The exalt cleats come in a pouch which has the size of the cleat on the pouch. The top of the pouch has a drawstring so that you can carry it by the drawstring, much like the events mask bag. One thing I noticed about the pouch is that it's quite strong for being a light material. I pulled both sides and pulled quite hard trying to tear it and couldnt get it to tear. Now i'm sure if you put all your effort in to tearing it you could, but who's going to need a pouch that strong for their cleats really?
My first impression when taking the cleats out of the bag was that I found them to be a nice looking cleat They appear to be very well made, all of the sticthing in the cleat is very well done, I didn't find 1 lose stitch in the entire cleat which is somewhat surprising considering all the stitching in this cleat. The next thing I noticed was that the cleats are very light, comparing it to my umbro soccer cleats which I used to wear for paintball, they are noticeably lighter. Unfortunately I don't have a small food scale to put them on to give actual weight comparisons, but I can tell you I can notice the weight difference just by holding each.
The Exalt cleats have 2 different style spikes that come with the cleat, your regular rubber golf style spikes or you can put in the optional steel spikes if permitted where you play. A tool for changing the spikes and both style of spikes are included with the cleat. The cleats have 7 holes for your choice of spike at the front of the cleat along with hard rubber spikes (non-removable) about 1/2 the height of whatever spike you put in. The rest of the cleat is small rubber treads much like a track shoe. The umbro soccer cleats I used prior to these cleats have 11 spikes upfront and 4 spikes at the back, though they're not really spikes since they're very rounded.
Trying Them On:
These shoes are comfortable! I usually wear between a 9.5 - 10 depending on the shoe, and the size 10 in these exalt cleat is a perfect fit for my foot. The umbro soccer cleats I have made seemed to be squeezing my toes together, where these cleats give you the necessary room at the end of the shoe. One thing to get used to is walking on these, since the cleats are at the front and the back is a track shoe the front seems to sit a bit higher than the back and it's a weird setup to get used to at first. After about 10 minutes of walking around I get used to the feeling, and it now feels normal.
My first test of these cleats came at our practice at Flagswipe Indoor Field www.flagswipepaintball.com in London, Ontario. When running our first few warm up laps I found these to be very comfortable to run in while simply jogging around, even for the 6 extra laps we had to do for people not listening. During the entire practice it seemed like I had great traction through all of our drills, not slipping at all during any of our running & gunning drills. When scrimmaging finally came around, I was unsure of how they would hold since the field was soaked in paint from a full day of play prior to our practice. I am a snake player, so on the breakout I had the 7 front spikes (golf style) dug into the ground ready to sprint to the snake. When breaking out I had incredible traction compared to when I would wear the umbro soccer cleats I used to wear, I didn't slip 1 time on the breakout out of 8 times heading to the snake. In our last practice I slipped 3 times on the breakout, and was actually getting quite frustrated because of it. Overall I found these held up better than I expected on the paint soaked turf, I am confident pushing off with all my weight that I wasnt going to slip when running. Since it's winter here I didn't get a chance to use them outside, but I can only assume they would work just as well if not better outdoors.
Before I purchased these cleats I didn't think there would be a huge difference between the soccer cleats I owned and these cleats, but after using them I can see a big difference in the performance of these cleats compared to the soccer cleats. I would reccomend these cleats to anyone who plays competitive paintball, since they do help with your traction while running. The cleats cost $80 CAD which I thought was a lot of money at first, until I remembered that the soccer cleats I purchased were $40 CAD and considering the difference in performance I can justify an extra $40 CAD. Great job on these cleats Exalt, I am very impressed.
These cleats from Exalt are the ultimate speedball shoes. If you're playing in the woods look elsewhere. They are a light, low topped shoe based around a track shoe. They're a little odd to look at with the golf cleats on, but the first time you step out onto a sandy or grassy field you'll understand why Exalt went with them. As you're at the start box you feel like your feet are on blocks and there's nearly zero slippage when running. My old JT cleats would always lose just a little bit of ground with each step, especially on sand, so in comparison these cleats gained me at least another stride on the run to the outside bunkers.
The only reasons to go with another cleat are for more ankle support or because you can't afford these.
10 out of 10
Last edited on Thursday, January 22nd, 2009 at 12:28 pm PST