March 31, 2020 – Footwear and sports equipment company, ASICS, has today utilized virtual reality to announce three new performance shoes for athletes. The announcement was made through the medium of VR this year due to ongoing global concern surrounding the current coronavirus outbreak.
Originally planning to announce its new shoes at an ASICS Innovation Summit in Tokyo, the company has taken its shoe innovation into virtual reality, for the company’s first product preview in VR. Media, athletes and shoppers around the world can experience the three new shoes up close and personal – in the virtual innovation lab of the ASICS Institute of Sport Science. The Institute is the home of ASICS innovation in Kobe, Japan, with scientists, engineers and designers constantly working to develop technology that helps athletes to safely perform to the best of their abilities.
Michael Shewchuk, a spokesperson for ASICS Canada in Vancouver, BC, commented: “I am really excited to see ASICS innovate in areas beyond the leading-edge shoes we are known for.” He added, “This kind of experiment is ideal, not just for our current physical distancing, COVID-19 awareness, but builds toward our long-term commitment to reducing our carbon footprint globally. The execution of these kinds of virtual reality experiences for athletes and consumers will only get better!”
The newly announced shoes include:
- The METARACER – ASICS’ most advanced distance racing shoe yet, with energy-saving GUIDESOLE technology combined with a stabilizing carbon plate;
- The METASPRINT – ASICS’ spikeless track shoe; lighter than most sprinting footwear, its honeycomb sole provides more traction and transfers power in between each stride for increased speed;
- The METARISE – a revolutionary volleyball shoe designed for the attack which gives players an extra 3 per cent lift for higher jumps, according to the company.
“We believe that now, more than ever, it’s really important to remember the positive impact of sport for individuals and society: exercise uplifts people, so they achieve a sound mind through a sound body. And what better way to showcase ASICS innovation than taking people to a virtual innovation lab that brings our technology to life,” said Yasuhito Hirota, the President & Chief Operating Officer of ASICS.
ASICS took the decision several weeks ago to close its retail stores and offices in affected markets around the world. However, the company reiterated that right now the uplifting power of movement and sport is more important than ever, with the World Health Organization stating that physical activity is an important way for people to cope with global restrictions on movement and enforced social distance measures.
As a result, ASICS recently opened access to the ASICS Studio at-home workout app for everyone for the duration of this difficult situation.
All three new shoes will be available in limited quantities from selected ASICS retail and online stores and specialist run outlets, starting with the METARACER in Japan from April 17th, followed globally from June 26th. The METASPRINT will also launch globally starting from April 17th and the METARISE from June 12th.
To find out more about the products, please visit at ASICS.com.
Image credit: ASICS
About the author
Sam is the Founder and Managing Editor of Auganix. With a background in research and report writing, he has been covering XR industry news for the past five years.