Cushioning, light weight designs and better energy return are among the wants runners have for their footwear. Nike’s new cushioning innovation, Nike React, aims to check off all those boxes.
The cushioning technology debuted last year in Nike’s basketball category and will launch in running footwear next month in the new Nike Epic React Flyknit. The foam reportedly delivers 13 percent greater energy return than Nike’s latest generation of Nike Lunarlon foam.
Nike React is Nike’s longest-lasting foam, giving runners the energy to do more and go further. The foam provides the wearer a cushioning sensation, while springing back to its original shape as they run. The result is a technology that provides a consistent underfoot feel stride after stride.
“I want to emphasize this because we’re not comparing Nike React technology to some no-name foam that fell off the back of a truck somewhere; we’re comparing it to our latest Lunarlon and, even with the bar set that high, Nike React technology delivers that much more energy return with each and every stride,” said Ernest Kim, director of advanced footwear for Nike Running.
Nike’s in-house chemists and mechanical engineers tried more than 400 combinations to nail down the perfect formula. Additionally, the company culled athlete data to pin down where athletes need support, cushioning and traction the most. Elite and everyday runners tested the technology in more than 17,000 miles of running.
“Over that span, our wear-testers consistently told us that Nike React made them want to run more often,” Kim said. “My favorite bit of feedback came from a wear tester who said of running in the Nike Epic React: ‘It felt fun—it makes you want to run.’”
The Nike Epic React Flyknit will launch at retail on Feb. 22. It’s currently available in the Nike React Hyperdunk 2017 Flyknit and Jordan Super.Fly 2017.