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View Full Version : Stick with companies that only make shoes or started as shoe companies!


Japanese Maple
07-29-2008, 07:56 AM
I was once told to only buy shoes from companies who either specialize in shoes only, or whose main focus is shoes, particularly running shoe companies who also sell tennis shoes. This would include: Nike, Adidas, Asics, K-Swiss, Lotto, New Balance, and Reebox. Companies who do not specialize in shoes that I stay away from are: Wilson, Prince, Babalot, Yonex, Head, Lacoste, Diadora(they may specialize in shoes-not sure), and Fila. The best shoe technology for tennis comes from companies who do extensive research in running shoes-all the new innovations comes from running shoe research. Based on this premise and favorable reviews I just purchased the Asics Resolutions. Asics is primarily a running shoe company with cutting edge research. I also believe the best value regarding price/performance ratio is New Balance-again a running shoe company who keeps the cost of shoes down with no exorbitant player endorsements. The New Balance 803's are excellent performing shoe for an outstanding price! I would also take a look at the New Balance 1003's. Nikes are an excellent shoe, but way overpriced due to player endorsements.

vasquez90
07-29-2008, 08:23 AM
i would disagree...nike could put anything in a box and sell it to you if it had a swoosh on it. the other companies pride themselves on quality, not quantity and put real value into materials, construction and technology.

i would stay stick with companies that started as tennis brands - are true tennis brands and spend the time to understand tennis players best (wilson, prince, babolat, head)...not companies that have wandered into the tennis market to make a buck. Most of the true tennis brands have people designing shoes that understand the game better and have experience working at the adidas or nikes anyway. In fact, some of the best tennis shoes made come from these brands - though they may not be marketed as well because the marketing $'s for Nike and Adidas, New Balance are so big - they can sell you anything - think about those who advertise on TV and those who dont.

ollinger
07-29-2008, 08:35 AM
I wouldn't be too concerned about how a company started out. BMW made aircraft engines and motorcycles long before making cars, and their cars seem just fine. I think Yonex started out making something like boat pontoons before taking up tennis racquets, and Wilson was in the cattle slaughtering business before starting up with tennis string and then racquets. Buy what you like.

Japanese Maple
07-29-2008, 10:23 AM
The only good advice in this worthless thread. Posts #1 and #2 are ********.
Head, Wilson, Yonex. Prince, Babalot, Fila, ect. do no research that I am aware of and sell 2nd rate shoes as compared to running shoe companies, or companies whose main focus and sales come from shoes such as Nike, Adidas, Asics, New Balance, K-Swiss, Lotto, and Reebox. All tennis shoe innovations and technology come form running shoe research and this can not be disputed! Your lack of evidence regarding my premise demonstrates that I am correct in my statements. However, I do believe Nike's are overpriced and don't last very long.

Japanese Maple
07-29-2008, 10:27 AM
i would disagree...nike could put anything in a box and sell it to you if it had a swoosh on it. the other companies pride themselves on quality, not quantity and put real value into materials, construction and technology.

i would stay stick with companies that started as tennis brands - are true tennis brands and spend the time to understand tennis players best (wilson, prince, babolat, head)...not companies that have wandered into the tennis market to make a buck. Most of the true tennis brands have people designing shoes that understand the game better and have experience working at the adidas or nikes anyway. In fact, some of the best tennis shoes made come from these brands - though they may not be marketed as well because the marketing $'s for Nike and Adidas, New Balance are so big - they can sell you anything - think about those who advertise on TV and those who dont.

How many Atp touring pros actually wear a shoe from Wilson, Head ,Prince, and Yonex? None that I am aware of. Pros wear what they are getting paid for but they would never put those shoes on listed above because of lack of quality.

BreakPoint
07-29-2008, 11:41 AM
Head, Wilson, Yonex. Prince, Babalot, Fila, ect. do no research that I am aware of and sell 2nd rate shoes as compared to running shoe companies, or companies whose main focus and sales come from shoes such as Nike, Adidas, Asics, New Balance, K-Swiss, Lotto, and Reebox. All tennis shoe innovations and technology come form running shoe research and this can not be disputed! Your lack of evidence regarding my premise demonstrates that I am correct in my statements. However, I do believe Nike's are overpriced and don't last very long.
Well, I'm disputing it because you're very wrong. "Head, Wilson, Yonex. Prince, Babalot, Fila, ect. do no research..."? Where do you get this stuff? How many pairs of Prince shoes have you owned? They are some of the best tennis shoes on the market and have been for a long time. They are very well cushioned as tennis shoes should be for the pounding on hardcourts. In contrast, the NB 780's and the Reebok Match Day Pumps felt like boat anchors on my feet - nothing leads me to believe they came from running shoe companies. I also find Lotto and Asics tennis shoes offer very little lateral support which you need for tennis but not for running. That's where a shoe company that specializes in running shoes falls short when also trying to make tennis shoes.

BreakPoint
07-29-2008, 11:48 AM
How many Atp touring pros actually wear a shoe from Wilson, Head ,Prince, and Yonex? None that I am aware of. Pros wear what they are getting paid for but they would never put those shoes on listed above because of lack of quality.
You just answered your own question. Those companies generally don't pay the pros to wear their shoes. It's all marketing. And it seems you fell for it hook, line, and sinker as they intended. Looks like all those millions of dollars the "brand name" shoes companies spent on marketing was well worth it - in your case at least.

What counts is what people who have to spend their own hard earned money on shoes wear, and I see lots of recreational players wearing Prince and Wilson shoes. They know better than to be fooled by marketing.

[d]ragon
07-29-2008, 02:09 PM
I was once told to only buy shoes from companies who either specialize in shoes only, or whose main focus is shoes, particularly running shoe companies who also sell tennis shoes. This would include: Nike, Adidas, Asics, K-Swiss, Lotto, New Balance, and Reebox. Companies who do not specialize in shoes that I stay away from are: Wilson, Prince, Babalot, Yonex, Head, Lacoste, Diadora(they may specialize in shoes-not sure), and Fila. The best shoe technology for tennis comes from companies who do extensive research in running shoes-all the new innovations comes from running shoe research. Based on this premise and favorable reviews I just purchased the Asics Resolutions. Asics is primarily a running shoe company with cutting edge research. I also believe the best value regarding price/performance ratio is New Balance-again a running shoe company who keeps the cost of shoes down with no exorbitant player endorsements. The New Balance 803's are excellent performing shoe for an outstanding price! I would also take a look at the New Balance 1003's. Nikes are an excellent shoe, but way overpriced due to player endorsements.

Head, Wilson, Yonex. Prince, Babalot, Fila, ect. do no research that I am aware of and sell 2nd rate shoes as compared to running shoe companies, or companies whose main focus and sales come from shoes such as Nike, Adidas, Asics, New Balance, K-Swiss, Lotto, and Reebox. All tennis shoe innovations and technology come form running shoe research and this can not be disputed! Your lack of evidence regarding my premise demonstrates that I am correct in my statements. However, I do believe Nike's are overpriced and don't last very long.

i would disagree...nike could put anything in a box and sell it to you if it had a swoosh on it. the other companies pride themselves on quality, not quantity and put real value into materials, construction and technology.

i would stay stick with companies that started as tennis brands - are true tennis brands and spend the time to understand tennis players best (wilson, prince, babolat, head)...not companies that have wandered into the tennis market to make a buck. Most of the true tennis brands have people designing shoes that understand the game better and have experience working at the adidas or nikes anyway. In fact, some of the best tennis shoes made come from these brands - though they may not be marketed as well because the marketing $'s for Nike and Adidas, New Balance are so big - they can sell you anything - think about those who advertise on TV and those who dont.

these are very ignorant things to say

Return_Ace
07-29-2008, 02:40 PM
Like some of the other posters... i dont' think u know what u're on about tbh.

#1. I've had a pair of cheap wilson shoes and they fitted better than either of my barricade 3s or 4s or my nike breathe free 2s... just that they didn't last long (because they were cheap ones).

#2. The new Head Prestige shoes got quite a nice review from TW.

#3. Yonex make the best badminton shoes... i have a pair and they're gorgeous. According to your logic, the best tech comes from running shoes ? What like running in a straight line ? Nuh uh. Badminton shoes are more a like that running shoes since both involve changes in direciton and require good ankle support.

crazytennis
07-29-2008, 02:46 PM
How many Atp touring pros actually wear a shoe from Wilson, Head ,Prince, and Yonex? None that I am aware of. Pros wear what they are getting paid for but they would never put those shoes on listed above because of lack of quality.

Nalbandian , Hewitt wear Yonex. Roddick wears Babolat. Seriously, these companies don't cough up millions of dollars for endorsements doesn't mean their shoes are bad.

I have worn shoes from many companies and the most comfortable shoes for me have been from Yonex and Asics. Shoes all depend on how they fit on your foot and not how many pros they pay to wear.

FreshStew
07-29-2008, 03:15 PM
I have always felt that way about shoes.

SempreSami
07-29-2008, 05:19 PM
Talk about fool's logic.

Should we not buy Toyotas any longer because they're not one of the top F1 teams? Everyone knows that all automotive innovation comes from racing and that F1 is the premier technological racing series on the planet. Toyota must suck because they're not in F1. Jackass.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/6/6d/Jarno_Trulli_2008_Britain.jpg/800px-Jarno_Trulli_2008_Britain.jpg

martin8768
07-29-2008, 06:31 PM
Like some of the other posters... i dont' think u know what u're on about tbh.

#1. I've had a pair of cheap wilson shoes and they fitted better than either of my barricade 3s or 4s or my nike breathe free 2s... just that they didn't last long (because they were cheap ones).

#2. The new Head Prestige shoes got quite a nice review from TW.

#3. Yonex make the best badminton shoes... i have a pair and they're gorgeous. According to your logic, the best tech comes from running shoes ? What like running in a straight line ? Nuh uh. Badminton shoes are more a like that running shoes since both involve changes in direciton and require good ankle support.
completely agree with this one here. i have a pair of yonex badminton shoes and they are the best shoes i ever used for a specific sport. they do a lot of research into this and i believe all companies have done enough research on every one of their products to sell it without this ignorance. shoes are a very personal piece of equipment because no feet are the same, in fact your own two feet aren't even the same, so like a racket it must feel right to whoever is using it. the end.

scraps234
07-29-2008, 06:55 PM
How many Atp touring pros actually wear a shoe from Wilson, Head ,Prince, and Yonex? None that I am aware of. Pros wear what they are getting paid for but they would never put those shoes on listed above because of lack of quality.


im sure there are loads of pros on the tour wearing wilson,head,prince,and yonex. Some of them may not be fame but they are on the tour ( http://www.tennis-warehouse.com/player.html?ccode=LHEWITT ) for 1 hewitt is on the tour and wears yonex

BreakPoint
07-29-2008, 08:51 PM
The pros wear the shoes that they can get for free or are paid by the manufacturers to wear. Most pros don't have a lot of money so they don't have the money to spend on shoes so they take whatever they can get for free. And Nike and Adidas give away free shoes to the pros. That's the reason why you see so many pros wearing those two brands.

El Guapo
07-29-2008, 10:10 PM
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/6/6d/Jarno_Trulli_2008_Britain.jpg/800px-Jarno_Trulli_2008_Britain.jpg
"top F1 team"

my last sentence should have read "they're not #1 in F1."

Lendl and Federer Fan
07-30-2008, 12:03 AM
I don't care about which company makes it, I just buy what I like and feel comfortable. :)

slice bh compliment
07-30-2008, 12:41 AM
Japanese Maple smacks of agenda. And has done no research that I am aware of ;-).

Cool name, though, like an ad for Boast. Too bad the guy can't even spell Babolat. I realize that is a ''foreign'' name, not easy for the average child, and that Babolat has only been in the tennis industry internationally for 5 decades or so.

But this poor man consistently seems to think that company's name is Babalot, indicating that he has limited exposure to the tennis industry. I personally do not read opinion pieces by people with his lack of credibility. I stick with opinions by people who only know tennis companies or started out as tennis people.;-)

EDIT: or at least people who have read enough about tennis to know that it's Babolat and not Babalot. That's not unreasonable, is it? Oooh, I hope not. Better stop smoking the ''kaedi''.

nickb
07-30-2008, 02:34 AM
Prince make amazing shoes...

River Hill
07-30-2008, 03:13 AM
Just get what feels good on your foot. I don't care if Dell makes a good feeling shoe, I am wearing it. Now if I was getting paid to wear a brand of shoe, that would be a different story.

