Fashion garment NFTs are not new and neither are NFT sneakers. What is new, however, are big sportswear players stepping onto the field. ASICS’ first move into this space was the release of their “Sunrise Red” NFT collection, whose objective was to support the next generation of sneaker designers. The collection had various editions of nine classic ASICS models like the GEL-LYTE III and traded on OpenSea from July 15 to July 19. On their site, ASICS stated,
As digital experiences continue to attract increasing amounts of our attention, ASICS aims to use digital goods to inspire real-world physical activity and continue helping people achieve a sound mind in a sound body.
Most recently, ASICS partnered with STEPN, a move-to-earn app that rewards users with crypto for walking, jogging, or running. Not the first or only one of its kind, these apps gamify fitness, like Pokemon Go or Wii Sports, by tracking movements and rewarding exercise. Other move-to-earn apps that use the blockchain include Genopets, WIRTUAL, DEFY, and OliveX. Fueled by the pandemic, the growth of fitness trackers, employer wellness programs, and overall health consciousness all point toward a wide market for move-to-earn apps.
STEPN uses NFT sneakers to track movements and was the first move-to-earn blockchain running app. People typically into crypto tend to be behind a screen a lot and just have a higher than average interest in currency and wealth. So already the benefit is two-fold: earn passive income while fighting the screen-loving sedentary geek stereotype by getting some movement in. Since, to start, you need to own or rent an NFT sneaker, the investment can get costly. But, considering how volatile NFTs are, this can be very rewarding. And, the more sneakers you own, the more income you get. This calculator can tell you exactly how much you’ll be earning based on different variables. You can either spend your earnings within the STEPN ecosystem or cash out for profit.
Even though it’s not an actual shoe you put on your feet, you still need to choose a sneaker that fits your fitness level. And yes, there are costs like digital shoe repairs.
Joe Pace, head of business development at ASICS, said in a statement:
Asics is committed to inspiring people to have a sound mind in a sound body and we aspire to apply technology in thoughtful ways to advance that mission. Our partnership with Stepn and their world-class team is designed to encourage the Web3 community to step away from their screens and get walking, jogging, and running outdoors.
The STEPN x ASICS NFT Sneaker Mystery Box collection, hosted and minted on the Binance NFT marketplace, had more than 195k participants with a total trading volume exceeding $10M. In coherence with the app, the collection had four sneaker types to suit different exercise intensities and fitness levels.