Heather Foundling Hawker
Womensportreport.com had the pleasure of writing a review on the latest product launch by UK Gear, international sporting gear manufacturer, the PT-03 Desert and the PT-03 Winter.
The shoes were designed and tested with the UK army and we were kindly sent samples by the UK office to write how we felt about them.
Heather Foundling Hawker, UK Athletics long distance runner tested the PT-03 desert shoe for us…here are her comments.
The PT-03 Desert trainer was definitely a shoe designed to survive, fantastic support while running on road, beach and rough terrain.
They are built to withstand pressure.
Through the forests and dense woodlands the shoes acted really well and gave me a lot of confidence around the ankle area, their attributes are superb.
When you first see them they look quite heavy but surprisingly they are very light weight and fit like a glove.
I am always a bit sceptical about trying out new trainers because your feet get used to a certain shoe, but I have to say I am very pleased to have tried out the Desert Shoes, comfortable, durable sole and quality grip.
Thank for giving me the opportunity to try out your product.
50km European Champion 2005. Great Britain 100km Ultra Squad
Marketing Director & Co-founder of womensportreport.com, took the PT03 Winter to the glaciers in Austria to test them under cold and icy conditions in the mountains. Please read her comments:
It was great to be contacted from UK Gear regarding a product review for their newly launched winter running shoe. My initial thoughts were curiosity and how they could come up with another new running shoe to withstand cold temperatures (up to -20 degrees Celsius) which is still wearable and good to exercise in. When the package arrived the first thing we noticed was the compact box design, which didn’t take up as much space as I was expecting them to. The PT-03 Winter came out of the box and on first glance it was a very well designed and “Good looking” shoe (if you can use that term with a trainer). On closer inspection, the manufacturing side of things was very precise aswell…we tested the seams, which would be the first place where you’d usually encounter flaws…looked at the soles…precisely cut out and well designed “tracks” promised fantastic grip in cold and icy conditions, checked out the laces - which appear very strong…the shoe also has little reflectors built in on the outside of each shoe, to make sure one can be seen in darker or foggier weather conditions. So all in all, these were some excellent and very important features to us concerning the design of the shoe, good quality built as standard.
The overall look of the shoe is that of a trekking shoe, very sturdy, yet cool…something one could even wear in a non sporting environment with a pair of jeans.
Once we were satisfied with the manufacturing quality, I set off to Austria for a little testing phase with them. First of all I tested them in wet conditions, since they are advertised as water proof (which by just looking at them, isn’t too convincing, because of the materials used). I got some of my colleagues over here in the Austrian office to run up in the mountains with me, knowing that the stony and autumn weathered paths would be wet and sometimes very slippery through the leaves that had just made way for the winter season to come. The grip of the shoes was astounding both uphill and downhill. Having stepped in a few puddles while doing the exercise regime laid out on the mountain path, I was expecting to get out of my shoes with wet and muddy socks…But that wasn’t the case…My feet and socks were still bone dry and most of all CLEAN…I was impressed. When I first put them on, they felt a bit tight, but they soon molded to my feet…they were ideal to wear when I needed the support up on the slippery mountain roads and paths. I didn’t like them too much when I was running on regular road surfaces, they're more of an offroad trainer.
|So in my opinion, they certainly passed the first test…then it was time to get them out onto the glacier and into the snow. You can imagine, the temperatures up there were below 0 degrees and very cold…all bundled up with hat, scarf and the other equipment that’s useful when climbing/hiking up there, I actually only wore a normal pair of socks, instead of thick ones, to see how warm the shoes would keep my feet and whether they would really withstand the cold temperatures as promised. I knew the grip was fantastic, so wasn’t too worried about slipping, plus, there was really more snow than ice…being waterproof was definitely an advantage, because having your feet soaked in snow for about two hours, would get you back with almost icicles instead of toes, wouldn’t it have been for the fact that they actually ARE waterproof…so what it says on the tin is what they do.|
As far as the cold temperatures are concerned, I really thoroughly enjoyed wearing the PT03 – they kept me warm and “icicle free” and believe me…that is a definite must in cold and snowy conditions…ordinarily it would have to be something really well padded with fur inside etc (I think everyone’s heard about the “moon boot” – well that’s the sort of thing I’m talking about) – but no, I could still be comfortable and sporty with the PT-03 winter…
My summary: I think they look great, they are of very good quality, I love the effort UK Gear and the army put into thinking about everything concerning a quality winter running shoe and would recommend the shoe to anyone…it’s definitely more of an off road shoe, but also acceptable to use on the road, once you adapt to the slightly stiffer exterior. Fantastic shoe…well done to everyone involved!