Japanese Maple
07-30-2008, 04:10 AM
Japanese Maple smacks of agenda. And has done no research that I am aware of ;-).

Cool name, though, like an ad for Boast. Too bad the guy can't even spell Babolat. I realize that is a ''foreign'' name, not easy for the average child, and that Babolat has only been in the tennis industry internationally for 5 decades or so.

But this poor man consistently seems to think that company's name is Babalot, indicating that he has limited exposure to the tennis industry. I personally do not read opinion pieces by people with his lack of credibility. I stick with opinions by people who only know tennis companies or started out as tennis people.;-)

EDIT: or at least people who have read enough about tennis to know that it's Babolat and not Babalot. That's not unreasonable, is it? Oooh, I hope not. Better stop smoking the ''kaedi''.

Slice bh-Babolot , Babolat, or Babalot who cares. Obviously you can't intelligently refute my premise when all you can do is pick on spelling. Do you have any facts to refute my claim that running shoe research is what drives new tennis shoe technology, or that a better quality shoe actual comes from companies whose main focus is shoes first or whose genesis is in the running shoe industry. Lets face it Wilson shoes are crap and so are Heads-although their new Pestige is a step in the right direction.

Return_Ace
07-30-2008, 04:26 AM
Slice bh-Babolot , Babolat, or Babalot who cares. Obviously you can't intelligently refute my premise when all you can do is pick on spelling. Do you have any facts to refute my claim that running shoe research is what drives new tennis shoe technology, or that a better quality shoe actual comes from companies whose main focus is shoes first or whose genesis is in the running shoe industry. Lets face it Wilson shoes are crap and so are Heads-although their new Propulse is a step in the right direction.

And all you seem to be able to do is conveniently reply to all the posts which have either insulted you or your topic and even more conveniently avoid replying to any posts which have put forward valid points such as comments from people who have actually used the shoes etc.

However for your own ease i shall summaries what has been said:

Breakpoint and Nickb - Prince shoes are actually good.

TW review says that the Head Prestige is a decent shoe.. not as high scoring as the Barricades etc. but still a good score none-the-less.

Martin8768 both agree that Yonex make brilliant badminton shoes and thus disproves your thoughts on shoe companies making the best shoes for a specific sport.

Also i pointed out that technically, running shoes are in no way suited for playing tennis since they only cater for "running" (forward/straight line) whilst Tennis shoes require much more lateral support and stability... something that Yonex have had to cater for with their badminton shoes from the start.

slice bh compliment
07-30-2008, 04:31 AM
Slice bh-Babolot , Babolat, or Babalot who cares. Obviously you can't intelligently refute my premise when all you can do is pick on spelling. ....

Oh, I picked on you for more than spelling. I made fun of your logic. I also made fun of your ''research''. Sorry you did not pick up on those. Too subtle. Mea culpa.

And, you are correct, engineering from running research is a major component of tennis shoe research. Thank you, Captain.

Great thread, BTW.

slice bh compliment
07-30-2008, 04:33 AM
... Diadora(they may specialize in shoes-not sure), .....

Yes, they do. Why not do a little research yourself, there, kid.

TheRed
07-30-2008, 04:41 AM
JMaple, may I ask, what level do you play at and how long have you been playing?
First point: No one needs to "refute your premise" because the person making a claim is YOU, not the rest of the TW community. YOU need to support that claim, something you haven't really done. Repeating your argument over and over is not support, at least for intelligent people.
2nd point: I'm a 5.0 player, competed in tournaments 10 years ago and still play quite often these days. I've worn Nikes, Reeboks, Asahi, Diadoras, Adidas, Wilson and Prince shoes. I'm older now, have more mileage on my knees, my feet are more sensitive, and I have more cash to spend. I've worn the BF II's, barricade II's, the match points, and many of the most popular shoes. Let me say, the best shoe I've ever worn in my nearly 18 years of playing tennis are my current shoes, Prince T9 roadsters. I also have the cage I's because they were on sale; the Nikes feel like $20 shoes compared to the prince shoes. I must admit, the BF II's were up there in my top 5 all time but the cages suck.

Return_Ace
07-30-2008, 04:54 AM
BFII's = Breathe Free 2s ?

This is probably another example of different shoes/different people since i didn't really like my BF2s that much... they've worn out ever so fast and even the fabric etc. tore quite early... My barricade 3s on the other hand seem much tougher and definitely more cushioned and supported.

That doesn't stop me from wearing my bf2s casually though because they still look the business 8)

Japanese Maple
07-30-2008, 05:04 AM
Slice bh-the best tennis shoes come from companies whose main focus is tennis shoes, using research from running shoe technology-Nike, Adidas, Asics, New Balance, K-Swiss, and Diadora . Companies that do not specialize in tennis shoes but merely slap their name on a shoe with lesser quality would be Head, Wilson, Yonex, Prince, and Fila. Babalat is too new in the shoe market to determine what quality of shoe they will consistently produce. Thats the key-consistent quality over the long term. I am sure some of the lesser quality shoe companies listed above from time to time have produced a decent shoe but not consistently do they put out a quality product to compete with Nike, Adidas, ect. Pros do generally wear what they get paid for, but would never wear an inferior shoe that could cause injury regardless of money paid.

Return_Ace
07-30-2008, 05:19 AM
Still

Haven't

Addressed

The

Posts

With

Proper

Responses

:roll:

El Guapo
07-30-2008, 07:06 AM
Still

Haven't

Addressed

The

Posts

With

Proper

Responses

:roll:
No she hasn't, but her stance is softening. Total cake.

MAXXply
07-30-2008, 08:39 AM
The laughing you hear right now is coming from Madison Ave, Big Tennis and footwear manufacturing magnates in southern China and south-east Asia. They've just read some of the slavish, brand-centric comments here from the sorta consumers Naomi Klein or Seth Godin would devote a chapter to.

C'mon...who gives a flying forehand which brand makes your overpriced kicks? Fact is they don't - they merely market them to malleable little tennis minds like ours. Your favourite brand outsources to their preferred sweatshop whereupon the workers will stich your shoes together for a pittance. Moreover, these sweatshops will make shoes for other tennis/non-tennis brands and licensees (no different to Mr Kunnan Lo of Pro-Kennex), a nano-percentage from each pair indirectly paying for the Asian Shoe Tycoon's kids U.S college education.

JapaneseMaple---suffice to say you should revisit those non-shoe brands you're poo-poohing...Head's Prestige is a pretty decent spec (and could only be improved if it came in all-white), as is the Wilson Trance and I'm pretty partial to the cushioning and support offered by the FILA Alfa. It doesn't take a specialist footwear company pedigree/history to know that tennis players need -as a minimum- cushioning and lateral stability...heck if a string brand offered this in a shoe and at a lower price than Nike etc, I know which one I'd buy.

Personally, a pair of soft kangaroo leather Diadora Borg Elites is not something I'd care to run around in again on hardcourts over five sets (cushioning)...nor the garment leather and flimsy midsole of the Reebok Phase I's - both from so-called "dedicated shoe companies".

siow_a
07-30-2008, 12:31 PM
I don't care about which company makes it, I just buy what I like and feel comfortable. :)


Couldn"t agree more...

LafayetteHitter
07-30-2008, 01:19 PM
The reason why the guys playing tennis for years here are passionate in response is because it is a known fact amongst tennis players that running shoes are HORRIBLE for tennis. I would like to see evidence that running shoe technology helps tennis shoes. I think some of the people that post here are either non-tennis players or they are NOT runners. The 2 have little to do with each other. You can take a pair of Gel Kayano and blow them out on a tennis court in a matter of days and then have to chalk up a nice sized bill for a rolled ankle. If you go out and hit with your grandmother once a week they may work but if you hit with courts with a group of 4.0's the only good thing that will come of it is that one of the 4.0 guys is probably a doctor and they get to jam you with a bill for the sprained ankle. For the record, Nike, Adidas, etc are NOT shoe tennis shoe specialized companies. Adidas makes everything from tennis shoes to bags for hauling softballs and Nike makes watches (are Nike watches junk just because they don't specialize like Rolex?)

BreakPoint
07-30-2008, 01:58 PM
Let me say, the best shoe I've ever worn in my nearly 18 years of playing tennis are my current shoes, Prince T9 roadsters. I also have the cage I's because they were on sale; the Nikes feel like $20 shoes compared to the prince shoes. I must admit, the BF II's were up there in my top 5 all time but the cages suck.
Exactly! About 12 years ago I bought a pair of the original Nike Oscillates from a shoe store because they looked kind of "cool". At the same time, I ordered my first pair of Prince shoes online, one of the original Prince NFS models. The Prince shoes cost about half as much as the Nike shoes. When I got them, I compared the Prince shoes to the Nike shoes. No comparison and no contest. The Prince shoes were 10 times better in every category! The quality of workmanship, materials, support, comfort, cushioning, everything was just so much better in the Prince shoes. The Nike shoes looked and felt like cheap supermarket shoes with almost no cushioning nor support in comparison. If no one had told me, I would have guessed that the Prince shoes cost 4 times more than the Nike shoes instead of actually being 1/2 the price. You can tell right away that Prince puts their money into the shoes themselves instead of putting their money into marketing and paying the pro like Agassi and Sampras as Nike does.

BreakPoint
07-30-2008, 02:12 PM
Slice bh-the best tennis shoes come from companies whose main focus is tennis shoes, using research from running shoe technology-Nike, Adidas, Asics, New Balance, K-Swiss, and Diadora . Companies that do not specialize in tennis shoes but merely slap their name on a shoe with lesser quality would be Head, Wilson, Yonex, Prince, and Fila. Babalat is too new in the shoe market to determine what quality of shoe they will consistently produce. Thats the key-consistent quality over the long term. I am sure some of the lesser quality shoe companies listed above from time to time have produced a decent shoe but not consistently do they put out a quality product to compete with Nike, Adidas, ect. Pros do generally wear what they get paid for, but would never wear an inferior shoe that could cause injury regardless of money paid.
Again, where exactly is your research to support this claim? You state it as if it was fact, just like you stated in another thread that you "know" that TW makes more profit from selling Adidas and Nike shoes than from selling New Balance shoes, but it is merely YOUR OPINION. You have NO FACTS to back up any of your claims.

I highly doubt you have even owned and played in several pairs of EACH of the brands of shoes you've listed above to even conduct a personal comparison, let alone any sort of scientific research.

Asics running shoes are great but I am afraid of their tennis shoes because they don't seem to offer as much lateral support as some of the "tennis brands". I've also tried New Balance tennis shoes and I think they're nowhere near as good as some of the "tennis brands". K-Swiss? Most are too heavy, clunky, and wear out too fast. Diadora? Forget about it! My most recent pair of Diadora shoes had zero support, little cushioning, and I literally wore out the soles after wearing them on the court only 4 times. But they were very comfortable to walk in. Just don't try playing tennis in them. My most recent pair of Lotto shoes were a bit more durable but support was also lacking. Again, very comfortable though. It seems the Italian brands are more about comfort than performance, IMO.

tbini87
07-30-2008, 02:20 PM
this thread is crazy! i am just waiting for all this hidden "research" to stop hiding! i personally could not care less how a company that makes shoes started. if yonex started as some pencil company but now makes great tennis racquets then i will use them. if prince started as a tennis company and now makes great tennis shoes, i will wear them! who cares how the company started if they make a great product?

crazytennis
07-30-2008, 02:28 PM
Exactly! About 12 years ago I bought a pair of the original Nike Oscillates from a shoe store because they looked kind of "cool". At the same time, I ordered my first pair of Prince shoes online, one of the original Prince NFS models. The Prince shoes cost about half as much as the Nike shoes. When I got them, I compared the Prince shoes to the Nike shoes. No comparison and no contest. The Prince shoes were 10 times better in every category! The quality of workmanship, materials, support, comfort, cushioning, everything was just so much better in the Prince shoes. The Nike shoes looked and felt like cheap supermarket shoes with almost no cushioning nor support in comparison. If no one had told me, I would have guessed that the Prince shoes cost 4 times more than the Nike shoes instead of actually being 1/2 the price. You can tell right away that Prince puts their money into the shoes themselves instead of putting their money into marketing and paying the pro like Agassi and Sampras as Nike does.

I used to use NFS shoes on clay courts. Really comfortable. I also own a pair of Yonex badminton shoes and they are really comfortable. However for tennis, I go with the Barricades as they last longer and I don't really want to buy shoes every month.

