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It All Begins in the Heel: Deckers X Labs Debuts K-ST 21 ‘Hypersneaker’

Straight from its Deckers X Lab innovation department, Deckers Brands unveiled a whole new breed of street sneaker—so unique that the company calls it a “hypersneaker.”

The K-ST 21 “hypersneaker” is designed first and foremost to make motion more efficient and enjoyable, the company claims, with the shoe’s core including the Carbon Bow Technology kinetic suspension system, a technology from Deckers X Lab designed to transform vertical landing energy into forward motion.

Inspired by ski technologies and marathon racing shoes, the carbon suspension system is uniquely shaped with the goal of capturing body load and providing extra arch support for a smooth suspension effect as the wearer is walking, while the front arms and curved surface assist with forward rolling motion. In particular, the shoe was designed for power walking, working out at the gym and even Parkour, Deckers says.

According to Deckers, the maker of brands including Ugg, Teva, Koolaburra by Ugg, Hoka One One and Sanuk, it “all begins at the heel.” The suspension system complements the surf-inspired SwallowTail heel, a wide base designed to capture ground contact early and provide a super smooth, progressive, and stable platform for movement.

Jean-Luc Diard, the vice president of innovation at Deckers Brands and co-founder of Hoka One One, says this earlier ground contact triggers proprioception—the perception or awareness of the movement and position of the body.

Deckers X Labs Debuts 'Hypersneaker' with
Jean-Luc Diard, the vice president of innovation at Deckers Brands

When the wearer is flat-footed and in a midfoot stance, the larger contact area provides enhanced stability, with the central part of the Carbon Bow Technology suspension supporting their weight and arch, providing extra cushion and reducing foot fatigue. Should a wearer land on an edge, such as stairs, the combination of the midsole shock absorption and carbon suspension shock absorption ensures a smooth and secure contact.

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Additional shoe specifications include lightweight, highly resilient and durable foam that range from a 17 to 21 millimeter stack height, Matryx midfoot wrapping, Cordura Ballistic side bands and a stretch Lycra nose panel for the shoe’s tongue and toe box. The sneaker includes two versions of the insoles so wearer can choose their fit preferences.

“At Deckers X Lab, we’re taking the most advanced technology available and building it into sneakers—the shoes that people wear every day. We believe suspension systems are a natural and logical evolution in technologies, enabling the creation of sneakers that are at the same time incredibly comfortable and dynamic,” Diard said in a statement. “When you put on the K-ST 21, you’ll want to move, to do more than usual. It pushes you forward comfortably and in full confidence.”

The spirit of K-ST 21 aligns with the Deckers X Lab mantra of inspiring and enabling people to experience their passion on a new level, whether it’s extending a walk from one mile to two, providing confidence in all biomechanical movements and pushing boundaries wherever they are.

The K-ST 21 retails for a starting price of $199 and is available, along with other Deckers X Lab designs, exclusively at deckersxlab.com. Deckers X Lab also offers footwear including recent releases such as the X-Scape NBK Low and KO-Z Snpr Mid, which are part of the limited-edition X-Scape and KO-Z series, respectively.