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At 6 feet 2 inches, star outfielder #miketrout is 235 pounds of strength and power. He needs to get out of the batter’s box quickly and propel around the bases without losing a second of speed or control. He also needs firm footing and the ability to cut in any direction to catch a deep ball. And, of course, he needs to be comfortable when he’s standing between all these moments.
To enable play at his elite level of performance, #nike designers and engineers have been continually gathering personalized data based on his foot and body movements to refine his signature cleat. The game-changer in this latest iteration came in the form of a new plate structure that is directly mapped to Trout’s performance data for stability, flexibility and explosiveness. This innovation enables Trout to generate the power and speed to play his game.
The genesis of this dates to 2013, when #nike designers and engineers first used computational #design and 3D printing in the Nike Vapor Laser Talon for that year’s football combine. “The athletes did exceptionally well, which proved that these new plates worked,” says Roger Chen, Sr Director, NXT Digital Innovation – Advanced #design.
The team took knowledge gleaned from working on football cleats to inform track and field spikes for the 2016 Rio games. The athlete insights from Allyson Felix and Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce led to the #design of the revolutionary track spike. “With the extensive research from the #nike Sports Research Lab (NSRL), we’re able to take athlete data into our computational #design process to dictate stiffness and other performance structures at a level of precision we couldn’t do before,” says Chen. The result is an even more refined, more science-driven #product.
Explicitly, this is the first Trout cleat to move from a solid plate to a lighter, more comfortable and highly personalized one. “Though very different from #baseball, what we learned from each of the other sports directly influenced how we built Trout’s latest cleat,” says Chen. “Specifically, the new cellular language that we created for the track and field plates had the benefits of additional stiffness, but were also lightweight and could be tuned for desired performance.”
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