On Wednesday in Los Angeles, Under Armour officially launched its latest footwear product for the football training space—the UA Micro G Gridiron Trainer. Built for the likes of Arian Foster and Julio Jones, the Gridiron Trainer is insanely comfortable, but also durable, combining neoprene and leather for lightweight performance, and a midfoot strap for stability.
Under Armour, we know, is constantly pushing the limits of provocative apparel and footwear. But at its core, the Gridiron Trainer, like all of UA’s football endeavors, is about performance. UA’s brand was built on football, and as Under Armour Creative Director of Footwear Dave Dombrow puts it, “We feel we should own training.”
How do you do that? Get inside the minds of Foster and Jones, two of the NFL’s most electrifying players, and find out what they need from a training sneaker. “The future athlete is totally different from what an athlete was 10 or 15 years ago. That’s true for all sports,” says Dombrow. “The game’s different. They play a different role. They can play different positions.” It’s that versatility that makes the Gridiron Trainer a perfect shoe for both Foster—a powerful, shifty back who relies on a low center of gravity to juke his way past defenders—and Jones—perhaps the fastest receiver in the league, and one of the freakiest athletes for corners to face on Sundays.
The Gridiron Trainer is a mash-up from the minds of Dombrow and Under Armour Senior Footwear Designer Ross Klein (who literally broke down the shoe from scratch right before our eyes during brunch at the Mondrian Hotel in West Hollywood). It’s breathable, adaptive, supportive and strong. “Julio moves so quick in different directions to find openings on the field as well as Arian with his penetration from the line,” says Klein, which is why the sneaker has what he calls “turf traction” for a smooth ride.
Designed for the future athlete, the Gridiron Trainer is a model of a training shoe’s future anatomy. Doesn’t hurt that it looks fly, too. And don’t just take our word for it—the ultimate co-signs of approval came Wednesday night at the Under Armour ESPYs Afterparty, when guests including Deion Sanders, Torrey Smith and Nelly flipped their dress shoes for GTs at the door. With Texans and Falcons colorways already on retail shelves, exclusively at Foot Locker and FootLocker.com, expect to see Cowboys and Dolphins edition Gridiron Trainers on the way later this fall.
Here’s more from Klein, via our friends from CounterKicks:
Abe Schwadron is the Online Editor of TDdaily.com. Follow him on Twitter @abe_squad.