Nike’s $1,200 Glasses Are Designed To Give Athletes An Edge
The cutting-edge eyewear was created without hinges for maximum stability and aerodynamic efficiency
Performance wear for athletes can hold the key between winning and losing. In an effort to create the greatest sunglasses for elite runners Nike teamed up with optics specialists at Zeiss. The newly designed sunglasses called Nike Wing are most remarkable for what they don’t offer.
The sunglasses are akin to swim goggles that hug your head rather than rest on your nose and ears. There are no hinges, temples or earpieces, which come standard in most sunglasses. The Wing have a single lens that wraps around past the temples and a silicone strap similar to swim goggles that circumvents any pressure caused from other glasses. Athletes are able to relax knowing the sunglasses won’t fall off which frees up precious energy that could otherwise be wasted worrying about micro-movements of the glasses.
Initial testing of Nike Wing design, held in a wind tunnel at Sacramento State University, were not successful because of problems with the strap. Early iterations of the strap used too much material which cause turbulence in the back of the head. Refinements to the glasses were made including a more streamline, rigid strap, a ventilated brow-bar that minimized fogging and a peak shaped frame that allowed air to flow smoothly over the glasses reducing drag.
The uniquely designed sunglasses retail for an astounding $1,200. While this price is well over 10 times what most people would pay for a pair of sunglasses, Nike is targeting a very specific athlete that is willing to invest in gear that could make or break their performance. Nike’s goal is for the Wing to be so light and comfortable that athletes forget that they’re wearing them.
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