Complex Magazine interviewed photographer/pro skater Todd Jordan to see how he felt about Flyknit, and how he would feel it was used in skateboarding. Here is a snippet:
Well, they feel great on my feet. Skateboarding is a much different kind of way of using your feet and it requires a lot more support especially for ankles, they felt great but I was certainly limiting myself to what I was trying to do because I'm aware of what can happen when you are not wearing the right support. I must say that they held up surprisingly well being that its just a fabric exterior and I'm actually blown away that there's not a hole where I ollie.
As with a lot of minor elements of consumer goods, something very small is hyped up to be "the world" of the product. If a company's marketing team can spin Flyknit the right way, which no doubt Nike will not have a problem with, a small paragraph can become a mysterious marvel. Vague language can be used to shift minds to believe that a shoe's technology is beyond human comprehension. That is to say, Nike employs a team of mad scientists that labor away at how to improve every millimeter of a shoe's understanding for the betterment of a skateboarder's foot, or aliens dropped this stuff off and then peaced out. What exactly is Flyknit? Is skateboarding going to improve overnight when this "new" tech drops into skateboarding shoes? Will shoes with Flyknit be better than a Nike Skateboarding shoe with only "Lunarlon technology?"
What does that even mean? Precisely engineered yarns? I mean, yeah, thanks Nike, because for a moment I was thinking you didn't care about all these imprecise yarns, of which there must be so many. Well, you kind of don't if you can get away with it? Think about it, "precisely engineered yarns." Ask questions, don't be sheeple, like SPoT's author Wit-E Beats appropriately brings to consumer's attention, "Nike has realized just how many folks are willing to spend $250+ on a pair of kicks without blinking."
After the yarns are "precisely engineered" (how? with what?), they are "used to create a lightweight, form fitting and virtually seamless upper, designed to deliver great performance while reducing material waste." Okay…so thank god they put these "precisely engineered yarns" to good use for the creation of lightweight shoes. As if lightweight even needs to be part of the technology description. I guess before Flyknit, the Nike shoes on your feet are heavyweight. Until there is a count of thread, yarn, or material "x" that clearly shows the amount of "material waste" that has been eliminated is revealed to us, then this advertisement remains beyond superfluous.
The Flyknit Collective description is just as silly. So…the workshop serves to invigorate us, to inspire us through "innovative engagements," hosted at practical and physical structures and change communities in "transformative ways?" Seriously, it's a workshop, leave it alone. You show up, get the rundown on some cool stuff and report it. The workshop better be practical, that goes without saying. Hosted in "physical structures?" WHAT?!! Compared to an impractical workshop hosted in a non-physical, other dimensional, non-earth based structure? Flyknit doesn't impact communities in "transformative ways." Hurricanes, military invasions, bombs over Baghdad, Communism, democracy, conversations, the wheel, fire…these are all things that transform communities. Not Flyknit.
I have said it before and I'll say it again, what Nike has done is make a shoe that is sans Zoom, Lunarlon, Flyknit technology not worth having. That is to say, what Nike is selling you is not a skateboard shoe but rather a Zoom, a Lunarlon, or a Flyknit. Or all three together. God forbid a Koston, P-Rod, or Janoski signature shoe that doesn't have these three "technologies" incorporated into the shoe. There was a time when someone skated a Janoski or P-Rod shoe because it was just that, a skateboard signature shoe a person picked up because the company and the pro's name on the shoe meant something to skateboarding (thankfully, there still is. It's called vans, etnies, adidas, etc).
The professional skateboarder's name might be a main and healthy attachment for a person to buy a shoe, and that's rad, it's a relational practice. Nike, through the advent of their technologies has effectively removed the person from shoes. When you think of skateboarding and the shoes on your feet, you want to think of Geoff Rowley, Jose Rojo, and Lucas Puig perhaps. Not Zoom, Lunarlon, and Flyknit (when did these people ever do anything for skateboarding?). Even Rowley makes a sarcastic comment at 2:10 about the "SPV" nomenclature applied to his vans signature shoe: "which is supposed to be super pro vulc or something like that." His comment is luscious, because through his tone you get it, essentially this is about skateboarding, not acronyms and "precisely engineered yarns."