Thursday, June 16, 2016

Nike Zoom Streak 6 Initial Review

(Note: I now have almost 100 miles on my first pair of Streak 6 and have done a full review which can be found HERE.  These have become my favorite racing shoes.  Read both reviews to find out why..)

I have wanted to like the streak series for a long time.  They have been worn by the fastest runners in the world, yet in my early years of running shied away from due to a high heel drop.  Now having reaching the age of reason, that is not as big a concern (now that I realize footstrike is usually a symptom of hip strength, control and range of motion).  I did try the Streak 5, but found the sole to be far too narrow and the midfoot uncomfortable. I did not want to run in a shoe that felt like my foot was falling off it it, so I passed it up.  Having recently spent some time in and thoroughly enjoyed racing in the Nike Zoom Streak LT 3 (REVIEW) I was very interested in the drastic changes that occurred with the Streak 6.  I was most excited for what looked like a complete new toebox fit and a pebax plate (which I think more racing shoes should have based on my experiences with the Takumi Sen 2 and GOmeb Speed 3).  I finally got a chance to try them out recently and here are my initial thoughts:


Sole/Ride: The Streak 6 is surprisingly light at under 6.5 ounces for my size 10 but well cushioned.  Both the forefoot and heel are soft for a racing flat and somewhat springy.  I can definitely understand why this shoe would be used as a marathon racing shoe and I would not hesitate to use it as such.  Many individuals will find that this is enough shoe if they are looking for a very lightweight shoe to train in (similar to how many train full time in marathon flats) despite the very lightweight.  I feel much more protection than then speed in this very lightweight package, but the pebax plate is still somewhat evident.  The plate is somewhat muted by the more protective and slightly softer feel of the midsole, but at speed I am definitely aware of some kind of extra pop in the shoe.
     The wider forefoot makes this shoe MUCH more stable in the front and it feels very different from previous versions.  Having a stable forefoot definitely helps create a better terminal stance/push-off.  However, the heel and especially midfoot continue to be very narrow.  The midfoot still feels like my foot is hanging off the edge somewhat and that the glued down insole digs into my arch from that collapse.  These are not deal breakers and the midfoot feels a little wider than previous versions.  However this feeling is still there and may take some time to get used to.  The increased width of the forefoot definitely contributes to muting this feeling somewhat, but further running and mileage will tell whether this becomes an issue.
   I am very happy with Nike's continued curved heel in most of their performance shoes (we will not talk about the previous versions of the Lunarglide that jutted so far posteriorly...).  The curved heel makes landing any point very smooth on this shoe.  This helps contribute to the very comfortable ride.  I again understand how this would make a fantastic marathon racer, workout shoe and even training shoe for some.  


Upper/Fit:  The first thing I noticed was how comfortable the new toebox is.  The fit in front is much more square and similar to the Streak LT 3.  There is plenty of room for the toes while the foot is still held very well in the midfoot and heel.  The midfoot and heel are far narrower and along with a strap under the upper around the midfoot does a great job of holding the foot to the shoe.  The upper is very light and breathable yet feels sturdy enough to handle long distances.  The Streak 6 does feel like it fits just a hair short, but not enough to size down (this may also be due to the fact that I am trying these at the end of the day after my feet have swollen a little and the upper) .  I would wear a thinner pair of socks instead or would consider running in them sockless for non-marathon distances (disclaimer: I have not run enough in these sockless to attest to whether this is a viable option.  They certainly feel comfortable upon initial try on).  Overall a very comfortable and great fitting upper.


Thoughts as a DPT: I am so happy with Nike's decision to change the Streak LT 3 and Streak 6's toeboxes to more square shaped designs.  They feel so much more stable and comfortable during speed and long miles alike.  Since more force is likely to be place on the front of the foot pushing off harder during terminal stance, it is helpful to improve stability there in a natural way.  This may reduce strain on muscles like the peroneus longus, which normally stabilizes the first MTP joint and can get overworked in individuals with forefoot instabilities or shoes with very narrow forefoots.  What I am not so happy about is the continued narrow midfoot on the Streak series.  The narrow midfoot contributes to instability due to a narrower base of support.  While yes this is a performance shoe and I do understand this saves weight, I might suggest adding just a hair more under the midfoot to improve stability and the transition between the heel and forefoot.  The curved lasts are common of racing shoes, but for a marathon racer where you might need a little more help over longer miles, a bit more natural stability can't hurt given that this lightweight racer still managed to lose weight from the previous version.


