Archive: July 2012

Nike’s Sneaker Lineup for the 2012 USA Olympic Basketball Team

Nike has gone all out for the London Summer Olympics Games and sports and sneaker fans have seen plenty of special edition sneakers. In part because Nike dominates the NBA sneaker game with a 92% market share and endorsements with almost all the top NBA players, they’ve placed sneakers on the feet of every Team USA player. Even the coach, Mike Krzyzewski, has a Nike endorsement. To celebrate, Nike has released a huge assortment of new and throwback basketball sneakers dedicated to the USA Olympic Basketball team, both past and present. But which Nike sneakers are Team USA players actually rocking on the London Olympic Courts? You can spot them by the use of red, white and obsidian blue, which you’ll see throughout Nike’s 2012 USA editions.

Nike Hyperdunk USA Edition

LeBron James (+), Anthony Davis (+), Blake Griffin, Andre Iguodala, Tyson, Chandler, James Harden (low) and Deron Williams (low)

Out of the wide array of basketball sneakers offered by Nike, their brand new, super high-tech Hyperdunks are covering the majority of feet on the Olympic Court. Released just this summer, these sneakers offer the absolute latest in Nike technology. First, Lunarlon and Phylon is used for the cushioning and midsole. Lunarlon, inspired by astronauts bouncing across the moon, is a patented type of ultralight foam. It also allows for a larger pressure distribution area across the foot, helping to minimize stress and injury. Phylon is another Nike invention and is a firmer foam midsole made of compressed pellets. The two different foam densities are used together to provide better balance and stability.

Nike Flywire is used for the upper, which was also designed to maximize support and minimize weight through a new minimalist design and materials. It does away with bulky layers of materials and replaces them with special threading and cables. The ultra-light and ultra-strong Vectran fibers turned into embroidery threads are used to create long stitches to build the shoe to support key areas of the foot. Vectran is also known for its use by NASA and bicycle tires. The shoe is then secured with cables that wrap around the show, acting like tendons in a foot.

This design of thread, cables and sole are all that are technically needed for the shoe to work. While the material panels normally perform the function of a pair of sneakers, the Hyperdunk’s actual material covering the foot are there simply to keep the foot free of outside elements like dirt, rocks, water, etc. Because of their reduced importance, the upper materials used are specialized for high-breathability and lightness.

Another high-tech feature that will be used by frontman Lebron James and Nike’s newest team member, Anthony Davis, will be using Hyperdunk + sneakers. The Nike + system uses sensors in the sneaker sole that will gather stats and measure performance based on jumps and steps for vertical, quickness and hustle.

Besides the high-top version seen here, guards James Harden and Deron Williams will be using low-tops for extra mobility in their defensive efforts.

Nike Zoom Hyperfuse USA Edition

Russell Westbrook
This Nike Zoom features an upper built with Nike’s new Hyperfuse system, which is a blend of three materials. It uses a synthetic as a support base layer, mesh for lightweight breathability and a thermoplastic urethane film as a top skin, all hot pressing into one piece. This creates a series of vents and slits for superior airflow in a durable unibody construction. Phylon is used for the midsole with a Nike Zoom Unit used for the forefoot. The Nike Zoom unit uses a network of thread, plastics and pressurized gas for padding and support giving a lower-to-the-ground responsiveness.

Jordan Super Fly USA Edition

Chris Paul and Carmelo Anthony
The Jordan Super Fly used the latest combo of Nike tech styled under the Jordan brand. It also uses the basketball-tailored Lunarlon found in the Hyperdunk, but keeps the heel tight with a Zoom Air unit. The upper is built with Nike’s new hyperfuse system making use of synthetic leather parts for strength and to add some traditional aesthetics. It follows the same red, white and blue colorway with the addition of gold accents and the iconic Jumpman logo in red making the Super Fly a high tech sneaker with a bit of classic Jordan styling.

Nike Zoom KD IV USA Edition

Kevin Durant
This new version of Kevin Durant’s signature sneaker now employs the Hyperfuse system, giving it a stronger, lighter and more breathable upper. For cushioning, it uses a full Phylon midsole. The highlight is the Adaptive Fit System, which uses a strap to lock your foot down. And this strap system is more than just a simple velcro strap on the other shell to work like shoe laces – It extends to include both the forefoot and the arch of the shoe, which lets it conform to your foot, not just the shoe.

