DiscontinuedUpdate: Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 36
Neutral / cushion / high arch
Shoes for runners who do not need any additional arch support (Around 50% of runners). Best for people with normal, high or medium high arches. See the best neutral shoes.
Stability / overpronation / normal arch
Shoes for runners who need mild to moderate arch support (Around 45% of runners). Best for runners with a low arch. See the best stability shoes.
Motion control / severe overpronation / flat feet
Shoes for runners who needs a lot of arch support. Best for runners with flat feet. See the best motion control shoes.
Good to know
Cushioned shoes for your daily easy running. Great comfort. See best shoes for daily running.
Lightweight shoes good for races, interval training, tempo runs and fartlek. Here are the best competition running shoes.
Good to know
If you want just one pair of shoes, buy a shoe for daily running.
WeightMen: 10.1ozWomen: 9oz
Heel to toe dropMen: 10mmWomen: 10mm
The height difference from the heel to the forefoot, also known as heel drop, toe spring, heel to toe spring or simply drop.
There are many opinions about what a good heel drop is. We do not recommend any in particular. Lean more in this video.
Heel heightMen: 29mmWomen: 29mm
Forefoot heightMen: 19mmWomen: 19mm
WidthMen: Narrow, Normal, Wide, X-WideWomen: Narrow, Normal, Wide
Release dateJun 2017
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88 / 100 based on 22 expert reviews
The Nike Pegasus 34: The greatest classic!
This is an 80 km review of what is clearly the most proven model of running shoe in modern history.
The Nike Pegasus was designed with the goal of building an accessibly priced shoe that every runner could afford. The first Pegasus was made largely of leather and sold for $50 on its release in 1983.
The Nike Pegasus has been used by both professional and amateur runners. Its favored by both neighborhood joggers and marathoners alike.
Today, the Pegasus 34 demonstrates that the designer's original vision is still alive even after 34 years.
The outsole has Duralon rubber that provides excellent traction and BRS 1000 (Blue Ribbon Sports) carbon rubber in high abrasion areas, providing added durability.
The traditional waffle outsole design is used on the majority of the outsole to assure excellent traction. A full-length Rubber Crash Rail on the lateral (outer side) of the sole provides for a smooth transition from landing to toe-off.
The midsole is the heart of every running shoe. The Pegasus 34’s midsole starts with a full-length Cushlon foam, into which are built two low-profile airbags; one for the forefoot and, one for the heel area.
These airbags are not token half-inch size pockets but are nearly full width and fully functional. Cushlon starts as NIKE's Phylon foam, with rubber additives, giving the Pegasus a nimble liveliness.
Flymesh, a seamless engineered mesh with interwoven monofilament lines (fishing line tensile-strength) are added for durability.
Flywires provide support and enhances fit at the midfoot; the Flywires go from just above the midfoot Cushlon foam and rise upward to meet the laces.
The laces then complete the top of the arc, making a comfortable and secure wrap around your foot that can be adjusted with lace tension or patterns for a more personal fit.
A partial mesh bootie, on the inside, wraps the foot for added comfort and the lightly padded tongue is attached along its sides; with no irritating stitches or excess material to rub the top of your foot.
There is no need for a lace loop on the tongue either, as it cannot slip due to how it is cleverly attached. There is a very effective reflective area on the rear of each shoe.
There is no external toe box stitched onto the front end and no big plastic exoskeleton on the rear as a heel counter.
There is no need for a bunch of overlays to give the uppers shape and support either as the Flymesh, Flywires, lacing and the big NIKE Swoosh logo take care of that. It is a truly a well thought out and functional design!
After working all night and being aware of an approaching ice/snow storm, I woke up my wife and somehow convinced her that we needed to drive 130 miles to get these new miracle shoes!
We did this and managed to get back home before the worst storm in years rolled over our little Indiana town with a barrage of ice, and then a thick blanket of snow.
My first run was as soon as the streets were slightly cleared of snow, at -10 degrees C. (13 F); it was windy at 4:00 a.m. in the predawn morning; limiting my first outing to only 5 km.
These shoes are superb on snow… the waffle soles acted like actual snow tires!
Amazingly, at 40 miles, with my 145 lbs. weight, and easy midfoot landing style, the shoes showed almost no wear.
