The high-tech sneaker from Me Next features a ‘gradient sandwich structure,’ a concept used in the aerospace industry to absorb huge amounts of energy and now said to have been applied to the midsole design for the very first time in footwear.
Compared to solid structures or non-gradient sandwich structures with the same weight and material, this design has the best buffer performance and shock absorption capability, Me Next says.
“Every day, the simple act of walking creates harmful shockwaves that cause injury and fatigue. In fact, for each kilometre walked, our feet experience 600-700 impacts with the ground. The effect is worse during exercise, with ground reflection that is 2-4 times one’s bodyweight. Injuries occur when shoes lack cushioning and buffer performance,” explains CEO Leon Xia.
The gradient sandwich structure consists of a bottom layer that is designed for absorbing energy from the ground, a middle layer that is made for energy storage and transmission, and a top layer that can return more energy as force is applied to efficiently reduce fatigue caused by long-distance walking.
The midsole buffer structure is made with micron-sized TPU powder as the raw material and uses SLS high-precision 3D printing technology within an N2 (Nitrogen) atmosphere.
Meanwhile, the midsole consists of more than 762 cushioning units, which are said to completely protect the pressure points of the feet. And the 3D printed design provides unrestricted airflow and breathability in all directions, which helps to remove moisture and prevent sweat and odours.
The Me Next 3D-printed sneakers are suitable for any workout or exercise such as cross-training, cycling, HIIT, jogging, and come in three colour designs. They are available on Kickstarter.