Nike Zoom Kobe VII USA Edition

Kobe Bryant
Kobe’s latest kicks use the latest in Nike tech, but incorporates a few features not found in the other sneakers above. First, it uses the Flywire system, as seen in the Hyperdunk, for its upper. It then uses a thermoplastic urethane heel clip to help lock down your foot. It comes fitted with an Attack Fast midsole insert, which uses a combo of a Phylon midsole amd Nike Zoom units in the heel and forefoot. The Zoom Kobe VII Supreme model includes another interchangeable Attack Strong insert.

While dedicated to Team USA, these sneakers also stand as classy, more toned down colorways when compared to the variety of flashy and colorful versions found of these basketball sneakers. Which ones are your favorites and do you plan on picking up a pair? Let us know in the comments below!

Mens Summer Shoes with Style – Forget the Sandals and Flip Flops

Summer’s in full swing guys, so its time to step your summer style up and ditch the sandals and flip flops. Unlike our female counterparts, your feet aren’t that appealing and no one’s going to compliment you on your pedicure. Whether at the beach, park, pool restaurant patio, or on a boat you’re going to want casual shoes that will complete your summer outfit. And with this heat wave to consider, going sockless with shorts is also a priority. So, here are 10 mens shoes to keep you comfy, cool and looking good this scorching summer.

Nautica Hyannis

Nautica Hyannis

Of course we have to start with a classic boat shoe. This Nautica Hyannis, shown above in sand dollar, is a good color choice for sandy situations. It features leather lacing and moc toe stitching, along with a removable, padded insole for cool comfort. These are leather upper and rubber lower shoes are sure to look good for several summer seasons.

Vans Bali

Vans Bali

Vans are known for their clean cut, casual sneakers and loafers; the Bali model shown here a perfect example. Made out of lightweight canvas, these are also an affordable choice, giving you the option to pick up a few colors to match your outfit without making any sacrifices.

Nautica Carlsbad

Nautica Carlsbad

Nautica’s casual take on the oxford shoe results in a classier sneaker to pair with any summer event. Shown here in an appropriate nautical blue, it features a fabric upper with suede accents and a padded collar. Keep away from denim shorts while you’re wearing these unless, of course, you’re going for the full Canadian tuxedo.

Rockport Greenbrook

Rockport Greenbrook

This loafer combines a casual moc toe with a traditional penny keeper strap. Shown here in supple Vicuna Suede, the inside still keeps you cool and comfy with a leather lining, EVA footbed, adiPRENE cushioning and polyurethane outsole.

Hush Puppies Winns

Hush Puppies Winns

For a more casual, but still sharp looking loafer, the Hush Puppies Winns is a perfect choice. It features a low-cut for the look, but with padded collar and tongue to still keep your ankle supported. Inside is a smooth lining a cushioned insole and a vulcanized rubber sole for the comfort we’ve come to expect from Hush Puppies.

Sperry Top Sider Bahama 2 Eye

Sperry Top Sider Bahama 2 Eye

We have to take a look at least one other boat shoe and seeing as Sperry made Top Siders the go to name, we’ve got to shine some light on them. This is the Bahama 2 Eye, making note of the lace holes. This traditional design comes with leather laces and a canvas upper. Nothing makes you look any fresher in the sun than white boat shoes. Make sure to use some shoe protector to keep it that way and don’t forget the canvas makes it easy to clean.

Sebago Dolphin

Sebago Dolphin

The Sebago Dolphin Dockside blends a boat shoe with a loafer in a more formal package. Shown here in a rich red brown, it features hand sewn full-grain leather, ¾ leather sock lining, rawhide laces, non-corrosive brass eyelets and non-marking rubber soles. It is perfect for those of you who want to go sockless in a pair of loafers without having the same top siders as everybody else.

Sanuk Kyoto

Sanuk Kyoto

Heading to the other end of the spectrum, here’s an example of an extremely casual loafer. The Sanuk brand was invented in California as an sandal alternative, designed to survive plenty of water. It features a frayed fabric upper, with an EVA footbed with anti-microbial treatment to maintain freshness while keeping your feet cushioned. Honestly, you probably wouldn’t have to ever take these off if you didn’t want to. They are that comfortable. That being said, please make sure you take them off on occasion.

