Nike Air Zoom Spiridon ’16

The original Nike Zoom Spiridon was released in 1997. In July 2016, the shoe was released for a second time, now under the name Air Zoom Spiridon ’16, and it remains one of the most popular Nike runners to date. A great blend of modern and retro elements, the Spiridon ’16 pays homage to the original with the responsive cushioning but adds a few new things that adapt it for everyday wear, mostly regarding weight and air flow. For those who are looking for a high-quality cushioned runner that can endure cold winds, you’ve got what you’re looking for right here.

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Where to Buy
Where to Buy
Pros & Cons
  • Durable rubber traction pattern
  • Extremely responsive Air Zoom unit
  • Memory foam heel counter
  • Dual-density foam in the forefoot
  • Versatile
  • Good traction
  • Great modern design with retro elements
  • Stitched synthetic patent leather and mesh upper
  • Dynamic Fit lacing system
  • Comfortable
  • Breathable
  • Cons
    • Narrow fit
    • Higher price
    • Key Features
      The Nike Air Zoom Spiridon ’16 features a durable rubber outsole with an intriguing traction pattern that is around 4mm high and protrudes so as the rest of the sole doesn’t come in contact with the ground. This approach inherently protects the midsole from abrasions and increases its longevity. The rubber thread is positioned so as to focus exclusively on contact areas of the foot and it features oval-shaped lugs with indents of the same shape on them that look as if they’re able to create a vacuum when in contact with the ground. The rubber is sectioned off to multiple impact areas which are connected with thin rubber strips in order to provide flexibility. The outsole not only provides great traction but adds to the overall modern vibe of the Air Zoom Spiridon ’16.
      The thick midsole of the Air Zoom Spiridon ’16 is thick for a good reason – it packs a punch both in the cushioning and in the responsiveness department. The midsole features a three-quarter length Air Zoom unit, memory foam heel counter, dual-density foam in the rest of the midsole, as well as an OrthoLite sockliner. The Nike Air Zoom unit is notorious as one of the most responsive units in the industry, and it has springy tensile fibers knit inside a pressurized Nike Air unit to thank for that. The midsole offers amazing comfort and cushion, but it’s also able to generate explosiveness and speed by providing a springy, responsive ride.
      The upper is separated into two very different sections that have different purposes and are comprised of different materials. The stitched synthetic leather section encircles the entire shoe and is closer to the midsole. While it lacks breathability, this sturdy section gives structure, support, and stability to the foot and protects it from impacts as well as cold weather. It goes especially high up in the heel area, cupping the heel and providing stability of movement. Above, you’ll find a mesh upper that continues onto the tongue of the running shoe. Its purpose is to provide breathability and create some flexibility in the upper, as well as to increase comfort by eliminating any potential pressures to the top of the foot. The upper also features a Dynamic Fit lacing system which enables you to lock down and secure your foot, providing a sock-like fit.
      The Zoom Air midsole cushioning is lightweight as always, but this running shoe as a whole, while still in the lightweight category, isn’t as light as some shoes that have engineered mesh uppers with no-sew overlays. However, the slight increase in weight caused by the synthetic leather and mesh upper is very well worth it, because it makes this shoe a great running option all year round.
      The mesh on the top part of the upper provides enough airflow to prevent your feet from sweating and overheating, as well as blistering. On the other hand, the upper shields the foot from cold, enabling you to wear this shoe in the fall/winter period, as well as spring. Depending on where you live, this might not be the perfect running option for the summer months, due to the fact that it’s unlikely that the mesh upper featured on the Air Zoom Spiridon ’16 will provide enough breathability in high temperatures.
      The original Spiridon was considered to be one of the most comfortable Nike runners back in the nineties, and the Air Zoom Spiridon ‘16 is no different. The Air Zoom midsole is only one of the reasons for the exquisite comfort this shoe has to offer; the padded collar, memory foam heel counter, and snug upper are all a major factor when it comes to comfort. The one thing to note, though, is the width of the shoe. A few people have complained that they had to go a size up due to the narrow shoe platform and stiff synthetic leather sides of the shoe box. Other than the width issue (or blessing, for people with narrow feet), this shoe is ideal for everyday wear and running alike.
      With the chunky sole and the glossy leather upper, this is the sort of running shoe that looks edgy, sporty and fast, all at the same time. While it doesn't exactly go well with elegant outfits, it sure seems impressive on a run or in casual settings. The famous large Nike Swoosh logo is stitched to the side of the upper, and baby-sized Swoosh branding can be seen on the toe cap and the tongue of the shoe. If you're an evening runner, you'll be pleased to know that the Spiridon '16 features reflecting piping on the upper, which is not only practical, but it speaks to the shoe being performance-oriented. On the back of the shoe, you'll find a heel pull tab that allows a swift on/off.
      The Nike Air Zoom Spiridon’ 16 is a high quality running shoe that spared no expense when it came to material and build. The rubber outsole elevates the rest of the midsole from the ground and prevents scratches and untimely wear and tear, while the midsole itself is resilient and long lasting. The EVA foam, which is known to flatten over time, won't make a great impact on the overall cushioning die to the three-quarter length of the Air Zoom unit. The upper is made of sturdy and stiff patent synthetic leather that won't lose its form any time soon, so you can count on wearing the Spiridon ‘16 for quite some time.

