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18 Feb 2015

Loughborough researchers support development of Umbro’s ‘lightest ever’ football boots

Academics at the Sports Technology Institute (STI) at Loughborough University have supported the development of one of the lightest ever football boots.

The new Velocita Pro is Umbro’s lightest ever football boot, weighing just 165 grams.

With a specially constructed outsole offering increased traction and mobility, the boot has been designed to improve multi-directional speed and help players feel quicker on their feet for a full 90 minutes.

Dr Sean Mitchell & Dr Steph Forrester have supported Umbro through a rigorous development and testing programme.

This has included bringing together state of the art thinking on boot traction, iterative development of a new sole design to achieve low mass, high traction and comfort with extensive player testing to evaluate in-boot pressure, traction and fatigue levels throughout controlled extended-play simulation.

The relationship between the STI and Umbro has led to practical research projects for postgraduate and undergraduate students.

Dr Sean Mitchell from the Sports Technology Institute said:

"We are particularly pleased with how this work has given us the opportunity to involve our best undergraduate and postgraduate students in cutting edge sports technology research that has real world impact for the sports industry, elite players and recreational enthusiasts.

“This is typical of our work within the STI and right at the heart of the Loughborough ethos."

Colin Lomas, Footwear and Equipment Director at Umbro stated:

“Working closely with Loughborough allows us to test products from initial concept to the finished article with experts in biomechanics, engineering and sports science.

“Footballers don’t run in straight lines, therefore the principle behind the Velocita was to create a boot which allows multi-directional speed.

“Every single aspect of the boot has a functional purpose geared towards this – from the unique configuration of the studs to the laces, which were flattened like runner’s spikes.

“And whilst weight was an important factor, the boot has been specifically engineered to offer a level of comfort for 90 minutes and beyond.”

Article reference number: February News