"It doesn't happen too often that we can present a completely new running shoe company here," said Urs Weber at ISPO Munich 2019. For the sixth time already, the chief reporter of Runner´s World Deutschland has organized and moderated the Running Shoe Symposium at ISPO Munich. As Weber is responsible for the largest running shoe database in Germany, he knows the running shoe market better than anybody else. Still, the concentrated expertise of the founders of True Motion and their innovation U-Tech Nevos, which won the ISPO Award in Gold in the Health and Fitness category, inspired journalists as well as specialist dealers and experts at the Running Shoe Symposium.
ISPO.com has compiled the most important questions and answers about the ISPO Award Gold Winner U-Tech Nevos by True Motion, which, according to the founders, "is supposed to offer a new running experience and biomechanical innovation in one solution."
True Motion is a new company, but its inventors are old acquaintances in the running business:
- Prof. Gert-Peter Brüggemann was Head of the Institute for Biomechanics and Orthopaedics at the Sports University in Cologne. He is regarded as one of the leading biomechanics experts worldwide and has advised numerous running brands on biomechanics.
- Andre Kriwet was chief product developer at Brooks and previously with Nike and Asics.
- Christian Arens is commercial managing director and previously worked as an auditor.
"Peter is our master. I'm the apprentice. And Christian counts the thalers," said Andre Kriwet with a wink. "We worked for absolutely fantastic companies and grew up there. But as it is often the case with children: at some point, they have to find their own way and leave the house."
37 running shoe companies are already active on the German market. "Now we are number 38. Does it really still need that?," asks Andre Kriwet, one of the three founders of True Motion. He gives himself the answer: "No, no one needs 38 brands of running shoes." Then why True Motion? "Running shoes haven't functionally improved for years. It's all about knitting and energy resetting the midsole. Isn't there more than these two things? What about biomechanics? This question has driven us," said Kriwet. And the goal: "We want to create the best possible running shoe for an optimal running experience."
"True Motion comes one step closer to the truth about the best possible running shoe," the founders said. "True Motion for us means answering the question: What is true?" explained Prof. Gert-Peter Brüggemann. "What do we really know about pronation, knee load and fatigue, damping and energy return?"
Kriwet has worked with industry leaders Brooks, Nike and Asics for nearly 25 years and knows all of their competitors. He said about the market of running shoe manufacturers: "So-called innovations are driven by margins and profit. Runners are not really the focus of companies. Functionally biomechanical shoes are in short supply."
True Motion relies on a different concept. Here are the three key points:
- A new running experience and biomechanical innovation in one solution
- Approach to the cause of the problem instead of treating symptoms
- No running shoe categorization Neutral vs. stability
Particularly the last point represents a new approach. "Overpronation is obsolete and dead. But there are no conclusive new approaches. Now what? Nothing comes from the industry anymore," said Andre Kriwet. "Running shoe categories such as neutral and stability are a futile attempt to help runners by treating symptoms. But these old categories have had their day. We start at the cause of non-physiological movement and do not let the problems arise in the first place."
The characteristic features of the sole are the two U-shaped elements on the forefoot and under the heel. "This arrangement is inspired by the form and function of the human foot," explained Prof. Gert-Peter Brüggemann. Thanks to the two hoof-shaped elements, you feel like you are on a soft and responsive trampoline, but you also feel safety and stability when your foot sinks into the center of the U-shaped construction.
"Our shoe can do both comfort and stability," said Prof. Brüggemann. "We have developed a new technology that is as ingenious as the human body itself. It centers the force in the center of the joints so that no harmful torsional forces act when walking and joint pain, for example in the knee, does not occur in the first place."
By bringing the force application point under the heel and thus avoiding lever forces and rotations, and instead of directing the force forward in the crotch, the leg axis and knee can also be stabilized. This reduces the risk of injury, explained Prof. Brüggemann.
"The runner doesn't have to understand everything," said product developer Kriwet, "he just has to know that he is getting function and running feeling in an intelligent solution. Thanks to U-Tech, the shoe feels centered, provides support and safety and is extremely responsive - like a trampoline."
The Nevos will be available from "selected running specialists in Germany" from mid-2019 and also via the homepage as Andre Kriwet explained. True Motion therefore focuses on the specialized retail trade and not on mass distribution. The selling price should be 150 Euro. Initially, customers can choose between four colors, two for women and two for men.
In spring 2020 the Nevos will be available in more colors and also a new model.