Because the summer and winter Olympics alternate every two years, it gives Nike plenty of time to experiment with new technologies they can provide to their athletes by the time the Games actually begin. The 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio, which kick off in July, are no different; and Nike spent Tuesday evening in New York City unveiling not just the uniforms and podium gear its athletes will be draped in, but its latest technological advancements as well. Here are some of the craziest things we saw.
The Nike Wing
Athletic sunglasses on steroids, except they weigh four grams less than the average pair of eyewear. The Swoosh went bold here—by integrating all of its latest technologies to make the Wing as aerodynamic as possible and by constructing the sunglasses from a single piece of glass. Even the temples, the parts that extend over the athlete’s ears to hold them in place, are an extension of the glass, giving the wearer almost 360-degree protection from the sun’s rays. Nike also eliminated the hinges between the temples and the lenses.
The Nike Aeroswift Bib
If there’s one thing that marathoners and track & field athletes agree on, it’s that bibs are trash. They’re flimsily attached to your top with some old bobby pins, and halfway through whatever event you’re participating in, they come unhinged and start slapping you in the face with each gust of wind—either that or they fall off completely. Who knows why it took until the 2016 Summer Olympics to address this problem, but hey, better late than never. Nike’s Aeroswift Bib is a single, perforated layer that can be integrated directly into the athlete’s top. When the event is over, you can simply peel it off. No bobby pins, and, more importantly, no being slowed down by a bib rattling around in the wind. Great success.
NikeLab Dynamic Reveal Jacket
This isn’t even about technology. Simply put, the jackets Nike has created for Team USA to rock on the podium are just super duper fresh. From the Olympic patch on the left shoulder to the blue ribbon pattern that runs down the jacket’s sleeves, these jackets can be worn straight from the podium and into the club. That’s how good they look.
Nike LeBron Zoom Soldier 10
As pointed out by Complex’s Russ Bengtson, giving LeBron James a basketball shoe without laces is a pretty insane concept, seeing as how LeBron is actually a real life giant who was smushed down into a still-huge 6-foot-8, 250-pound mini-giant. Compared to the bulkiness of the Nike LeBron 11, 12 and 13, which more closely resembled tanks than basketball shoes, the Zoom Soldier 10 is like a feather. Still, that didn’t stop LeBron from rocking it for most of the 2016 NBA Playoffs, including the Finals, giving credence to the shoe’s performance capabilities without all the bells and whistles that come with his signature line. That’s pretty impressive, and the above Team USA colorway is pretty sick.