Today, I’ll look a new product from the folks at Yankz!, the Slacklace system. As you might notice, we’ve been reviewing quite a bit of gear from the folks over at Yankz!, including the Bicycle Fuel System and Yankz! SureLaces. Thanks to Pierce and the entire team for sending over a great pack of review samples.
Slacklaces are flat elastic shoelaces that are designed to eliminate tight spots, banding, and pressure points in your shoes. According to Yankz!, these laces “can improve circulation, comfort, and performance”. The idea behind the laces is that instead of using traditional cotton on synthetic laces that you tie tightly, the Slacklaces give and adjust to your foot as you move, providing a higher level of comfort. Additionally, once installed and tied, the Slacklaces are designed to stay tied and not require untying and retying. This could be especially useful to people with limited range of motion.
I admit I’m skeptical of the need for these laces, because my original pair of Yankz! do just fine, thank you very much. But then I realized that this product is not specifically designed for triathletes or runners, but for anyone that wears shoes. Instead of starting at the top and working down with two adjustment points like the SureLaces do, Slacklaces are attached to shoes in a traditional way and are tied at the top.
Skepticism aside, these laces do what they claim, which is to make your shoes a bit more comfortable. They didn’t cut my mile times by 30 seconds or anything, but they did allow my feet a bit of extra room to expand on longer runs. This is one of the reasons I have used the Yankz! SureLaces since I started running and doing triathlons and as I moved into ultra-marathons, I admit I like my Yankz! even more. Having the additional expansion room that either SureLaces or Slacklaces provide can reduce your discomfort on those long runs.
Additionally, if you’re a triathlete, the added benefit is saving time in T2 when putting on your running shoes.
If you like Yankz! SureLaces, you probably won’t switch to these, but you might consider picking them up for your other shoes. After testing these for a number of longer runs, I’m convinced they’re well made, well designed, and do reduce pressure and tight spots in most shoes. I have already switched back to my traditional Yankz! in my running shoes, but moved these over to another pair. Ultimately, I’ve gotten used to not tying my shoes after using the originals, so why not add the Slacklaces to my non-running shoes?
I’ll report back at a later date regarding the long-term durability of the Slacklaces.