The Nike Future Flight is a Basketball Shoe Designed for Young Athletes

Nike has done three years of research and development to deliver better kids-specific performance shoes. It has resulted in the Nike Future Flight, a hoops shoe designed for young athletes.

Generally, kids shoes are mini versions of the sneakers we all know and love. However, they usually have lackluster materials, and their designs can be…iffy. Now, Nike has unveiled its Future Series for young athletes, which will also bring the Future Speed, a running sneaker designed for kids.

To build sneakers specifically for kids, designers and researchers at Nike had to analyze what kids needed to perform. According to the company, kids are lower to the ground and thus, a kid’s angle and movement is more extreme than that of an adult. Additionally, Nike says that kids don’t have the foot strength to be mid- or forefoot strikers so they are predominantly heel strikers. Kids also told researchers that they wanted to feel lightweight in a shoe.

nike future flight kids basketball shoe

Designing for kids meant broadening the foot form in the forefoot to give kids room to grow, as well as using less glue and sticking to lightweight meshes, according to Nike. Designers were also inspired by a puppy paw, which has a softer surface to provide cushioning that is surrounded by firmer skin for better traction and stability.

From the redesigns came the Nike Future Flight, a shoe designed to bring young athletes closer to the ground. The shoe utilizes a dual-density midsole comprised of a solar-soft foam core (tuned for a kid’s size and weight) and a firmer injected Phylon carrier that runs around the outsole (for stability during lateral cuts). Finally, a deconstructed collar should allow the ankle to move through its full range of motion.

The Nike Future Flight and Future Speed will debut on July 1 at The brand has not announced pricing information, but it has pledged to continue to develop kids-specific footwear.

nike future flight

Nike future flight outsole

Nike Future series kids shoes


Source: Nike


  1. I guess they expect kids to play only on INDOOR courts since that traction looks like it wouldn’t last a month outdoors. When I was a kid I only got 1 or 2 shoes a year. That math doesn’t add up.

    1. I was wondering why companies don’t use as much durable traction with hard rubber anymore. A lot of retro shoes that are outdoor-worthy have great traction, such as the Maestro 2 in Duke’s review. Most shoes today use transluscent or soft rubber with shallow patterns and too many of them have serious durability issues as well as inconsistent traction. And they seem to be getting less durable as time goes on(see the latest Durant, Kobe, and Lebrons).

      I’ve thought about this from all angles, and the answer is simple: they want them to wear down faster so you’ll buy more shoes. Thats it.

      1. Sad but true. They’re very capable of making good traction that can last. They choose not to. And they cant give the excuse of “Thick durable traction cant provide excellent indoor performance”. Kobe Mentality 2 received a “Hall Of Fame” rating from Nightwing. Its awesome for both indoor and outdoor. It also only cost $100

        1. The Mentality was awesome, so what did they do for the next budget Kobe? They made the Mamba Instinct less durable. Had worse traction too, I think.

          One of the first things I do when I see a shoe in a store is I feel the rubber on the bottom. If it feels like a gummy bear, then thats a big factor in me not buying it.

    2. The mentality II is awesome but it doesn’t last more than a couple months outdoors. My pair is already pretty flat.

  2. Wait, the kids’ Foamposites aren’t up to par with the adult sizes? But they cost $180, the same as what the adult sizes did back in 1997. Why would Nike do that? I’m being sarcastic BTW.

    I saw these on somebody’s website yesterday, and they’re $90. Why not make a mid basketball shoe? Kids need that ankle support.

  3. I don’t think that the traction has has to be incredibly durable because as the article says kids tend to put more force and pressure into their heels rather then the forefoot which might mean that the traction won’t ware out as fast compared to a regular shoe. Could be completely wrong though.

  4. there are only two things that concerns me with this shoe, the price and the durability. one of the main issues I see with “some” kids’ shoes is their short lifespan which only lasts an approx. 3-4 months before they are all worn out in the heel area. I think the Kyrie 2’s lasted longer probably due to lesser usage time or the rubber and phylon midsole are thicker. also, the cost. if these costs around $100 and more, I think payless shoes or heavily discounted previous/old Nike shoes are a much better option. besides, Kids’ shoes would be only good for 3/4 of the year before they get too small to wear. kids don’t need to buy 2 pairs of shoes for 6 months.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.