|Symbioz, price TBA, TSL Outdoor. (Tsloutdoor.com)
Snowshoes aren't exactly known for their sleek design and comfort, especially for novices. But French snowshoe manufacturer TSL Outdoor has created a new breed of snowshoes that have adopted the "barefoot" principle of running shoes: Minimalist design, slim, and flexible.
Updating conventional snowshoes from their stiff aluminum frame isn't a brand-new concept. Back in 2008, Easton designed a model with a two-part frame that was designed to add flexibility, writes Gizmag. Tubbs also released its Flex line snowshoes, which promote a more natural step with a heel-to-toe roll, adds the site.
But TSL Symbioz takes the concept much further, with both a flexible frame and binding, meaning the shoe adapts to varied terrain while providing a more natural walking feel. For grip in hardpack and ice, a series of spikes under the shoe bend and twist, which the company says will provide better sidehill grip and offer more contact with the ground.
While the Symbioz has been building buzz in France over the past few months and at this month's ISPO conference in Munich, no word is yet available on when it will be released, or for what price.