The Nike Flyknit Lunar 2 is an incredibly comfortable, lightweight road running shoe that doesn’t compromise on cushioning.
The Nike Flyknit Lunar 2 running shoe is the much anticipated update to the Nike Flyknit Lunar 1+. Released by Nike earlier this month, this is one of the most exciting new shoes on the market. I’ve been looking for a road running shoe for a while, so when RuinYourKnees said they were looking for someone to review this shoe, I jumped at the chance.
After logging approximately 75 miles in the Nike Flyknit Lunar 2, I’m still impressed every time I pull them on. The shoes are lightweight, comfortable, and eye-catching. If I had one beef with the shoe, it’s the fact that the curved heel can be a bit uncomfortable, as I explain in more depth below. Overall though, the shoes deliver across the board. The Lunar 2 is listed at $150 and comes in men’s and women’s models.
We took a couple videos and plenty of pictures of the shoes. The first video is my first impression and some footage of me giving the shoes a good test around the area (the second is my impression after 50+ miles, at the bottom of the article):
Nike Flyknit Lunar 2 Initial Review
I’ve been running both recreationally and competitively since I was in junior high, and have been through quite a few pairs of running shoes over the years – running in everything from bulky, over-padded trail running shoes to ultra-light racing flats. Most of my running lately has been on trails in the minimalist-but-not-quite-barefoot New Balance MT110. For various reasons (not the least of which is the shorter winter days), I’ve recently been forced to run mostly paved trails during the week, which has led to my feet taking a bit of a beating.
Enter the Nike Flyknit Lunar 2. With the lightweight Flyknit upper combined with Lunarlon cushioning, this shoe is ideal for runners who want a lightweight shoe but still want enough cushioning to be able to log miles on pavement without killing their feet.
Nike bills the Flyknit Lunar 2 as Impossibly Light. Incredibly Strong. According to Nike:
The micro-engineered Nike Flyknit upper provides support, stretch and ventilation where needed most. Nike Flyknit construction also eliminates the need for the multiple materials and material cuts used in the uppers of traditional sport footwear manufacturing, providing a virtually seamless upper and helping reduce waste. To further boost support, Flywire cables are integrated into the upper to cradle the foot and provide a supportive lockdown.
Another notable feature is the outsole, which has a tread pattern like no other shoe that I’ve seen . Nike used pressure map data to create a tread pattern that reflects a runner’s natural stride. I’m a mid-foot striker, but I also tried running heel-to-toe and these shoes seem to work well either way.
- Stack Height: Forefoot (18 mm), Heel (28 mm)
- Heel To Toe Drop: 10 mm
- Weight: 9 oz (men’s size 10)
- Features Flywire and Flyknit technology
- Lunarlon Cushioning
- Fitsole sockliner for comfort and underfoot protection
- Pull-tab on the heel for easy on and off
- Reflective elements for visibility in low light
- Pressure mapped outsole
Whereas the Nike Flyknit Lunar 1+ upper was fairly monochromatic, the updated version features some bold color combinations. More muted options are available, such as black or gray, but I opted for the visually striking Volt/Vivid Blue combination. I don’t normally like shoes that are this loud, but for some reason the bold color pattern really appeals to me. Maybe it’s because wearing short shorts and bright shoes just makes people look faster! I wore the shoes to work several times and got lots of comments, most along the lines of “Wow! Those are some bright shoes!” If you get the Volt/Vivid Blue option, get ready to be noticed. If the standard color offerings don’t suit your style, NikeiD offers a convenient (albeit pricier) way to dial in your look.
I am absolutely in love with the Flyknit upper! It’s a very satisfying feeling to have the shoe stretch and conform to my feet as I pull them on. Some people have recommended sizing up, but I thought the sizing was spot on. I can see my big toes pushing on the fabric but it’s not noticeable by feel. Not only does the stretchy upper create a sock-like fit, it’s also woven in one piece (the upper is made from one piece of thread!) so there are zero hot spots.
One of the biggest complaints people had about the Nike Flyknit Lunar 1+ appears to have carried over to this version as well. The curved heel tends to rub on the Achilles and has caused issues with quite a few runners. I’ve noticed it some, but it hasn’t led to blisters yet. I didn’t notice it initially, but I’ve started to notice some more rubbing lately, especially if I wear them all day.
The other major complaint about the Lunar 1+ was the fact that the tongue had a tendency to slide to the outside. Nike addressed that by stitching the tongue directly to the upper, but it can still slide a small amount. I haven’t been able to feel it but I have noticed that they tend to move after a while. Regardless, it’s nice to see that Nike did listen to some customer feedback before making the update. If it weren’t for the issue with the curved heel, I might give it a perfect score in this department.
I’ve put these shoes to the test on a variety of surfaces and so far they’ve been up to the task. I love how lightweight and responsive they feel on the track, and the Lunarlon cushioning is great when you’re grinding away the miles on pavement. I used these shoes on some trails as well and I can’t say I recommend it for that. They do fine on packed dirt, but the relatively (compared to what I’m used to) high platform feels somewhat unstable on uneven terrain and they can’t handle a lot of lateral movement. If you’re going to be running on trails with a lot of rocks and roots I would recommend a dedicated trail running shoe. I won’t dock any points for this though, since this is designed to be a road shoe and they handle well on just about every other surface.
It’s still too early to tell how these shoes will hold up in the long run but they definitely appear to be well made. My only concern is that the Lunarlon cushioning is so light it might start breaking down earlier than typical running shoes. I haven’t heard any complaints about the Lunar 1+ cushioning, so my worries might be misplaced. I’ll be sure to post an update if I run into any long term quality issues but I don’t see that being an issue at this point.
Nike Flyknit Lunar 2 Price/Bottom Line
At $150, Flyknit Lunar 2 shoes aren’t cheap! If you are a bargain hunter, hold off until these start going on sale. If you don’t mind spending a little extra money to get a top of the line shoe, you won’t find many that are better than this. Nike has put all of their latest technology into this shoe and the result is impressive. The Flyknit lunar2 is available in Men’s and Women’s models.
Disclosure: Ruin Yours Knees sent me a free pair of Flyknit Lunar 2’s in exchange for my independent review of the shoe.