‘Linear Energy Push’) which increases the forefoot bending stiffness by 15% for a more responsive ride.
"The PRIMEKNIT+ upper is also a more precise knit designed and forged for incredible support and enhanced movement, combining pure comfort with lightweight performance."
What is new about the Boost midsole in the new Ultraboost?
"With UB21, we redesigned the midsole from the ground up. We have never used BOOST in this way before and sculpted it so dramatically as you see in the latest Ultraboost.
"By increasing the amount of BOOST, you now get a very soft, transitional feeling when the heel strikes the ground, which gives a smooth transition through the rest of the foot, with the adidas LEP creating a spring effect through the forefoot for a more responsive ride and incredible energy return."
How are you able to keep improving the Boost midsole year after year?
"During the development of the shoe, we looked into the optimum level and the amount of BOOST that you need underfoot. In developing the shoe, we had to find the right balance between weight, cushioning and stiffness, as often if you increase one variable it impacts another.
"Once the final silhouette was complete, the shoe went through a rigorous testing process, which includes our adidas runners community as well as mechanical testing. All of this feedback and data was then taken on board to refine the design and creative process."
What is adidas LEP?
"adidas LEP is a complete redesign of the torsion system that provides a 15% increase in forefoot bending stiffness for a more responsive ride. Ultraboost has always been about energy and we sometimes call the LEP the ‘little extra push’ that gives you that extra spring in your run."
Who is the new Ultraboost designed for?
"The new Ultraboost is an extremely universal shoe designed for runners of all shapes and performance levels and can be used for all kinds of different runs. From a design perspective, it also brings back all of those things that runners loved about previous iterations of the shoe but takes the performance experience to the next level. So, we think the latest Ultraboost appeals to both long-term fans of the franchise, as well as newcomers."