AndrewD
07-30-2008, 03:06 PM
I disagree wholeheartedly with the OP's premise. In my opinion, the worst tennis shoes being produced (worst in terms of build quality and foot protection- which should be the most important to a shoe maker) are made by Nike. Now, there's a company whose bread-and-butter is athletic shoes (running, initially) but who continually undermine any advantage that might give them with poor quality control and, what I perceive to be, a general attitude of indifference toward their customers (kind of goes hand-in-hand with poor quality control).

Surprisingly, to me at least, I've also been very disappointed with the efforts of New Balance. Given their heritage I did expect them to pay more attention to foot protection in their tennis shoes but, unfortunately, that doesn't seem to be the case. Adidas, outside of the Barricade line, seems to be better than Nike (not very hard to achieve) but a long way behind Asics (best of the 'shoe specific' brands by quite a long way) and not as good as some of the other brands that didn't start with shoes. Reebok also appear to be a good, solid choice. Lotto used to be 'functional', no idea what they're like these days. Same with Diadora.

Of the ones that didn't start with footwear, I've found Yonex tennis shoes to be extremely good (very underrated, it would seem) and Prince to be very reliable in their product (not always the best looking but still very good). I wouldn't give Fila to my worst enemy and remain very suspicious of Wilson, apart from the old ProStaff leather and mesh.

bertrevert
07-30-2008, 06:29 PM
I disagree AndrewD...

Have you actually purchased the Vapors if not then what other Nike shoe did you try on court?

I have Prince MS4 and they are fantastic and strong and give a lot of support, couldn't kill them with an axe.

I have Vapor 4s (get a friend from the US to bring u back a pair). And they are thin and fast and probably won't be v durable.
But that doesn't make them crap, nor are they a result of anything less than r&d.

They fulfill a different purpose.

I agree that Nike fashion shoes are worthless, but Nike remain a top-tier shoe in running and tennis for good reasons.

What the Nikes are good at: glove fit, super fast, just-enough rubber, solid heel protection.

If yr fast on your feet then Vapors or Cages are it.

Tell me your not idly big-brand-bashing because it's easy. If you cannot see the value in their top of the line items then I'm stumped. Cheers nevertheless.

bertrevert
07-30-2008, 06:38 PM
The laughing you hear right now is coming from Madison Ave, Big Tennis and footwear manufacturing magnates in southern China and south-east Asia. They've just read some of the slavish, brand-centric comments here from the sorta consumers Naomi Klein or Seth Godin would devote a chapter to.

C'mon...who gives a flying forehand which brand makes your overpriced kicks? Fact is they don't - they merely market them to malleable little tennis minds like ours. Your favourite brand outsources to their preferred sweatshop whereupon the workers will stich your shoes together for a pittance. Moreover, these sweatshops will make shoes for other tennis/non-tennis brands and licensees (no different to Mr Kunnan Lo of Pro-Kennex), a nano-percentage from each pair indirectly paying for the Asian Shoe Tycoon's kids U.S college education.

JapaneseMaple---suffice to say you should revisit those non-shoe brands you're poo-poohing...Head's Prestige is a pretty decent spec (and could only be improved if it came in all-white), as is the Wilson Trance and I'm pretty partial to the cushioning and support offered by the FILA Alfa. It doesn't take a specialist footwear company pedigree/history to know that tennis players need -as a minimum- cushioning and lateral stability...heck if a string brand offered this in a shoe and at a lower price than Nike etc, I know which one I'd buy.



Yes I don't think brand-adherence is healthy or virtuous or gets you very far in life.

But I think of Klein and Godin at the opposite ends of the spectrum. Or maybe that's waht you meant?

I've used a lot of cheap tenn shoes: KMart, Target, Pay-Less, Aldi. Brands were Dunlop, Slazenger, Crane and...?

I do think paying more for devoted tennis shoes, logically from tennis-centric depts of the brands discussed here is worth it.

They aim to produce what we need: lateral support, outsoles with enough stick/slide, stability, toe drag protection.

Such features are imitated only in the cheap shoes. Go on cut those cheap shoes up and look inside, then cut an expensive shoe up. There are differences in construction and materails used and that is what you pay for.

The Head and Wilson you mention are finally good efforts by those guys, as there earlier stuff (which I own) was pretty poor.

bluetrain4
07-30-2008, 09:30 PM
I don't agree with OP's premise at all. I've played with great shoes from a wide variety of companies (Nike, Reebok, Asics, Prince, Adidas), whether they started in shoes or not.

I've never liked Nike shoes (running or tennis) because they never fit me right, but I don't think their entire line is crap. That's also important to note. The same company can produce a great shoe and a crap shoe.

I've had about 5 pairs of Adidas a3 Prevails in a row and really liked them.

Just got a pair of Prince T20s and love them.

AndrewD
07-30-2008, 09:56 PM
bert,

check out the flex point on Nike shoes. In all but the very odd instance its pretty much dead centre. That's just not the sign of a well-made shoe. No, I don't own Vapors but that's due to the poor construction and their not being built to last as well as other brands. As for their cushioning, it's very poor in relation to the other key brands.

Can't see where I called them crap, although I do think they're very poorly made. Nike make a product which is appealing to look at and feels okay on the foot but which does so at the expense of total foot security and cushioning. That makes it a poorly constructed shoe and I see absolutely no value in them.

Don't see how I can be 'big-brand-bashing' when Nike is the only big name shoe brand I consider to be sub-standard (Wilson and Fila are in a different class) but I consider Asics, Prince and some Adidas to be of the highest quality.

El Guapo
07-30-2008, 10:00 PM
^^^^^^ BS. Show us your test with BFIIs or V5s.

bertrevert
07-30-2008, 10:39 PM
Ok will check out flex-point in the Nikes though I think I did and they are strong in the arch and just bend at the toe-base (under foot pad) which is good.

Eek, I don't want to cut up my vapors jus yet but I have cut up worn-out wilson and slazenger, neither looking particularly brill inside.

Return_Ace
07-31-2008, 01:15 AM
^^^^^^ BS. Show us your test with BFIIs or V5s.

I'd watch who you'd call out on saying bs...

A new-ish poster is one thing, but an older and respected member of the board is another.

Technically I feel AndrewD is right in it seems that Nike appear to be pushing the light and less durable shoes (but still costing much) compared to the heavier more durable shoes..

As i stated before, my BF2s wore out very quickly, under 6 months whilst my Adidas Barricade IIIs have lasted me an age.

http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y253/SethAnubis/Tennis/th_DSC00265.jpg (http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y253/SethAnubis/Tennis/DSC00265.jpg)

http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y253/SethAnubis/Tennis/th_DSC00269.jpg (http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y253/SethAnubis/Tennis/DSC00269.jpg)

http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y253/SethAnubis/Tennis/th_DSC00267.jpg (http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y253/SethAnubis/Tennis/DSC00267.jpg)

http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y253/SethAnubis/Tennis/th_DSC00268.jpg (http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y253/SethAnubis/Tennis/DSC00268.jpg)

crazytennis
07-31-2008, 02:40 AM
I'd watch who you'd call out on saying bs...

A new-ish poster is one thing, but an older and respected member of the board is another.

Technically I feel AndrewD is right in it seems that Nike appear to be pushing the light and less durable shoes (but still costing much) compared to the heavier more durable shoes..

As i stated before, my BF2s wore out very quickly, under 6 months whilst my Adidas Barricade IIIs have lasted me an age.

http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y253/SethAnubis/Tennis/th_DSC00265.jpg (http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y253/SethAnubis/Tennis/DSC00265.jpg)

http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y253/SethAnubis/Tennis/th_DSC00269.jpg (http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y253/SethAnubis/Tennis/DSC00269.jpg)

http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y253/SethAnubis/Tennis/th_DSC00267.jpg (http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y253/SethAnubis/Tennis/DSC00267.jpg)

http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y253/SethAnubis/Tennis/th_DSC00268.jpg (http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y253/SethAnubis/Tennis/DSC00268.jpg)

I wear the exact same colourway for B3 right now.

Japanese Maple
07-31-2008, 05:37 AM
Exactly! About 12 years ago I bought a pair of the original Nike Oscillates from a shoe store because they looked kind of "cool". At the same time, I ordered my first pair of Prince shoes online, one of the original Prince NFS models. The Prince shoes cost about half as much as the Nike shoes. When I got them, I compared the Prince shoes to the Nike shoes. No comparison and no contest. The Prince shoes were 10 times better in every category! The quality of workmanship, materials, support, comfort, cushioning, everything was just so much better in the Prince shoes. The Nike shoes looked and felt like cheap supermarket shoes with almost no cushioning nor support in comparison. If no one had told me, I would have guessed that the Prince shoes cost 4 times more than the Nike shoes instead of actually being 1/2 the price. You can tell right away that Prince puts their money into the shoes themselves instead of putting their money into marketing and paying the pro like Agassi and Sampras as Nike does.

Breakpoint-you couldn't be more wrong about the quality and technology of the Nike Air Oscillates, the shoe worn exclusively by Pete Sampras throughout his playing career and numerous other pros. To me where superior technology comes into play is the ability to blend comfort/cushion, support/stability, durability(sole and mid-sole), and weight. What amazed me about the Air Oscillates is how light they were, but at the same time had outstanding lateral support and stability-clearly one of the best shoes every made. The Oscillates were clearly a high performance match shoe that were not high in comfort and sole durability for the everyday player who isn't getting free shoes. To compare the Nike Oscillates to any Prince shoe demonstrates your ignorance and Prince bias. Two things Sampras would never compromise on for money is his racquet/strings, and shoes. There are alot of shoes you could criticize, but not the Nike Oscillates worn exclusively by a 14 time grand slam champion!

Japanese Maple
07-31-2008, 05:51 AM
Again, where exactly is your research to support this claim? You state it as if it was fact, just like you stated in another thread that you "know" that TW makes more profit from selling Adidas and Nike shoes than from selling New Balance shoes, but it is merely YOUR OPINION. You have NO FACTS to back up any of your claims.

I highly doubt you have even owned and played in several pairs of EACH of the brands of shoes you've listed above to even conduct a personal comparison, let alone any sort of scientific research.

Asics running shoes are great but I am afraid of their tennis shoes because they don't seem to offer as much lateral support as some of the "tennis brands". I've also tried New Balance tennis shoes and I think they're nowhere near as good as some of the "tennis brands". K-Swiss? Most are too heavy, clunky, and wear out too fast. Diadora? Forget about it! My most recent pair of Diadora shoes had zero support, little cushioning, and I literally wore out the soles after wearing them on the court only 4 times. But they were very comfortable to walk in. Just don't try playing tennis in them. My most recent pair of Lotto shoes were a bit more durable but support was also lacking. Again, very comfortable though. It seems the Italian brands are more about comfort than performance, IMO.

Breakpoint-obviously you have never played with the New Balance 803's-comfortable, light weight and outstanding lateral support and stability! For the price they are clearly the best value for tennis shoes today-I just wish they were not so bland. I don't think it is a badge of honor to play with numerous shoes from numerous companies. If you stick with a quality company whose specialty is shoes you wouldn't have to be constantly searching for the ideal shoe by trying every company under the sun! Stick with Nike, Adidas, New Balance, and now Aasics. I just received the new Aasics Resolutions and played in them yesterday and they are excellent-comfortable, light weight, and good lateral support/stability. Compared to my Adidas Barricade IV's, they felt like slippers but still gave me the stability/support I need for my big frame and all court game-great match shoe. I will be anxious to see how long the mid-sole lasts in comparison to the Barricades.

SempreSami
07-31-2008, 05:56 AM
Breakpoint-you couldn't be more wrong about the quality and technology of the Nike Air Oscillates, the shoe worn exclusively by Pete Sampras and throughout his playing career and numerous other pros. To me where superior technology comes into play is the ability to blend comfort/cushion, support/stability, durability(sole and mid-sole), and weight. What amazed me about the Air Oscillates is how light they were, but at the same time had outstanding lateral support and stability-clearly one of the best shoes every made. The Oscillates were clearly a high performance match shoe that were not high in comfort and sole durability for the everyday player who isn't getting free shoes. To compare the Nike Oscillates to any Prince shoe demonstrates your ignorance and Prince bias. Two things Sampras would never compromise on for money is his racquet/strings, and shoes. There are alot of shoes you could criticize, but not the Nike Oscillates worn exclusively by a 14 time grand slam champion!

