Updated: December 2nd, 2011

UPDATE! Review of the Nike Lunarglide+3 available!

Nike LunarGlide+ Womens

Nike LunarGlide+ Womens

Nike LunarGlide+ Mens

Nike LunarGlide+ Mens

Full Name: Nike LunarGlide+
Category: Stability
Weight: 10.6 oz. (300 gr.)
Suggested Price: 99$
Recommended For: Mild Overpronators, Neutral Runners who overpronate over long distances
  • Nike LunarGlide General Info:

After generating quite some buzz, Nike finally launched the Lunarglide running shoe. The promise is to deliver a lightweight shoe with exceptional cushioning together with innovative aspects of stability – following up on the very good response of the Lunar Racer and the Lunar Trainer. The key technologies used by the Oregon company are Lunarlite foam (originally a NASA technology), an innovative construction of the sole unit and the Flywire technology in the upper. Plus, a mens and a womens specific version. At only 300 grams (10.6 oz for a US size 9 mens) this shoe captured a lot of attention before its launch. It’s time to check in detail what has been delivered.

  • Nike LunarGlide Sole Unit:

The core of the Lunarglide sole unit is the Lunar Foam technology. Initially developed by NASA in order to save weight in space, Lunar Foam is an extremely lightweight foam material (30% lighter than standard foam materials) that has exceptional properties that allow it to compress and return to the original shape more responsively than traditional foam.
Due to the unique properties and construction, Lunar Foam cannot be exposed to sunlight and therefore has to be encapsulated in an exterior shell of Phylite foam material. Nike took this to its advantage and delivered a system that used the Lunar Foam cushioning properties and the Phylite more structured composition in order to deliver a responsive cushioning system that is also supportive against pronation.

Before continuing with our opininons, here is a video where Phil McCartney, Nike’s global director for footwear, explains the construction of the LunarGlide running shoe.

The combination of different thickness of the two foam materials in this encapsulated shell construction cushions your step on heel strike and gradually increases support while the weight shifts from the heel to the forefoot and from the lateral (external) side to the medial (internal) side.

To complete the overview of the sole unit, we need to mention the inclusion of the Nike+ system (where you can insert an Apple/Nike chip in the midsole of the shoe and this will communicate your running data to your iPod) and the Waffle pattern of the outsole – which is deeply carved, both to reduce weight and increase flexibility.

  • Nike LunarGlide Upper:

Nike’s quest to reduce weight continued in the design of the upper of the shoe. The most innovative feature in this sense is the FlyWire technology. Directly derived from the olympic sprint shoes, FlyWire is a lightweight, incredibly resistant wire that connects the eyelets to the midsole, embracing the foot and keeping it stable during the run. A traditional upper is built by stitching together pieces of mesh and leather – the FlyWire allows Nike to construct the shoe in a different way, reducing weight and improving the fit by delivering a seamless constructed upper.

The lining of the shoe is extremely padded and feels very soft on the foot. The seamless construction allows the shoe to be worn sockless.

Nike LunarGlide Womens Lining

Nike LunarGlide Womens Lining

Last mention to the gender-specific design of the LunarGlide running shoes (please refer to our how to choose the best womens running shoes article for more details why gender-specific construction is important).

The shoes are built on slightly different sole units, they use a different last (the shape around which the upper is built and determines the fit of the shoe around the foot) and the women’s version presents an arch strap on the medial side to secure the foot into position – as women tend to overpronate more than men.

  • Nike LunarGlide Opinion:

We were really curious to test drive the LunarGlide, and especially to check how the dynamic support system actually works. First of all, when first worn, the shoe feels lightweight and very comfortable. The lining of the upper achieved its goal of delivering a snug fit while at the same time being soft and padded. The last is quite curved and the toebox roomy. It all promises a comfortable ride.

On the run, the shoe is extremely cushioned (in a soft, bouncy way) especially in the heel. It is a pleasurable feeling, especially if you are used to harder support shoes – but some runners might not like it. As for the support, our testing felt the shoe delivered some support, but we don’t believe it’s enough to support a serious over pronator on long runs.

A mild pronator, or a neutral runner who starts pronating when the run is long are who we recommend this shoe to. These runners will love the Lunarglide, as the shoe will provide an amazing level of cushioning while preventing excessive pronation. Runners who seriosuly overpronate, might enjoy a soft, lightweight and cusioned ride that offers them some degree of support, but we recommend it only for shorter runs.

At 99$ recommended retail price, the LunarGlide is an extremely interesting shoe.

  • Nike LunarGlide Price Comparison:

UPDATE! Review of the Nike Lunarglide+3 available!

Let us know what you think of this shoe in the comments!

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