Running shoes, it seems, are going hi-tech. Last month we wrote about the new Adidas Boost trainers. This month, it’s the turn of Nike to unveil its latest product, the suitably hi-tech sounding Flyknit Lunar 1+.
Essentially based on the same technology that helped propel Mo Farah to Olympic victory last summer in his Nike Zoom Victory Elite, this lightweight £140 running shoe is made from just one piece of fabric which Nike claims helps reduce the weight and friction caused by stitching and gluing multiple pieces of fabrics together.
At an event at the beautiful Somerset House in central London last night I received a pair of pink and black Lunar 1s to test out (see image on the left). Before setting off on our 5Km run along the Thames the running shoes were placed in a steamer for 30 seconds and then moulded to my feet to make sure they fitted properly. I usually run in a bog-standard pair of Nike Darts and what I noticed about these as soon as I put them on was just how lightweight they felt (just over 200 grammes).
Of course the problem with them being really lightweight – like, say, running spikes – could be they offer little support which means you run the risk of wrecking your legs on long runs, especially if you are getting on a bit like I am. But if anything the opposite was true. They actually felt really supportive and bouncy, giving me a real spring to my step even when pounding the pavements (I’m sure there is a more technical term but you get my point). This is largely thanks to the Lunarlon midsole, claims Nike (see video below for technical explanation)
With a price tag of £140 they obviously aren’t going to be for everyone, but for club runners and enthusiasts the Nike Lunar 1s seems like a particularly wise investment. To find about more about the technology of the shoe see our interview with Nike product ‘Ekin’ (a product manager who knows Nike back to front, geddit) Sam Adams.
Sorry it’s a little dark (and pink) but it was late by the time we finished our run over the Millennium Bridge and down through Waterloo and then back over to Somerset House.
And here you can see my pair of Nike Lunar 1+ coming out of the steamer, before putting them on before my first run. Looks great doesn’t it, like they’ve been cryogenically frozen for thousands of years and are just seeing daylight for the first time!
You can see Hannah England, Silver medalist, World Championship 1500m talking about Nike and her training regime here.