Nike ISPA (Improvise. Scavenge. Protect. Adapt.) is the latest innovation for the mega brand. It consists of the ultimate swagger and performance, while maintaining being fully recyclable — adding to the brand’s vision to become a closed-loop system where there is no waste— only protection.
‘Improvise’ stands for Nike’s vision of never ceasing to reinvent the brand and the wheel. ‘Scavenge,’ then, is for pulling the best resources and recyclable materials to make the best possible shoe ever. ‘Protect’ represents Nike being an armor against the problems feet go through. And, finally, ‘Adapt’ stands for being able to work towards all solutions. On Nike’s terms, that means staying durable, resourceful, versatile and functional.
This year, the brand will release two new styles, Link and Link Axis, under the ISPA model. Both shoes have mid-cuts where you can separate the top sections from the sole unit. They also have the Flyknit upper that is made from 100% recycled polyester, and TPU cages from 20% recycled materials.
For more than 30 years, Nike has been dedicated to delivering the best products for athletic performance, all the while keeping the environment and planet in mind. As the climate crisis continues to worsen, Nike’s new goal is to become completely circular (having a zero waste supply chain via a closed-loop system) by 2025.
These two new models are inspired by the principle of disassembly, and the ability to take apart an object and recycle it. The challenge, of course, was to create a product that didn’t compromise on performance or fashion, while still using eco-friendly materials that are able to be recycled. For that, the Swoosh had to improve their recycling capabilities.
“We have a responsibility to consider the complete design solution: how we source, make, use, return and ultimately reimagine product. The goal is to make matter matter more,” Nike Chief Design Officer John Hoke shared in a press release.
Typically, shoe designers use glue, cement, and other elements to make their shoes, but these materials actually makes shoe disassembly very difficult. When you recycle shoes, you have to shred them. That uses a lot of energy — canceling out any good recycling elements. But a shoe that could be taken apart can drastically decrease the carbon footprint of the product and completely transform the life cycle.
“Designing in partnership with engineering, digital product creation and development, these shoes are completely informed by method of make — it really is a case of form following function,” the vice president of product design shared in a recent statement. “Our hope is that these ideas and aesthetics become normalized, accelerating our ability to imagine how shoes will continue to evolve in the future.”
Photos via Nike