The shoes you use as an agility handler play a key role in working seamlessly together with your dog. You guide your dog’s behavior and the quicker you are able to move from one obstacle to the next, the more smoothly you both will perform.
This sport poses a challenge for your shoes and it is very important that you are able to rely on your shoes in all situations. Teukka Niskanen is a Finnish physical therapist and the designer of FEET footwear. Now he will tell you how important your shoes are for your performance as an agility handler.
The story of a man who is passionate about human movement
“I am Teukka Niskanen, the designer of FEET footwear and an open-minded explorer of the world. I am a physical therapist and I specialize, among other things, in biomechanics, so I have an understanding of the brilliant functioning of the human body.
The biomechanics of the body are particularly important when running and it is important for all of us to know that we have an ingenious shock absorbing system in our body. Its flawless functioning is crucial for the well-being of the entire body, so your shoes must support this incredible phenomenon.
Gaining this knowledge is what led me to design running shoes with respect for the functioning of the human body. However, I have learned the best lessons outside of school. I am particularly interested in human movement and I don’t only focus on the esthetic perspective but also on how a person carries their body. It gives me important information as to whether the body is functioning in perfect synergy with all the moving parts.
My history of working with running shoes is long and began with the Finnish company Karhu in the early 2000s. The first series of shoes I designed was the Karhu M-Series, which gained a legendary reputation during its short lifetime. My then colleague, who is now my mentor, introduced me to the world of designing running shoes through tacit knowledge.
Feet2 Oy is a rather young business as we only started in 2014. The idea and design of the shoes has always been based on the brilliant functioning of the human body. This led to the creation of a unique series of running shoes that are currently available in four models. The sole structure accurately conforms to the anatomy of the foot’s bones, so the shoes support and conform to the natural movement of the runner’s feet. What this means is that the movement of your feet will be as natural as it can be with shoes on.”
The key thing for an agility handler is to be able to rely on their shoes
The key thing for an agility handler is to be able to rely on their shoes in all situations. Agility training and competitions take place on different surfaces and in varying weather conditions.
For this reason, the FEET Trail shoes are a highly recommended option for agility handlers. The Trail shoes are designed for natural terrain, but they perform flawlessly on all surfaces. The shoes have a minimalist structure and particular attention has been paid to ensure a good fit. The inside of the fabric is laminated to eliminate seams that could cause friction.
The outsole has an excellent grip, which is very important for an agility handler when quickly changing direction or increasing speed. The shoe maintains good contact with different surfaces in all conditions, accurately following the movement of the foot. If the shoes get wet, they will not lose their properties but actually conform even better to the shape of the foot. If the weather conditions are very wet, water will enter the shoes but it will also exit immediately, so you will not experience the unpleasant feeling of water remaining in your shoes.
Comments from agility handlers regarding Feet Trail running shoes:
“I am happy with the Trail shoes. They are a better fit for me than the Inov-8 shoes. In spite of the low structure they are also flexible.” Iina Kalliomäki
“The shoes are very light and soft. The sole is appropriately thick and light. I finally found agility shoes that I can use without getting back pain.” Katri Jokela
“The best shoes ever! My feet don’t hurt and the shoes have a good grip on all surfaces.” Riikka Karinen
I myself also use the Feet Trail running shoes during agility training and competitions. I love the model and when I have them on, it feels like I’m not even wearing any shoes. They offer just the right amount of grip in all situations – not too much and not too little. I definitely recommend these shoes! Check out the video to see how the shoes work and what they look like:
All the best,