Memories of the Future: Adidas Micropacer

Posted by Katie Danzer on

Before Nikeplus technology another high tech running shoe was making a splash in the 1980’s. During a time when most households lacked a desktop computer, the Adidas Micropacer introduced the idea of a computerized sneaker. Released in 1984, this shoe’s claim to fame was its innovative onboard technology. More specifically a sensor in the toe was connected to a microprocessor embedded in the tongue of the left shoe. The sensor on the Adidas Micropacer is triggered when the wearer pushes off the ground. The mini computer would then calculate distance, average speed, and even calorie burn. These advancements were so mind blowing, they earned a spot at the Computer Museum History Center in Boston. However their steep price and lack of functionality made the Adidas Micropacer a very controversial release. Truthfully the world wasn’t ready for such a sophisticated sneaker. As the predecessor to the Jump man, Adidas was far ahead of its time. 

 

It was suggested the heavy leather build lacked breathability. Several 1980s running magazines dismissed the sneaker for financial and technical reasons. While the built in sensor sounded great theoretically, it rarely worked to its potential. The Adidas Micropacer boasted a metallic silver upper that gave the appearance of a futuristic performance shoe. A lace cover was included hiding the shoelaces from view. Traditional Adidas stripes were the only detail linking the sneakers to present day times. Lately Adidas has been experiencing an upward trend in the sneaker world. Consequently, it’s likely they’ll offer more technology driven sneakers in 2016. The future is now.

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