3D-printed shoes make you able to leap tall buildings in a single bound

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Let’s hear it for the Olympics, that worldwide tribute to brotherly love, friendly competition and corporate sponsorship. This year’s edition is going down at the end of the month in London, UK. Athletes have been training their whole lives in their quest for a gold medal. They’ll take any legal edge they can get, any sanctioned leg up on the competition. This usually comes in the form of equipment. There is a reason why athletic equipment manufacturing is big, big business. Even shaving just a millisecond off of a final tally can be the difference between national glory and national shame.

That’s where Luc Fusaro comes in. This designer has used 3D technology to offer a solution that might help athletes shave that crucial bit of time off of the finish line. His “Designed To Win” shoe was crafted using a 3D printer. It’s mission? To scan an athlete’s foot and create a shoe to that specification in an effort to make it as light and efficient as possible. Mr. Fusaro says his shoes can increase speed by as much as 3.5 percent. To an Olympic athlete that is not chump change. It is, however, chump change to a guy who sits on the couch all day watching Celebrity Ghost Stories.

The shoes weigh just 96 grams and are made of sintered nylon polyamide powder. With something this fantastic, of course, there is usually a catch. The catch this time? It’s only a prototype design. You can’t just plop your piggies down on the counter at Foot Locker and demand they create you a pair. Maybe one day it’ll work like that but until that day you are likely to be arrested. Keep those feet tucked away where they belong.