Under Armour HOVR Machina Review

These new runners communicate with you to make you a better runner.

The Under Armour HOVR Machina (pronounced: Mach-e-na) can now coach you. Yep, you read that right. These shoes will now coax you to become a more efficient runner. The recently released shoe comes with an embedded chip that allows runners to connect with the MapMyRun app to access a host of features, including cadence and gait tracking, audio-coaching, interval training, and more. You can never have enough data to analyse, right? They look pretty fly, too.

Putting them on, the first thing you notice about the Machina is their cushy-ness. They feel soft yet firm, perfect for a long-distance shoe. They next thing that strikes you is that the Machina give a lot of spring on the run, thanks for something UA calls The Pebax Propulsion Plate, a lining above the mid-sole that gives you smoother transitions and a faster, springier toe-off.

Under Armour HOVR Machina feel very solid and stable thanks to the external heel counter. It creates a locked-in feel around the heel, something that a lot of its competitors miss. Comfort-wise, it’s a great shoe.

But the big sell (and news) for this shoe is the connectivity. Remember IoT, the Internet of things? Well this is the thin edge of the wedge. All of the footwear in Under Armour’s 2020 run suite, including the UA HOVR Machina, come digitally connected, allowing runners not only to track and analyse their runs, but also to gain valuable insight into their running form.

Form Coaching is a personalised feature helps every runner ensure that their form doesn’t break down in the middle of a run by providing real-time, personalised guidance, helping runners better manage their risk of injury and improve their performance.

Under Armour HOVR Machina tracking

Runners can also measure their foot strike angle and ground contact time, offered in a post-run analysis, to give them deeper insights into their form, especially useful on longer runs where the form may tend to break down due to fatigue. All of these features are available with a seamless, easy-to-use connection to MapMyRun. UA owns MapMyrun, so all that data that will be connected will be accessible to UA for research, no doubt a boon for their design team.

Under Armour HOVR Machina

All up, a very practical and comfortable mid- to long-distance shoe that is at the forefront of running shoe design. You’ll see a lot more of this type digital integration over the next few years, mark my words.

You can find out more about them here:

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