If you’re looking to snag a pair of running shoes this year, there are many brands jostling for your attention. Under Armour’s looking to jostle just a little harder than everyone else, if its newly unveiled-in-SA HOVR Machina running shoes are any indication.
And that’s because, like the rest of Under Armour’s gear due to release in 2020, they support UA’s real-time form coaching — basically, your shoes will tell you if your running style sucks. The Machina will connect to UA’s app and give your personalised tips for everything from cadence to pace, with details about foot-strike angle and ground contact times at their fingertips.
The way Under Armour explains it, the insights seem like the sort of stuff Jawbone used to provide for its wearables. And that sounds very good indeed.
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But that’s not all, obviously. Aside from the sensors you can sync to your smartphone (or wristwatch — see below), the Machina’s got a few Deus-worthy physical improvements due. In the heel there’s something UA calls a “2-pronged carbon-filled Pebax® spring plate”, which we’re choosing to believing is a magical sproingy thing that speeds you on your way. And that’s not far from the truth. The company’s also worked out a way to alter its HOVR midsole to give runners improved energy return by removing some of the cage while keeping the support you want in that area.
Long story short, if you’re after an improved run, UA’s HOVR Machina, and every other shoe to issue forth this year, will critique you and make you better. By syncing data from the shoes with its app and giving you extensive feedback. Samsung’s jumped on the bandwagon early as well, introducing an Under Armour version of its Galaxy Watch Active2 a couple of months back. It should work just fine with Under Armour’s new HOVR Machina, as well as any of the company’s other connected kicks.