Nike introduces first hands-free sneaker

New Nike GO FlyEase. Photo courtesy

People take the opportunity to put their shoes on for granted daily. Nike’s newest design solution will help millions of people who have to cope with this often overlooked task.

The new laceless shoe, named the Nike Go FlyEase, does not require wearers to use their hands to slip the sneaker on and off.

“If you design for the most extreme needs, then you’re unlocking benefits for everybody,” said paralympic athlete Sarah Reinertsen, who helped design the shoe.

When the shoe is open, you can quickly slide your foot into the footbed and step forward naturally. The tensioner band and bi-stable hinge will pull the heel cup and the forefoot together, securing the shoe in a steady open position.

In addition, there is also a kickstand on the heel to help take the shoe off.

Go FlyEase is effectively two shoes in one, with the inner shoe popping out as needed.

The hands-free design is perhaps a game-changer for both those in a rush to get out of the door, and those with disabilities who find the traditional lace, zips or fastening methods troublesome.

Nike’s latest innovation strives to address a new concept the market often ignores: adaptive clothing.

A 2019 Coresight Research Study report projected that the adaptive clothing industry will grow to $54.8 billion in the U.S., and $349.9 billion globally by 2023.

“For some wearers, the Nike Go FlyEase may just be a sneaker with enhanced convenience. For others, with disabilities invisible or visible, it could be the freedom to put on their shoes independently,” said Nike.

Along with the Nike Swim Hijab, this sneaker launch is another way for the well-respected sportswear company to make its products more inclusive and accessible to more marginalized communities.

Bebe Vio, a wheelchair fencer, said, “Usually, I spend so much time to get in my shoes. With the Nike GO FlyEase, I just need to put my feet in and jump on it.”

Vio was one of the few players who had early access to the shoe.

“The shoes are a new kind of technology, not only for adaptive athletes but for everyone’s real life, ” Vio said.

The shoe became available “via invite for select Nike members” on Feb. 15, but the company plans to release it more widely on March 19.