      Read also about memory foam sneakers.
      The Air Zoom technology is great when it comes to protecting the feet from the impact forces when running. Due to the shock-absorbing properties of the Spiridon '16, your feet won't get painful or tired no matter how much time you spend in the shoe. Your toes and forefoot won't take the impact burden either, thanks to the brand’s smart use of the dual density foam. The toe bumper and the bottom half of the upper are sturdy and will protect the foot from stray pebbles while running, as well as the cold. However, if you're looking for a winter shoe that can protect you from the elements, you'll have to look further than the Spiridon '16.
      The Air Zoom technology is one of the world’s best when it comes to responsiveness. The midsole of the Nike Air Zoom Spiridon '16 is made to absorb the force from the impact and return some of it back to the runner, propelling the foot forward and increasing your speed. The energy-return, bounce, and springiness that the Spiridon’ 16 midsole has to offer are one of the best in the industry, making this a solid choice for a racing shoe for colder weather.
      The Nike Air Zoom Spiridon '16 is a neutral running shoe, meaning it’s best suited for runners with normal, medium-high or high arches. The shoe box is roomy enough to accommodate a custom orthotic insole that could offer some additional support for those who have low arches. The main type of support that the Spiridon ’16 offers is the lateral support that comes from the sturdy patent leather upper and prevents the foot from slipping and twisting. If you suffer from severe overpronation or supination, then you should find a stability or even a motion control shoe that suits your needs.
      This responsive running shoe performs great both on races and everyday jogs. It gives the best performance on roads, track, pavements, concrete, light gravel, treadmill and any other flat surface you can think of. While this is a performance shoe, it can be worn every day just as a walking shoe without an issue.
      As with a lot of Nike’s shoes that feature the snappy Air Zoom midsole, the Spiridon ’16 is up there in price and steps deep into the three-digit territory. However, given the quality build, cushioning, responsiveness and the durability that this shoe offers, a lot of the customers consider they have paid a fair price for the running shoe they’ve gotten. If you’re a fan of lightweight, responsive, sturdy shoes, having the Spiridon ’16 in rotation is a really good idea.
      The performance-oriented rubber traction pattern provides good grip on both dry and slightly wet surfaces, although it goes without saying that this shoe isn’t meant for running on the snow. The lugs of the outsole almost look like suction pads that create excellent traction on various surfaces.
      Compared to the shoes that feature EVA foam midsoles and engineered no-sew mesh uppers, the Nike Air Zoom Spiridon ’16 is nowhere near as flexible. However, the thin rubber strips that connect larger traction areas on the outsole allow for some much-needed sole flex that follows the natural movement of the foot, while the upper remains pretty stiff, with the mesh area on top of the upper serves the purpose of providing breathability, rather than flexibility. However, the upper construction and positioning of the mesh allow for natural foot movements as well, especially the toe-off flex, which is more than enough for most runners.
      The Dynamic Fit lacing system locks the foot in place and, paired with the stiff synthetic leather that encases the foot, provides a glove-like fit and a significant amount of stability. Additionally, the stiff upper stabilizes the foot when performing lateral movements, with the chances of your foot twisting being minimal.
      The relatively high drop of the Spiridon ’16 indicates that this is a shoe made with heel-strikers in mind. The heel will be noticeable, especially due to the memory foam heel counter, and the midfoot strikers will have to take some time to adjust to the heel and stop feeling like it’s getting in the way of your natural stride. This kind of drop puts the Spiridon ’16 in the compromise zone, skewing toward heel strikers as the main running target group. If you intend to buy this shoe for casual wear, though, feel free to disregard the drop, because walking in them will be far easier, even if you’re a forefoot striker.
      Key Features
      ● Protruding durable rubber traction pattern outsole
      ● ¾ Air Zoom unit, memory foam heel counter, and dual-density foam midsole
      ● Stitched synthetic patent leather and mesh upper
      ● Breathable shoe for colder weather
      ● Extremely comfortable
      ● Pricey, but worth the money
      ● Neutral shoe
      ● Road, track and treadmill shoe
      ● Pretty stiff
      ● Fantastic responsiveness
      Bottom Line
      The Nike Air Zoom Spiridon ’16 is the type of running shoe that doesn’t have any flaws as such – it just suits the preferences of some runners, while others might prefer a different shoe, but there’s no denying that in its category, this is truly an exquisite shoe. Durable, comfortable, responsive, cushioned and made with quality materials, it has a lot going for it. The stylishness and the sporty design have found a faithful fan base, and for a good reason – the Spiridon ’16 didn’t come to play, and the design clearly says so. All in all, we’re looking at an amazing running shoe meant for neutral runners and flat surfaces that will last you a long time.
      Where to Buy
      By Lizzy Pavlovic
      Last updated:
      Where to buy
      Best offer on: Jul. 26. 2021

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