In January 2020, Nike launched the OG: the React Infinity Run Flyknit, and the result was surprising. People left their trusted Pegasus and Zoom Fly’s for this new type of running shoe. It was less bouncy than the Zoom Fly, but made for increased mileage and training runs, so that made sense. It was the dependable, everyday, training run shoe, and people loved it.
That’s why it came as such a surprise in January, 2021, to hear that this shoe was getting a makeover and the React Infinity Run Flyknit 2 was set to be released. Even I was a skeptic about how much improvement could actually be made to the original version, which was still relatively new. Well one thing I should know about Nike is not to be surprised with their innovation. Nike has the best creative and scientific minds constantly analyzing the current needs of athletes and anticipating future ones.
“The Nike React Infinity Run Flyknit 2 continues to help keep you running. A refreshed upper uses Flywire technology that combines with Flyknit for support and breathability where you need it. The high foam heights provide soft responsiveness and long-lasting comfort. It’s still one of our most tested shoes, designed to help you feel the potential when your foot hits the pavement.” – Nike Website
The updates that Nike has made to the Flyknit 2 are remarkable and noticeable during the first wear. There is no heel slippage! The first version, although a good shoe for the everyday runner, had poor lockdown which resulted in heel blisters, especially during strenuous runs. I experienced this when I included incline and any type of uneven ground. The Flyknit 2 has been revised to include a firm lockdown and no blisters, even on a hard run inclusive of tough terrain.
The midsole has a soft cushion, while providing a secure foundation. Designed with injury prevention in mind, runners feel the comfort and protection in this shoe. It is truly a remarkable combination.
“The Nike React Infinity Run 2 is the newest leap forward in our mission to reduce running-related injuries. Building on the success of its predecessor and offering next-level stability, cushioning, and durability, the shoe was developed through one of our largest, most thorough independent studies to date.” – Nike Website
Nike actually commissioned a study to see if this shoe would in fact reduce injury over a traditional training shoe. They followed 226 runners over the course of 12 weeks, as they trained for a half marathon. They found that the Nike React Infinity Run reduced running injuries by 52% compared to the Nike Air Zoom Structure 22. That’s a persuasive statistic and telling of the science that was employed in building this shoe.
I haven’t had the opportunity to try this shoe out in a true race yet, but I’ve found it to be a favorite for long training runs. I get the cushion and support with no slippage, and thus no blisters. Even on my first wear. This shoe is different from others in the smoothness of the ride it gives to runners. I encourage you to try out this new version and experience the updates for yourself.