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July 16, 2013

Nike Free Flyknit Provides Compression Fit with Free Flexibility

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Runners can now reap the benefits of natural motion found in Nike Free and the supportive, second-skin fit of Nike Flyknit in a single shoe. The Nike Free Flyknit unites two of Nike’s most innovative and popular technologies to deliver barefoot-like flexibility and a compression fit that locks the foot in place.

The Nike Free Flyknit is designed to flex with the foot in motion. It is informed by Nike’s "Nature Amplified" design ethos — an approach fueled by scientific data and athlete insights. 

“Nike Free Flyknit is the ultimate expression of natural performance principles, combining a supportive, sock-like upper and a flexible midsole and outsole that move with the body,” says Sean McDowell, Creative Director for Nike Running. “The compression fit brings the foot closer to the sole for enhanced lockdown and propulsion.”

Nike Flyknit upper

A new, more compressive NIke Flyknit construction in the shoe upper secures the runner’s foot to the shoe platform. The unique zoned performance mapping pattern of the Nike Flyknit upper is derived from insights on how pressure is exerted on the top of the foot. Nike Sport Research Lab scientists employed pressure-mapping technology to locate stress areas, and designers used the data to inform the new upper. Zones on the top of the foot have engineered stretch built to enable natural flex, while a tighter weave at the perimeter stabilizes the forefoot and heel. Additionally, elasticized construction fits securely around the ankle for a comfortable, secure fit. By knitting a one-piece upper, Nike Flyknit construction reduces Nike's typical upper waste by an average of 88 percent. 

Nike Free platform

The advanced Nike Flyknit upper sits atop a Nike Free+ 5.0 midsole, which lies in the middle of the Nike Free spectrum, providing mid-range cushioning. (On a scale or 1-10, 1 is akin to running barefoot and 10 is comparable to a traditional running shoe.) The articulated Nike Free sole is flexible and moves naturally with the foot. Diagonal hot-knifed sipes (strategically-engineered flex grooves) through the arch help ensure natural movement in the mid-foot as a runner transitions stride.

The Nike Free Flyknit comes on the heels of decades of biomechanics research and design exploration with the intent of providing the best run possible. The breakthrough combination of a compressive Nike Flyknit upper with a highly flexible Nike Free midsole and outsole adds up to a running shoe that delivers a more natural ride, amplifying athletes’ ability to move quickly and comfortably over distance.

The Nike Free Flyknit ($160) will be available globally beginning Aug. 1. It can be pre-ordered at nike.com/freeflyknit.