Buying a new pair of football boots is always a hard decision, trying to decide which football boots to get between Adidas and Nike, or if you should try to branch out and buy from someone else. There’s a lot of good reasons to stick to the established big brands, but sometimes, smaller companies can produce high quality products and innovate beyond what Nike or Adidas are willing to. Concave is one of these companies, being a fairly unknown brand, but gaining a cult-like following around the world. For many people, Concave boots represent a technological advancement, a focus on quality of experience and quality of design, while keeping a reasonable and affordable price.
We put Concave’s latest innovation, the Concave PT+ Classic football boot through a rigorous test, and we have the results for you, as well as a review of the technology and design that go behind the Concave PT+ boots.
Concave is not your typical football brand, and the Concave PT+ Classics are not your typical football boots either. I was excited as I opened the box, because I’ve never tried a pair on, I’ve just read about them and seen pictures. For those who don’t know, Concave is a company out of Australia, representing the Land Down Under in the footballing world, and rapidly expanding around the world. The whole theory behind these football boots is to use technology and design to improve accuracy, to protect players from injury, and to ensure comfort is not lost in the process.
Design-wise, the boots look amazing from all angles, which I photographed thoroughly. The most interesting design aspect of the Concave PT+ Classics, like all of the Concaves, is the “Sweet Spot” above the laces.
In pictures I never realized exactly how this sweet spot is made, how hard it was, or if it was inconvenient. After getting to play around with the boot a bit, I can now properly explain and understand what it does and how it is. The surprising part with the sweet spot was how hard it is. It feels like plastic (or harder), but it’s flexible and covered by leather. The sweet spot is basically the area on top of the foot with which most kicks are made, which for everyone (unless you are not normal) is curved. This gives you a pretty small sweet spot, which Concave have tried to expand, and claim to have quadrupled with their sweet spot on top of the laces. The leather looks and feels great, and it has small parts sticking out to increase grip while kicking. This is how it basically works:
As you can see from the image, the idea is to expand the kicking area in order to enhance the kicking experience and accuracy of the player. Concave claims that in their independent testing, accuracy increases by around 30% with the Concave boots, with the sweet spot. That’s impressive, but we’ll see later on in the review if it worked for me.
As I already mentioned, the Concave PT+ Classics are covered in leather, which not only looks classic, but also feels more classic. The leather is some of the highest quality leather I’ve ever felt, and it looks amazing, shining when you wear them. As you can see in the close-up the leather cover seems very durable and high quality. The boot is covered with kangaroo leather, which is fitting for an Australian company. Kangaroo leather is the most durable and quality leather that is currently used on football boots. A big problem I always have with modern football boots is that they break easily, but the PT+ Classics look like they’ll last, even though I can’t say that with confidence since I received my pair before the weekend.
The design of the back heel is not only made to look attractive, which is does, but Concave has also invested a lot in technology related to the back of the boot. It looks great, with leather and a Concave logo on the top, and white on the bottom. A big problem in football is the Achilles Heel injuries, which Concave say they have reduced the risk of with this new boot. While wearing them, I did feel the back of my foot as very comfortable and sturdy, and the back is pretty hard. As you can see the plastic bottom wraps around the heel, which protects and gives a more sturdy support to the heel.
The bottom of the boot is also very nicely designed, as you can see in the picture. I’m not sure on the technology behind the studs and bottom of the boot, but visually it is very appealing and I love the curve with ridges which I think reduce weight, increase flexibility, but still keep strength in the bottom. But don’t quote me on that, it’s just what it seems like. Here’s another look at the bottom and the studs:
Overall, the boot looks fantastic, and one of my favorite features is the sweet spot cover, which hides the laces and improves accuracy. The Concave PT+ Classics do have laces, but they are very well hidden by the cover, which is elastic. The PT+ Classics also come with a really nice Concave bag, as well as a helping shoe stretching tool to help you put them on. I didn’t need it though, but it’s nice that they ship it with the necessary tools.
My design score for the Concave PT+ Classics: 7/10
Comfort is a big point to consider when buying football shoes, and it’s the most important aspect to me usually. From the first moment I put the PT+ Classics on, they really felt like they belong on my feet. They are well padded and very comfortable, especially in the heel area, where my old pair of Vapours fails by a big margin. I have a particularly wide foot, so the bottom felt a bit strange for me, because the boots are very slim. They have a very slim sole, which felt strange for me. But if you’re normal, you shouldn’t have that problem.
Considering that, I found them ridiculously comfortable. While I played, they really fit well and I didn’t get any blisters, which usually happens with new boots.
My comfort score for the Concave PT+ Classics: 8.5/10
I really wanted to test out the sweet spot while playing, and to see if it really makes me more accurate. I wanted the comparison to be fair, so I brought along my Adidas AdiPures, which are also very comfortable and they are leather. Before taking my first shot with the Concave PT+ Classics, I was very skeptical about the sweet spot, and I actually thought it will get in the way and be annoying when kicking. The first few shots really felt unnatural, and slightly weird, and that’s easy to understand because the kicking area is much larger, so you have to get used to it.
Compared to kicking with a pair of AdiPures, the Concave experience is noticeable. After a while, it became natural to kick with the extra sweet spot, and it was very comfortable to kick with the new boots. One thing I noticed immediately is the stress on the top of my foot that was released because of the sweet spot. It gives nice padding, which, when kicking, makes the kicking pain much lower in the lace region. This is the opposite of a pair of Vapours for example, where it feels like you are almost kicking bare foot.
I didn’t experience a rise in accuracy of 30%, I would say that I was slightly more accurate with the PT+ Classics than with the AdiPures. But then again, I’m not Ronaldo, so I can’t really test my accuracy accurately (excuse the pun). They felt great kicking and passing, and I really enjoyed the run around more than in my AdiPures, which I’ve been very happy with.
The importance is that I felt the difference of the sweet spot, and that the comfort of kicking was something I haven’t experienced before. I can’t say that it improves your accuracy an X amount, but I did feel a difference while playing. Taking shots became easier and more comfortable, especially when kicking low drives.
I also first thought that the sweet spot would affect kicks with the inside or outside of the foot, but it doesn’t get in the way for either.
Another surprising thing was that they felt a lot lighter than my AdiPures, even though there is not much difference in the weight, but I think it’s because of the fit, and where the weight is distributed.
My performance score for the Concave PT+ Classics: 9.5/10
You can expect to be able to buy a pair of Concave PT+ Classics mid-july from retailers that work with Concave, or on their website: http://www.shopconcave.com/us/c-43-view-by-range.aspx
Our overall score for the Concave PT+ Classic football boot is: 8.5/10
A great boot, and a great experience to be playing in them. They also come in white, pictured above. I’ll update you with information about when they are on sale and where to get the best deal, so drop a comment if you want the info.
Do you own a pair of Concaves now? What is your experience over a longer period, and how would you rate the version of Concaves you own?