It’s been 20 years since Under Armor changed the way football players wicked sweat out of their pits. Since then the company’s expanded to producing all kinds of apparel as well as shoes. To celebrate its 20th anniversary Under Armour is tackling a brand new market: 3D-printing.
The UA Architech is the first performance shoe to hit the market that makes use of 3D-printed components. Specifically, the midsole of the shoe is 3D printed in Under Armour’s lab in downtown Baltimore, Maryland. Under Armour is only making 96 pairs currently. As each pair has to be printed and produced by the lab’s small team, the shoes cost $300 a pair (around £210).
The idea behind printing the midsole is that it allows the shoe to create new structures that will be as light and springy as a traditional trainer, but with the added stability of a shoe that a weight lifter might need. Gizmodo got an exclusive look at the 3D printing process and their primary testing lab. We even ran the shoe through Under Armour’s gamut of squishing and bending machines to see how it stacks up against a traditional trainer.
Because for sports shoes costing that much you want a shoe that will not only look cool but also last.