Because Sampras paid for all his strings/shoes :roll:

Japanese Maple
07-31-2008, 06:06 AM
JMaple, may I ask, what level do you play at and how long have you been playing?
First point: No one needs to "refute your premise" because the person making a claim is YOU, not the rest of the TW community. YOU need to support that claim, something you haven't really done. Repeating your argument over and over is not support, at least for intelligent people.
2nd point: I'm a 5.0 player, competed in tournaments 10 years ago and still play quite often these days. I've worn Nikes, Reeboks, Asahi, Diadoras, Adidas, Wilson and Prince shoes. I'm older now, have more mileage on my knees, my feet are more sensitive, and I have more cash to spend. I've worn the BF II's, barricade II's, the match points, and many of the most popular shoes. Let me say, the best shoe I've ever worn in my nearly 18 years of playing tennis are my current shoes, Prince T9 roadsters. I also have the cage I's because they were on sale; the Nikes feel like $20 shoes compared to the prince shoes. I must admit, the BF II's were up there in my top 5 all time but the cages suck.

The Red-as I stated to Breakpoint, I don't think it is a badge of honor to have played with so many different shoes from so many companies. If you stuck with a good shoe from one of the main shoe companies perhaps your feet and knees would not be giving you problems today! Could you imagine Sampras trying a different shoe from numerous companies throughout his career-doesn't make sense! I stick with quality shoes from quality companies along with putting in a shoe insert like Spenco or Sof Sol, and I have had no foot, ankle, knee, hip, or back issues. Long before the soles wear out the mid-sole goes and I am quick to replace them when this happens. Most people wear their shoes way too long when the mid-sole is shot-this is where problems start occuring do to the extra shock being transmitted up the leg to the back area.

Japanese Maple
07-31-2008, 06:16 AM
The reason why the guys playing tennis for years here are passionate in response is because it is a known fact amongst tennis players that running shoes are HORRIBLE for tennis. I would like to see evidence that running shoe technology helps tennis shoes. I think some of the people that post here are either non-tennis players or they are NOT runners. The 2 have little to do with each other. You can take a pair of Gel Kayano and blow them out on a tennis court in a matter of days and then have to chalk up a nice sized bill for a rolled ankle. If you go out and hit with your grandmother once a week they may work but if you hit with courts with a group of 4.0's the only good thing that will come of it is that one of the 4.0 guys is probably a doctor and they get to jam you with a bill for the sprained ankle. For the record, Nike, Adidas, etc are NOT shoe tennis shoe specialized companies. Adidas makes everything from tennis shoes to bags for hauling softballs and Nike makes watches (are Nike watches junk just because they don't specialize like Rolex?)

Running shoe technolgy that the tennis industry uses is mainly in new lightweight materials that are durable and comfortable in the mid-sole area. Obviously for tennis you tailor the materials to provide more lateral support/stability than is needed for running shoes, but all new materials generally come from the money spent in running shoe research. For the record, Nike and Adidas started as shoe companies who continue to spend millions on new shoe research to stay ahead of their competition and continue making a quality shoe that dominates the market.

Japanese Maple
07-31-2008, 06:25 AM
Because Sampras paid for all his strings/shoes :roll:
Just because a pro gets free strings, shoes, and racquets doesn't mean they would sacrifice their career results and injury potential due to lesser quality products. With Sampras it was all about results and making history and he goes with whats is best for him to achieve this regardless what he gets paid.

El Guapo
07-31-2008, 07:55 AM
I'd watch who you'd call out on saying bs...

A new-ish poster is one thing, but an older and respected member of the board is another.

Technically I feel AndrewD is right in it seems that Nike appear to be pushing the light and less durable shoes (but still costing much) compared to the heavier more durable shoes..

As i stated before, my BF2s wore out very quickly, under 6 months whilst my Adidas Barricade IIIs have lasted me an age.

http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y253/SethAnubis/Tennis/th_DSC00265.jpg (http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y253/SethAnubis/Tennis/DSC00265.jpg)

http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y253/SethAnubis/Tennis/th_DSC00269.jpg (http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y253/SethAnubis/Tennis/DSC00269.jpg)

http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y253/SethAnubis/Tennis/th_DSC00267.jpg (http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y253/SethAnubis/Tennis/DSC00267.jpg)

http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y253/SethAnubis/Tennis/th_DSC00268.jpg (http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y253/SethAnubis/Tennis/DSC00268.jpg)
Your pictures showed absolutely nothing to back up your claims. You're still BS.

I've got a pair of BIIs, BFIIs, Oscillates, 304s and 305s here and they all flex in the correct spot.

El Guapo
07-31-2008, 07:58 AM
Just because a pro gets free strings, shoes, and racquets doesn't mean they would sacrifice their career results and injury potential due to lesser quality products. With Sampras it was all about results and making history and he goes with whats is best for him to achieve this regardless what he gets paid.
Finally something intelligent from you. Plenty of pros go against their clothing and/or racquet sponsor and get a separate shoe sponsorship from the company that works best for their feet.

Return_Ace
07-31-2008, 09:17 AM
Your pictures showed absolutely nothing to back up your claims. You're still BS.

I've got a pair of BIIs, BFIIs, Oscillates, 304s and 305s here and they all flex in the correct spot.

Why don't you start reading posts more clearly ?

I've blatantly stated that my BF2s wear out much much quicker than my barricades.

My pictures also support that claim. Or, if you can't decipher them:

Picture #1. - That's one of my Barricades on the top. And one of my BF2s on the bottom.

Pictures #2. and #3. - There you can see the fabric has clearly worn (as in it's torn)

Picture #4. - Those are the "soles" of each shoe... where you can see that the BF2s are worn out and the barricades are not.

Since i've been using my barricades now for a longer time than my BF2s it shows that the BF2s wear out more easily.

Thus supporting my claim that:

my BF2s wore out very quickly, under 6 months whilst my Adidas Barricade IIIs have lasted me an age.

and

Nike appear to be pushing the light and less durable shoes (but still costing much) compared to the heavier more durable shoes..

Please learn to read my posts before you actually comment on them :roll:

El Guapo
07-31-2008, 09:30 AM
check out the flex point on Nike shoes. In all but the very odd instance its pretty much dead centre.

Return_Ace = struggling with the English language

Return_Ace
07-31-2008, 09:36 AM
Return_Ace = struggling with the English language

Actually, my english is fine.

If we actually take the whole post into consideration.

check out the flex point on Nike shoes. In all but the very odd instance its pretty much dead centre. That's just not the sign of a well-made shoe. No, I don't own Vapors but that's due to the poor construction and their not being built to last as well as other brands. As for their cushioning, it's very poor in relation to the other key brands.

Can't see where I called them crap, although I do think they're very poorly made. Nike make a product which is appealing to look at and feels okay on the foot but which does so at the expense of total foot security and cushioning. That makes it a poorly constructed shoe and I see absolutely no value in them.

All you did was refer to the post above... of which the "flex point" was merely one statement.

Also just to be more pedantic, if you'd actually read my post clearly, I did not once even refer to the flex point of the shoes and concentrated on the durability (or lack of).

El Guapo
07-31-2008, 09:37 AM
^^^ Try reading post #45 a few more times.

SempreSami
07-31-2008, 10:56 AM
You're awfully sensitive with criticism towards Nike, El Guapo. Care to explain why?

Return_Ace
07-31-2008, 10:57 AM
^^^ Try reading post #45 a few more times.

Try looking up the word "vague" in the dictionary.

Your post makes no references as to which part of his post you were referring to. Not that i didn't understand anyways, my comment was that you should think about crying BS all the time since AndrewD is a useful poster on the forums.

As i said before, my post was about durability, which i showed with my pics.

Your pictures showed absolutely nothing to back up your claims. You're still BS.

Therefore, i proved my claims.

Maybe you should try reading my posts more ? :roll:

BreakPoint
07-31-2008, 11:10 AM
Breakpoint-you couldn't be more wrong about the quality and technology of the Nike Air Oscillates, the shoe worn exclusively by Pete Sampras throughout his playing career and numerous other pros. To me where superior technology comes into play is the ability to blend comfort/cushion, support/stability, durability(sole and mid-sole), and weight. What amazed me about the Air Oscillates is how light they were, but at the same time had outstanding lateral support and stability-clearly one of the best shoes every made. The Oscillates were clearly a high performance match shoe that were not high in comfort and sole durability for the everyday player who isn't getting free shoes. To compare the Nike Oscillates to any Prince shoe demonstrates your ignorance and Prince bias. Two things Sampras would never compromise on for money is his racquet/strings, and shoes. There are alot of shoes you could criticize, but not the Nike Oscillates worn exclusively by a 14 time grand slam champion!
The fact that you cite Pete Sampras shows your ignorance of marketing. Looks like Nike got its money's worth for all those millions they paid Sampras to wear the Oscillates. For one thing, how do you know Sampras' Oscillates were not custom made with much better cushioning and support than the retail version? You do know that Federer never wore any of the retail Vapors, right? His shoes are completely custom made and just made to look like the Vapors from the outside. On the inside, they are completely different. You fell for all the marketing that just because a pro uses something that it must be better. How much some of us are fooled. The Oscillates were a piece of crap compared to my Prince shoes. The quality was terrible and felt more flimsy than wearing a pair of filp-flops. If you want to kill your feet then the Oscillates were your shoe as they had minimal cushioning and support. And the highlighted text in your post above emphasizes the point. Are you getting your shoes for free? If not, why would you spend more of your hard earned money on a shoe that isn't comfortable and doesn't last long? :confused:

Just because you see some pro wearing some shoe or using some racquet does not make it better. Davydenko used to wear Prince shoes, so does that automatically mean they're the best shoes? He uses the Prince O3 Tour, does that mean that's the best racquet? There are lots of great racquets out there that you never see any pro using. What the pros use is pretty irrelevant to what the rest of us who don't get paid or get them for free should be using.

Why don't you get a few pairs of Prince shoes first before speaking of something you're totally ignorant of as it's pretty obvious that you've never owned a single pair of Prince tennis shoes in your entire life. In the meantime, why don't you read this: http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=205923

BreakPoint
07-31-2008, 11:14 AM
I stick with quality shoes from quality companies along with putting in a shoe insert like Spenco or Sof Sol, and I have had no foot, ankle, knee, hip, or back issues. Long before the soles wear out the mid-sole goes and I am quick to replace them when this happens. Most people wear their shoes way too long when the mid-sole is shot-this is where problems start occuring do to the extra shock being transmitted up the leg to the back area.
And if you wore Prince shoes instead of the Oscillates, you wouldn't have to replace them as often.

BreakPoint
07-31-2008, 11:23 AM
For the record, Nike and Adidas started as shoe companies who continue to spend millions on new shoe research to stay ahead of their competition and continue making a quality shoe that dominates the market.
You mean they dominant the endorsement market which then convinces people like you to buy their shoes thereby giving them a bigger market share. Besides, any new breakthrough research is quickly copied by all the competitors anyway.

How do you explain that Wilson and Prince have two of the biggest market shares for tennis shoes even though neither pay anyone to wear their shoes? Must be pretty good shoes in their own rights, huh, since no one is buying them because some pro wears them. The Prince T-10 was actually the #2 selling shoe right behind the Barricades.

BreakPoint
07-31-2008, 11:26 AM
Just because a pro gets free strings, shoes, and racquets doesn't mean they would sacrifice their career results and injury potential due to lesser quality products. With Sampras it was all about results and making history and he goes with whats is best for him to achieve this regardless what he gets paid.
So just because Sampras wears what you believe are real Oscillates, does that mean it's the best shoe for everyone? Is the PS 6.0 85 also the best racquet for everyone? Do you also use the PS 6.0 85 just because Sampras used it?

Japanese Maple
07-31-2008, 12:05 PM
Breakpoint-relax, relax, take a deep breath, great, now don't take yourself so seriously. Your bias towards Prince is comical. How can anyone take Prince serious when their main market in racquets has rapidly evaporated over the years-they are hanging on by a thread worldwide aren't they. I only bought one pair of Nike Air Oscillates and over time they were too narrow for my feet. What are you talking about they lacked support-that was one of their best features along with the light weight. Their cushioning was more than adequate which is what you want for a high performance shoe. Too much cushioning you add weight and potentially sacrifice lateral support. I don't recall Sampras ever having any foot problems, do you ? Nike wanted Sampras to go to their newer shoes over the years, but he refused to make a switch and was not getting paid millions for endorsing a shoe that was an older model. I wear mainly Adidas Barricades and New Balance and what the pros wear for a living does matter to me , but is not everything in my decision. The new Aasic Resolutions that I just received are excellent, very pleased so long as the mid-sole holds up. Nike and Adidas build quality shoes first backed up by continuous monies(millions) spent on research. All the money they spend on marketing would not exist if they didn't have an excellent product to promote. Good luck in your journey trying a myriad of shoes-the flavor of the month if you will-I will stick with the experts who know what they are doing and that is certainly not Prince!

