Bolt and Bromell have different opinions about today's track spikes
Today's track spikes have moved the standard in many ways, both in terms of materials and technology. The legendary eight-time Olympic champion Usain Bolt, in an interview with Reuters last year, mentioned that today's track spikes give runners a great advantage and that if he had the opportunity to wear such track spikes, he would almost certainly have set even better results, although his world records in the 100 and 200 meters haven't been broken yet.
“When I was told about it I couldn’t believe that this is what we have gone to, you know what I mean? That we are really adjusting the spikes to a level where it’s now giving athletes an advantage to run even faster”.
Unlike Bolt, Trayvon Bromell, who last year ran the 100m race in 9.76s, believes that track spikes have not experienced too many improvements. Bolt competed in Puma track spikes throughout his career, while Bromell does so in New Balance track spikes.
“I don’t think there’s a lot of data to show that they’re having such a big improvement,” Bromell, who runs for New Balance, said last week. “I know we (New Balance) are constantly building onto what we have to make the perfect spike, but for me personally as a runner I still feel like it’s not enough data to really show.”
Top athletes mostly wear NIKE, the brand has become the leader in producing the most advanced track spikes in recent years.
“We’re just smarter about how we engineer and assemble them,” Nike said.
Multiple Olympic and World Champion winner Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, believes that spikes on their own aren't enough, it is still necessary to have a talent for sprinting.
“Maybe the combination of both – having good products and good runners combined – makes for a very good end-product. So for me, I can’t single-handedly point to the spikes.”
Jamaican sprint coach Stephen Francis cannot claim with certainty that NIKE track spikes help to achieve better results.
“Based on anecdotal evidence and based on the fact that you have people who never would have run as fast as they are running, I suspect that there may be a point, but there is no scientific basis to make that point.”