Wearables

Good cushioning for long runs

The new Nike React Infinity Run offers good protection for long endurance runs.
The new Nike React Infinity Run offers good protection for long endurance runs.PHOTO: NIKE

I last ran a marathon a decade ago to strike it off my bucket list.

Since then, I have rarely run more than 5km on my jogs and, usually, at a leisurely pace.

Given that, the new Nike React Infinity Run could be the ideal shoes for me.

It has Nike's React foam, said to offer superior cushioning and energy return. In fact, Nike has stuffed 24 per cent more React foam into the shoes' midsole, compared with other Nike shoes, for extra cushioning.

Its geometry and rocker-like bottom are said to offer a fluid transition between foot strike and toe-off and reduce running injuries, while its wide base offers stability on long runs. In short, it suits casual runners like me and elite runners doing recovery runs.

Without an over-prominent rocker sole design at its front, which some elite running shoes have, the React Infinity Run looks like a pair of trendy sneakers, especially the hero white model. But I prefer the almost all-black scheme of my review pair.

The shoes' mesh upper feels comfortable from the moment I slip my feet into them, with plenty of toe wiggle room. The sock-like construction makes the shoes feel snug. A slight downside is the lack of a stiffer heel counter for my injury-prone ankles.

But during my runs, whether I am doing heel strikes or fore-foot strikes, I find the shoes' cushioning to be fantastic with my knees and ankles buffered from much of the impact on every stride.

But the thick cushioning also means the shoes are slightly heavier than most running shoes - good for training, though.

In terms of overall performance, the Nike Zoom Pegasus Turbo 2 I reviewed last December is probably the better package.

But for those who have just started running or are looking for better protection during long endurance runs, the Nike React Infinity Run might be the better option.

  • FOR

    • Thick cushioning
    • Comfortable
    • Doubles as trendy sneakers

  • AGAINST

    • Slightly heavy
    • Lacking a stiff heel counter

  • SPECS

    PRICE: $239

    MATERIAL: Nike's React foam midsole with Flyknit three-layer mesh upper

    HEEL DROP: 9mm

    WEIGHT: 291g (Men's, US 9)

  • RATING

    DESIGN: 4/5

    PERFORMANCE: 4/5

    VALUE FOR MONEY: 4/5

    OVERALL: 4/5

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 19, 2020, with the headline 'Good cushioning for long runs'. Print Edition | Subscribe