Current running shoes: The highlight with the “U”: How revolutionary is the U-Tech Nevos 3 from True Motion?

The minds behind True Motion wanted to start nothing less than a revolution a few years ago.

Current running shoes: The highlight with the “U”: How revolutionary is the U-Tech Nevos 3 from True Motion?

The minds behind True Motion wanted to start nothing less than a revolution a few years ago. A revolution in the running shoe market. Anyone who goes running more than once a week might just shrug their shoulders at this point. At some point I also stopped counting the revolutions.

The last time I got excited was when the US shoe giant launched an unprecedented promotional campaign with the legendary Swoosh in autumn 2019. In a truly futuristic shoe called "AlphaFly" and under largely clinical conditions, Kenyan Eliud Kipchoge became the first person in the world to run the 42.195 kilometer marathon in Vienna in under two hours. Without going into depth: Carbon fiber (also called carbon) was used in the midsole of this so-called “miracle shoe” – or rather, it was helped along. The sole in the rear and midfoot is extremely thick, soft and flexible, so runners should “get energy back” with every step. It quickly became clear to me that we were moving in the wondrous world of competitive sports and that this biomechanical revolution was completely irrelevant to the modest goals of an amateur runner. By the way, the price of the Nike “AlphaFly 3” is well over 300 euros.

But back to True Motion and three visionaries who set out to shake up the running scene.

About a year before Kipchoge's record run, Prof. Dr.'s paths crossed via detours and coincidences in 2018. Gert-Peter Brüggemann and Andre Kriwet. And like many others before them, the duo has since then, full of euphoria and passion, pursued the question of all questions: "How do you build the best running shoe on the planet?" Brüggemann is an internationally recognized scientist with decades of experience. Specialty: Biomechanics. Kriwet has been creating running shoes for a long time, developing and tinkering for the top dogs Brooks and Nike, among others. The running shoe start-up from Cologne is completed by Christian Arens, a passionate hobby runner and the commercial head of True Motion.

>> True Motion U-TECH Nevos 3 Damen <<

Heads have been spinning for five years. And they took a rather unusual path right from the start. Because True Motion was supposed to conquer the running shoe market without external financing. This model of starting a business is called bootstrapping. And as bold as the trio acted commercially, the idea of ​​the perfect running shoe was developed just as unconventionally.

Copying is the easiest, but at the same time simplest way to success, not only in the running shoe sector. True Motion has also taken this route. However, Prof. Brüggemann and Andre Kriwet did not copy the ideas of their (predominantly powerful) competitors. Instead, they took inspiration from Mother Nature, specifically the human anatomy: The heels and meniscus are U-shaped to stabilize the knee and foot. The manufacturer takes advantage of this striking U-shape. The sole was constructed in the shape of a horseshoe (U-shape) on both the forefoot and heel. From the first market-ready shoe to the current top model, the U-Tech Nevos 3, which True Motion made available to stern for testing. U-shapes are soft in the knees and heels. And you already guessed it: True Motion also adopted this when developing its running shoes. In particular, the "U" under the heel is made of very soft foam called thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU).

What does True Motion want to achieve with these structures adapted from nature? The core idea of ​​the Cologne team is to shift the focus away from the ankle joint and onto the entire leg axis. Ideally, runners should sink their feet firmly and centrally into the U-shaped sole construction on the heel when they put their feet down. And it is centered in such a way that it only plays a minor role whether the leg usually bends outward (supinator) or excessively inward (overpronator) when rolling. In most running shoes, these incorrect movements are corrected by appropriately placed supports. Brüggemann and Kriwet wanted to avoid this technical correction with their shoes.

And otherwise?

The responsive TPU under the heel is said to bring another advantage. According to True Motion, runners benefit from the so-called trampoline effect. Explained somewhat simply, the elastic foam of the horseshoe sole stores part of the energy used when the foot is planted and releases it again at the moment of impact from the ground. A kind of energy recovery, which is also said to be the case with the “miracle shoes” from Oregon mentioned at the beginning. In the Nevos 3, the so-called Motion Bridge under the midfoot is intended to transfer this energy to the forefoot. Because that's where it's needed for printing. So much for theory.

Upper material: MeshWeight: 308 grams (UK 9.5)Drop (according to manufacturer): 10 millimetersColors: two each for men and women, unisex (white)Surface: asphalt, paved pathsRRP: 160 eurosMarket launch: December 1st, 2023

>> Here you can find the True Motion U-TECH Nevos 3 Unisex <<

A little inappropriate for the cold, wet Hamburg winter weather, our test shoe came in the bright white unisex version of the new Nevos 3 (True Motion has two additional designs for women and men). The shoe seems a bit bulky at first glance, which is mainly due to the massive sole construction in the heel area. With a weight of around 300 grams per shoe, it can easily keep up with comparable competitors. The materials were accurately processed and connected to each other, and in our opinion the designers also did a great job with their graphic accents in anthracite. The subtle and non-slip profile suggests a shoe for the street or at least paved paths. The bacon sole look is a matter of taste.

>> True Motion U-TECH Nevos 3 Herren <<

So how did the Nevos 3 fare in action? We ran the all-rounder for about 50 kilometers - mostly on asphalt and solid forest and park paths. As soon as you slipped it on, you noticed how softly padded the Nevos 3 is. This felt very comfortable and good, especially in the heel and in the pleasantly spacious forefoot area. Maybe a bit too much like a sofa for a running shoe and for the taste of the tester, who weighs around 80 kilos. And the pleasant feeling didn't want to disappear even with the first "attempts to walk". On the contrary: the sole construction is so high and soft that you can noticeably bounce your heel even when walking with little dynamic. A completely new experience - especially for runners who previously had nothing to do with cushioning. And you can't get rid of the slightly strange (and completely new attenuation) feeling even on the first slightly faster meters in the Nevos 3. When you put the foot down, your foot sinks into the soft heel pad, but fights its way out of the impression and actually pushes noticeably. At a manageable pace (between 5:30 and 6 minutes per kilometer), this feedback came mainly on asphalted footpaths. This interesting energy recovery effect fizzled out on soft park paths soaked in rain. But that didn't detract from the fun of running (with a little more training kilometers in my legs it might have been even more fun).

You can't get much more comfort than that. Metatarsal and heel strikers will have a lot of fun with the Nevos 3. Anyone who has previously worn rather soft shoes should feel particularly comfortable in the lavishly padded interior. The horseshoe under the heel is special. Not surprisingly, heel strikers in particular benefit from this special sole construction and the little extra kick in the push-off phase. Overall, a stable, visually attractive and comfortable shoe for anyone who enjoys running.

Maybe not a revolution, but in any case an exciting impulse that could once again bring movement to the running shoe market.

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