Conclusion:  I am very happy and excited with the changes to the Nike Zoom Streak 6.  The shoe is lighter while being more stable and better fitting in the forefoot, more protective and a little more responsive due to the pebax plate.  If I was going to run a marathon this would definitely be my shoe of choice.  It reminds me of a better fitting Brooks T7, which I commented that if I was still in my minimal mode I would train full time in.  The Streak 6 is so comfortable, light and protective that foresee many using this as a full time trainer.  Time will tell how the outsole durability is, but I have a good feeling about these.  I highly suggest giving the Nike Zoom Streak 6 a try and these should be released in more stores in July of 2016.

All thoughts are my own.

-Matthew Klein, DPT

Note:  As mentioned at the top, I have now put a significant number of miles on my first pair of the Nike Zoom Streak 6.  The full review an be found HERE.  You can tell the link is important because the letters are all in caps.  Kidding.  Seriously though take a look.

Disclaimer: These shoes were a personal purchase from Running Warehouse.  I did run briefly on the road to test the shoes out but no more than what I would do testing shoes at a local running retail store.  Due to financial reasons I will likely have to return these to Running Warehouse until I am able to start my job as a physical therapist licensed applicant in August of 2016.  If I do win a race that has free shoes as first prize, these will definitely be on the top of my list to purchase.

19 comments:

  1. Thanks for another great review. How do the Streak 6 compare to the Adios Boost 2/3 and which one would you recommend?

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    1. The Streak 6 is much lighter and feels a bit softer upon initial try on. It feels like a 5k-10k flat with more cushioning. Whereas the Adios Boost 2/3 still feel like marathon racers. The fit is also much more foot shaped in the Streak 6 compared to the Adios series. The Adios feels snappier and firmer upon initial try on compared to the streak 6.

      It really depends on what you like as per the recommendation. The upper fit, protection and very lightweight really make me prefer the Streak 6 over the Adios Boost 2/3.

      Hope that helps and thanks for reading!

      -Matt Klein, DPT

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    2. Hello Dr Klein!

      Great insight a lot of things must work to put one foot in front of the other...have you ever looked at the Topo Magnifly? I believe a medium cushioned toe shape trainer with the 5mm drop. Would love to read your review!

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    3. I have not tried Topo shoes for many years since the original Topo RT which I only briefly ran in then retired to a casual shoe due to several aspects of the shoe that disappointed me biomechanically. I am sure Topo has come a long way since then. When funding is available I will consider giving them a shot.

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  2. Thanks for the review! How is the sizing compared to the Streak LT 3?

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    1. Sizing is pretty similar. The Streak 6 runs wider and with a more relaxed fit that the Streak LT 3.

      Hope that helps and thanks for reading!

      -Matt Klein, DPT

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  3. Thanks for your timely review,
    been waiting for these since I've seen Kipchoge wearing them for Berlin.
    I really like how Nike ditched Flywire in favor of the nice, soft stabilizing band from the LT2s. I used my Flyknit Free 4.0 exactly once, and then never gain for a workout. Lace them tightly (as one would for a speed workout), and the Flywire will dig into your skin and leave nasty wounds after a few miles.
    I couldn't find an offset for the Streak 6. Do you happen to know the stack heights? Usually Nike goes for 12mm with their Marathon flats to go easy on runners' calves.

    Cheers

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    1. Hello! I too have been waiting for these!

      The drop is listed at 8mm per RW and that's how it feels (maybe a little lower). That 8mm drop combined with the new outsole/midsole set up makes this shoe feel so much smoother than previous versions.

      Hope that helps and thanks for reading!

      -Matt Klein, DPT

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    2. That is good news, Matt, thank you! While I prefer 0-4mm, I think 8 is definitely the more reasonable choice for 1/2-full. The 12mm from Nike's previous models was too high for my foot strike.

      I couldn't help but notice the prominent rockered sole in the first picture paired with prominent toe spring. I don't think you mentioned it, but does that rocker contribute to toe spring (thus negligible in my book) or did they give the Streak 6 a more pronounced toe spring in the first place (bad IMO)?

      Thanks

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    3. The toe spring does not feel any more excessive than the previous version. I think the rocker comes from a more rounded heel compared to the posteriorly extending heel of the Streak 5. The landing is definitely much smoother.

      Again the rocker seems to contribute to the toe spring rather than coming from an excessive one to begin with.

      Hope that helps!

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    4. That last paragraph helped, thanks! Ordered a pair directly from Nike. Let's see how they compare to my favourite daily trainers, the GORun 4.

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    5. Curious to hear your thoughts as well!

