Nike's running technology goes well beyond that Air Max you planned each paycheck around in high school. Sneaker Report breaks down each technology to help you identify the right sole for you. Find out if the Free is really best for your running gait, what the Zoom is all about and what Air Max is up to these days. This is A Breakdown of Today's Nike Running Soles.
Nike Free 5.0
Best for: Neutral runners that like the flexible, low to the ground feel of the Free, but need a bit more support and cushioning underfoot.
Notable shoes: Nike Free 5.0+, Nike Flyknit Free, Nike 5.0+ Shield
Nike Free 3.0
Best for: Mid foot strikers looking for a natural, flexible ride on an ultra low sole.
Notable shoes: Nike Free 3.0+ Shield, Nike Free 3.0
Best for: Neutral runners that tend to heel strike, the Lunar midsole supplies a 8mm heel to toe drop for those seeking extra support.
Notable shoes: Nike Flyknit Lunar1+,
Best for: Runners looking for an extra spring in their step. Paired with the right upper, Lunarlon is a terrific midsole for middle distance training.
Notable shoes: Nike Lunarglide+ 5
Best for: Those that like the feel of a little extra cushioning. Super light for the super fast, this sole is ideal for 5k to marathon distances.
Notable shoes: Nike Lunaracer+ 3, Nike Lunarspeed Lite+ 2
Best for: Made up of a Zoom forefoot and a full-length Phylon midsole, runners will find this sole lightweight and responsive.
Notable shoes: Nike Flyknit Racer
Best for: Heel strikers that want an extra boost on first impact thanks to a Zoom-equipped heel and forefoot unit.
Notable shoes: Nike Zoom Structure+ 17, Nike Air Pegasus+ 30 Shield
Nike Air Max+ 2013
Best for: Athletes looking for an all purpose trainer that provides a feeling of ultimate cushioning. This is not for your "low to the ground" runners, but just as light.
Notable shoes: Nike Air Max+ 2013, Nike Flyknit Air Max