BreakPoint
07-31-2008, 12:22 PM
Breakpoint-relax, relax, take a deep breath, great, now don't take yourself so seriously. Your bias towards Prince is comical. How can anyone take Prince serious when their main market in racquets has rapidly evaporated over the years-they are hanging on by a thread worldwide aren't they. I only bought one pair of Nike Air Oscillates and over time they were too narrow for my feet. What are you talking about they lacked support-that was one of their best features along with the light weight. Their cushioning was more than adequate which is what you want for a high performance shoe. Too much cushioning and you add weight a potentially sacrifice lateral support. I don't recall Sampras ever having any foot problems, do you ? Nike wanted Sampras to go to their newer shoes over the years, but he refused to make a switch and was not getting paid millions for endorsing a shoe that was an older model. I wear mainly Adidas Barricades and New Balance and what the pros wear for a living does matter to me , but is not everything in my decision. The new Aasic Resolutions that I just received are excellent, very pleased so long as the mid-sole holds up. Nike and Adidas build quality shoes first backed up by continuous monies(millions) spent on research. All the money they spend on marketing would not exist if they didn't have an excellent product to promote. Good luck in your journey trying a myriad of shoes-the flavor of the month if you will-I will stick with the experts who know what they are doing and that is certainly not Prince!
Boy, have you got that BACKWARDS! If a company had a great product, they wouldn't have to spend any money marketing it because the product would sell itself. If it's a great product, people would buy it on its own merits. They don't need to see the pros wearing it. Why do Nike and Adidas have to spend millions to pay the pros to wear their shoes? Maybe they're not good enough and that's how they have to sell their shoes - by spending millions on marketing?

You keep saying that Prince shoes are inferior to the "shoe brands" yet you have never owned a pair of Prince shoes in your life? I guess ignorance is bliss, right? You know what, I think the new Batman movie is totally boring even though I've never seen it, and the Avery racquet sucks even though I've never played with it. :oops:

Japanese Maple
07-31-2008, 12:52 PM
Breakpoint-you obviously didn't study business or marketing in college if you did go to college. Everything starts with a quality product-you can only fool the public for so long with a sub par shoe. How much you spend on marketing is based on the size of the market you are going after worldwide and how much of the pie you want to capture,but you must have an excellent product to promote. Prince once was respectable in the racquet industry but has really dropped of to basically be a non entity just like they are in tennis shoes-a non player who can't compete world wide with the big boys.

SempreSami
07-31-2008, 12:56 PM
Breakpoint-you obviously didn't study business or marketing in college if you did go to college. Everything starts with a quality product-you can only fool the public for so long with a sub par shoe. How much you spend on marketing is based on the size of the market you are going after worldwide and how much of the pie you want to capture,but you must have an excellent product to promote. Prince once was respectable in the racquet industry but has really dropped of to basically be a non entity just like they are in tennis shoes-a non player who can't compete world wide with the big boys.

Errr, what?

CGMemphis
07-31-2008, 01:00 PM
Aside from the arguing and for once I agree with BP, Nike has both sides, marketing and self selling shoes. You didnt say that per se, just what I put together and agree with.

No, pro's shoes are not stock shelf shoes, but they are not 100% different. The tech in the pro's are the same things we get, but custom insoles, a different stich for comfort, etc etc. Just like customizing a racquet, the shoes are for them.

Back in the day, I used to wear Nike. The Diadora ran adds in the back of magazines for their shoes. They touted the same long wearing rubber used in F-1 car tires etc. I bought them because I was wearing out toes and instep soles on my foot dragging forehands. I wore through those Diadoras so fast it was ridiculous.

I sent the shoes in and said asked for a replacement, 6 weeks was too early to wear out a shoe. They whined and never replaced my shoes. I never had that problem with Nike. They wore, I sent them back. I stick with their customer service to this day.

The fact that the Diadora shoes are hardly advertised, hardly seen on tour, etc shows me they lost their big ta-do a long time ago. I view other shoes in this category, but unknowingly.

After years of being a Nike diehard, I tried the new Barricades 5's, hate em. Stiff heavy shoe that drives me crazy. They are everyday kick arounds now and I am back with Nike. Ijust brand loyalty from me. Thats what it boils down too.

I wouldn't bash another company without having tried their shoes, but Diadora made me a Nike loyalist with their crappy product. Im hesitant to spend money elsewhere, especially with the Adidas faux paus.

CGMemphis
07-31-2008, 01:03 PM
Breakpoint-you obviously didn't study business or marketing in college if you did go to college. Everything starts with a quality product-you can only fool the public for so long with a sub par shoe. How much you spend on marketing is based on the size of the market you are going after worldwide and how much of the pie you want to capture,but you must have an excellent product to promote. Prince once was respectable in the racquet industry but has really dropped of to basically be a non entity just like they are in tennis shoes-a non player who can't compete world wide with the big boys.

Umm no. You dont need a high-quality product to compete in the market. Buzz and word of mouth and sex appeal sell far more less quality products than a pair of Prince shoes. Ever heard of the Volkswagen Beetle??

Do some research. Prince doesnt worry about their shoes, they worry about their racquets and let the racquets sell the shoes.

SempreSami
07-31-2008, 01:05 PM
Ever heard of the Volkswagen Beetle??

The brainchild of this fellow.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/7/7d/Adolf_Hitler_cph_3a48970.jpg/225px-Adolf_Hitler_cph_3a48970.jpg

CGMemphis
07-31-2008, 01:29 PM
The brainchild of this fellow.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/7/7d/Adolf_Hitler_cph_3a48970.jpg/225px-Adolf_Hitler_cph_3a48970.jpg

Yep. All his personal history aside (which I abhor), the VW bug started out cheaply made and little to no marketing. They were notorious for breaking down, especially in the 70's and 80's. VW was going to cancel the bug and replace the car in the lineup. The public outcry - regardless of the shoddy product and crappy overall car - was relentless, they have kept it to this day. Its only now you see their marketing, using the old collectors model.

Not to derail, but marketing on shoes is not just having high quality products, theres different dymanics and I am picking apart JM's point of having a high quality product. His argument doesnt stand.

Japanese Maple
07-31-2008, 02:01 PM
Umm no. You dont need a high-quality product to compete in the market. Buzz and word of mouth and sex appeal sell far more less quality products than a pair of Prince shoes. Ever heard of the Volkswagen Beetle??

Do some research. Prince doesnt worry about their shoes, they worry about their racquets and let the racquets sell the shoes.
CGMemphis-Nike and Adidas have tremendous marketing power but they also consistently produce an excellent product that gets better every year through research and technological advances. I have nothing against Prince, in fact for years I played with the Prince Graphite Classic, but less face it their racquet market share has dropped off significantly to being a second rate company, especially their shoes.

BreakPoint
07-31-2008, 02:07 PM
Breakpoint-you obviously didn't study business or marketing in college if you did go to college. Everything starts with a quality product-you can only fool the public for so long with a sub par shoe. How much you spend on marketing is based on the size of the market you are going after worldwide and how much of the pie you want to capture,but you must have an excellent product to promote. Prince once was respectable in the racquet industry but has really dropped of to basically be a non entity just like they are in tennis shoes-a non player who can't compete world wide with the big boys.
Um...I have an MBA from an Ivy League university and have worked in marketing as well as in venture capital. :-?

Huh? Prince doesn't want to capture a large market share? :confused:

How many Pintos do you think Ford sold? How much Vioxx did Merck sell? You can promote ANY product. But the worse the product, the more you have to spend on marketing to convince people otherwise.

Huh? Prince and Wilson have been the top sales leaders in the tennis shoe industry for years. In fact, FOUR of the Top 10 best selling tennis shoes in total sales are PRINCE shoes! You cannot say that about Nike nor Adidas! Why don't you get your facts straight before blabbering on?

http://www.princetennis.com/tennis/files/newstipsSubLinks.aspx?aid=97&ntid=1

I think YOU'RE the one that obviously didn't go to college. College grads aren't so gullible to marketing. :oops:

Gmedlo
07-31-2008, 05:59 PM
Prince once was respectable in the racquet industry but has really dropped of to basically be a non entity just like they are in tennis shoes-a non player who can't compete world wide with the big boys.

http://i206.photobucket.com/albums/bb19/youdumbcat/EpicFail02.jpg

slice bh compliment
07-31-2008, 06:14 PM
^True^.
Japanese Maple reminds me of a college kid who strung and managed the desk at the pro shop at the club where I was the tennis director/head pro. He grew out of this phase by his senior year.

Type of guy (at least for his first year or two working for me) who knows what he knows, believes it ... and that's good enough for him and his buddies. Thing is, he ends up sounding pretty solid, especially when he is talking to novice/recreational players. But that's not really the crowd around here is it?

edit:
Sorrymate. Gotta agree with Gmeldo's assessment.

fridrix
07-31-2008, 06:49 PM
^^^^^ hahaha, nice, slice

meh
07-31-2008, 10:14 PM
By the OP's logic, Lotto and K-Swiss should manufacture the best tennis shoes, since their respective first products were tennis shoes, but you'd certainly be hard-pressed to find anybody who thinks so.

BreakPoint
07-31-2008, 11:21 PM
By the OP's logic, Lotto and K-Swiss should manufacture the best tennis shoes, since their respective first products were tennis shoes, but you'd certainly be hard-pressed to find anybody who thinks so.
And he probably thinks Babolat makes the worst tennis racquets in the world because for the first 120 years of the company's existence, all they made were strings, and didn't even start making racquets until only about 14 years ago.

But then so many pros use Babolat racquets. :eek: Hmmm....I guess that blows his theory out of the water. :oops:

Japanese Maple
08-01-2008, 06:47 AM
Um...I have an MBA from an Ivy League university and have worked in marketing as well as in venture capital. :-?

Huh? Prince doesn't want to capture a large market share? :confused:

How many Pintos do you think Ford sold? How much Vioxx did Merck sell? You can promote ANY product. But the worse the product, the more you have to spend on marketing to convince people otherwise.

Huh? Prince and Wilson have been the top sales leaders in the tennis shoe industry for years. In fact, FOUR of the Top 10 best selling tennis shoes in total sales are PRINCE shoes! You cannot say that about Nike nor Adidas! Why don't you get your facts straight before blabbering on?

http://www.princetennis.com/tennis/files/newstipsSubLinks.aspx?aid=97&ntid=1

I think YOU'RE the one that obviously didn't go to college. College grads aren't so gullible to marketing. :oops:

LOL-Breakpoint, I would think a so called Ivy League graduates time would be more valuable than posting over 18,000 comments on a tennis board-I highly doubt that you have any degree from an Ivy school, let alone college based upon your comments. Wilson shoes are crap and Prince does not have a world wide market like they used to, especially in their so called forte of racquets. Adding or subtracting weights is a marketing gimmick and a joke. Your Vioxx example makes no sense at all. I have stated my opinion and my feet,ankles, knees, hips, and back thank me that I have choosen to stick with quality shoe companies who actually do their own research and don't merely slap their name on a shoe, copying others. You should really try the New Balance 803's-clearly the best price/performance bargain in tennis shoes today! Outstanding lateral support/stability, light weight, and comfortable all for under $75.00 bucks!

El Guapo
08-01-2008, 07:14 AM
^^^^ You think that NB does a lot of technological research? You're delusional. Have you seen these the NB Zip line? Talk about copy-cat. They are heavy with almost zero cushioning. You won't find a more hated shoe among true runners.

Japanese Maple
08-01-2008, 09:24 AM
^^^^ You think that NB does a lot of technological research? You're delusional. Have you seen these the NB Zip line? Talk about copy-cat. They are heavy with almost zero cushioning. You won't find a more hated shoe among true runners.
El Guapo-New Balance does do extensive research, hence their genesis as a running shoe company consistently building a quality product year after year. As I had mentioned the 803's are an excellent shoe. I suspect their new 1003's are very good based on the reviews of happy customers. I just received my Aasic Resolutions and my initial impressions after hitting for an 1 1/2 is very favorable. I read from another customer that the mid-sole has held up very well after hitting 8 hrs. per wk for the last 4 months. Compared to my Barricade IV's, the Aasics make me feel like a speed demon on the court while offering very good lateral support/stability and excellent cushioning! Very pleased so far!

