Nike Unveils Tokyo Olympics 2020 ‘Air Zoom Alphafly NEXT%’

Nike Unveils Tokyo Olympics 2020 Air Zoom Alphafly NEXT%

By Rachel Tooley | February 6, 2020

Nike recently unveiled their Olympics 2020 apparel and footwear lines, debuting their most sustainable and high-tech collection to date. Following the Nike ‘Move To Zero’ mission, the sportswear brand have been working towards creating innovative products using the most advanced and eco-friendly technologies. The new Alphafly NEXT% model is a continuation in Nikes belief to protect the future of sport against the issue of climate change, which the brand outlined on their website last year. So far, the movement has seen the brand actively working towards their goals in consideration to become a more sustainable market leader; Nike’s Re-use A Shoe program and the Nike-Grind program are two initiatives which recycle waste to create sports/recreation facilities including playgrounds, running tracks and courts, whilst also recycling waste into fabric for new products. 

A prototype of Nikes first Air Zoom Alphafly NEXT% shoe was worn and tested by athlete Eliud Kipchoge in 2019, when he ran a marathon in 1:59.40, achieving his long-term career goal of completing a marathon under two hours. Since, he has inspired many fellow athletes to continue to work towards breaking their PB and setting new records within all realms of sports.

This year, the Olympics in Japan see Nike providing athletes with one of their most performance enhancing products of their time, which is also being put on general release for the athletes and sneakerheads alike to get their hands on in the coming months. The Nike Air Zoom Alphafly NEXT% racing shoe is an updated redesign of the previous Vapourfly NEXT% model, where each component of this futuristic silhouette has been tried and tested in the Nike Sport Research Lab. Available in a stand-out colourway of fluorescent green and stealthy black, you’ll certainly look the part if you bring these streamlined iterations of a Nike classic to your training sessions. The shoes feature updated technology developed by Nike themselves, which includes 2 responsive Zoom Air pockets in the forefoot of the shoe. Alongside these air pockets, the shoe also features Zoom X foam in the heel, which is designed to be more responsive in terms of protection and cushioning. The Zoom X foam is a lightweight technology to give athletes an extra spring in their step to create a more streamlined performance, which is also used in Nike’s Vaporfly NEXT% model. 

Previously, the Nike Vapourfly NEXT% model featured a carbon plate which consisted of a single thickness for every size variation of the shoe. Nike have been working to adapt this feature by scaling the thickness of each plate according to the shoe size, for a more custom approach to performance enhancement. Each shoe size has a different flexibility which benefits one’s performance depending on their size – the smaller the shoe the more flexible the carbon plates are.

This lightweight silhouette also features Atomknit fabric – an improved Flyknit fabric. The Atomknit forms the upper of the shoe and is extra lightweight to give the athlete extra lift and easier movement. Keeping their ‘Move To Zero’ mission in mind, Nike have been working to divert one million plastic bottles per year from landfill, to create uppers for Flyknit shoes, alongside creating yarns used in manufacturing jerseys and other apparel products. The new version of the Flynknit fabric is steamed and stretched during the manufacturing process, which creates a more contoured fit to the foot. A unique quality of the fabric is the minimal water absorption for extra comfort and breathability, ideal when considering the potential heat of this years’ Tokyo Olympics. 

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