Scarpa North America Blog

Less is More: The new Spark minimalist running shoe

Apr. 17th 2012

Trail running is experiencing a renaissance. And it’s showing us that less is more, as in lower to the ground, less cushioned, less material, and more minimal. The theory being that the more efficient and lower impact running style is to strike the ground with the midfoot/forefoot, not the heel. This allows the dynamic structure of the foot to absorb most of the impact, so the shoe needs to absorb only a small amount of impact. SCARPA saw the intelligence in the minimal style, and the Spark was made.

The new trail running collection at SCARPA is what we refer to as Mountain Minimal. Merging the best ideas of minimalism with the realities of a trail runner’s needs in rugged terrain, these goals come to life in the new Spark and Tempo. Minimal uppers combined with the appropriate level of traction, support and cushioning underneath deliver the perfect balance between weight and performance. The midsole provides 14mm of cushion in the heel and 8mm in the forefoot, for a drop of 6mm. The outsole was designed to provide excellent traction, while still saving weight, 23% lighter than our standard platform.

The Spark has a flexible, high tensile fabric in the forefoot that helps provide forefoot protection with very little weight. The uppers are all synthetic with minimal overlays; again, the goal is to only use overlays where they are needed the most. We also have incorporated a bunch of planet friendly features into the Spark, with recycled content in the upper fabric and synthetic leather, as well as the laces and lining. The Spark also features EcoPure™ in the midsole, which allows it to biodegrade much more quickly at the end of its product life.

Born and bred in the rugged terrain of the Colorado Rockies, these shoes deliver what we consider “appropriate minimalism”, and caught the eye of Runner’s World, who presented the Spark with the “Best Debut” award for all mountain applications. Take comfort as you speed through technical terrain; these shoes have everything you need and nothing you don’t.

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