September 07, 2017
By Greg Monteforte, Style Insider, PGATOUR.COM
- Dustin Johnson wore the adidas TOUR360 shoes during his FedExCup Playoff victory at THE NORTHERN TRUST. (Photos courtesy of adidas Golf)
The first PGA TOUR event where Dustin Johnson laced up the new adidas TOUR360 shoe, he strolled into the winner’s circle and temporarily moved into the top spot of the 2017 FedExCup Points List. Not a bad debut for adidas' latest TOUR-level shoe.
Johnson is no stranger to the adidas TOUR360 franchise. He’s been wearing TOUR360 shoes since the day he turned professional. He won his first PGA TOUR tournament in 2008 in the TOUR360 LTD. Last year he captured his first major championship at the U.S. Open while sporting the TOUR360 BOOST.
Not surprisingly, the TOUR360 BOOST was Johnson’s favorite shoe. When the adidas team approached him about a new generation of the shoe, he told them not to change a thing. While this was validation of a job well done, it was also a challenge for a team that is always trying to innovate. Throughout the process, designers picked up on minor comments from DJ and then used them in a broader sense to take the shoe to the next level. As a result, the new TOUR360 features subtle, yet significant changes from the previous model.
The first area of improvement is stability. An upgraded outsole top plate, which sits above the Boost midsole, allows the shoe to accommodate the natural foot flection that occurs during the swing.
“We used insights from what we call ARAMIS testing, which maps the foot throughout the golf swing. It sees the forces inside of the shoe to identify where the strain is being placed,” said Masun Denison, Global Footwear Director at adidas Golf.
Based on this testing and analysis, the outsole top plate on the new TOUR360 wraps higher on the lateral side of the foot. The plate is also soft enough to provide lateral and medial stability, allowing players to transition their power in the follow through of their swings.
Adidas added even more stability to the shoe by using a proprietary material called SPRINTSKIN™ to reinforce the upper. This ultra-lightweight microfiber will not stretch over time, which means it provides exceptional support and stability, especially in the saddle area, without adding weight.
In addition to stability, adidas focused on increased comfort through a more flexible outsole and a tongue with more padding. The outsole has been improved by making the TPU density of the material softer and more malleable than in previous versions of the shoe.
“We found a TPU with a softer density. It still provides great stability, but allows the shoe to bend more easily when walking. It's more comfortable, a little bit lighter, and players leave the course feeling more refreshed,” said Denison.
Two areas where Dustin Johnson provided the most influence on the new TOUR360 were the aesthetics and the premium materials. He was looking for a clean design and adidas responded with a classic toe-down shape and removed the center seam that was present on the previous version. This not only removed any visual distractions from the toe, but it also provided a side benefit. By removing the center toe seam, adidas reduced the weight and enhanced the overall comfort of the shoe.
The classic elements extend from the toe to the back of the shoe where the sporty S-curve heel design has been replaced with a more refined and traditional shape. The new design is a direct result of one of the biggest apparel trends in the game today. Many players, including Johnson, are wearing slimmer trousers with an aggressive taper through the lower leg. This reimagined design allows tapered pant legs to flow in a smoother fashion over the heel of the shoe.
Not only did Dustin influence the design of the heel, but he also influenced the materials used on the inside of it. He liked the premium look of adidas’ Adipure shoe from 2010, so adidas’ team of designers enveloped the heel with a premium leather lining for additional comfort, durability, and richness.
The new TOUR360 continues to rely on BOOST technology in the midsole to provide top-shelf comfort. It features a 10-cleat puremotion® TPU outsole with CenTraXion and thintech® cleats to offer improved stability and grip where golfers need it most. To ensure that greenskeepers like the TOUR360 as much as Dustin Johnson does, adidas conducted extensive testing of the shoe on various types of greens.
“We did time-lapse videos on different greens with different moisture levels. We have a machine that can measure the amount of moisture in the green. We do 30-second videos all the way up to two-minute, five-minute and 10-minute videos. We can mimic someone coming to the green in the next group and what the green would look like. We also went to the East Coast to test the shoe on different types of grass,” added Denison.
The TOUR360 will be released to the public in the beginning of October. It will be available in black/white, white/black, and white/icy blue, which was worn by Dustin Johnson when he won THE NORTHERN TRUST to start the 2017 FedExCup Playoffs. Additional colorways and styles of the new TOUR360 will roll out in 2018. The TOUR360 will continue to feature a 2-year waterproof warranty. The MSRP for the new TOUR360 will be $200 USD.