Were you fooled by our April Fool? These shoes sure would be fun though…
An imaginative Japanese inventor has developed a pair of computerised dance shoes which can automatically perform a range of Strictly Come Dancing-style routines.
The SupaStepz5000, which have been created by Tokyo-based electronics “genius” Takashi Nakamura, are fitted with a ‘smart’ switch which allows the wearer to immediately master a host of traditional dances including the Waltz, Foxtrot, Tango and Charleston.
The footwear, which attracts a hefty price tag of 345,995 Japanese Yen (c. £2,050) per pair, will be launched in June, 2014, by consumer electronics firm Kaizo Kyu, who commissioned the product.
Mr Nakamura, 54, who, in 2011, launched a glove-connected paintbrush which made up and down strokes robotically, has described his new concept as “really beautiful”.
“After many years in design around 14 prototypes later I am there,” he revealed.
“This SupaStepz5000 is wonderful news for people who like to dance, Ballroom style.
“Because, if they buy of pair of these shoes, bingo! They no longer have to worry about learning the steps and even if they are struggling to dance at all, they can just pop a pair of Supastepz5000 on, which are available in blue, red, green and black and suddenly they will be marvellous.”
The innovator did, however, issue a warning to would-be purchasers that it is vital that their dance partner, if also wearing the shoes, programmes exactly the same dance routine.
He added: “While trialling the shoes there was a situation when one person was set on the Waltz and the other on the Tango, it was crazy, crazy, I couldn’t stop laughing.”
The switch is located beneath the tongue of the shoes, which are predominantly manufactured from synthetic leather, mesh, rubber and canvas.
Other Ballroom and Latin dances programmed into the device include the Cha-cha-cha, Paso Doble, Salsa and Samba.
Former Strictly Come Dancing champion, Karen Hardy, who owns an award-winning dance studio in Imperial Wharf, London, believes the new invention will take the fun out of dancing.
She remarked: “Ballroom dancing, to me, is without doubt the greatest way to spend leisure time.
“It’s enormous fun, it keeps you fit, it’s fabulously social, it can be competitive and it’s beautiful.
“I fear these shoes may confuse people, both physically, and in terms of the best way to learn a dance style and that has to be with a brilliant teacher at a dance studio.
“I’m going to give the inventor of these shoes a ‘three’ for effort, but that’s it.”