The Nike Air Presto - "the T-shirt for the foot"
As comfortable and uncomplicated as a T-shirt, shoe designer Tobie Hatfield describes his Nike Air Presto. In fact, this is one of the most comfortable sneakers ever. He is also seen as the predecessor of the Nike Free. He made his debut 18 years ago, but even today he is still one of the latest Nike models. Sneaker lovers and professional runners alike appreciate this shoe, it has even been exhibited in art galleries. The Nike Air Presto, however, was not born overnight, its development was a long process.
History of the Nike Air Presto
The shoe was presented to the public for the first time at the turn of the millennium. But many years went by before the time came. The shoe developer Tobie Hatfield had the idea to develop a new sneaker with an incomparable fit and the highest possible wearing comfort. The designer is also the brother of the well known Nike developer Tinker Hatfield.
The well-known slogan of the Prestos was: "The T-shirt for the foot". That said it all. The sneaker should be as comfortable as a slipper, but light and fresh.
The development of the shoe goes back to the nineties. During this time, Nike has developed some groundbreaking sneaker technologies. New was the concept of using a sports shoe to allow the foot to roll as naturally as possible, an idea that later reached perfection with the Nike Free.
To ensure this, Hatfield developed the so-called "V-Notch" for the Presto. This is a notch carved into the shoe on the ankle, which is responsible for the comfortable fit.
The sizes of the Nike Air Presto
An anecdote is told again and again to describe the wearing comfort of the Presto. Allegedly Hatfield had given a size 9 prototype of the shoe to an employee wearing size 11 shoe. However, the employee did not notice the difference in size and felt comfortable in this shoe, which was actually two sizes too small for him. The flexibility of the shoe made it possible. This experience led Hatfield to revolutionize the Presto shoe sizing system.
The Nike Air Presto can actually be ordered as a T-shirt for the foot in shirt sizes. The sizes range from 3XS to XXL. You can buy the shoe so it wraps around your foot like a sock. The usual addition of about one centimeter is optional with this model, but not necessary. So just wear the Presto the way you like it most, a little more casually or tightly fitting!
Space Mesh, a new upper material for the Presto
Not only the size structure was unusual, for this shoe Nike also developed a new upper material, the Space Mesh. The material, which originates from medical technology, is stable and extraordinarily flexible. It gives the foot the necessary support and hardly hinders it in its natural rolling movement.
The Duralo outsole provides the necessary cushioning and also gives the shoe its futuristic design. With this shoe model, Nike was only a small step away from the feeling of walking barefoot. This idea was finally fully realized with the Nike Free.
Why is the sneaker called Presto?
During the development phase, the name for the new Nike shoe was sought via the crowd. Over 300 sneaker freaks from all over the world sent in their suggestions. Finally the name "Presto Magic" was convincing. When you put on your shoe, it fits so well that it almost looks like magic. The magician says "Presto" in a trick, which corresponds approximately to the German "Simsalabim". Presto Magic became Presto.
Colorways and designs of the Nike Air Presto
The colour names of this sneaker are as unusual as the process of finding the name. For the first time in the history of Nike, the Colorways were given illustrative names. The shoe models were not simply named after their hue, instead fantastic descriptions were invented to evoke certain associations. The designs were called for example "Catfight Shiner", "Trouble at Home", "Abdominal Snowman" or "Rabid Panda".
Nike Air Presto Information
- Brand: Nike
- Designer: Tobie Hatfield
- Published in: 2000
- Technology: Sock-like stretch upper material