Keds Army Twill Jute Wrap

Keds Army Twill Jute Wrap

This version of the Keds Army Twill shoe successfully takes an casual oxford look, but adds a tropical vibe with its jute wrapped sole. Jute is a fantastic little environmentally friendly plant whose fiber is used in India and South Asian countries to create textiles for a huge variety of applications (literally massive). Here we see it for summer style points, toning down the attention-grabbing burgundy fabric upper.

Sperry Top Sider Largo Slip On

Sperry Top Sider Largo Slip On

This urban loafer from Sperry is sure to be popular in this heat with its perforated suede upper. It’s taupe coloring is accented with contrast stitching, a padded collar and soft leather lining for comfort. The contour footbed features a removable Foot Dry lining and Wave-Siping traction to suit it to wet conditions.

While flip flops and sandals are fine for some people, hopefully this has brought you to realize that they’re not the only summer kicks that can keep your feet happy in this ridiculous heat. Many of these casual summer ready shoes are affordably priced or already on sale with summer fully underway. Don’t stop at these ten shoes, though. Be sure to check out our other offerings in your favorite style and pick your perfect summer shoe.

Choose the Best Shoes for Your Workout

Get Your Summer Body On: Choosing the Right Shoes for Your Workout

Best Shoes For Your Workout

The months just before and during summer are the best to be active. Longer days mean more hours of sunlight after you’ve put in your 9-to-5 at work. Barbeques, the beach and summer sun – who doesn’t want to be outside and look good while doing it? Gearing up can be expensive, but not when you can get brand name discount shoes. If you’re not yet at your summertime prime, here’s a list of the best footwear that’ll help get you from flab to fab in no time. If you’re a beginner, big name and big dollar shoes are best left to the experts. Stick with the basics. Comfort, quality and practicality are what you need.

If running is your sport of choice, there are three main categories of shoes to explore.

Motion Control Running Shoes
Look into these if you have a low arch or flat feet. Motion control running shoes are designed to counteract the natural inward rotation (overpronation) that commonly afflicts runners with low arches. These shoes tend to be more rigid and bulky – their structure helps prevent the excessive rotation that often times leads to injuries.

With its firm midsole and rigid structure, the New Balance WR1012 is a great option when it comes to motion control running shoes.

New Balance WR1012

Stability Running Shoes
These shoes are the Goldilocks of running shoes – not too firm and not too cushioned – they’re just right. Designed for runners with a normal instep, that is, not too arched and not too flat, stability running shoes enlist only moderate control features.

Nike Linarlite+ 2 A great shoe for the normal-footed runner, the Nike Lunarlite+ 2 is lighter than its motion control counterpart, but maintains a high level of support and cushioning.

Cushioned Running Shoes
This one might be pretty self explanatory. Look to cushioned running shoes for relief if you have high arches. The increased cushioning in these shoes allows for greater support and shock absorption that aren’t naturally provided by high-arch insteps.

K Swiss Tubes Run 100 are perfect for the job. Enhanced flexibility is achieved by the anatomically correct flex-grooves. The cushioned midsole is complimented and enhanced by the feature that gives this shoe its name – the tubes. K Swiss Tubes Run 100

If you enjoy taking your exercise with a dose of fresh air and a side of nature, then hiking is probably where your next adventure lies. For the light to moderate hiker who enjoys day hikes, or weekend backpacking trips where you may be carrying light loads, a hiking boot with a mid or high cut is ideal. These kinds of boots can be moderately flexible, and are perfect for ankles that are prone to rolling.

Hi Tec Total Terrain Mid WP

Take a look at the Hi Tec Total Terrain Mid WP for durable waterproof construction and comfort.

If you’re gnarly enough to tackle CrossFit, you deserve a shoe that can keep up. You want to look for a shoe that’s lightweight (think lots of mesh), durable (let’s face it, these shoes are going to be put through the ultimate test of quality) and has a neutral (or close to) drop from the heel to the toe. This neutral drop increases ankle and knee stability and decreases your chances of getting hurt.

Start with a shoe that was named one of the best CrossFit shoes of 2012, the New Balance WX20. New Balance WX20

So go on, get out there and tackle your Summer get-fit routine. No matter what your workout obsession, you’ve got a good idea of where to start when choosing the footwear that will keep you comfortable and coming back for more.

Let us know how you get fit for summer in the comments below, on our Facebook page or via Twitter. You can also check out tips, tricks and videos on our Pinterest page!