BreakPoint
08-01-2008, 01:29 PM
LOL-Breakpoint, I would think a so called Ivy League graduates time would be more valuable than posting over 18,000 comments on a tennis board-I highly doubt that you have any degree from an Ivy school, let alone college based upon your comments. Wilson shoes are crap and Prince does not have a world wide market like they used to, especially in their so called forte of racquets. Adding or subtracting weights is a marketing gimmick and a joke. Your Vioxx example makes no sense at all. I have stated my opinion and my feet,ankles, knees, hips, and back thank me that I have choosen to stick with quality shoe companies who actually do their own research and don't merely slap their name on a shoe, copying others. You should really try the New Balance 803's-clearly the best price/performance bargain in tennis shoes today! Outstanding lateral support/stability, light weight, and comfortable all for under $75.00 bucks!
Um.... I can do with my time as I please and don't need to work if I choose not to. Maybe if you went to an Ivy League school, you could do that to. But no chance because you obviously don't possess the intelligence to get anywhere near an Ivy school.

The worse thing is someone so ignorant that they don't even know how little they know. Did you even bother to read that link above? Prince does their own research on shoes and have come out with numerous innovations over the years, such as NFS and the Precision Tube Technology. In racquets, they came out with the O-Ports and Speedports, the only "real" technical innovation in racquet in at least the past decade. They sell worldwide and have many models sold in Japan that are not even sold in the U.S.

Did you know most bottled water is nothing but tap water? Yet, people spend billions of dollars a year on bottled tap water? Why? Because of all the marketing that makes people think it's something different. It's not! It's tap water! Gullible people like you are a marketer's dream. Maybe if you ever graduate from high school, you'll actually learn something.

Japanese Maple
08-01-2008, 03:26 PM
Um.... I can do with my time as I please and don't need to work if I choose not to. Maybe if you went to an Ivy League school, you could do that to. But no chance because you obviously don't possess the intelligence to get anywhere near an Ivy school.

The worse thing is someone so ignorant that they don't even know how little they know. Did you even bother to read that link above? Prince does their own research on shoes and have come out with numerous innovations over the years, such as NFS and the Precision Tube Technology. In racquets, they came out with the O-Ports and Speedports, the only "real" technical innovation in racquet in at least the past decade. They sell worldwide and have many models sold in Japan that are not even sold in the U.S.

Did you know most bottled water is nothing but tap water? Yet, people spend billions of dollars a year on bottled tap water? Why? Because of all the marketing that makes people think it's something different. It's not! It's tap water! Gullible people like you are a marketer's dream. Maybe if you ever graduate from high school, you'll actually learn something.

Breakpoint-you have been a prolific TW message board responder since 2004. With 19,000 entries on an average of 5 minutes to read comments and post comments(which is conservative) you have spent over 1,500 hours, or over 65 days at 24 hours straight, or 195 days responding over 8 hours per day with mindless banter on a message board! You my friend are not an Ivy League graduate. An Ivy League MBA's time is far more valuable than to spend the exorbitant time you have making 18,900 entries-oh my God what a boring existence-I feel sorry for you-good luck with your addiction-I wish you the best. By the way people with class who actual attended an Ivy League school don't brag about having gone there-they have quiet, dignified confidence with no masked bravado!

BreakPoint
08-01-2008, 03:47 PM
Breakpoint-you have been a prolific TW message board responder since 2004. With 19,000 entries on an average of 5 minutes to read comments and post comments(which is conservative) you have spent over 1,500 hours, or over 65 days at 24 hours straight, or 195 days responding over 8 hours per day with mindless banter on a message board! You my friend are not an Ivy League graduate. An Ivy League MBA's time is far more valuable than to spend the exorbitant time you have making 18,900 entries-oh my God what a boring existence-I feel sorry for you-good luck with your addiction-I wish you the best. By the way people with class who actual attended an Ivy League school don't brag about having gone there-they have quiet, dignified confidence with no masked bravado!
Um...aren't you the one that accused me of not having attended college and having no education in marketing? :confused: You called me on it and I responded! How is that "bragging"? OTOH, you are obviously a very uneducated person based on your obtuse posts.

If you had gone to an Ivy school, maybe you would also know how to read and type at superhuman speeds? But alas, you'll never even get out of high school with your close minded attitude. :cry:

BTW, if you're smart enough, you'd know how to make all of your time your own and not have to answer to anyone else and do with your time whatever you please. And tennis pleases me.

I'll tell you what, why don't you put your money where your big mouth is. I'll bet you 10 million dollars right now that I have not one, but two Ivy League degrees, one in Mechanical Engineering and the other a MBA. So if you're so sure I'm lying then why don't you put up your money. It'll be the easiest and the only 10 million dollars you'll ever make, right? So put up or shut up.

staedtler
08-01-2008, 03:50 PM
I'll throw in my 2 cents.

I design shoes for a living. From what I know and experienced, I will try to demystify certain things.

In terms of technology and research, I would say NB, Nike and adidas probably do spend the most. But that doesn't mean they technically have the best cushioning systems or materials. I mean look at Shox, a cushioning technology that supposedly took 20 years to get it right and developed. But really its just cylindrical columns made of polyurethane or some very dense foam. Its not exactly great for running and has been known to cause injuries as its not a particularly a very stable cushioning system. Which is why we've only seen a few Shox tennis shoes. Even in those shoes, the 'shox' were shaped differently to enhance stability.

Then you got those TPU like cushioning systems, like adidas' Bounce, Lotto's Syn-Pulse technology. Those are pretty elaborate, but I wouldn't say the most effective. They can possibly be a little stiff and hard. Prince is a little interesting in that they seem to have tubes of TPU placed into the midsole. Its very similar to what Merrell has in their adventure/trail shoes.

From what I've seen in tennis shoes, the most effective cushioning systems seem to be foams, gels, and for Nike, air cushioning. I would say Nike and asics are the most original in terms of really good effective cushioning for tennis players. Nike has Zoom air which I think is excellent for tennis and no one else has it. Same with Asics and their gel cushioning. I don't really see any other companies also using a gel. Actually even Nike is getting back with the foams, with their Lunarlite foam, which is pretty special I might add.

Now for everyone else in the tennis shoe market, they all use relatively similar cushioning systems. Even though, adidas and New Balance have all those years in the shoe business, and all that money in research & development, they are still basically using a viscoelastic rubberized foam inserted in an EVA midsole for their tennis shoes. And all the other tennis shoes companies like Diadora, Fila use very similar setups and in many cases are just as good. So adiprene, Abzorb, Superaction, DA2 Plus, Vibrakill, all these technologies are very similar as they are a viscoelastic/rubberized foam. It wouldn't surprise me if a few of these technologies are the same. I'm sure a few are a little more responsive than others as they are different durometers you can spec for a shoe. Also I don't think people realize that some footwear companies contract the same factory, thus its possible the same foam materials are being used. My company has used very similar materials, and all we do is just throw a marketing term on it to make it seem very technological.

Also in terms of fit, its entirely possible for another company to replicate the fit of another shoe company. It just takes a little reverse engineering. For example, if my company likes the shape and fit of the Barricade, we can buy that shoe, send it to a last maker like Jones & Vining, where they can then develop the shape and last from that shoe. Then from there, we can modify the shape if we want a rounder toebox, or square toebox, or a higher toebox, etc... Actually Jones & Vining makes lasts for many companies like Nike, asics, adidas, so its entirely possible they could just send us the last they developed for those companies.

Now with upper materials like leathers, synthetic leathers, meshes and linings, many footwear companies source from the same material suppliers. Like for meshes and linings, companies have the same stuff, but they just throw a marketing term on top of it to make it seem original and technological. For example, people can not say Nike uses better linings and meshes than Prince. Why? Because I know they use the same meshes and linings, because they source from the same company called Dri-Lex. My company has used them, and our contact over there tells us which linings are popular amongst the other companies. Heck here's a link that shows all the companies Dri-Lex has supplied for.

http://www.faytex.com/users.html

Like Climacool works and all, but its really just vents in the upper and molded pieces in combination with open spacer meshes. Wilson's Open II shoes are pretty similar to an adidas Climacool shoe in terms of ventilation.

So in conclusion, what am I trying to say?
What I'm trying to say is that any company can develop a really good tennis shoe. It doesn't matter if the company has been developing shoes for 60 years or 5 years. In order to make a good performing tennis shoe, you need some good footwear developers and footwear designers that know what the tennis player needs. You also need to have good factories for the shoes to be developed, because usually the better factories are the ones that can handle the more complicated and intricate processes. You also need to source from some good material suppliers. You will also need some good marketing to help 'fool' the customer into thinking you have something special. And of course you will also need a decent amount of money to get all of this, haha. Once you combine all of it, and everything goes right, you can get a pretty darn good shoe out of it. So I hope this helps. Sorry if my post is very long:)

El Guapo
08-01-2008, 03:53 PM
Actually even Nike is getting back with the foams, with their Lunarlite foam, which is pretty special I might add.

Huge understatement. The Lunarlite foam is an amazing breakthrough. Sounds silly but it really is MUCH better than anything that's ever been done before.

BreakPoint
08-01-2008, 03:54 PM
An Ivy League MBA's time is far more valuable than to spend the exorbitant time you have making 18,900 entries-
And how would you possibly know? You're not one yourself, are you? :-?

I don't think I've ever come across anyone who doesn't actually know anything but assumes so much as being fact. Man, you've got a lot to learn about the world. But then again, you do live in your own little world there, don't you, so never mind.

tbini87
08-01-2008, 10:02 PM
I'll throw in my 2 cents.

I design shoes for a living. From what I know and experienced, I will try to demystify certain things.

In terms of technology and research, I would say NB, Nike and adidas probably do spend the most. But that doesn't mean they technically have the best cushioning systems or materials. I mean look at Shox, a cushioning technology that supposedly took 20 years to get it right and developed. But really its just cylindrical columns made of polyurethane or some very dense foam. Its not exactly great for running and has been known to cause injuries as its not a particularly a very stable cushioning system. Which is why we've only seen a few Shox tennis shoes. Even in those shoes, the 'shox' were shaped differently to enhance stability.

Then you got those TPU like cushioning systems, like adidas' Bounce, Lotto's Syn-Pulse technology. Those are pretty elaborate, but I wouldn't say the most effective. They can possibly be a little stiff and hard. Prince is a little interesting in that they seem to have tubes of TPU placed into the midsole. Its very similar to what Merrell has in their adventure/trail shoes.

From what I've seen in tennis shoes, the most effective cushioning systems seem to be foams, gels, and for Nike, air cushioning. I would say Nike and asics are the most original in terms of really good effective cushioning for tennis players. Nike has Zoom air which I think is excellent for tennis and no one else has it. Same with Asics and their gel cushioning. I don't really see any other companies also using a gel. Actually even Nike is getting back with the foams, with their Lunarlite foam, which is pretty special I might add.

Now for everyone else in the tennis shoe market, they all use relatively similar cushioning systems. Even though, adidas and New Balance have all those years in the shoe business, and all that money in research & development, they are still basically using a viscoelastic rubberized foam inserted in an EVA midsole for their tennis shoes. And all the other tennis shoes companies like Diadora, Fila use very similar setups and in many cases are just as good. So adiprene, Abzorb, Superaction, DA2 Plus, Vibrakill, all these technologies are very similar as they are a viscoelastic/rubberized foam. It wouldn't surprise me if a few of these technologies are the same. I'm sure a few are a little more responsive than others as they are different durometers you can spec for a shoe. Also I don't think people realize that some footwear companies contract the same factory, thus its possible the same foam materials are being used. My company has used very similar materials, and all we do is just throw a marketing term on it to make it seem very technological.

Also in terms of fit, its entirely possible for another company to replicate the fit of another shoe company. It just takes a little reverse engineering. For example, if my company likes the shape and fit of the Barricade, we can buy that shoe, send it to a last maker like Jones & Vining, where they can then develop the shape and last from that shoe. Then from there, we can modify the shape if we want a rounder toebox, or square toebox, or a higher toebox, etc... Actually Jones & Vining makes lasts for many companies like Nike, asics, adidas, so its entirely possible they could just send us the last they developed for those companies.

