March 1, 2015

Screwing around on the Asics Japan website

So I guess it bears mentioning that I don't speak Japanese, and I sure as shit can't read kanji. But I wanted to check out the running shoe section on the Asics Japan website... because this is an exciting Saturday night, for me. Don't judge.

Anyway, I clicked on a couple shoes that don't exist in the States, the Sortiemagic, and the Skysensor. I guess you'd say both are racing flats. Scrolling down to the bottom of the latter shoe's page, you see this:

I've circled what I find amusing. (Click on the picture and it gets big enough to see clearly.) That is, you can use the Skysensor if you're an elite racer (30 minute 10k) or a challenger racer (40 minute 10k). If you're slower than that, I guess you aren't supposed to run in this shoe.

Checking the page for the Sortiemagic, which is lighter, it's only for elite racers. So for people like me, who are faster than 40 minutes, but slower than 30... too bad.

Clicking around the rest of the site, it doesn't seem that they have any "racer" categories other than those two. I find it really amusing to imagine how this category system would go over on an American website. Not well, is my guess.


  1. So, since they only market Skysensors and Sortiemagics to elite racers in Japan, they must sell literally tens of pair! Good marketing strategy.

    1. Well, you might be surprised. At the University Half Marathon Championships this weekend, Japan had 643 runners under 1:10, and 159 under 1:05. They don't have the 2:03 marathoners that Kenya/Ethiopia do, but their depth at the level just below that is staggering.

    2. Granted, that's still not many, in terms of shoe sales. But Japan might have more elite distance runners than any other country, by some measures.