Nike tennis shoes are often synonymous with the sport of tennis itself. The powerhouse brand supplies the footwear for a number of top ATP and WTA professionals, as well as tennis players at all other levels of the game. One of the most widely used shoes the past couple of years has been the Zoom Cage 3. If you watch much tennis, you’ve seen it on the feet of all-time great Rafael Nadal, as well as other notable names, such as Juan Martín del Potro and Borna Ćorić. In 2020, though, you’ll be seeing something far more unique: The Nike Air Zoom Vapor Cage 4 (released December 15th).
Nike Air Zoom Vapor Cage 4 Tennis Shoes
The new Cage 4 picks up the Vapor moniker to denote a concerted effort by Nike to make this model faster and more dynamic than any previous Cage tennis shoe. Billed as the most durable Vapor to date, the Cage 4 offers an excellent blend of durability, stability, and response. While the design may look a little crazy at first, there’s a clear method to the madness.
Outsole material wraps notably high around the toe and medial forefoot to offer better durability for toe draggers. The Cage 4 also rearranges the line’s durable Kurim® material, this time opting for targeted lines/dots as opposed to the Cage 3’s full over-wrap construction.
The Cage 4 comes with a partial-sleeve construction that may take some getting used to, but hugs your foot for a dynamic, supportive feel. Part of what makes the shoe look so unique is the fact that the eyelets on the medial side are covered for better protection.
Nike Cages have always been known for stability and durability. The pronounced foot frame on the lateral side of the shoe is designed to offer better stability than past models during side-to-side movements. It offers a solid base to explode off of when changing directions.
No update to the Cage line would be complete without a Zoom Air unit. The Cage 4 localizes this responsive technology in the forefoot for a springy, dynamic feel, as well as greater overall cushioning. The layout is meant to keep you closer to the ground for greater overall stability and explosiveness.
The generative outsole design saves weight by incorporating additional durable rubber where it’s needed the most, but thinner levels in low-wear areas. This will help you move faster, but maintain the durability expected from a Cage tennis shoe. Hard court models come with a 6-month durability guarantee.
Fit and Sizing
Some characterized the fit of the Cage 3 to be a bit short and narrow (particularly in the forefoot), but Nike seems to have addressed this with the Cage 4. When trying both on, the Cage 3 puts a bit of pressure on my toes, whereas the Cage 4 does not. That said, the update is not overly roomy, as it still hugs my foot, but more comfortably. There is also a little bit more ground contact with the Cage 4. Both have a rounded heel for a smooth striking phase, but the Cage 4’s outsole sticks out further to the rear. Arch height feels roughly the same between the models, being mid to low.
To check out all of the colorways for this high-performance tennis shoe, visit TennisExpress.com. Be sure to keep an eye out for our full review on this shoe in the coming weeks!
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