Sneakers Nike

The largest sport company

Founded in 1964 as a distributor of Japanese shoes ASICS on the North American continent, Nike the leader in the sports goods market - in the US the company occupies more than half of the treadmill market and 92% of the footwear market for basketball( 1).

The company's revenue in 2012 was more than $ 25 billion, and the immediate value of the Nike brand is estimated at $ 10 billion, making it the most expensive sports brand in the world. The company also owns the brands Converse and Hurley, and for a while owned Umbro( 2).

Nike Air Max

Thanks to Air Max's technology, Nike has managed to dramatically increase sales and become the largest manufacturer of sports shoes in the US.The model was first introduced in 1987, and today more than 30 variations of these classic sneakers have been produced.

The key advantage of Nike Air Max is the availability of an air capsule( "waffle") placed in the sole under the heel or the full length of the stupa. Thanks to this capsule, there is a significant cushioning and softening of the foot impacts against the surface when running.

Nike Shox vs. Reebok E.R.S.

In an attempt to keep market share, the other largest footwear manufacturer, Reebok introduced the Energy Return System( E.R.S.) technology in 1988, consisting of the use of special cylinders in the sole of running shoes for cushioning on the run( 3).

The technology has been used in the production of Reebok shoes for more than 20 years, and has been replaced only with the advent of Reebok Hexalite. In turn, in 2000 Nike released the Shox model with similar mechanics, but now the line is no longer produced.

Nike vs. Adidas

After the purchase by the German company Adidas-Solomon of the American company Reebok in 2009, the patents and developments of Reebok moved to the head office. A few months later, Nike sued Adidas for copying Shox technology and violating 19 of its patents( 4).

In 2009, another trial took place between Nike and Adidas regarding the technologies of Nike Flyknit and adiZero Primeknit. However, in this case, the court sided with Adidas, and refused to recognize the company's products by copying the development of Nike( 5).

Nike Flyknit

Flyknit technology belongs to the newest generation. The result of research by Nike was the creation of a model weighing only 159 grams using the latest sewing technology to achieve the most comfortable fit of the foot.

At the moment the company produces models Nike Free 4.0 Flyknit and Nike Flyknit Air Max( see main illustration).Adidas, in turn, claims that regardless of Nike has developed a similar technology adiZero Primeknit, and uses it in their sneakers.

Nike Free Run

In response to criticism of running in shock-absorbing running shoes and the growing popularity of running barefoot, in 2004 Nike introduced the Free model. The company proposed a scale from 0( running with bare feet) to 10( running in sneakers), over which the first Free took position 5.

The main advantage of Nike Free is the hexagonal flexible grooves on the sole, which ensure the naturalness of the running movements. As in other cases, Adidas also produces an analog of this model - Adipure Trainer, and New Balance - New Balance Minimus.

Why are Nike sneakers expensive?

In 2003, the largest European and American footwear distributor, Foot Locker, suspended the sale of top-end Nike models, citing their high cost against competitors. The companies took several months to reach an agreement.

It is important to note that Nike does not manufacture shoes on its own, but only places orders for its production at third-party factories. The power of the company is focused solely on research and development of new technologies, design and marketing of sports shoes.


Despite the fact that Nike was the first to create shock-absorbing racing sneakers( the Air Max model), the second largest player on the market - the German company Adidas and its Reebok division - often represent analogues of many Nike developments.

Read more:

  • Why running barefoot is better?
  • How to choose the best sneakers?
  • Does running fat burn?

Scientific sources:

  1. Nike: The No.1 Most Innovative Company Of 2013, source
  2. Nike, Inc., Wikipedia Article, source
  3. Energy Return System, Wikipedia Article, source
  4. Nike sues Adidas over shoe patent, source
  5. Adidas Won Against Nike Over Flyknit Patent Infringement Case, source