Nike has been my first choice for sports shoes for a decade. The brand named after the Greek goddess of victory and famous for its "swoosh" symbol has indeed provided me innumerable moments of victory and comfort.
Extremely popular amongst my friends, popularized by the genius marketing strategy of the brand and the official partners of Indian cricket team for the season, owning a Nike shoe, had a prestige added to it.
I’m a well built 6 foot tall flat footer so I prefer stability shoes.
The transition from the basic running shoes was lacking the support and possessed the hard cushion. The Structure triax provided support but lacked the cushioning. I then narrowed down on the Airmax and the LunarEclipse3. (See LunarEclipse 5 for current model.)
The flagship model Airmax was my first trial, but when it lacked the the stability of structure triax I yearned for even at a hefty price tag. After a thorough research, I purchased my first pair of LunarEclipse3, solely owing to the support offered.
A perfect package of stability and comfort, the shoe had been my daily wear rigorously over the last four years, till its demise.
The review focuses on four main aspects of the shoes: Aesthetic appeal, Comfort, Stability, Endurance .
Figure 1. Top view of the shoes
Out of the three color choices, I chose the cool grey/volt-atomic teal with reflective silver lining. The grey color is bland in sports shoes, synonymous with vibrant colors but the choice was easy to maintain. Ideal for rugged use. The fluorescent green tail and the reflective “swoosh” is an added advantage under the low light. The swoosh and the tail provides enhanced visibility for long runs under dim light. The shoe is reasonably bulky and takes up space for storage. Black and fluorescent green would have been a good combination.
Figure 2. Side view of the shoes (Lunarlon Foam)
Pitched as the elite model of the lunar series of Nike, the shoe is the most comfiest pair I have ever used. The “Lunarlon” foam manufactured from multi layers of natural rubber, the mid layer of foam padding is the best in the market. Wide toe box, knitted breathable upper sole is the cherry on the icing. The side “swoosh” is a visual appeal, that isn't required. The space could have been utilized for more breathable mesh.
The removable inner sole is a good option for people like me, who sweats quite often. Smelly shoes is unbearable and this is a good feature. The microfiber pattern aids in adding comfort and aids in cleaning. The aqua green color is light for an insole, a darker color would have been better.
Figure 3. Insole
The fluorescent green elastic inserts ensures firm grip of the laces and aids in securing the shoes to feet. The plastic tip at the tail of the shoe,is padded and provides aid to wear the shoe.
Figure 4. Laces Grip
The “Dynamic Support” technology of Nike is unparalleled. The best is stability I have ever used. I did compare with the Rebook Reezig of my friend. The Reezig offered only 50% of the support and cushion offered by the Dynamic Support. The technology is simple and is incorporated withing the sole. A depression is blended to the the Lunarlon foam at the ankle. Brilliant indigenous tech. I have had issues twisting my ankle quite frequently owing to the bad conditions of the pavements. Switching to this pair, has prevented such incidents.
Four years is a good time frame to test a shoes. I have tried different terrains with this pair. Treks on uneven terrain, 10k runs on tarmac, concrete, unpaved terrain, this shoes has survived the rigorous testing. My tests were carried out to the extent of damaging the entire sole. The color combination of green, black and yellow is a treat for the eye. The varied tread pattern ensures firm grip. The sole wear was quicker than I expected. Could have used a better gum or technology for the sole.
Figure 5. Worn out grip.
To sum it up, this shoe was priced at $130 during my purchase and the current prices are hiked exorbitantly high. This pair did provide me with the victory and comfort that I had imagined. The Nike+ipod sync feature was an added advantage for every running shoes at the time when there were few smartwatches and fitness devices. To my dismay, during upgrade I was shocked that Nike has recalled a good series. It was the "demise of a Nike" for a flat footer .