Air cushion is the soul of Nike. No matter how the technology changes, Air is always represent NIKE’s creative spirit. But Air is not changeless. To keep up with the times, it appears Max Air, Zoom Air and other patterns. From the new NIKE LeBron 16, we can see very strong Ultra Max.
Ultra Max is a combination of Max Air and Zoom Air. Tracing back to the beginning of the year 2010, Nike launched Zoom Air (Cage Zoom), with the purpose of enlarging the volume of Zoom Air when ensuring stability. Hereafter, the first time Nike used Max Air in whole sole on Lebron 7. And then it used visible Zoom in whole sole on Leborn 10. Nike and LeBorn series are keeping on trying to improve the volume of air cushion.
Nike LeBron 7 – Max Air
Nike LeBron 10 – Visible Zoom
The 2017 Nike Air Vapor Max showed the fire-new shape based on Max Air. Although this technology still haven’t been used on the basketball shoes. But Vapor Max provided the essential breakthrough for the emergence of Ultra Max, such as the workmanship of new air cushion and the designing proposal of how to ensure the flexibility of such big air cushion.
Ultra Max has the structural features of Zoom Air and Max Air. Its inner fiber pull wire and structure of air cushion are exactly the same as Zoom Air. So it has the flexibility and response speed of Zoom Air. Meanwhile, it is also Max Air. It has super volume of air cushion, not only the entirety, but also the volume of each air cushion is huge. It’s to ensure the flexibility. It’s undoubted the design thought of Vapor Max.
Nike Air VaporMax – VaporMax
Nike LeBron 16 – UltraMax
On Nike LeBorn, We can see the innovation process from Max Air（LBJ 7）to Visible Zoom（LBJ 10), and from the initial hexagon small air cushion Hex Zoom (LBJ 12) to present big air cushion (LBJ15 & 16). Moreover, LeBorn series learned the lesson from KD series in the process of innovation. LeBorn use simple holder for the air cushion, instead of continuing to use the pipes to connect each air cushion. That chose the right way for the great experience of present Ultra Max.
Nike LeBron 12 – Hex Zoom
Nike LeBron 15 – UltraMax
「Choice of King」
NIKE KD 11 changed its technological configuration before NIKE LeBorn. It didn’t use the similar visible air cushion of whole feet, but choosing React.
NIKE interior should have put Ultra Max on a high position. They are supposed to keep on developing and improving it on Nike LeBorn for the future three years. In other words, this is the exclusive technologic choice of King James. Other product lines of basketball are disable to undertake such high price, and only can launch simple configuration styles.
In general, Ultra Max has excellent kick-back speed and top performance of cushion. The visual impact of the huge volume of air cushion is irreplaceable. Even so, the Ultra Max won’t stop innovating, maybe just improving some details. Nike and LeBorn James never stop on the way of innovation.