Reebok’s durable Flexweave may be the future of athletic shoes

Reebok unveiled an innovative new material that it believes could be the future of athletic footwear and sports apparel. Dubbed Flexweave, this fabric uses a unique construction method to create a figure-eight design, which Reebok says can then be interlaced with an unlimited number of fibers to create a single surface that construction that is lightweight, durable, and breathable all at the same time.

The new Flexweave material is created from chenille yarn and is scheduled to make its debut in Reebok footwear this spring. But the company was eager to partner with top designers from around the world to see what they could create using this new type of fabric. To that end, the Flexweave technology was shared with Joe Doucet X Partners in New York; Odd Matter design studio in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, and the Modla design house in London. Each was given free reign to imagine something new and innovative using Flexweave and none of them disappointed.

Designer and entrepreneur Joe Doucet used the Flexwave material to create a new smart glove that combines both form and function. Lightweight and form-fitting, the gloves were built to include integrated GPS technology that would help guide a runner along a preselected course during their workout. Lights on the gloves would illuminate to indicate when the runner should turn, helping them navigate the route.

The team at Odd Matter took a different approach, designing what it calls an “active chair” instead. Built from Flexweave fabrics and EVA foam, the lightweight chair was built to engage the core muscles while sitting on it. This way, it can help athletes to continue to work toward their fitness goals, even while relaxing.

Finally, the Modla designers created a Flexweave mask that resembles something that Bane from The Dark Knight Rises might wear. The mask uses 3D-printed parts and is assembled without the use of glue, with each individual piece seamlessly fitting together. It is meant to help athletes with altitude training and includes a delta symbol on the front of the mask that can be rotated to adjust the amount of oxygen that can be taken in.

“Flexweave is going to a major part of the Reebok DNA moving forward. With this creative and imaginative project, we’ve achieved exactly what we set out to do; demonstrate through collaborations in other fields what Flexweave can truly achieve when put to the ultimate test,” Reebok Running’s Global Marking Director James Woolard said in a statement.

Runners will be able to put Flexweave to the test themselves in a few months. Until then, you can find out more about the material, and the unique products that the designers made from it, on Reebok’s Flexweave website.