Meeting the needs of young athletes
Designed to deliver flexibility, quickness and durability, the shoe includes many of the features of the adult version but is customized to specifically meet the unique demands that Grade School, Pre-School, Toddler and Infant athletes place on their footwear.
"The KYRIE 1 was a really fun shoe to work on because of Kyrie’s incredible game and the phenomenal connection he has with kids,” said Michael Saranthakos, Nike Senior Footwear Designer for Young Athletes. "The main goal in designing the KYRIE 1 for young athletes was to blend high performance and a strong style statement for play on and off the court .”
The Australian-born Irving began his professional career by earing 2012 Rookie of the Year honors. He has since followed it up two-time All-Star appearances (2013, 2014), and was most recently named the MVP of the 2014 FIBA World Cup. If the recent past is any indication, the future is bright for Nike’s newest signature athlete.
“As a kid, imagining that I’d be in the Nike family with my own shoe was something that seemed almost unattainable,” said Irving. “Now that I’ve received the KYRIE 1 I’m honored to represent Nike and its next generation of players.”
The Grade School version of the KYRIE 1 is a performance basketball shoe for young athletes. This player’s rapidly improving game demands great support, flexible cushioning and lightweight for speed and those needs have been met with the KYRIE 1.
The durable upper uses Hyperfuse construction for lockdown stability, hardwearing durability and great breathability. The full rubber outsole and its 360-degree dynamic pattern deliver great traction, and a Phylon cushioning solution provides comfort and protection.
The KYRIE 1 grade school version is identical in look and aesthetic detail to the adult version. Signature details include:
The new Kyrie Irving logo on the shoe’s tongue represents his inner strength and hunger to learn
Hand-written details in Irving’s penmanship: #2 on the upper heel along with his personal signature on the inside of the tongue.
Jagged pattern on the wrapped traction near the toe and heel counter with architectural angles are both inspired by the Sydney Opera House in Irving’s homeland of Australia.
The acronym “JBY” that sits beneath Irving’s new logo on the outsole stands for “Just Be You,” a motto that Irving hopes inspires kids as they establish their own unique identities.
The physiological and physical realities of the Pre-School athlete demand a different application of Nike innovation to support the performance needs of athletes just learning the game.
Flexibility is the most critical attribute of a Pre-School shoe — but it also needs to be supportive in the right places, provide a degree of protection and deliver durability. The sturdy traction offered by a full rubber outsole carries over from the larger version and the Hyperfuse upper has fewer layers to make it lighter and easier to flex while providing the same great support and durability.
The Toddler-sized KYRIE 1 has been made softer in the upper than the two larger size ranges. This makes it even more flexible to support the natural motion of toddlers’ growing feet. The lacing system and modified ankle collar give the feel of a locked-down fit and the lower-profile full rubber cup sole enhances flexibility and gets this athlete lower to the ground to provide a stable base and greater traction.
The KYRIE 1 is currently available for customization on NIKEiD; the KYRIE 1 Dream colorway will be available in North America on Dec. 23 in adult and kids sizes at nike.com and select retail destinations. The KYRIE 1 Deceptive Red colorway is available globally on Jan. 10, 2015. Along with the shoe, special KYRIE 1 T-shirts, hats and socks will also be available.