The Nike React Infinity Run Flyknit 2 is a durable, well-cushioned everyday trainer. It provides stability for neutral and over-pronating runners alike.
The React Infinity 2 is built on a full-length React foam midsole platform and serves up loads of comfort, softness and resiliency. At the same time it also provides a wide, sturdy platform for a variety of gait types.
Runners can find the biggest updates to the second edition of this shoe in the knit upper. The lacing system is now secured with Nike’s Flywire system for a locked-down feel.
More padding in the heel collar provides a more comfortable and secure fit. And generally, the upper — which features a mix of both coarse, durable knit pattern and a lighter, more open pattern — offers more support and breathability than the previous edition. It is also a teeny bit heavier than the original version.
There is more blown rubber on the outsole in this model, which helps it deliver better traction and durability. Narrow outsole groves give it a performance-oriented flex and increase traction in all types of weather conditions.
FIT, FEEL, RIDE
The Nike React Infinity Run Flyknit 2 fits true-to-size with a comfortable interior and a medium width in the toe box. (It doesn’t fit quite as snug/narrow as most Nike running shoes, but it does have a high arch.)
The step-in feel is opulently plush, making it one of the best and coziest and most comfortable shoes on the market.
The ride is generally soft and very secure, but it seems ever-so-slightly firmer than the previous version. Although, this is without veering too far to the right of the comfort vs. performance scale.
Combined with the rocker geometry of the midsole profile, it results in a less bouncy ride than the first version. Instead, it produces more of a stable, responsive rolling sensation that tends to return more energy in every stride. It’s almost a boost of assistance in every stride.
WHO IT’S BEST FOR
Runners who appreciate cushioning and need stability in their everyday training shoes will love this shoe.
The Nike React Infinity Run Flyknit 2 can handle long runs, recovery runs and moderately paced tempo runs with aplomb. It provides a stable, consistent ride no matter what type of stride pattern or gait idiosyncrasies a runners might have.
Nike specifically designed this shoe as a modern stability shoe to reduce the injury rate among runners who have significantly pronating gait patterns.
A study with North Star Sports Medicine Research in British Columbia revealed 52 percent less disruption in training due to pain or discomfort compared to the Nike Air Zoom Structure 22 stability shoe.
Unlike traditional stability shoes that rely on a firm wedge of foam under the medial side of the midsole, the React Infinity Run Flyknit 2 provides stability in a variety of ways. This is possible due to:
- The wider footprint for more ground contact,
- Reinforced guiderails around the base of the heel
- The semi-firm and absorbent React foam.
The entire system of features is designed to help over-pronators maintain a neutral foot orientation while not encumbering neutral runners.
The addition of the Flyknit closure technology really improves the fit of this shoe. This allows for a more adaptable and secure fit across the middle of the foot and through the heel.
Combined with the padded, stretchy gusseted tongue and high arch, the upper really provides an all-encompassing wrap-like fit. (Runners with flatter feet might find the arch to be a bit too stout.)
The updated version of the React Infinity has less material between the insole and midsole, which means you’re closer to the foam. This helps create a more intuitive and responsive experience. The foam itself has a higher height, providing a plush feel. However, you can also feel the ground better for a more proprioceptive experience.
There’s a more much distinct rocker profile in this edition, helping smooth the transition from heel strike to toe-off. It starts with a flared heel for mitigating downward impact force, then it’s slightly concave under the middle of the foot and finishes with a rounded toe spring off the front.
The only drawback of the React Infinity 2 is that it’s a bit heavier than many everyday trainers. However, it is still well-balanced from heel to toe.
It can be a workhorse for most of your running needs, but it’s a bit too hefty for shorter, faster workouts and up-tempo long runs. This is true especially compared to the well-cushioned, featherweight super shoes that many runners have in their quivers.