The Pegasus is a robust shoe that can handle a much heavier passenger than I, perhaps even 200 lbs.
I did manage to find some easy (very easy) trails at the local university, and the Pegasus was right at home with its waffle outsole providing good grip on the damp grass and loose dirt.
Back on the road, I got to like the Cushlon Foam-Air combination, running every day in this shoe doesn't seem to be tiring.
I had expected the Nike Pegasus 34, with its full-length Cushlon foam midsole, to be more flexible.
Overall, flexibility was a little bit too stiff, at first. However, the more I ran in the Pegasus the more comfortable they became.
I have been seeking out more flat ground with fewer hills, in preparation for the Southern Illinois Spring Classic Half Marathon; I believe the Pegasus will be a perfect shoe for that race.
A word of caution, the laces did not stay tied, but they are long enough to be tucked in or double knotted. Personally, I chose to replace them with Brooks Adrenaline GTS 18 laces.
I did take an occasional break to run in my Brooks Launch 4’s, simply for a change and to enjoy the easy gait that I could not find in the Nike Pegasus.
Compared to the Brooks Launch 4 and the Asics GT 2000 5
The GT 2000 5, Pegasus 34 and the Launch 4 are similar in many ways.
I was surprised to find that the Launch was so much easier to run in than the other three models. I think that is due to the fact that the Launch is so much more flexible than the Pegasus and the GT.
The Asics GT 2000-5 is more cushioned, with Gel…making it the “Comfort Champion” of these three models.
NIKE, like some other manufacturers, seems to be having a difficult time getting the patterns of their engineered mesh uppers to line up.
I had to look at three different pairs of the Pegasus before I got one that was correctly lined up…other than this, there were no other quality issues.
Runningwarehouse.com claims that there are no gender-specific changes in the women's version of the Pegasus, only color and size selection differ from the men's version.
- Terrific design…less is often more
- Laces did not stay tied
- Could use a little more toe box height
- Maybe a little stiff at first
In the 1970s, I enjoyed the advice of Albert Byrd, a 1936 Olympic Cyclist (Road and Track) from Chicago, when I was living in Tampa, Florida.
His advice to me was always the same…just "go out and work up a good sweat." Al always rode a 45-year-old Schwinn that Frank Schwinn had personally built for him, prior to the Olympic Games.
We were 30 years younger than Al, back then, and he could almost always beat us. Not even our new Columbus and Reynolds tubing bicycles from Milano and Leeds could make a difference!
Those days taught me at least one lesson..." the biggest part of the equation is always the athlete."
The Nike Pegasus 34 is a very good blend of old and new technologies that all work very well together. There are no painted on Gel inserts and no simulated reflective stripes.
The Pegasus 34 is not a shoe that pretends to be anything other than what it is. I sometimes wonder, has technology passed the Pegasus by, and the answer is always, not if it fits.
“Thanks, Al…Now, Let’s Go Out and Work up a Good Sweat.”
This expert has been verified by RunRepeat. Reviews are neutral, unbiased and based on extensive testing.
Pegasus 34: A Worthy Successor
the Pegasus 33. In fact, there are only a few changes added to the shoe.
One change is that this time the flywire on the shoe is hidden and the laces are now flat. It’s still got its stylish look and comes in a plethora of colorways to fit everyone’s style.
I found the Pegasus 34 to be very comfortable to run in, I don’t have any issues with areas being too tight or too loose.
I don’t know if it’s just in my head but this model felt a little snugger than the previous model which I didn’t mind. The flywire system kept the feel snug and secure during my runs.
Also to add, it didn’t matter if I was using it on my long run, intervals, or short run, the shoe maintained its comfortable feeling. One thing, however, is that when the shoe is brand new it’s a little stiff out of the box but it breaks in relatively quick.
I’ve been using the shoe about 5 months and put around ~144 miles so far.
In addition, I’ve used this shoe strictly only during practice or something running related. So far the shoe is still in good condition so far.
The only visual damage to the shoe is the plastic bit on top of the laces looking like it got crushed because I dropped something on it.
Just like the previous model, the Nike Pegasus 34 is a beast for running. I’ve used the shoe for long runs, intervals and tempo runs.
