In terms of hours logged on his or her feet during each day, a hospital worker’s shift can often feel more like running a marathon.
Recognizing the endurance required for a long day of work in the hospital, Nike just unveiled a cushioned shoe which can endure hospital conditions and is easy to slip on and off, called the Air Zoom Pulse. According to a Nike press release, the new design – which will be released on Nike.com in December – is a “shoe for everyday heroes.”
“One can think of the Air Zoom Pulse as almost a traditional clog made athletic — all the arch and posture support of that industry favorite is augmented in the Pulse, with a smooth capacity for natural motion,” the brand said in a release.
The Air Zoom Pulse was developed based on product tests at OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Hospital located in Nike’s hometown of Portland, Oregon, where designers learned first-hand about a day in the life of a hospital worker. According to the release, “Nurses, for example, walk approximately four to five miles and sit for less than an hour during the course of a 12-hour shift.”
The laceless sneakers feature a coated toe box to protect against spills, as well as a sole that “removes closed cells” to prevent spill absorption as well. The Air Zoom Pulse shoes are available in both black and neon blue, as well as six other versions designed by hospital patients as part of the Doernbecher Freestyle Program.
Now in its 16th year, the Freestyle Program is a charitable initiative which benefits “innovative health care advances at OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Hospital,” according to Nike. Patients ages 8-15 are nominated by health care professionals to help design activewear alongside Nike to raise money for the hospital. With this shoe collection, 100 percent of proceeds earned from the six patient-designed styles will be donated to OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Hospital.
The team was confronted with the challenge of creating a shoe that was comfortable for doctors and nurses who walk several miles every day, but versatile enough to withstand hurried movements in an emergency situation.
“The answer comes through the Pulse’s full-rubber outsole, a flexible drop-in midsole with Zoom Air heel unit and a heel fit so secure, it feels like a soft, snug hug,” the brand said.