On Wednesday, March 16, 2016, Nike unveiled some incredible technology innovations in footwear. From enhanced classics like the Nike Air Max to revolutionary new products like a self-lacing shoe of the future called the Nike HyperAdapt 1.0, check out five things that impressed us the most.
The Nike HyperAdapt 1.0 has been in the works for about 10 years. And soon, the self-lacing shoe will be available. When you step in to the shoe, your heel strikes a sensor that literally lights up and triggers the underfoot-lacing system to form around your foot. Two buttons on the outer edge allow you to tighten and loosen for a fit that’s unique to you—and your movements. The shoe makes swift micro-adjustments in real time so you can pivot, sprint, and jump without experiencing any undue pressure or slippage. Distractions, discomfort, and discontinuity are things of the past. Welcome to the future.
The Nike HyperAdapt 1.0 will be available only to members of Nike+ beginning Holiday 2016 in three colors. To become a Nike+ member and sign up for notifications about the Nike HyperAdapt 1.0, go to Nike.com.
The original Nike Air Max wowed in 1987 with its visible "Air-cushioning" unit in the heel of the shoe. Jump to 1995 and the air unit expanded along the entirety of the sole. Fast-forward 30 years of innovation and you get the Nike Air VaporMax. This iteration sheds its former bulk and weight by ditching the foam midsole and bottom rubber layer for a two-in-one elastic "Air" unit. You might think the subtraction of foam and rubber would mean less support, but the designers placed even more “Air” underfoot to give you the structure you need without minimizing the “pillowy” or bouncy response. Plus, the Flyknit upper offers additional lightweight support. The shoe's sustainable, too. Flyknit technology has also allowed Nike to eliminate up to 3.5 million pounds of waste from traditional materials since 2012.
To sign up for notifications about the Nike Air VaporMax, go to Nike.com. Launching spring 2017, price TBD.
Kevin Durand’s signature versatility and—perhaps more impressive—his court coverage (the guy logs four miles a game and 15 marathons a season!) inspired the eponymous shoe: Nike Air Zoom KD9. To revolutionize basketball footwear, Nike amped up the support, comfort, and responsiveness of their Flyknit and Zoom Air technologies. The low-cut shoe boasts a honeycomb structured Flyknit along the upper to contain and support the ankle as well as the forefoot to lock down the base of the foot while still allowing natural movement. Players are afforded multidimensional movement, lateral quickness, and lightweight strength. But it doesn’t end there. You can see the "Zoom Air" bag taper from the heel (16mm) to toe (10mm); the fibers within compress and spring back for a buoyant response and impact protection. There’s also a flex groove that separates the forefoot from the rest of the shoe for greater ups and natural transitions back to the ground.
The KD9 is available globally for athletes of all ages, from toddler to adult, beginning June 20. To sign up for notifications about the Nike Air Zoom KD9, go to Nike.com.
When you run, your foot expands as it strikes the ground. You’ve probably experienced the phenomenon yourself—as well as the discomfort that comes from a too-snug shoe half-way through your run. The Nike Free RN Motion Flyknit addresses the problem with a midsole that splays and spreads across two planes. Designers fused two pieces of foam into one solid piece that offers more cushioning than past Nike Free models to increase mobility and give you the feel of barefoot running—only with more support and impact protection. They also stretched the Flyknit underfoot to work harmoniously with the foam for a truly natural ride.
To sign up for notifications about the Nike Free RN Motion Flyknit, go to Nike.com.
“Mud has always presented unfortunate but seemingly accepted problems," Max Blau VP of Nike Football Footwear said in a press release. "Players are accustomed to clanking their boots together as they exit the pitch or rubbing them over harsh brushes to remove mud. Worse, they play slower and cautiously as mud makes their feet heavy and compromises their traction.”
So solve this problem, Nike developed new Anti-Clog Traction that makes it nearly impossible for mud to jam the sole plate of their football (soccer) shoes. The sole plates are made of an adaptive polymer. Instead of taking a water-proofing route, which has proved to be ineffective, researchers used water to their advantage. When water contacts the polymer sole of the shoe, a slippery layer forms that keeps mud from clogging the cleat plate without sacrificing traction.
Nike Anti-Clog Traction will initially be available in limited quantities via the Nike Football App on April 15. Special versions of the current Tiempo, Magista and Hypervenom models carry the Nike Anti-Clog Traction hexagon mark on the heel.