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Sunday, 5 July 2009

Michael Jackson's Patented Shoes


As the world mourns the loss of Michael Jackson, proclaimed by some to be the King of Pop, I was enthralled to learn that the singer and consummate performer had a secret to his Smooth Criminal move: the classic leaning move, where the dancers (and the singer himself) leaned about 45 degrees to the front. This illusion was created by a combination of a peg, which rose from the ground as needed, and a cavity in the shoe's heel, which allowed the peg to "latch on" to. This combination was eventually patented.

From the abstract:
A system for allowing a shoe wearer to lean forwardly beyond his center of gravity by virtue of wearing a specially designed pair of shoes which will engage with a hitch member movably projectable through a stage surface. The shoes have a specially designed heel slot which can be detachably engaged with the hitch member by simply sliding the shoe wearer's foot forward, thereby engaging with the hitch member.


US_Patent_5,255,452

Further reading:

A YouTube video of the invention, by CBS television network, is available here.

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