Over the years Nike has continued creating innovative technology to help athletes perform at their best. One of the best examples is the ever-evolving line of Nike Zoom running shoes. But with so many  options to choose from, it can be difficult to spot the differences between them. So we’ve created a chart showing which tech features each shoe has along with descriptions of those tech features, so you can figure out which Zoom running shoe is best for you. No matter which pair you end up buying, you’re sure to stand out from the pack with Nike Zoom running shoes.

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Nike Zoom Running Shoes Pictured Above
(from left to right)

Air Zoom Pegasus Turbo 2, Air Zoom Pegasus 37
Zoom Fly 3, Zoom Streak LT 4, ZoomX Vaporfly NEXT%
Zoom Gravity, Zoom Winflo, Air Zoom Vomero 14
Air Zoom Pegasus 36 Trail, Air Zoom Terra Kiger 6


Chart showing which tech features each Nike Zoom running shoe has.

* Shoes feature a full-length Zoom Air unit. ** Shoes are designed for off-road trail running.

Technology of Nike Zoom Running Shoes

Engineered Mesh

Engineered mesh is more flexible and more durable compared to regular mesh. It’s often used as the upper for many of Nike’s performance running shoes to provide breathability while remaining snug on your feet.


This unique upper first debuted on Nike’s ZoomX Vaporfly NEXT%. It’s super strong and lightweight, but more importantly it’s water resistant. So even in the worst rainy weather, the shoes won’t soak up water.

Flywire Cables

The exposed Flywire cables on some of the Zoom shoes provide a secure feel by allowing for a tight, but flexible fit. These cables stretch all the way to the sole, though you only see a bit on the top. So even though they may look insignificant, they provide substantial support without adding much extra weight.

Carbon Plate

Encased in the React cushioning, this full-length plate adds a layer of firmness to the shoes, adding a snappy response that propels you forward during your run.

ZoomX Foam

Originally designed to assist runners trying to break the two-hour marathon time, ZoomX Foam is the lightest, softest, and most responsive midsole cushioning from Nike. It gives you comfortable cushion without adding weight and bulk to your shoe.

React Foam

Originally, this foam cushioning debuted in Nike’s basketball shoes in 2017. Less than a year later, Nike figured out how to best incorporate it into running shoes. With this new technology, runners no longer need to decide between either a soft cushion to absorb energy or a firm cushion to provide energy return. They can have it all. React cushioning is lightweight and has significant energy return and durability to last long distances.

Cushlon Foam

This foam midsole is softer and more responsive than traditional Phylon. Cushlon absorbs impact and feels soft underfoot to provide cushioned comfort.

Zoom Air

Zoom Air debuted with Nike more than 20 years ago. Nike Zoom Air units come in different sizes, but in running shoes, the Zoom Air units are most commonly seen as either a full-length unit that goes along the entirety of the sole or two smaller units placed beneath the heel and beneath the toes. These units are filled with air and stretched fibers that contract when pressure is applied and bounce back when pressure is removed. So with every stride you take, you experience dynamic energy return.

To shop all Nike running gear, head on over to eastbay.com.