MINNEAPOLIS, Dec. 5, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- A last name. An arch rival. College pride. A personal goal. These are the words and mantras that motivate athletes to keep pushing, keep training, keep winning. And now, if start-up track and field company Velaasa reaches its Kickstarter goal, athletes will carry those words on the wood heel of the company's first Olympic weightlifting shoe, the Strake.
"When it comes to lifting, the shoe is everything," says Wil Fleming, who lifted in Strake prototypes prior to the official product launch. "The Strake isn't just nostalgic. It's also functional. Premium straps and buckles coupled with thin outsoles allow the shoe to work for and with the athlete, increasing performance, technique and ultimately amplifying results."
Velaasa was formed in 2012 by former University of Minnesota track athlete turned coach Lynden Reder. The company initially found success in producing shot put equipment and athletic apparel. Targeting a hole in the market for quality lifting gear, in 2016, Reder laid initial plans to create a track-inspired Olympic weightlifting shoe. He gained immediate traction from Olympic silver medalist Joe Kovacs, who last summer signed a sponsorship agreement with the company.
"We've built our brand around the independence, ability, and potential of the individual," says Reder. "Together with renown weight coach Wil Fleming and shotput World Champion and Olympic Medalist Joe Kovacs, we're launching the Strake with confidence and style."
Over the last 12 months, Reder and his small team have worked with local Minnesota-based designers and weightlifting coaches, including Fleming, to perfect the Strake. Today, the shoe is ready for production, but funds from the Kickstarter will provide additional options for customization.
By adding laser module technology and customization services, athletes will have the option to burn up to 15 characters into the heel of the shoe. The expansion will cost roughly $35,000, which is Velaasa's Kickstarter goal. If they reach it, reward level participants will receive the Strake with full customization options by April 2018.
Velaasa is a team of athletic professionals who rally for athletes at all levels across the nation. Velaasa is working to reshape the track and field industry by introducing new track-specific footwear, new forms of athletic support and new ways to consume track and field content. Founded in 2012 by Lynden Reder, what was initially a product development company quickly turned into track and field organization with a goal to reshape the way the industry supports and drives success for its athletes, coaches and fans. Learn more at Velaasa.com.