The Nike Vaporfly made sneaker news headlines as well as sports headlines everywhere when it was banned for simply being “too good”, giving wearers an unfair advantage. However, can they be resold? This is the ultimate guide to reselling the 074252" rel="noreferrer noopener">Nike Vaporfly Next with a walkthrough of the sneaker’s rich history.

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The Nike Zoomx Vaporfly Next is not exactly the most popular sneaker to resell but they are popular in general, especially due to its history.

Nike Zoomx Vaporfly Next: A Brief History

Nike Zoomx Vaporfly Next Product Image
Nike Zoomx Vaporfly Next Product Image Via Nike

The lead researcher on one of the most significant running shoe studies ever published is Dr. Wouter Hoogkamer.

Wouter began both his professional and academic careers as an engineer, much like Kevin Fallon from Speedland. The main lesson to be learned from this is that being smart at arithmetic can make you a running shoe rockstar!

Even before he began working on the Nike project, Wouter was a highly skilled scientist. He discovered his area of expertise in biomechanics and became passionate about energetics throughout his life.

At first, this was just an examination of the energetics of uphill running and had nothing to do with running shoes.

This inspired him to work on a number of cycling-related projects before taking a significant step into the field of neurophysiology in an effort to solve some of the riddles surrounding stroke and Parkinson’s disease.

The Greatest Running Shoe Is Born

Then, Nike knocked on Wouter’s door, and he started working on a project to create a shoe that would enable an athlete to complete the marathon in less than two hours.

Along with Rodger Kram, another eminent scholar, they believed that this accomplishment, if it were even conceivable, would take place at least five to ten years from then. 

The legendary Eliud Kipchoge raced the marathon on October 13, 2019, in 1:59:40, using a Nike prototype shoe called the Alphafly that Wouter Hoogkamer assisted in creating. A good thing to have on your resume!

Yet, Wouter always felt like an “outsider looking in” when it came to Nike, and much of his later comprehension of how the Nike super sneakers function has been attained by reverse engineering, and without Nike’s aid!

The top three finishers in the Rio Olympic men’s marathon used the Nike Zoomx Vaporfly Next shoes, which originally gained popularity in 2016. Since then, Nike has created several iterations.

The Nike Zoomx Vaporfly Next Was Banned From Tokyo Olympics

Eliud Kipchoge of Kenya accomplished the unthinkable in October 2019 by finishing a marathon in sub two hours. He ran at an average pace of 21.18 km/h for his 1:59:40 time.

Nonetheless, others contend that his Nike Alphafly sneakers contributed to the unofficial record in some way. The Alphaflys, or “the shoe that broke running,” as sports scientist Dr. Ross Tucker dubbed them, are equipped with technology that is intended to increase speed and energy return.

Three carbon plates and a state-of-the-art midsole (the cushioning above the tread) were credited with the shoe’s 4 percent improvement in running efficiency and an estimated 3.4 percent gain in speed in peer-reviewed research, despite being sponsored by Nike.

Unfortunately, the Alphaflys were prohibited from entering in top competition under new rules that World Athletics announced in January 2020.

According to these new regulations, a shoe may only have one carbon-fiber plate and a midsole that is no taller than 40mm.

Yet that is not where the narrative ends. The Vaporfly, a modified version from Nike that complies with the new rules, finished on the podium in 31 of the 36 major marathons in 2019. Nike has been praised for its inventiveness, but others claim it is technical doping.

What Is The Technology Behind The Nike Vaporfly?

Nike Zoomx Vaporfly NExt Technology Diagram Via Nike
Nike Zoomx Vaporfly NExt Technology Diagram Via Nike

The legal Vaporflys seem to be typical shoes on the outside. Yet little variations add enough to make a big impact.

The carbon-fiber plate, midsole material, and midsole thickness are at the core of the Vaporfly’s effectiveness. 

The full-length plate stiffens the shoe and serves as a lever to reduce effort at the ankle. Nike-funded, but peer-reviewed, studies indicate that doing this improves running efficiency by 1.5%.

The hardness of the carbon plate alone could seem unpleasant, but the midsole’s thickness—which measures 31mm at the heel—balances this.

Due to the usage of Pebax foam, a polyamide block elastomer, the midsole of this shoe is not as heavy as a standard racing shoe. Air pods are an added suspension system on more modern versions.

It’s challenging to determine the overall benefit that each component provides.

Nevertheless, some runners benefit more from the stability, energy economy, and comfort the shoes provide than others; according to the British Journal Of Sports Medicine, increases in run times vary from 6% to nothing.

What Was The Particular Reason For The Ban On Nike Vaporfly?

The shoe’s appearance was clouded by the unachievable expectations made about it from the time it was introduced in 2017.

Nike had previously launched their Breaking2 initiative, which sought to run a marathon in under two hours but had not yet specified how they planned to do so. The shoe was then shown.

The apparent conclusion was that any sneaker that would shave three minutes off the previous record for the marathon must be fraudulent.

Does it include a carbon fiber plate? Carbon-fiber plates are thus cheating or unfair. In a way, the technology didn’t really matter since the premise was implied by the conclusion.

Any shoe that overnight reduced a top marathoner’s time by three minutes, two minutes, or even one minute must be dishonest. What alternative outcome could there be?

World Athletics was forced to choose between two vociferous extremes: those who said the shoes were unquestionably prohibited on the basis of technical arguments and others who insisted the shoes were unquestionably legal based on technical precedents.

They stopped in the headlight’s glare, and the longer they did not move, the more difficult it was to consider any form of restriction.

