Written by: Poe
Produced by: Dan Hwang (DAN H.)
Sports wear, a term synonymous with today active trends and jet-setter lifestyle. A category even luxury fashion houses have embraced, integrated into their lineup and showcased with their own interpretation at the seasonal fashion week. But just a few decades, the term induce an image of uniform from local football clubs or amateur baseball teams. It was not until some 60 years, when one’s everyday activities started to dictate their senses of style, that sport wear went beyond the fields and courts. In the ensuing years, the advent of synthetic fabric and other technical improvement propagated sports wear even further into what is now a common sight. With the official revealing of the new Nike Sportswear apparels last month, Nike wants to push that envelop once again. This time, by infusing even more performance into every details of the clothing.
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The flagship of Nike apparel, its creation has become sort of lore in Nike’s history. Avid runner and Nike employee Geoff Hollister, who was a member of the storied University of Oregon track team at one time, wanted to create a athletic wear that will actually perform to the specific needs of runners. He then took inspirations from the Native Americans of Pacific Northwest and incorporated a water repellent synthetic fabrics on top of a mesh lined fabric. This incorporation meant a runner can braved the elements in relative comfort. To give the appearance of speed, Hollister angled the seams where the 2 fabrics conjoined to a 26° angle and the iconic chevron signature was born. First debut at the 1980 Olympic Trials, it further solidified its standing during the 1984 Summer Olympic, when it and other products created via: Nike’s research & development, helped 58 Nike sponsored athletes walked away with some 65 medals.
Nike – 1980 U.S. Olympic Trials Windrunner Replica
Not willing to rest on those merits, Nike continued to improve the Windrunner. Each passing year saw revisions to its nylon composition, its zippers, even its graphics. But upgrades could only go so far. In order to reach loftier goals, Nike designers went back to the design centers and basically crafted a completely new Windrunner. On appearance alone, the new version just screams “fast”. Designers streamlined every protruding surfaces on the classic Windrunner design. Pockets are now created by seamless No Sew technology process. In place is a newly designed hood with the hood adjusters taken out to further the streamline look. Even the 26° chevron gave way to Nike’s quest for performance. Rather than sewn, it is now digitally printed on. The improvements did not just end on appearance. The new Windrunner will feature Flywire material, the same technology found on the new Hyperdunk and Air Max 90 Current footwears. The latest in Nike innovation, Flywire works on similar concept as cables on suspension bridges. At key points, the high tensile threads could support the weight of the entire product, be it sneakers or jackets. In turn, usage of materials could be reduced. All this translates to the lightest Windrunner jacket ever, at only 116 grams. So light in fact that the jacket is semi-transparent.
Come in August of this year, another version of this new Windrunner will make its debut. As homage to the Windrunner’s debut 24 years ago. Nike will outfit members of the U.S. Olympic Team with a special Windrunner for their medal ceremony during the Summer Olympic in Beijing. An example of the company’s commitment to athletes and their quests.
Nike – 2008 Summer Olympic Media Stand Windrunner