DC Wonk wrote:
Some people love to point to pro cycling as a sport that limits the technology, but it really doesn't. It just's sets a limit on the bicycle weight mostly. The fact is bicycle technology is about 50 times more complicated and diverse than shoe technology ever was, and yet pro cycling is alive and well, expanding into new events like gravel racing.
Anyone who can afford about $21k can buy a copy of Chris Froome's Pinarello Dogma setup, but that's just one bike. That doesn't include the time trial bike, which is a better comparison to a racing shoe. And you can't buy his time trial bike -- they are unique, and they are changed every year, as are the $3k wheelsets, etc.
Nobody in pro cycling whines about technology, unless the technology doesn't work well. The best riders win because they had the best fitness, strategy, and luck on a given day. The technology in cycling is constantly changing, constantly being tested, and utilized by the many teams. I hate Nike, but I like the fact that they are moving the sport forward after decades of stagnation.
People need to stop it with all the comparisons to cycling, golf, baseball, etc. Other sports have an inherent technological component. Running and swimming are different. In running, shoes had always been designed to be as close to barefoot as possible. Companies tried to make them as light as they could while still protecting your feet from the elements. If you needed more cushioning you had to sacrifice by adding weight. Yes, technology improved from the early 1900s when marathoners would have to drop out because their shoes were filling with blood but the goal was to be as light and comfortable as possible, not the most responsive. It should be the same in swimming where a swimsuit's goal should be to be as good as naked, not better than naked. That is when it becomes unnatural.