Nike Shox is a shoe feature first released by Nike in 2000 that is incorporated in several of their flagship sneakers. The shoe design includes a support system feature, which is an arrangement of small hollow columns in the midsole supporting the shoe's heel, which are made primarily with polyurethane. There are different formations of the shox technology, but most models include four circular columns in a square formation to provide cushioning. Later variations in shox models added one or two additional shox, 25 mm high, though they may vary in height; as well as triangular and rectangular shox that Nike claims provide better stability. Some shoes have midsoles made entirely of Shox, like the TL and VC series.
Close up of a Nike Shox system
Nike claims that Shox not only absorb impact from heel strike while running, but also claims they "spring back" and add more power to a runner's stride. Aside from this alleged boost in speed, the Shox is supposed to provide superior shock absorption with high-tech elastic foam.
The newer Shox series is compatible with "Nike+ technology." The Nike Shox Saya+ is the most recent Shox with this feature. The new Nike Shox Q'Vida Hi shoe is a new woman's "dance boot" implementation of Shox.
Comedian Jerry Seinfeld is also a fan of, and wears Nike Shox.
Some of Nike’s best selling shoes include Shox, like the Shox NZ and Shox Turbo, which are available in different colors. These shoes can be found for customization on NikeID, Nike's online shoe customizing site. There are numerous options like different colors and materials for the Shox, along with custom tags.
In 1984, designer Bruce Kilgore began researching the Shox project design. Inspiration for the shoe is said to have come from viewing indoor track sprinters appear to "bounce" after impacting the surface of the track. Nike developers experimented with many materials that were unable to provide the runner with sufficient support and also returning a small portion of energy to the runner following impact with the ground. Ultimately, polyurethane was developed as the key component to the Shox system success.
Nike released the first Shox based shoe. The shoe attracted considerable excitement due in part to the timing of its release. The new millennium energized consumers with hopes for new technologies, which contributed heavily to Nike Shox' early success.
During the 2000 Summer Olympics, the brand saw a tremendous boost in popularity when Team USA's Vince Carter dunked over a 7'2" center from Team France in a pair of Shox BB4 (his first signature shoe with Nike). Carter's dunk would become a major influence on Shox' advertisement strategy.
The release of two popular Shox basketball shoes, the Nike Shox Explosive and the Nike Shox Elevate. The Shox VC IV, Shox signature shoe for Vince Carter, is also released.
Some of the new Shox are compatible with the Nike+iPod feature, particularly the Nike Shox Saya.
Nike creates an Air Force 1 prototype with Shox cushioning, never released to the public. The proficiency testing sample was then sold by an ex-employee during an eBay auction organised in collaboration with the sneaker collector Jordan Geller, owner of Shoezeum and of the record for the biggest sneaker collection of the world. The shoe is now owned by the swiss startup Support Your Localz, founded by Andrea Antonacci.
Nike ends production of most designs implementing the Shox feature, albeit Nike Shox shoes continue to be sold in some countries to this day.
On June 29, 2019, Nike commemorated Vince Carter's career by re-releasing his first signature shoe, the Shox BB4, in various colorways, including the "Olympics" variant. Vince Carter sported the shoes in different colorways throughout the 2018–19 NBA season and 2019-20 NBA season. Carter famously wore the model during the 2000 Summer Olympics when he pulled off "le dunk de la mort" ("the Dunk of Death"). The Nike Shox BB4 "Toronto Raptors" White paid homage to Vince Carter's days as a Raptor (he wore a similar colorway during the season) and were released globally August 25, 2019. A "Toronto Raptors" Black pair was released in Canada on April 2020. The Nike Shox BB4 in the original colorway of Black/Metallic Silver/Lapis, debuted by Carter on November 15, 2000, was re-released on September 20, 2019. The shoe worn by Carter in the 2001 NBA All Star Game, a white and varsity red colorway, was re-released on October 11, 2019. Several other colorways that Vince wore on-court throughout his final years in the NBA were also released publicly for a total of 8 variations.
- "New York Times: Jerry Seinfeld Intends to Die Standing Up"
- "Nike sues Adidas over shoe patent". BBC. 2006-02-17. Retrieved 2009-04-17.
- "A Former Nike Employee Is Selling Incredibly Rare Samples on eBay". Highsnobiety. 2019-12-11. Retrieved 2019-12-18.
- "Jordy Geller and the world's largest collection of sneakers - video". Guinness World Records. 2012-10-02. Retrieved 2019-12-18.
- "Streetwear Community on Instagram: "Siamo molto fieri di annunciarvi che @supportyourlocalz in collaborazione con @antonaccigram e @shoezeum sono riusciti a portarvi in…"". Instagram. Retrieved 2020-01-12.
- "The Boing Is Back". Nike.com. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
- "Nike Shox BB4 Vince Carter White Navy Release Date". SneakerNews.com. 31 May 2019. Retrieved June 28, 2019.
- "Vince Carter Takes It Back, Will Wear Nike Shox BB4 PEs for Remainder of Season". SLAMonline.com. 28 October 2018. Retrieved June 28, 2019.
- Briguglio, Mario (7 October 2019). "Nike Shox BB4 Varsity Red AT7843-101 Release Date - SBD". sneakerbardetroit.com. Retrieved October 31, 2019.