During my long runs, the shoe remained comfortable and didn’t give me any discomforts on my feet. The same was for my intervals on the track and tempo runs on the road.
The shoe also had a little spring from the zoom air units that kept me running fast. The shoe protected me from the impact of my feet hitting the track and road.
After 114 miles the shoe has lost its spring but still holds up well for the same workload that I gave it earlier in its life.
Difference from Last Year
There’s not a lot of differences from last year’s model.
The changes are a hiding the flywire, making the laces flat (to address untying issue) and making it a little lighter (not noticeable though).
- Lots of colorways
- Spring feeling from zoom air units
- Snug fit
- Laces don’t untie anymore like the previous model
- Pebbles get stuck on the bottom of the shoe
- Laces are little short if you use the runner's knot but it’s still enough to do a tiny double knot
The Nike Pegasus 34 is a great shoe and there isn’t really a lot of change or improvements. The shoe is comfortable and great for running long distances and fast runs.
It’s stylish and there are so many colorways that it’s nearly impossible not to find a style that you won’t like. My only gripe is that when you use the runner’s knot there’s barely enough lace to do a double knot, but that’s a minor issue.
If you loved the Pegasus 33, the Pegasus 34 is a basically it's twin brother that’s an inch taller.
This expert has been verified by RunRepeat. Reviews are neutral, unbiased and based on extensive testing.
Pegasus 34: Is it really for you?
Before reading this review, please have in mind I am a heavyweight runner and already had knee and ankle issues in the past, so cushion and stability is very important for me.
That being said, I bought the Nike shoes in the past.
Appearance & Color Variation
First things first, this is a very sleek and beautiful shoe.
You wanna buy them even before trying them out, and Nike also did a good job on color variation. You can check full-color variations on Nike site. I choose the black/red version.
A special comment here is for the Nike logo, which is a silver and reflexive, in my opinion much better than the standard classic white logo.
Comfortability & Upper
As expected, Nike shoes generally fit perfectly and no surprise on size and inside fabric or manufacturing details bothering the feet and toes.
It fits just fine wrapping around the ankle comfortably.
The upper is also very strong and solid with a double layered fabric – and yet with good respiration level, which means a lasting shoe in the long run with a good toe protection at the same time.
Running (Cushion, Stability & Sole)
During running, things are a little bit different.
When I first started running, I already felt that the cushion is nothing like what I am used to, which is fine, cause I knew Pegasus is a mid-cushioned shoe, but I didn’t expect too much lower than Asics Nimbus or Nike Vomero for instance, which just to have a comparison are currently my favorite shoes.
And after a couple of minutes of running, I felt steps were pretty hard and the Zoom Air technology was not helping me out with the back energy I was expecting, both on the back and forefoot areas.
Stability wise, we have a plus here, since it shows a strong support for arch and ankles which made me more secure while running on curves or different soils.
However, on the sole topic, it was a total disappointment.
I felt it very unsafe to run on wet floors, it is just too slippery on sidewalks and just so so even on asphalt. I give a strong minus here.
On the back part, you can see a strong reflexive light for night running, so I give a plus here.
The Day After
Before reviewing shoes, I always like to wait for the day after to completely evaluate it not only during the exercise but also its effect on my body after it.
And with Pegasus the results where disastrous.
As expected for the hard step and low cushion experience, my legs were completely sore on the morning after, feeling aches from the feet sole up to the knees, especially for my both calves.
What I like
- Modern & sleek looking with good amount of color schemes
- Good feet comfortability and smooth arch and upper experience
- Strong stability with good ankle support
- Not sufficient cushioning
- Steps are not well transferred into energy for a lighter and faster exercise
- Sole is very slippery on wet floors
- After training effects are highly felt on the legs, especially feet sole and calves
The Nike Pegasus 34 is comfortable but a low cushioned running shoe, especially if you are heavyweight like me. The step absorption is also not good and after training sore can be highly felt.
If you are not heavyweight and want to use it for casual training on the gym or treadmill exercises it might be your choice, but if you are an outside runner in need for every day, soil and weather shoes, I would not recommend this.
This expert has been verified by RunRepeat. Reviews are neutral, unbiased and based on extensive testing.
The Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 34
The Nike Pegasus 34 looks and feels good.