Now with upper materials like leathers, synthetic leathers, meshes and linings, many footwear companies source from the same material suppliers. Like for meshes and linings, companies have the same stuff, but they just throw a marketing term on top of it to make it seem original and technological. For example, people can not say Nike uses better linings and meshes than Prince. Why? Because I know they use the same meshes and linings, because they source from the same company called Dri-Lex. My company has used them, and our contact over there tells us which linings are popular amongst the other companies. Heck here's a link that shows all the companies Dri-Lex has supplied for.

http://www.faytex.com/users.html

Like Climacool works and all, but its really just vents in the upper and molded pieces in combination with open spacer meshes. Wilson's Open II shoes are pretty similar to an adidas Climacool shoe in terms of ventilation.

So in conclusion, what am I trying to say?
What I'm trying to say is that any company can develop a really good tennis shoe. It doesn't matter if the company has been developing shoes for 60 years or 5 years. In order to make a good performing tennis shoe, you need some good footwear developers and footwear designers that know what the tennis player needs. You also need to have good factories for the shoes to be developed, because usually the better factories are the ones that can handle the more complicated and intricate processes. You also need to source from some good material suppliers. You will also need some good marketing to help 'fool' the customer into thinking you have something special. And of course you will also need a decent amount of money to get all of this, haha. Once you combine all of it, and everything goes right, you can get a pretty darn good shoe out of it. So I hope this helps. Sorry if my post is very long:)


thanks for the very detailed post. nice to get some info from a person in the field, as opposed to someone's theory they made up off the top of their head without any experience in the field. you said any company can make a great shoe, whether they have been in the field a long or short amount of time (50 years to 5 years or whatever). i think that is what others here were trying to get at.

staedtler
08-03-2008, 02:23 PM
thanks for the very detailed post. nice to get some info from a person in the field, as opposed to someone's theory they made up off the top of their head without any experience in the field. you said any company can make a great shoe, whether they have been in the field a long or short amount of time (50 years to 5 years or whatever). i think that is what others here were trying to get at.

Thanks, I'm glad you enjoyed it. I think alot of assumptions are made when it comes to footwear and many people think quality comes in the form of a Nike or adidas, or New Balance. And these people don't give the 'lesser' brands a chance. Every person has different feet, and different brands fit better for certain people. Its just like tennis racquets. Different strokes for different folks. I never thought I'd be using a Tecnifibre racquet because I had never heard of them in terms of the racquet business. But what do you know, their frame fits me the best. So its just like shoes.

Japanese Maple
08-04-2008, 05:36 AM
thanks for the very detailed post. nice to get some info from a person in the field, as opposed to someone's theory they made up off the top of their head without any experience in the field. you said any company can make a great shoe, whether they have been in the field a long or short amount of time (50 years to 5 years or whatever). i think that is what others here were trying to get at.
tbini87-while its true that anybody could design and market a shoe within a short period of time, the key is that companies overall commitment to the tennis shoe industry, and their ability to consistently produce a quality product year after year and not be a 1-2 year hit wonder. I have over 25 years test marketing tennis shoes and I clearly know whats quality and what is not which is why I prefer to stick with the established companies while being flexible enough to adapt and try other companies who develop and market a good shoe for the money. Aasics, in the past had a nice tennis shoe, but for my size frame and all-court game style did not provide enough lateral/stability support to work for me. Recently, through the excellent reviews of the Aasic Resolutions they appear to have address the stability issue and I purchased the shoes. After wearing them twice, these are excellent shoes with good support/stability and I am very pleased with the purchase.

Japanese Maple
08-04-2008, 06:12 AM
Staedtler-thank you for your informative post. While I agree with you that within a relatively short period of time anybody can design and market a tennis shoe, very few companies make a serious commitment to the tennis shoe industry to do so on a consistent basis over the long haul. Quality backed up by continual research on a consistent basis over the long term is key for me which is why I look mainly at New Balance, Nike, Adidas, and Asics. For me the key to a great shoe is the ability for a company to blend comfort/cushioning,lateral support/stability, durability(midsole and sole), fit, and overall weight. Usually when a company adds sole and midsole durability(particularly sole), they need more weight like the Adidas Barricades. In the past for me, lighter shoes(14-15 oz.) usually meant they sacrificed lateral support and midsole integrity.

Staedtler-while companies can copy some things from another tennis shoe company, I am sure the major companies through research have proprietary technology that can not be copied which give them a distinct competitive edge. In your mind, where is the bulk of the research focused on-sole, midsole, uppers, weight, styling, ect. Also, where is the bulk of the weight in a tennis shoe come from-uppers, sole, or midsole. What impresses me about the New Balance 803's and now the Asic Resolutions is their ability to provide excellent cushioning/comfort, lateral support/stability, good sole endurance, overall fit/feel, and a reasonable weight-not too heavy like the Adidas Barricades. For me to put my final stamp of approval on the Asics will be how long the midsole last before its memory and cushion is shot. If the midsole holds up over a reasonable time, this shoe will be a huge success!

montx
08-04-2008, 06:17 AM
I agree. The people who make shoes also give detail to the rest of the apparel's quality.

Fila suck in my opinion. I dropped their wear.

I have come to like adidas and nike. I suppose "Oh, what a surprise!"

BreakPoint
08-04-2008, 03:00 PM
Asics, in the past had a nice tennis shoe, but for my size frame and all-court game style did not provide enough lateral/stability support to work for me.
Hmmm...I wonder why? Could it be because they started as a running shoe company and most of their research is in running shoes, like I said several times above? Hmmm......

OTOH, all of Prince's shoe research is in tennis shoes, not running shoes. The two are apples and oranges. Prince knows tennis inside and out and knows what tennis players need on their feet to perform their best on a tennis court. Asics does not. They know what you need on your feet to perform on a running track moving in only one direction. That's why I only buy Asics running shoes.

Japanese Maple
08-04-2008, 03:42 PM
Hmmm...I wonder why? Could it be because they started as a running shoe company and most of their research is in running shoes, like I said several times above? Hmmm......

OTOH, all of Prince's shoe research is in tennis shoes, not running shoes. The two are apples and oranges. Prince knows tennis inside and out and knows what tennis players need on their feet to perform their best on a tennis court. Asics does not. They know what you need on your feet to perform on a running track moving in only one direction. That's why I only buy Asics running shoes.
Like I said Breakpoint, for me its hard to take Prince seriously for shoes when they can't even hold on to their core market in tennis racquets which has dropped tremendously! Asics new Resolution shoe is outstanding based on my direct experience, TW review, and customer feedback by fellow players. They definitely have a winner here and their years of research producing running shoes has really paid off! Asics has been successful worldwide with past tennis shoes that pro players have worn and have been fine , but for my size frame and all court game I need a little more lateral support. Their new shoe now provides that extra support I need-what a great shoe!

Gmedlo
08-04-2008, 04:40 PM
JM: Your continual lack of evidence regarding Prince's shortcomings in ANY market continues to make you look like an idiot.

Have you ever worn a Prince shoe?

staedtler
08-04-2008, 05:03 PM
Staedtler-thank you for your informative post. While I agree with you that within a relatively short period of time anybody can design and market a tennis shoe, very few companies make a serious commitment to the tennis shoe industry to do so on a consistent basis over the long haul. Quality backed up by continual research on a consistent basis over the long term is key for me which is why I look mainly at New Balance, Nike, Adidas, and Aasics. For me the key to a great shoe is the ability for a company to blend comfort/cushioning,lateral support/stability, durability(midsole and sole), fit, and overall weight. Usually when a company adds sole and midsole durability(particularly sole), they need more weight like the Adidas Barricades. In the past for me, lighter shoes(14-15 oz.) usually meant they sacrificed lateral support and midsole integrity.

Staedtler-while companies can copy some things from another tennis shoe company, I am sure the major companies through research have proprietary technology that can not be copied which give them a distinct competitive edge. In your mind, where is the bulk of the research focused on-sole, midsole, uppers, weight, styling, ect. Also, where is the bulk of the weight in a tennis shoe come from-uppers, sole, or midsole. What impresses me about the New Balance 803's and now the Aasic Resolutions is their ability to provide excellent cushioning/comfort, lateral support/stability, good sole endurance, overall fit/feel, and a reasonable weight-not too heavy like the Adidas Barricades. For me to put my final stamp of approval on the Aasics will be how long the midsole last before its memory and cushion is shot. If the midsole holds up over a reasonable time, this shoe will be a huge success!

True. There is proprietary technology that can't be copied. But a few can be mimicked. You know some technologies are just trends really. A lot of marketing hype. When Nike Shox first came out, they were a pretty big hit. Adidas then followed with their first incarnation of a3, which actually made much more sense in terms of running than shox. Obviously they couldn't directly copy shox, but they came up with a system that was quite similar, which is PU columns sandwiched in a TPU cantilever plate. Now Avia has something pretty similar to that first incarnation of a3. Now that years have passed, adidas has come up with a3 Bounce technology. Pretty cool and all, but I wouldn't say revolutionary. Next thing you know, New Balance comes out with something similar called NB Zip. Im sure they did some 'research', but Im more sure they are cashing in on a trend.

Now since we're talking about tennis shoes specifically, what company has proprietary technology that gives them a distinct competitive edge when it comes to tennis? I can really only think of Nike and asics in terms of cushioning. Nike has their Max Air and Zoom Air and that tech works great for tennis. Asics has their gel which I haven't tried, but people love it for tennis. Adidas does have their a3 Bounce tech, but I don't think that its all that great for tennis. Reebok using Pump technology, seems to result in heavier, bulkier, and yet not so great fitting shoes even though pump is suppose to alleviate that. Nike does have that cool Drag-on tech, but then again Drag-on is just a fancy name for direct injection molding. Prince is now doing it with the OV-1 and same with Lacoste with their Repel shoe.

So in my opinion, other than Nike and asics, every company is somewhat working on level ground. They all have similar tech in terms of cushioning, its just all about how they design and apply their respective techs to their shoes. Some companies just might do it a little better than others. But if you got great experienced footwear developers, and footwear designers that know the needs of the tennis player, then you can somewhat hang with the big boys. That's why Prince, Wilson, Yonex, Babolat, Head, they have a chance to produce good tennis shoes, because they are only concentrating on tennis. All they have to do, is take what works for tennis players, and build on that.

So you can't honestly say, that tennis companies like Prince, Babolat don't do research for their shoes. Maybe in terms of tech, they don't have the funds to research elastomers and such to come up with a great tech. But they do have enough money to research the tennis player. I mean afterall, thats what they've been doing all along. Instead of just analyzing strokes and mechanics of a tennis player, they also concentrate on looking at footwork and the biomechanics of a tennis player. I mean the building blocks are there, they have access to good materials, elastomers, foams that work, its just a matter of really understanding the needs of a tennis player, and putting it all together. I mean you don't need full-length shox, or NB Zip and all the new 'technological' stuff to make a good tennis shoe. I mean adidas still uses adiprene. So all that continual research into technologies like a3, NB Zip, Shox, doesn't necessarily impact the tennis world. I mean Im sure something will come up that might really impact tennis, like Lunarlite foam from Nike. But I'd say most of that stuff like NB Zip don't really apply to tennis.

As for research, and how much is spent on certain areas. I really can't say. I know Nike has their Innovation Kitchen, and cushioning techs like Shox and Lunarlite foam has come from there. They also got their upper technology like Flywire that was ideated and conceptualized in the Innovation Kitchen. I also think Foamposite came from the minds of the Innovation Kitchen, but Im not too sure. Theres also material development for meshes and such, but I think the suppliers do more of that kind of research. So I really can't say where the most bulk of research is spent on, but I want to say its spread out pretty equally.

As for the weight of the shoe and where its most concentrated at. I want to say at the midsole. Some companies use some really dense foams and thick outsoles, and that makes up for the bulk of the weight of the shoe in my opinion.

Also JM, have you tried Prince shoes? From what I see on Prince shoes, they use some pretty decently high tech stuff. I mean they have a relatively unique heel cushioning system with their Precision Tube. They also make use of Dri-Lex linings and meshes which are good. They even make use of decently expensive molding processes like direct injection molding which is found on their OV-1 shoe. So on paper, Prince has a pretty decent shoe. I don't know how they feel or perform, but people seem to vouch for them. I know some college players that love their shoes from the Prince M Series. I mean I would give them a serious chance. The only thing I don't like is their aesthetic appeal. I feel they can definitely improve that, but then again in terms of aesthetics, what I like, most tennis players don't like.

staedtler
08-04-2008, 05:15 PM
Hmmm...I wonder why? Could it be because they started as a running shoe company and most of their research is in running shoes, like I said several times above? Hmmm......

