According to Aetrex, BOA has been utilizing its Albert 2 Pro foot-scanning technology since it launched its Performance Fit Lab four years ago. The fit-focused company used the tech to scan an athlete’s unique feet, collecting 3D foot measurements and biomechanical data through motion capture and force plates so as to better understand how variations in foot shape, the construction of footwear uppers and material choice impact performance, Aetrex said.
Beyond using scan data to select and recruit testers with a “well-matched foot shape,” BOA is analyzing the data to optimize how its BOA Fit System integrates onto footwear to wrap the foot and yield “maximum performance benefits,” it added.
“If we understand where along the length of the shoe the average instep is highest, we can design our panels to lock that area in,” Dan Feeney, director of biomechanics research and Performance Fit Lab at BOA, said in a statement. “Similarly, we use the length from the heel to the metatarsophalangeal joints to determine where our last panel should end. Thus, we ensure footwear from industry leading brand partners garner the maximum performance benefits of the BOA Fit System.”
BOA’s Performance Fit Lab has used the Albert 2 Pro to scan more than 300 athletes and conducted performance tests in golf, court, trail run, hike, workwear, ski, snowboard and cycling. According to a peer-reviewed white paper published in Footwear Science, BOA found configurations featuring a BOA Fit System-powered wrap structure improved agility and speed by up to 9 percent.
“More recently,” the snowboarding company Burton has also begun using the Albert 2 Pro “to help inform the best fit through scientific data,” Aetrex said.
“Burton is currently trialing the latest and greatest Aetrex technology at Burton’s Vermont headquarters store as a part of our efforts to find a real-world data source to help understand foot shapes better,” Eric Carlson, senior product line merchandiser at Burton, said in a statement.
Aetrex revealed in June that it had seen “increased momentum” in Albert 2 Pro sales in the first quarter, with more than 220 scanner orders placed by run specialty and outdoor specialty stores in the U.S, including Fit2Run, Big Peach Running Co., Scheels, Danner, The North Face, Marathon Sports and Sun & Ski Sports. The device can analyze users’ underfoot to identify areas where they could be prone to discomfort or pain. A gait analysis option captures pressure data while walking, including the user’s center of gravity.