KNOW YOUR TECH breaks down the scientific technology used in your favorite sneakers and activewear. Let’s demystify your next purchase: today’s technology is Nike Flywire. Introduced in 2008, this futuristic technology is inspired by NASA's use of Vectran material. The material is known for its lightweight strength and has since become a staple on many of Nike's performance models.

What is it? Lightweight yet heavy-duty Vectran filaments which are placed strategically on the uppers of sneakers for fit, support, and flexibility. By utilizing Flywire only in key areas, the minimal construction allows sneakers to remain lightweight and quick without sacrificing necessary support or adding bulk to the shoe. Flywire is utilized on Nike footwear across the board, including basketball, running, training, soccer, baseball, and tennis models, and has also been utilized on performance apparel.

How does it work? These durable strands of Vectran function much like cables on a suspension bridge. The Flywire cables wrap around the wearer's foot, creating a lockdown fit and eliminating foot slipping. The use of individual strands for support in place of traditional overlays also allows for added flexibility.

Notable products: Hyperdunk 2013, LeBron X, Flyknit Lunar 1, TW '14, KD VI

Bottom line: Flywire is utilized on the signature models for some of the biggest names in sports, including LeBron James and Tiger Woods. The technology is beneficial for all sports and activities, ensuring a lightweight, supportive feel.

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