The Turning Point 

By 2019, the Vaporfly had become widely used and the market leader, but professionals from many other firms were competing—and sometimes winning—in early prototypes of massively cushioned, carbon-plate-equipped variants.

Almost every major shoe manufacturer has a Vaporfly rival that was expected to launch in 2020. The likelihood of new shoe regulations was growing.

The Birth of The Alphafly

Nike Zoomx Alphafly Next Diagram Via Nike
Nike Zoomx Alphafly Next Diagram Via Nike

However, in October, Kipchoge completed his sub-two demonstration marathon in Vienna while sporting a new prototype, purportedly called the Alphafly.

With a colossally thick bottom and weird pods beneath the forefoot, they no longer resembled any standard running shoe.

Wild speculations based on patent filings concerning three distinct carbon fiber plates and yet another abrupt increase in running economy started to circulate although Nike had still not provided any information about them at the time. 

The détente was over because even if rival shoe manufacturers managed to match the original Zoomx Vaporfly Next, Nike‘s athletes would still be one step (or rather, several minutes) ahead, supposing the Alphafly wasn’t just a significant nose tweak intended to provoke controversy and render the Vaporfly seem reasonable, which is a possibility that seems improbable but is not entirely impossible.

It seemed to mark a turning point. I wasn’t alone in thinking this either; the British Journal of Sports Medicine published an editorial online shortly after the event.

The essay, written by sports scientists Geoff Burns and Nicholas Tam before Kipchoge’s run, asked for a new midsole thickness restriction.

New Rules For All

Most importantly, they contended that regulating specific technological components like the carbon-fiber plate wasn’t the best course of action.

Instead, the thickness restriction would just provide guidelines so that all businesses could develop under the same limitations.

They recommended establishing the restrictions such that future iterations—the Alphafly being the big red flag—would be banned but presently existing shoes would be permitted.

Also, the long-standing practice of letting athletes compete in unfinished prototypes has been outlawed. While the new guidelines seem straightforward in principle, there are several moving pieces that undoubtedly lead to discussion in the following months. 

Was there a better way for World Athletics to handle this? Many of these issues might have been prevented in 2017 if there had been an immediate and comprehensive set of guidelines, as many individuals at the time were pushing for.

In retrospect, they were correct, but in my opinion for the wrong reasons. The new shoes don’t have springs, and they don’t deviate much from any established running shoe design standards.

That’s all for the story of the Nike Zoomx Vaporfly Next, but can your resell them?

Nike Zoomx Vaporfly Next Resale In 2023

The Nike Zoomx Vaporfly comes in a number of colors and shapes, however, in most cases the sneakers are not very profitable.

To make it easier to understand, the Vaporfly Next should be bought for reselling with a lot of caution as usually, these sneakers sell for around retail price or even under.

On the other hand, some Nike Zoomx Vaporfly Next are also very profitable such as the original few.

Let’s check out a few of them.

Nike Zoom Vaporfly EliteBreaking2

  • Retail Price: $600
  • Average Resell: $900
  • Release Date: 09/22/2017
  • Style Code: 880849-600
Nike Zoom Vaporfly Elite Breaking2 Side View
Nike Zoom Vaporfly Elite Breaking2 Side View

The Nike Zoom VaporFly Elite has already made history in the world of sneakers.

Eliud Kipchoge ran the fastest 26.2 miles in human history while wearing the shoe, which was created as part of Nike’s Breaking2 project, as part of Nike’s moonshot ambition to produce a sub-two-hour marathon.

These sneakers feature an upper reminiscent of the “Red October” Air Yeezy with a crimson upper that appears to be knitted and matching laces and throats that seem to feature ventilation holes.

Big Swooshes in black cover the sides while white midsoles and black/white outsoles finish off the design.

On the secondary market, these are one of the most profitable and resell for around $900 in gross profits although that’s not too high as its retail price is $600.

Nike ZoomX Vaporfly Next%Betrue (2019)

  • Retail Price: $250
  • Average Resell: $500
  • Release Date: 10/22/2019
  • Style Code: AO4568-101
Nike Zoomx Vaporfly Next Be True Side View
Nike Zoomx Vaporfly Next Be True Side View

This ZoomX Vaporfly NEXT% incorporates Gilbert Baker’s famous rainbow flag into a gradient of colors across the front midfoot and speckled silver at the rear, continuing with the list of Pride Month releases supporting the LGBTQIA+ community.

Gilbert Baker’s signature, along with the phrases “SEXUALITY, LIFE, HEALING, SUNLIGHT, NATURE,” and more, are printed on the insole in a vibrant rainbow pattern, strengthening this shoe’s links to the “Be True” line. The shoebox is similarly colored in rainbow hues.

The ZoomX foam and VaporWeave uppers of this ZoomX Vaporfly NEXT% running shoe, which has the greatest amount of energy return and is extremely lightweight and breathable, include all of Nike’s most cutting-edge running technology.

A huge Swoosh at the front and a smaller one at the rear, silver eyelet stays, and a continuous carbon fiber plate at the midfoot complete the shoe.

On the secondary market, these are profitable as well and resell for around $500. However, most releases of the Nike Vaporfly Next are not and in most cases, you should skip it unless it is a very limited pair.

Take your reselling game to the next level


Mohammad Yousaf

Mohammad Yousaf

As a business student, Mohammad was thoroughly impressed with where the secondary market was heading for sneakers. He quickly realized that what used to be considered as a side hustle, was now the main income stream for many. He has studied the game ever since.


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