Monday, July 27, 2009

Nike LunarGlide+ : A Team FatBird Review

The Nike LunarGlide+ was launched in Singapore on 1st July 2009. Team FatBird were one of the early birds (no pun intended) to bring them out for test drives and shoe trials, carried out over a period of 3 weeks from 6th July 2009 to 26th July 2009.

The Team gathered feedback and responses from our members as well as from runners who has had the good opportunity to try those shoes during the Nike Run SG and Nike-SHAPE Breakfast Runs.

This Team LunarGlide+ review will cover 15 different aspects, doused with a couple of feedback interviews conducted with trial users. Runners provided their feedback based on these components.

The Nike LunarGlide+ is the first running shoe to deliver both top-tier cushioning and as-needed support with the new Dynamic Support system.

The shoes make use of a cushioning system called the LUNARLITE SYSTEM which consists of a firmer and denser carrier foam and a softer foam core. The Nike LunarGlide+ mid-sole is comprised of a lightweight cushlon foam core that sits within a firmer foam carriage. The foam core is cut to fit into the carriage at an angle creating a deeper cushioned lateral side. The medial side of the Nike LunarGlide+ mid-sole features a rear-foot wedge that has been contoured into the firmer foam carriage which provides stability on an as-needed basis.

The Dynamic Support system delivers great cushioning for neutral runners, as well as the necessary support for runners that over-pronate. This makes the LunarGlide+ appropriate for a remarkably wide range of runners.

Nike designed Flywire technology into the upper to provide the necessary support with a dramatic reduction in weight versus a conventional, overlay-based upper construction.

For additional technical information and specifications. you may refer to the Product Technical & Data sheets from Nike.

This “second generation” and upgrade of the Lunar Trainer series definitely has a marked improvement in the design and looks departments. The colours are vibrant, cool enough to be worn out onto the streets for the weekend :) It is definitely an eye catcher and attractive to runners of different age groups.

The Men’s version with the black upper and bright orange soles really stand out as being ‘macho’...outstanding and striking. The overall appearance looks more like a pair of sneakers than running shoes.

The women’s version of the shoe has a nice, soft beige/white upper with orange soles, giving them the feminine feel, but yet retaining the sporty image. The colour also makes it easy to match with a range of running attire.

The mid foot sole has a light bouncy feel on light jogging, but turns firmer when landing squarely on the mid foot portion. It is designed as the workhorse for long distance endurance runs as well as for recovery runs.

The LunarGlide+ is lighter compared with other trainers. As such, it could be considered for use in longer distance racing, as well as for training runs such as tempo and intervals.

The new outsole with rubber in high abrasion areas provide a certain level of durability to the shoe. It is built to last and it seems that the shoe is pretty hardy, and certainly looks and feels durable. There is no sign of wear and tear after quite a few consecutive runs or even after clocking a distance of more than 50km.

The toe-box area is wide and roomy and is ideal for the Asian’s wider feet. It is not required for one to upsize for this particular Nike model to get a more comfortable forefoot fit.
The well padded tongue and heel area provides additional comfort. The feet are very pampered by the new well padded and designed upper. Furthermore, the upper of the shoes is a one-piece material which is soft and tender to the feet, reducing the chances of abrasions and blisters.

The generous heel and mid-foot cushion provides very good protection, especially running on the hard concrete path and on tarmac. The new cushion material absorbs the impacts and shocks from the hard surfaces very well. Given the ample cushion and dynamic support system, the Lunar Glide+ should be suitable not only to road, but also to trail and sand.

The shoe gives a firm grip and offers good traction which should provide better holding on wet, slippery surfaces. However, it is by no means slip-proof.

As a trainer, it allow runners to land on heel strike as it provides enough cushioning without too much impact to their knees. The cushioned material definitely covers both heels & mid-foot with protection. It absorbs the impact from hard surfaces.

The use of LunarLite in the midsole and Flywire in the upper allow for a dramatic reduction in weight compared to typical daily distance running shoes. The men’s Lunar Glide+ weighs just 300g (10.6 oz). while the women’s weighs a mere 245g( 8.6 oz). The shoe runs light even after 15km. It really gives the runner a chance to “glide”.

The LunarGlide+ work well for mid-foot runners, with ample heel cushioning for those transitioning to mid-foot landing. The new Dynamic Support system shatters the myth that runners must compromise by selecting between two industry-standard categories: stability or cushioning. It is able to fit the runner’s landing accordingly, and is even able to change with the runner’s form (more pronation) as the distance gets longer and the legs get tired .

The sole is not as thick as other trainers, and feels just right. Perhaps due to the fact that it has both stability and cushioning support, they are suitable for both over pronator and under pronator runners. It will be good if future Glide+ version comes with even lower heel thickness which will minimise and reduce the tendency of landing on the heel area.

The Lunar Glide+ suit all distances, with it performing best for distances above 10km. However, some runners commented that the shoe may not be suitable for distances of more than 21km.

The new Dynamic Support system allows the shoe to fit runners who are neutral to slight under or over pronators, thus reducing the need to compromise between two industry-standard categories: stability or cushioning. Neutral runners find that it fits their neutral feet very well, and even allow for the slight over-pronation in later parts of the runs when the distances get longer and they tend to over-pronate. Slightly under or over pronated runners feel that there is ample stability support from the shoe.

However, this shoe is not recommended for runners with flat foot.

The shoe appears to be quite stiff, but runners who put on the shoe and ran felt that it was not as hard as what they had initially thought. Although the shoe is soft in general, it is sufficiently firm to provide a good level of responsiveness, which is required for good pick-up and feel.

The soft seamless material on the upper make the shoes breathable, and dissipates heat quite well. It feels very airy and cool throughout even after running as far as 17km.

It looks like Nike has a potential winner in the LunarGlide+, more so with its suitability for a wide range of runners from neutral to those who over pronate not too severely. The soft upper of the shoes has made them cool and airy to the feet, with a soft and plush wrap that make them such a comfortable ride.

The ladies had it good this time with special features (see below) built just for them, not to mention the very attractive design and colour of the shoes.

On the scale of 5, with 1 being very unsatisfied and 5 being very satisfied, the runners that participated in our shoe review gave an average of 4-Birds. In general, runners provided good feedback in terms of the shoe’s cushion/stability, design and comfort and its responsiveness
RATING: ****


Nike LunarGlide+ Trials, TFB Media News



HernĂ¡n said...

Hi there!
I would like to know where can I find the Product Technical and Data sheets

Team FatBird said...

Good Morning Hernan,

Hope the Lunar Glide+ Video helps..


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