The BOA dial platform has graced cycling shoes and snowboard boots for years. But as they appear on more running shoes, brands like Saucony are redesigning entire uppers around the improved BOA Fit System.
The collaboration between Saucony and BOA spawned the Switchback 2, a new trail shoe design integrating the BOA Fit System on the side of its bootie-like construction. The brands also developed an asymmetric configuration and “Mono-Panel” upper to alleviate pressure on the top of the foot and bring the midfoot close to the sole for a more responsive, speedier feel.
It also adds an entirely new look to the classic trail shoe aesthetic. Plus, that bootie-like upper and fit make it less likely for trail grit to find its way into the shoe.
BOA is confident the BOA Fit System will change the way athletes run. In early studies, fit configurations designed and tested in the brand’s lab improved agility and reduced pressure over the toes when running downhill, according to BOA’s resident biomechanist, Dr. Dan Feeney.
“We found that as you make a shoe fit better and better, some of the measures of how hard you’re hitting ground actually improve,” he said.
Changing the Game: The BOA Fit System x Saucony Switchback 2
The Saucony Switchback 2 is the result of years of collaboration and development between BOA and Saucony.
The newest — and arguably most important — performance enhancement is the Mono-Panel on the top of the foot. The minimalist upper gives the Switchback 2 a more seamless appearance. However, underneath, a Tri-Panel construction is integrated for structure and to evenly distribute pressure across the top of the foot.
“Putting the BOA Fit System on the side means you can get a more effective closure without irritating the top of the foot,” Feeney told us. And the Mono-Panel also helps with the fit under the foot while running.
“Having that canopy over the foot conforms to a wider variety of feet more easily,” Feeney said. “Everyone’s foot looks different. If you look at a slow-motion view of someone running, their foot changes shape from heel off to toe strike, and this configuration will help conform to that foot as it’s changing shape throughout the motion.”
Other updates to the Switchback include Saucony’s new PWRRUN+ midsole, which shaves an ounce off the total weight. Also, there’s now a rock guard for more trail protection and durability.
BOA x Saucony Switchback 2 Specs & Price
- Weight: 8.8 oz. (men’s size 9)
- Drop: 4 mm
- Lug height: 3 mm
- Price: $140
The BOA Fit System dials bring the brand’s “precision fit” mantra to another level. With the turn of the BOA dial, athletes can make micro-adjustments that activate the Mono-Panel on the shoe, delivering a more precise fit for their workout.
Saucony uses BOA’s TX4 Lace and L6 Dial, two trail-minded features the brand says add durability and lightweight performance to the shoe. On longer workouts, trail runners can quickly adjust the shoe’s fit as their feet swell without dealing with any loose laces.
This post is sponsored by BOA. Learn more about the BOA Fit System and the brand’s Performance Fit Lab here.