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In May I wrote about STRONG (Soldier Transformation OnGoing), a Defense project working on equipping the Dutch soldier with new uniforms which include a unique camouflage pattern. The soldiers will also receive new shoes next year. New shoes may sound like a simple matter, but there’s a lot more to it than that. In this article, I’ll tell you all about it!
New shoes for the Dutch military
There are many functions within Defense, so for that reason, they have eight different styles to choose from. Each model is suitable for a different country, climate, and function. So your choice of shoe depends on the work you are doing. Below you see different models.
Of course, with a new pair of shoes comes new socks. They also have a choice of different models which fit with the shoes.
3D scan of the feet
A 3D scan is used to make sure that the soldiers receive the correct shoe size. When measuring for socks the size, pressure points, and position of the ankles are considered. Following this scan, the soldier gets advice on which shoes to choose.
Then it’s time to try on and test shoes. To get the best impression of the shoes, they created a special running profile. This comprises uneven stones and beams so they get an idea of what it is like to wear these shoes in practice. They can then choose the shoe that fits best.
Fit and Measure Trailer
To organize this entire process as efficiently as possible, there is a special Fit and Measure Trailer that will drive past the barracks from September. The aim is to advise eighty soldiers a day about their new work shoes.
From March 2022 there will be a special shop-in-shop within the KPU, the company where soldiers receive all clothing and personal equipment. The goal with this shop is to eventually be able to give hundreds of soldiers advice regarding their work shoes.
Veterans and military personnel who want to reintegrate can also get involved in the new shoe project. If they wish, they can help with advising on the choice of new shoes. In this way, they can contribute to and remain involved in the Defense organization. A great initiative!