Yak Leather - Strong and Lightweight

Yak leather has a long history in the high plains of rural Tibet. It is used traditionally for clothing and footwear while the hides are sewn into shelters and blankets.

Black Yak

The yak pulls plows and carries loads over long distances. Every part of the yak is used - from the butter that flavors tea and lights lamps to the dung that shores up homes and is used for fuel in cooking fires.

Because of surface scarring caused by a rugged life at very high altitudes, yak leather has been largely ignored by major tanneries in China. Yaks evolved at 12,000 ft. and up, and those raised in lower elevations are not nearly as healthy.

When Ecco opened its factory/tannery in Xiamen, China and began utilizing local resources, they also began to discover some of the amazing properties of yak hides.

For instance...

  • Yak hides have exceptional tensile strength, 3 times that of cowhide

  • It is stronger and thicker than kangaroo hide making it much more versatile

  • Because of its strength, much less is needed in production, typically saving up to 50% in weight

  • And by using thinner leather, a shoe's breathability is vastly increased.

Yak in Ecco Shoes

Ecco first used yak hides in their walking and hiking footwear. Weight savings combined with rugged strength factors made this a natural fit. Yak Hiking shoes with goretex now boast superior breathability over their competition.

Ecco introduced its revolutionary Biom project in spring 2009. Based on the concept of natural motion, Ecco Biom seeks to strengthen the muscles and ligaments of the foot. Many Biom models use yak.

After the initial success Biom achieved with runners, Ecco Biom then applied what it had learned to its leather golf shoes. Ecco Biom golf shoes are available in yak, are very lightweight and are built lower to the ground.

This greatly increases a golfer's swing stability.

And by encouraging the foot's natural motion, which improves foot and lower leg strength, the risk of injury is greatly reduced. Learn more about Ecco Biom golf here.

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