The mesh looks like it will allow a lot of breathabilities and I personally love the black, gold and white combination!
Upper & Comfort
The upper of the Pegasus 34, is a Nike engineered mesh…basically, a lightweight material that looks good, and gives a large amount of breathability. This does, however, mean that the shoes aren’t waterproof!
So these may not be the right shoes for those depths of winter training runs…unless that is, you don’t mind getting your feet wet!
If you are looking for an all-year-round training shoe but like all the elements of the Pegasus 34, then I would suggest the more water repellent Pegasus 34 ‘Shield’.
Elements of the more advanced (and subsequently higher priced running shoes) seem to slowly trickle down to the more ‘affordable’ Nike running shoes.
Around the lacing holes, you will notice the flywire elements. These are lightweight and strong elements of the shoe to give durability, flexibility and minimal weight.
At 283g these are around the mid-range in terms of weight for comparable running shoes within its category.
At first, I did notice there seemed to be a bit of ‘weight’ to these shoes, not that they are heavy, just they were noticeable! After wearing them in (around the 10-15 miles mark) this feeling of weight had passed. This may be down to getting used to the weight.
When trying the shoes on for the first time, the mesh does seem to provide quite a bit of flex and feels that they adjust and hug to your feet well. Compared to other running shoes, such as the Salomon Speedcross 4, the Pegasus 34’s seem to be a lot more flexible. I would say that after a few short runs the shoes felt acclimatized and worn in.
Nike does offer the narrow, normal and wide widths for both male and female versions, which is always a bonus! And I know from a few runner friends this can always be a major drawback when deciding on the right running shoe!
Midsole & Cushioning
This time around the Pegasus 34 uses the Premium Cushlon ST foam.
The foam midsole at first glance seems to provide an adequate amount of cushioning and springs back into shape after compression. Only time and miles will tell on how well the foam will hold up.
At around 50-100 miles of usage, the foam does seem to be holding up well. On days with longer runs (15-26 miles) I have noticed that the cushioning does seem to reduce gradually. I believe this is due to the constant repetition and compression. This has resulted in the occasional pain and rubbing on the ball of my foot.
For those who run short distances and often, could be negated by alternating the shoes with either a second pair (a tip I have received from a number of running colleagues) or alternating from the road to trails. I believe this will allow the shoes to breathe and allow the foam midsole to be uncompressed.
After more than 340+ miles, you can see in the image below that there is still a large amount of grip on the sole. The cushioning still has an amount of spring, but it is evident that there is a lot less than the first time they came out of the box.
As a shoe for logging the training miles and increasing the mileage, they have worked extremely well under different conditions and on a variety of terrains. The real test came when traveling across America for 3 months, visiting an enormous diversity of terrains, climates and weather conditions.
On many occasions, I have used these shoes for two or three runs on the same day and multiple times on concurrent days. The shoe itself had no issue with withstanding these runs, distances, and terrains, however, as previously stated the shoes do feel as though they will require rest to breathe.
As with Nike being the powerhouse and world-dominating brand that it is, variation and colorways seem to be one of their strong suits. The ability to produce such large quantities of the shoes means that they more often than not have a large range of colors and variations.
As a consumer, if the shoe fits (pardon the pun!), then there will be a lot of colors to choose from. At the time of writing more than 24 colors have been released for men, (14 for women), as well as the NikeiD customization service.
Nike ID allows you to customize various elements of the shoes to create your perfect color combination; be warned there are endless possibilities and a lot of time can be spent on this!
Having used the Pegasus 34 as my main training shoe, and race shoe for much of the season, I would recommend them. As I have been stepping up the miles and my training and progressed from a beginner to a more experienced runner, I would suggest that these are a good entry level shoe.
Beginner – Good all round shoe that will cover all bases, if you are starting with a couch to 5k, just attending a local Parkrun or require a shoe that will last through a marathon training plan and onto the marathon itself. I would say these are a good fit.
If you want a good solid workhorse training shoe that will let you increase your mileage, a shoe for that 5k Saturday morning Park run or even just a stylish trainer that you can run in if needs be, then I would recommend these shoes.
