LENDING SUPPORT FOR THE FIRST REI HIKING BOOTS

by | May 14, 2021 | Case Study, Product Design

THE FLASH AND TRAVERSE HIKING BOOTS FROM REI DELIVER OUT-OF-THE-BOX FIT WITH INSITE® INSOLES.

Well-known as an outdoor apparel and gear retailer, REI decided to make its first foray into developing its own footwear line with the debut of two hiking boots. The company needed its new REI hiking boots Flash and Traverse to give a great first impression right out of the box, so it was important they incorporate trusted materials and components. The hiking boots were developed based on input from REI Co-op members and consumers, which drove the conception of durable boots with the hallmarks of a trail running shoe. To help achieve this combination of durability and support, REI turned to INSITE® insoles.

THE CHALLENGE: BLENDING COMFORT, DURABILITY, SUPPORT, AND SUSTAINABILITY IN A HIKING BOOT

The Flash and the Traverse each needed to offer different features to answer to the varied needs of outdoor enthusiasts depending on the type of terrain, distance of the hike, and ability of the hiker. INSITE® insoles play a specific role in each boot to deliver a great outdoor experience and deliver on specific customer expectations.

Among those expectations, as identified through the feedback from Co-op members and customers, was a desire for REI’s new boots to be comfortable and sustainable, two key features and priorities at the heart of INSITE® Insoles’ design and production.

THE SOLUTION: TWO HIKING BOOTS, TWO DIFFERENT INSOLES, MANY POSSIBILITIES

REI’s development of two different hiking boots answered customer requests for a boot that would be both supportive and durable. Customers wanted a boot with the support of a running shoe for faster movement, and durability for long hikes or withstanding heavy pack weights. Integral to each boot’s ability to deliver on these features are the insoles.

The Flash offers a cushioned midsole with a rocker system, enhancing the wearer’s natural walking stride while providing a snappier toe spring for faster movement. Think hiking-boot-meets-running-shoe. INSITE® Contoura® insoles, which are created based on podiatrist research, ensure natural alignment and biomechanical efficiency for a steady stride.

INSITE’s insoles are made with high-performance foam derived from 25% certified plant-based content, helping REI deliver on their sustainable boot design.

The Traverse, on the other hand, offers support and durability for long-haul hikers, and is able to take on heavier loads and withstand rough terrain. This boot also uses INSITE’s Contoura insole, giving wearers the benefit of an insole that has been designed based on more than 120,000 3D food scans and thoroughly wear tested to achieve customer-approved comfort and support. Blending Comfort, Durability, Support,

THE RESULT: FORGING NEW TRAILS

INSITE® technology provides data-based support and cushioning that has allowed REI to deliver two comfortable yet durable hiking boots each designed to meet their customers’ unique needs.

In product reviews, customers have noted that the men’s Traverse boot offers great cushioning, is forgiving on the feet, and that they did not feel the need to swap it out with an aftermarket insole. Customers describe the women’s Traverse boot as feeling like walking on clouds, and molded to the wearer’s feet as though they had worn them for years.

Customers noted that the Flash boot offers the perfect amount of cushioning, padding, and support for hiking or walking around.

Request a Sample Insole or Start a Project

Insole Insights