South Surrey’s Kirk Arsenault has started a new company, Str8laced, that sells cleat wraps that aim to keep athletes’ shoes from coming untied during games and practices. (Contributed photo)

South Surrey’s Kirk Arsenault has started a new company, Str8laced, that sells cleat wraps that aim to keep athletes’ shoes from coming untied during games and practices. (Contributed photo)

South Surrey sports equipment entrepreneur tying up loose ends before Alberta move

Str8laced wraps keep laces from coming loose in the middle of play, says Kirk Arsenault

About this time last year, Kirk Arsenault found himself in a tough spot.

He was still recovering from a heart attack he had recently suffered – which resulted in quadruple heart bypass surgery – and had returned to work earlier than he was supposed to, only to lose his job a short time later.

But rather than mope or stress about what to do next, the South Surrey father – and former youth soccer coach and rugby player with the Semiahmoo Old Boys – used the time off to launch a company, selling a product he’d be tinkering with for years.

After partnering with a friend who had connections in the apparel world, Arsenault launched Str8laced, selling wraps for sports cleats that keep the laces from coming untied in the middle of a game or practice. The wraps are made of a poly-cotton blend – the same material used in soccer socks, but with more elasticity.

“It’s been an ongoing thing for a couple years, but we just finally got all our ducks in a row,” he said.

“This (new career path) isn’t something I maybe expected, but everything happens for a reason – that’s always been my outlook. It’s worked out quite well. People talk about making lemonades out of lemons and this was essentially exactly that. It freed up my time and here we are, going gung-ho.

“We’re just working to get the word out and then we’ll see where it goes.”

Arsenault said the idea for the lace covers came to him after years playing sports himself, as well as watching his daughter’s teams play.

“In rugby, we always tape our laces but once I started using these – I had a mock-up pair I’d made at home – we just realized that it worked great,” he explained. “And watching (younger kids) play soccer, it’s the middle of winter and they’re out there – sometimes it’s hard to bend down to tie my own laces, let alone a bunch of young girls running around out there with their laces undone.”

So far, Arsenault has donated 200 pairs of his product to South Surrey/White Rock’s Coastal FC soccer association – “To trial them and let me know what they think,” he said – while a friend who coaches a youth team in Port Coquitlam has also bought a set for his team.

Arsenault said they’ll soon be appearing in a few local stores – like Docksteader Source for Sports, he noted – and down the road he hopes to continue to expand the company’s reach.

He’ll also be looking to expand into Alberta, because he is set to move with his family to Medicine Hat at the end of the month. After losing his previous job, Arsenault said they’ve decided to sell their home and move somewhere with a lower cost of living.

The price of the wraps isn’t prohibitive – $3.99 individually in retail stores, or $1.99 if teams make direct bulk orders – and Arsenault said that’s by design.

“I didn’t want to be creating a big, expensive product for something that serves a purpose like this. Its one of those things that’s practical – there’s a need for it… and we supply (a solution) for a low cost.”

Even though he is gearing up to leave the community – his business partner will remain here and run the B.C. part of the operation, he noted – Arsenault said he hopes his product has a lasting effect.

“Hopefully people will see these things on the field and say ‘Hey, I think those are made by that grumpy old Kirk guy who used to coach me,’” he said.



sports@peacearchnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Businessrugbysoccer

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A Morgan Creek resident has filed an official complaint against a blueberry farmer in the area. (Google image)
Morgan Creek couple files official noise complaint against blueberry farmer

Pair who recently moved to South Surrey say blasting fans keep them from sleeping

Members of the Wheeling 8’s dance group go on a roll at Surrey’s Chuck Bailey Recreation Centre in 2018, during the club’s 45th-anniversary event. If not for the pandemic, such activities could be socially prescribed as part of a new program involving Fraser Health and DiverseCity Community Resources Society. (File photo: Tom Zillich)
‘Social prescriptions’ connect Surrey seniors to activities and other services they need

Fraser Health-backed program involves GP referrals to a Seniors’ Community Connector with DiverseCity

Linda Annis, Aug. 12, 2020. (Photo: Malin Jordan)
Annis wants independent auditor general for Surrey

‘Surrey taxpayers deserve the best possible oversight of the tax dollars they send to city hall,’ Surrey councillor says

rcmp
South Surrey neighbours’ calls to police lead to break-and-enter arrest

‘Prime example’ of RCMP and public working together, constable says

A large crowd protested against COVID-19 measures at Sunset Beach in Vancouver on Tuesday, April 20, 2021. (Snapchat)
VIDEO: Large, police-patrolled crowds gather at Vancouver beach for COVID protests

Vancouver police said they patrolled the area and monitored all gatherings

FILE – RCMP officers wearing face masks to curb the spread of COVID-19 stand by as protesters opposed to the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion block rail lines, in Burnaby, B.C., on Friday, November 27, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Very scary’: B.C. travel rules too vague, shouldn’t involve police, civil liberties group says

BCCLA said that speaking with communities could have avoided top-down approach

Ocean Legacy Foundation members conduct a shoreline pollution cleanup in Vancouver. (OLP)
It’s time to end ‘suffocating’ plastic pollution along B.C. shorelines, advocates urge

This Earth Day, Ocean Legacy Foundation is launching a free educational platform to educate the public about plastic pollution

A teacher-librarian in Nanaimo was fired in 2019 for checking out an age-inappropriate graphic novel to a student. The discipline agreement was published Wednesday, April 21. (News Bulletin file photo)
B.C. teacher-librarian fired for checking out too-graphic graphic novel to student

Teacher had been previously disciplined and suspended on two occasions

Former University of Victoria rowing coach Barney Williams is photographed in the stands during the Greater Victoria Invitational at CARSA Performance Gym at the University of Victoria in Victoria, B.C., on Friday, November 29, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Former B.C. university rowing coach ‘deeply sorry’ after complaints

Barney Williams says he’s been committed to ensuring no other member of the roster had a similar experience

Aria Pendak Jefferson cuddles ChiChi, the family cat that ran away two years ago in Ucluelet. The feline was missing until Courtney Johnson and Barry Edge discovered her in the parking lot of the Canadian Princess earlier this month. Aria and her parents were reunited with ChiChi in a parking lot in Port Alberni. (SUSAN QUINN/ Alberni Valley News)
B.C. girl’s wish granted as her cat came back, two years later

Courtenay family reunited with cat that went missing in Ucluelet in 2019

Stu Burgess is operations manager for Golden Ears and Rolley Lake Provincial Parks. (The News files)
Golden Ears park camping to be limited to those in local health region

Fraser Health Authority and Vancouver Coastal Health now considered one region

Thousands have converged in Whonnock Lake Park to enjoy the nice weather. (Roxanne Hooper/The News)
Thousands enjoy B.C. park with warnings about social distancing

Portable toilets installed in anticipation of nice weather

FILE – The Instagram app is shown on an iPhone in Toronto on Monday, March 19, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graeme Roy
Judge acquits B.C. teen boy ‘set up’ on sex assault charge based on Instagram messages

The girl and her friends did not have ‘good intentions’ towards the accused, judge says

Most Read