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    6. Got my black/white pair yesterday. Unfortunately they are too small, even though I ordered my regular size 28.5cm which translates to 10.5/44.5 with Nike. Also got a pair of matching black/white LT3s which are even smaller at 10.5. Will return both. However, I doubt that I am going to size up. Both shoes felt VERY narrow, which won't get better by sizing up usually. Since I planned on using both as daily trainers, the LT3s for <6 miles), and the Streaks for long runs (>6miles), a narrow toe box is a no-go for me. It calls for foot related biomechanical problems when used on a regular basis with wide feet.
      I guess my feet have adapted to my using Mizuno, Skechers, and Vivobarefoot for the last 2 years, and thus feel very uncomfortable in narrow toe boxes. They have expanded a full EU size in length, and to 4.7" in width.
      Nike makes the best looking shoes, hands down, just not for my feet anymore it seems.

      Next on my list is the new Kinvara 7. Any chance for a review from you?

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    7. I will see if I can go try a pair. It will only be an initial review but I will make an attempt.

      The Kinvara 7, Hyperspeed 7, NB 1400v4, Hoka Tracer, Mizuno Wave Cruise 10 and more are all on my list of shoes to try.

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  4. Hello,

    I see in your informative review that you state that some may consider using the shoe v 6 as a full time trainer.

    I have the air streak 5 and only use this shoe for threshold sessions, road reps and racing. I am 45, 68 ( ish ) kg and have been running for 2 decades. After 320 km the black outsole is wearing thin at the heel on my 5.

    Hands up please if you currently use the 5 as a full time trainer ? What is your weight and distances ? I am curious as I thought the 5 and 6 were not exactly marketed as workaday shoes.

    Maybe I should wear mine everyday if I can get away with it. Thanks all...

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    1. I am writing an updated full review (I have ~35 miles on my current pair) and will be adding a section to address this. And you are very correct that the Streak series is marketed as a racing shoe.

      Each person will be able to handle a different shoe for different types of training. I believe the Streak 6 made me remember what I was looking for when I went through my minimalist phase (long since matured since then).

      I currently only use the Streak 6 for workouts and racing, similar to your use. My shoe needs/uses have definitely evolved to the more traditional training in normal trainers and racing/doing workouts in racing flats.

      There are some individuals (surprisingly many masters runners from those I have encountered) who seem to enjoy training and racing in racing shoes like the Streak/Adios series. I should have been more clear who I was addressing.

      This again has spawned a new section on my reviews about who this shoe would perform well for. I'm going to try to integrate all the different physical therapy, foot and lower extremity biomechanics I have learned to make an educated guess/suggestion on this topic.

      Thanks for bringing that up and hope you enjoyed the review. I found the Streak 6 to be a massive upgrade to the Streak 5.

      -Matthew Klein, DPT

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  5. I only run 40-45miles/week which hardly makes me a criterion for overstress issues, however, I say if your form is good, and your structures (connective tissue, bone) are fine you can train in any shoe.
    I rotate Mizuno Universe, Ekiden, Nike LT2, NB Minimus V00, Vivobarefoots, Merrell Trail Gloves, Saucony Fastwitch 7, and GORun 4s for daily training. My daily runs vary from 8-16k. I'm 1.92m, weigh 75kg and my bodyfat is 5-6% (measured twice a year). I'm no feather-weight Asian or African marathoner, but I wouldn't consider myself a mere recreational runner with measurements like these either.
    So much for "marketed" shoes. Companies want you to buy shoes, and except for a few they don't care what their shoes are good for. The whole neutral, stability, natural, trainer, racer, whatever are made up categories to get runners buy more shoes.

    That said, I'd refrain from using the Streak day in-day out. Not because it's not "meant" to be a daily shoe but to spare your body from repetitive strain from one shoe.

    I'm sure, though, that Matt Klein may help you better, as his professional background lends more weight to his opinion.

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  6. Hi !

    I currently use Hyperspeed 6s for fast workouts and races and they are slowly dying. Unfortunately, the seventh version will never be available in Europe (France), so I was considering the Streak 6 to replace them. But I can't try them on before buying and have never run in Nikes before. So I'd like to have a fit comparison if you can help.
    I wear a size 9.5US (27.5cm) for my Hyperspeeds, and a size 9US (27cm) for my NB Zantes v1 and Boracays v2. The Nike size charts are complicated, it seems, nothing coincides. What size would suit me ? Should I choose according to the real size of my feet (26.5cm) ?
    Thanks you very much indeed.
    Cheers
    Jay

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    1. Hey Jay.

      Unfortunately it's difficult to give you a straight answer. I would probably go 9.5 as I went true to size as well (and also find most New Balance fit a half size small). I found the Streak 6 to fit tight at first and then loosens up after a few miles. A thin pair of socks should solve that problem.

      And don't worry. In my personal opinion you are not missing much with the Hyperspeed 7 (I was disappointed).

      So I would suggest true to size. Many individuals have suggested going up half a size but sounds like you are on the border so I would stay with 9.5 and use thin socks.

      Hope that helps and good luck.

      -Dr. Matt Klein, DPT, PTLA

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