As an avid runner, I tend change my running shoes twice or even three times a year. It is so easy to wear them out through continuous outdoor running. A few months back, Nike had 20% off store wide sales. With that, I took the advantage and bought myself a pair of Nike Air VaporMax Flyknit running shoes. This model hit the Australian Market mid last year and created a huge wave in the athletic footwear industry.
The introduction of the Air VapourMax into the market by Nike showcased their latest and most innovative runners yet. Nike have constantly reinvented the Air Max technology over the past three decades. In celebration of its 30th year, Nike has delivered its promise of ‘walking on Air’ by creating the most lightweight shoe with a standalone outsole that locks directly to an airbag made out of TPU.
I have been running on the VapourMax Flyknit 5 to 6 days a week on an average of 6.5 km per run. 95% of my runs are outdoor on a field of grass or on a concrete/bitumen foot path, while the rest 5% are on the treadmill. On top of that, I also use the runners at the gym while I am doing weight training.
I was highly impressed with the shoe’s look, design, colors and feel. The size 10 shoe was one size bigger than my normal sizing, however, it fitted my feet well. My immediate impression was one of fascination. Normal running shoes has plenty of padding and cushioning within while this Nike doesn’t seem like it has much. Note that I said, it doesn’t seem like… at first .
It took me two runs to break into this shoes. A very short amount of time considering it takes me an average of seven to ten runs to experience maximum comfort on other runners. By day three, I was hooked, this Nike is awesome! Also, the shoes are so light and I didn’t suffer from any injuries or blisters from trying to break into the shoes.
After 3 Months Run
I am still running daily with this shoe, however, the fascination had since greatly reduced. That said, the Knit Uppers and Cushions are so well made, that I haven’t had a single injury, blisters or pain from running. Even when I doubled my distances. The sock- like fit gave my ankle the much needed support , which made all my runs a confident one. Plus, it does feel like you are running on a soft, cushy air
For some, running on shoes with standalone soles might seem to feel like you are running on a separate platform, however I never had that issue and adapted to the change pretty much right away. That said, you can feel the separation of the soles when running.
While the shoes are still performing well, visually speaking, it looks terrible. The outsole air bag looks a little deflated and I can feel after each runs that the sole is slowly deteriorating. This is unfortunate as my other runners are still pretty good even after 6 to 8 months. On top of that, the lightweightness and the thinness of this runner means that when running, you can feel everything that you step on. So if you happen to run on small rocks, yep you will feel it. The outsole has also started making funny squeaky noises during running which can be annoying.
Nike Air VapourMax Flyknit Pro’s
- Great design, looks and colour selections
- Sock-like knit upper means that it is breathable and fits like a glove
- Provide supports to ankle and prevents injuries
- Shoe is lightweight
- Excellent cushioning
- The airbag outsole is great, it does feel like running on air
- Great for mid to long distance running
- Easy to clean
- It does not take long to get comfortable in this shoe
- Great quality
- The shoe material and fit means that I no longer get calluses and dead skins on the bottom of my feet.
- Elastic laces are great, you get same tension all the times and it never comes undone.
- As you land, it minimises landing impact, which is great if you struggle with injuries
Nike Air VapourMax Cons
- The shoes are pricey at $A 230 after discount
- For some, you may never get used to the separated outsole sensation
- You run a little slower
- Shoes are unsuitable for runners with wide feet
- Squeaky noises from the soles
- Deflated outsole over time
- Very little recoil when running. As you land, it minimises landing impact, however sacrifices the recoil affects. So it takes so much more effort to take off after every landing.
Kudos to Nike for creating sensational shoes. That said for now, I am in two minds as I don’t know if I would purchase a newer version or another pair of these. The shoes doesn’t seem to last as long for the price I am paying. I love how comfortable they feel however, as a daily runner, I must have a secure and reliable shoe. Perhaps I will wait until Nike have fully perfected this technology and reduces the price a little bit before I commit to buying another VapourMax in the future