Shoelace Locks Keep Your Fancy Footwear Firmly Attached

Remember the 1980s, when velcro sneakers were the hip new thing? (Incidentally, VELCRO® is a registered trademark for VELCRO® brank hook-and-loop fasteners but we use it here as a general term for the fastening technology). Only the coolest kids in school had a fresh pair of Zips. Velcro left a bit to be desired though. The hooks and loops would wear out, and the sneakers always seemed to pop apart at the worst possible moments — like when running or jumping. These days, velcro seems to be relegated to the elderly, which gives it the stigma of “old people shoes”.

So what is an aspiring hacker to do, just tie their shoelaces like a simple plebe? [Pentland_Designs] has the answer with his shoelace locks. The design is his take on the classic plastic clip found on backpacks and jackets. [Pentland_Designs] has added a twist though — a “button” which flexes a plastic ring, releasing the main body of the clip. This means the user doesn’t have to bend down when taking off their shoes. This isn’t just good for folks with disabilities. Anyone with back problems will tell you that avoiding a couple of deep bends at the end of the day helps a lot.

Check out the video of [Pentland_Designs] Shoelace locks after the break. For more shoe-tech, check out these LEGO self-lacing shoes, or this teardown of Nike’s self-lacing offering.

25 thoughts on “Shoelace Locks Keep Your Fancy Footwear Firmly Attached

    1. I thought I was the only one in the world that did this! I decided to try this once and it’s the greatest thing ever. Not appropriate for running shoes, etc, but perfect for day to day. Converts any dumb old shoe into a slipper you can wear anywhere. :-)

    1. I learned that as the “Speed Knot”. Years ago, probably from here. Never had the opportunity to teach it to a tot, though- I wonder how that would go? Has anybody been ‘raised’ with that knot?

      1. I don’t see why not, once it becomes muscle memory you do it without even thinking. I can’t even remember how to tie my shoes the regular way I was taught when I was a child, I just do this. I’m sure if you were raised on it you wouldn’t even know anything different.

  1. Does it bug anyone else that they tied it wrong? The reason it rotates 90 degrees when tied is because they did left over right then left over right (rather than left over then right over), resulting in a granny knot variant which is more likely to come undone

  2. “These days, velcro seems to be relegated to the elderly, which gives it the stigma of “old people shoes”.”

    Hey Adam Fabio – I am “Triggered” by your “Ageism Bias”! In-fact, the vast majority of shoes sold with Velcro Straps are made for Toddlers and Young Children. If you don’t believe me, do a statistical analysis of your local shoe departments. The Elderly are the most valuable part of our Society! They’ve been “there” before, and can teach us how to repeat mistakes in Life… If only the young would listen :-(

      1. All of this talk begs the obvious question:

        Why the are we still messing with tying shoes onto our feet (with knots that keep coming undone) when velcro is infinitely better?

        It’s like smartphones and one measly day on a charge brand new is “good enough” for EVERYONE. Steve Jobs set that inadequate standard complete with non-replaceable battery. I guess nobody was going to mess with HIS phone. It makes zero sense to leave a $600 smart phone sitting so anyone can mess with it. In ANY work place.

        1. Your rant got weird. Just disable the bloatware on your non-apple smartphone and watch the battery life jump to 3 days or more. (On standby, obviously.)
          Samsung Galaxy S5 goes on for a week if you choose ultra-power-saving mode. (Greyscale, most apps disabled. Perfect for camping trips.) Removable battery and (almost) waterproof.
          It helps if you don’t use your phone as your main media player all day long too…

          Velcro sucks anywhere there is mud or tall grass. Almost impossible to clean.

  3. I found a way cheaper solution for low-top shoes. All you do is tie them normally but loose. Then tie the two bows resulting in a permanent knot. Now you have loafers and no bending over. I once had velcro shoes and loved them because they never come undone. (until too-worn out as above)Then I had a pair with only one velcro strap which I would use to seatbelt the knot that otherwise come undone way too often. The logical next step is the permanent knot.

    All of the 3 solutions apply only for low top shoes. Now we need a solution for high top shoes, boots, or even corsets. The good question is why nobody 10,000 years ago invented the permanent knot.

      1. The laces simply represent a macro scale version of sewn stitches in the first place. The Nikes, the featured invention, and my permanent knot represent a long overdue attempt at fixing the problem of shoes coming undone. The Nikes are the costly Rube Goldberg approach to what Velcro already solves. Unable to get new Velcro shoes, I went with the permanent knot and save $700 and mechanical problems.

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