OTOH, all of Prince's shoe research is in tennis shoes, not running shoes. The two are apples and oranges. Prince knows tennis inside and out and knows what tennis players need on their feet to perform their best on a tennis court. Asics does not. They know what you need on your feet to perform on a running track moving in only one direction. That's why I only buy Asics running shoes.

Actually I think asics' first ever shoe was a basketball shoe. And that striped logo on the side is actually in direct response to the movements of a basketball player. The stripes on the side were functional overlays that were suppose to add lateral support for the basketball player. But since then, they've been pretty much a running/track company. Although I think they are quite popular in volleyball too. In fact I would say their advances in volleyball shoes have just as a great effect on their tennis shoes as do their advances in running. I think the movements in volleyball are a little more similar to tennis than the movements in running.

El Guapo
08-04-2008, 05:43 PM
Now since we're talking about tennis shoes specifically, what company has proprietary technology that gives them a distinct competitive edge when it comes to tennis? I can really only think of Nike and asics in terms of cushioning.

Nope. Try Yonex. They blow Nike and Asics out of the water in terms of lightweight cushioning. So much better than either (at least until Nike releases their Lunarlite tennis shoes).

staedtler
08-04-2008, 06:01 PM
Nope. Try Yonex. They blow Nike and Asics out of the water in terms of lightweight cushioning. So much better than either (at least until Nike releases their Lunarlite tennis shoes).

Thank you El Guapo. I haven't tried Yonex shoes, so I dont know what they are like. I only pointed out Nike and asics because they seem to have a unique cushioning technology that works pretty well for tennis. Unique as in no one else seems to have anything similar material wise Almost every other company is just using some elastomer or viscoelastic foam while Nike and asics have their Air and gel respectively.

But JM, as you can see some people even believe that the tennis companies like Yonex have better lightweight cushioning than Nike or asics.

El Guapo
08-04-2008, 06:10 PM
Thank you El Guapo. I haven't tried Yonex shoes, so I dont know what they are like. I only pointed out Nike and asics because they seem to have a unique cushioning technology that works pretty well for tennis. Unique as in no one else seems to have anything similar material wise Almost every other company is just using some elastomer or viscoelastic foam while Nike and asics have their Air and gel respectively.

But JM, as you can see some people even believe that the tennis companies like Yonex have better lightweight cushioning than Nike or asics.
But Nike is going back to foam (Lunarlite) and scrapping their Air technology in their elite shoes.

staedtler
08-04-2008, 06:22 PM
But Nike is going back to foam (Lunarlite) and scrapping their Air technology in their elite shoes.

Yes, I know they are going back to foam. But they are not entirely scrapping Air for their 'elite' shoes. I can see that some shoes have 3/4 length of Lunar foam like Lunartrainers, and Zoom Court Lunas. But in some of their elite tennis shoes like the Vapor VI, they are still using Zoom Air in the heel along with lunarlite foam in the forefoot. The Air Max CourtBallistec uses Max Air in the heel in conjunction with lunarlite foam in the forefoot. So they are clearly not scrapping Air in their elite shoes. Look at the Hyperdunks, it still has zoom air in the heel and thats an 'elite' b-ball shoe. So Nike still has something relatively unique that isn't a foam in their elite tennis shoes.

Japanese Maple
08-04-2008, 06:27 PM
JM: Your continual lack of evidence regarding Prince's shortcomings in ANY market continues to make you look like an idiot.

Have you ever worn a Prince shoe?
Years ago I looked at Prince and I did not like the overall fit-too boxy and clunky, I know all about Prince's organizational changes and erosion in the tennis market through a friend who left Prince and went to work for Head when they had their mass exit of personnel. You really don't want me to get started about Prince!

BreakPoint
08-04-2008, 10:59 PM
Like I said Breakpoint, for me its hard to take Prince seriously for shoes when they can't even hold on to their core market in tennis racquets which has dropped tremendously! Asics new Resolution shoe is outstanding based on my direct experience, TW review, and customer feedback by fellow players. They definitely have a winner here and their years of research producing running shoes has really paid off! Asics has been successful worldwide with past tennis shoes that pro players have worn and have been fine , but for my size frame and all court game I need a little more lateral support. Their new shoe now provides that extra support I need-what a great shoe!
Huh? Prince's market for tennis racquets has "dropped tremendously"? Where do you get this stuff? :confused: Prince is without a doubt THE hottest tennis racquet brand right now. They have FOUR of the Top 10 best selling tennis racquets on the market right now. No other brand can make that claim. Prince has been increasing their market share for tennis racquets for the last several years! WHERE exactly is this "drop off"?

I highly recommend you read this: http://www.princetennis.com/tennis/files/newstipsSubLinks.aspx?aid=125&ntid=1

And like I said before, Prince also has FOUR of the Top 10 best selling tennis shoes on the market. No other tennis shoe brand can say that. Asics has zero. http://www.princetennis.com/tennis/files/newstipsSubLinks.aspx?aid=97&ntid=1

But why let facts get in the way of your closed-minded theories? :-?

Asics "years of research in running shoes has really paid off"? Yeah, in making running shoes! What does that have anything to do with tennis shoes? Would you wear running shoes to play tennis in? No, because they are totally different animals! That's like saying Honda's engine research has really paid off in making better flat panel TVs! :roll:

I'm glad you like your Asics tennis shoes, but I hope you're a serve and volleyer and not a baseliner, so you only have to run forwards towards the net and not side-to-side on the baseline.

BreakPoint
08-04-2008, 11:14 PM
Actually I think asics' first ever shoe was a basketball shoe. And that striped logo on the side is actually in direct response to the movements of a basketball player. The stripes on the side were functional overlays that were suppose to add lateral support for the basketball player. But since then, they've been pretty much a running/track company. Although I think they are quite popular in volleyball too. In fact I would say their advances in volleyball shoes have just as a great effect on their tennis shoes as do their advances in running. I think the movements in volleyball are a little more similar to tennis than the movements in running.
Well, I know they used to known as "Tiger" and that Phil Knight, the co-founder of Nike did a distribution deal with them in the early days of Nike, before Nike made their own shoes, to sell Tiger running shoes in the U.S. All they sold were running shoes and Phil Knight used to hang out in the parking lot at track meets and sold Tiger running shoes out of the trunk of his car. :)

BreakPoint
08-04-2008, 11:22 PM
Years ago I looked at Prince and I did not like the overall fit-too boxy and clunky, I know all about Prince's organizational changes and erosion in the tennis market through a friend who left Prince and went to work for Head when they had their mass exit of personnel. You really don't want me to get started about Prince!
That was many moons ago, my friend. You need to get up to date!

The private equity investors that bought Prince from Bennetton several years ago have really turned the company around and increased their market share temendously in racquets, shoes, strings, etc. So much so that the investors recently sold Prince to another group of investors for like 4-5 times what they paid for the company only 4-5 years ago. The new investors wouldn't have paid that much for the company if they weren't doing great in the market and making tons of profit.

Japanese Maple
08-05-2008, 04:58 AM
Huh? Prince's market for tennis racquets has "dropped tremendously"? Where do you get this stuff? :confused: Prince is without a doubt THE hottest tennis racquet brand right now. They have FOUR of the Top 10 best selling tennis racquets on the market right now. No other brand can make that claim. Prince has been increasing their market share for tennis racquets for the last several years! WHERE exactly is this "drop off"?

I highly recommend you read this: http://www.princetennis.com/tennis/files/newstipsSubLinks.aspx?aid=125&ntid=1

And like I said before, Prince also has FOUR of the Top 10 best selling tennis shoes on the market. No other tennis shoe brand can say that. Asics has zero. http://www.princetennis.com/tennis/files/newstipsSubLinks.aspx?aid=97&ntid=1

But why let facts get in the way of your closed-minded theories? :-?

Asics "years of research in running shoes has really paid off"? Yeah, in making running shoes! What does that have anything to do with tennis shoes? Would you wear running shoes to play tennis in? No, because they are totally different animals! That's like saying Honda's engine research has really paid off in making better flat panel TVs! :roll:

I'm glad you like your Asics tennis shoes, but I hope you're a serve and volleyer and not a baseliner, so you only have to run forwards towards the net and not side-to-side on the baseline.

Breakpoint-its amazing how much information you expel about Prince, perhaps because you work for them maybe with that so called Ivy League education or our a teaching pro who gets free stuff from them-again really using that so called Ivy League education, uh-lol! Its relatively easy to take running shoe technology, particularly when dealing with the midsole cushion and adapt them to tennis shoes which Asics has done so superbly. They have been very successful for years in the tennis shoe market worldwide and I predict their new Resolution shoe will be a smashing success thanks in part for the years of research developing their running and volleyball shoes-bravo for a job well done!

cmb
08-05-2008, 05:04 AM
Fila shoes are good. I dont know why u knocked fila.

KerryJ
08-05-2008, 05:14 AM
How many Atp touring pros actually wear a shoe from Wilson, Head ,Prince, and Yonex?

Some scrub named Lleyton Hewitt.

BreakPoint
08-05-2008, 01:03 PM
Breakpoint-its amazing how much information you expel about Prince, perhaps because you work for them maybe with that so called Ivy League education or our a teaching pro who gets free stuff from them-again really using that so called Ivy League education, uh-lol! Its relatively easy to take running shoe technology, particularly when dealing with the midsole cushion and adapt them to tennis shoes which Asics has done so superbly. They have been very successful for years in the tennis shoe market worldwide and I predict their new Resolution shoe will be a smashing success thanks in part for the years of research developing their running and volleyball shoes-bravo for a job well done!
No, I don't work for Prince. I told you before, I don't work for anyone. People work for me. Yes, it really is "amazing" that there's actually information about Prince on the Prince website. Who would've "thunk" it? :-?

Yes, my Ivy League education taught me how to gather the facts first before spewing garbage and making ridiculous assumptions. Something you obviously never learned in your vocational community college. :(

No, I am not a teaching pro nor am I sponsored by anyone. In fact, I haven't liked any Prince racquets that I've tried since the POG. But that's because I've actually TRIED them on a tennis court. Perhaps you should do the same with shoes before passing judgement on them. :oops:

JSE
08-05-2008, 01:22 PM
Years ago I looked at Prince and I did not like the overall fit-too boxy and clunky, I know all about Prince's organizational changes and erosion in the tennis market through a friend who left Prince and went to work for Head when they had their mass exit of personnel. You really don't want me to get started about Prince!

Prince MC4. Best shoe I have ever worn by a long shot. I've tried on the asics, horrible fit for me. Tried some Barricade V's, cause intense pain. Tried various Nike's over the years and some have been decent for me. I keep going back to the MC4.

Whoops, I got started about Pricne. Sorry? :oops:

Return_Ace
08-05-2008, 03:03 PM
I don't know how Maple thinks he can have the right to "accuse" Breakpoint of working for Prince when he's there plugging New Balance left, right and center..... :?

Japanese Maple
08-05-2008, 07:06 PM
I don't know how Maple thinks he can have the right to "accuse" Breakpoint of working for Prince when he's there plugging New Balance left, right and center..... :?
Actually, I am real fond of my new Asic Resolutions that I just received-excellent cushioning, stability/support, sharp styling, and light weight. These Asics make me feel like a speed demon compared to my Adidas Barricades-17.8 oz. vs. 14.9!. I think the NB 803's are clearly the best overall shoe on the market for the price. I only wish they have a little more color and style, but the support/stability, weight, cushioning, and durability are outstanding!

baseline08thrasher
08-05-2008, 07:54 PM
you just need to sit down and do your research on the computer about what you need.
Don't judge the companies as they have gotten really far just to be well known.
If they weren't trusted then they wouldn't even be in this topic.

texastornado
08-05-2008, 08:51 PM
wow, well said staedtler. Finally someone comes out and says it. most shoes are just made out of pu and eva foam. At best they might have a slightly different chemical composition or they might be used in different ratios to resist permanent compression.
the precision tube thing reminds me of dmx shear, nike impax and mizuno wave technology.

i also don't know why someone would knock filas, they all seem to be designed on the same last and have a consistent fit across models.