- Nike Forward is a game-changing innovation platform revolutionizing apparel creation.
- The process to create, requires fewer steps than traditional Nike knits or wovens which significantly reduces the carbon footprint of the first generation Forward material — an average of 75% reduction compared to traditional knit fleece used by Nike.
- It highlights NIKE, Inc.’s culture of innovation and commitment to take action in create a better world.
- It debuts in the form of one of the most beloved sport-inspired silhouettes, the iconic grey hoodie.
Athletes around the world have shared that climate change is a barrier to sport. Nike Forward, the company’s most significant apparel innovation since Dri-Fit, responds to that concern by re-setting the way we think about fleece. Moving away from traditional knit and woven processes, it revolutionizes apparel creation by hacking punch-needle machines for the purpose of making premium, sustainability-minded product.
“Nike Forward feels different because it is different. It is not a traditional knit or woven, but a completely new material that drastically reduces its carbon footprint,” says Carmen Zolman, VP Innovation Apparel Design, NIKE, Inc.
Over five years of research went into the development of Nike Forward. The innovation, shifting from knit or woven, simplifies the process of material fabrication by reducing steps. Rather than follow a multistage (spin yarn, knit, cut, sew and more) creation cycle, it turns fiber directly to textile through needle-punch. Fewer steps means less energy consumption, contributing to an average of 75% reduction in the carbon footprint for this first generation material compared to traditional knit fleece. it’s material also has a lighter density than traditional knit fleece, which is crucial to reaching 75% carbon reduction, and the finished product is comprised of 70% recycled content by weight.
It debuts in a beloved silhouette, the grey hoodie. In keeping with its sustainable ethos, the hoodie forgoes embellishments and dyes, favoring raw cut pockets and zero water usage.
“It’s game-changing platforms, that accelerate a culture of innovation at Nike to help protect the planet and the future of sport,” says Janett Nichol, VP Apparel Innovation, NIKE,Inc.
It is the latest advancement in over 30 years of sustainability-minded innovations, joining the ranks of Nike Air, Flyknit, Flyleather, Space Hippie and Next Nature. The platform is purpose-built and created for future circularity — the first iteration products are made without zippers, aglets or extra trims, making it easier for the garments to be recycled. In total, Nike Forward is an unlock as we work to achieve our impact targets.
“As part of our commitment to serve athletes by offering more sustainable options and meeting our bold, science-based impact targets, we’re introducing a material innovation that can be adapted to different lifestyle and performance purposes,” says Seana Hannah, VP Sustainable Innovation, Nike, Inc.
It can be made with a diverse range of layers, including industrial and post-consumer waste, and can be precisely tuned for athlete needs. It is a testament to audacious imagination and hands-on experimentation with the most advanced proprietary sport science, digital tools and manufacturing techniques. Not only does it solve problems for athletes, it continues Nike’s legacy of setting new aesthetic and performance standards for sport.
“We believe this platform has the potential to reset the way we think about material and apparel. This is the biggest Nike apparel innovation since Dri-Fit 30 years ago and has huge potential to transform the industry in the way that Air and Flyknit did for Nike footwear,” says Aaron Heiser, VP Global Apparel Product Merchandising, NIKE, Inc.