- Being the 34th version, these have a long history of development and innovations from its predecessors
- The latest innovations in the higher priced range of Nike shoes gradually make the way down to this range
- Durable – can withstand a lot of miles
- Flexible and breathable
- Variety of widths and styles to choose from
- Not waterproof - if you want or need a waterproof shoe to go for the Pegasus 34 ‘Shield’
- Comes with the Nike price tag
- Not specific for those with pronation
- Requires downtime between runs to allow for the midsole to decompress
Road running and logging the training miles, an everyday runner and the occasional race shoe. Can withstand the mileage and is still very useable at around 350 miles.
Beginners – As one of the mid-range Nike running shoes I would recommend this as a starting shoe, as they will last. If you start getting the running bug and hooked, these will surely last you for at least one running season, maybe even two.
Intermediate – For the more experienced runner and one who’s clocking a lot of miles, I would suggest that this would be a good shoe to go alongside maybe one or two other pairs. I would recommend either a supplementary ‘race’ shoe or an additional pair to alternate with or a pair of trail shoes (if you trail run!).
Experienced – If you are into your running, and know your shoes, then you probably already have a good idea of what you are looking at. Having always worn Nike running shoes, the fit and feel of these are very similar to what you know. Again they are as durable as most Nike’s, and the Pegasus range. I would recommend these for an everyday training shoe.
Triathlete – As a budding triathlete, I have used these in a number of races. I have had no issues or problems using these for the events. My only concern or area for improvement would be the lacing up of the shoes, but these are not a specific triathlon running shoe!
- There may not be a lot of noticeable changes in the Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 34, but the updated upper, coupled with the current technology in the rest of the shoe, is enough to impress both new users and patrons of the Pegasus line.
- Although not a significant difference, the Pegasus 34 is generally lighter than its predecessor, thus, runners who are looking for all the speed boost they can get will approve of this update.
- The upper now features a newly-engineered Flymesh that is designed to provide support and ventilation on the top of the shoe. Together with the Flywire cords that are now installed differently, the foot is ensured to get a fluid ride and an adaptive fit.
- While still possessing the familiar outsole design and midsole technology, the Pegasus 34 has a sleeker designed upper and overall silhouette that is both pleasing to look at and comfortable to wear.
The Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 34 fits true to size and gives a snug and secure fit without feeling restricted. The shoe provides an incredible foot lockdown and is efficient in preventing heel slippage. Coming in width profiles of D-medium, 2E-wide, and 4E-extra wide for men, and 2A-narrow, B-medium, and D-wide for women, this shoe is available to cater to all foot volumes.
The Pegasus 34 retains the signature waffle-patterned outsole made from Duralon and carbon rubber. These hexagon-shaped lugs wrap the medial part of the outsole and are designed to enhance flexibility. On the lateral part lies the stripe-shaped crash rail, is for a smoother transition through the gait cycle. Overall, these two patterns work together for incredible traction on any surface.
The midsole features a full-length Cushlon ST foam made of EVA foam that provides more softness and support while still producing enough level of bounce and responsiveness. There is also a removable insole that adds to the cushioning.
The Pegasus 34 has Zoom Air units located in the forefoot and heel, which reduces the weight of the shoe and provides a more cushioned landing. These Zoom Air bags give the foot a nudge forward off the ground with each step and offer additional support against vibrations running through from the outsole. This midsole unit is also present in the new Pegasus 35 running shoe.
Additional cushioning is given to the runner via the Fitsole sock liner. This add-on is anatomically shaped to provide mild support to the curves of the underfoot, particularly the arch.
The Flymesh technology of the Pegasus 34 now features bigger pores that are designed to reduce heat buildup when you run. This stable-engineered mesh wraps seamlessly around the upper, ensuring support and ventilation across the top of the shoe.
Like the Pegasus 33, this running shoe makes use of the Flywire closure system, which is now concealed by the layer of mesh mentioned above. These cords hug the arch of the foot for a dialed-in fit, connects to the laces, which then pull a partial bootie that wraps the midfoot, ensuring a supportive fit while retaining flexibility.
A supportive fit is given to the runner through a partial bootie construction. The soft mesh in the interior of the shoe wraps around the foot in a secure yet non-irritating way.
An internal heel counter holds the rear of the foot in place and prevents it from exiting the shoe accidentally.