Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 36 Review

After a radical change for the Pegasus 35, the 36 just gets a minor upper refresh with no changes to the midsole or outsole. The soft, low feel of the 35 is back with a slightly better upper fit.

Pegasus 35 vs 36

  • Overall, there’s not much difference between the Pegasus vs 35
  • The upper has seen a refresh, with a more exposed flywire system and less bulky tongue
  • The 36 still has a really great under-foot feel – somehow fast & responsive yet soft & forgiving at the same time
  • While the new flyknit upper is very sock-like and forgiving, the fit is still on the snug side and might have even gotten a little tighter in the toebox
  • Length appears to be near (in running terms) true-to-size – maybe a little short, but not enough to be able to go up a half or even full size to get around the small toebox
  • Overall width throughout the shoe is on the narrow side, but the flyknit upper does have enough flexibility to accommodate a decent range of foot widths

Pegasus 36 Review

Fit

The flyknit upper remains tight. While the tongue has lost some of its bulk, the shallow and narrow toebox and flyknit material greet your toes immediately when you put the shoes on. The length of the 36 is pretty true-to-size in terms of running shoes, so Nike just is providing a pretty snug fit overall. Runners and walkers needing room in the toebox, especially depth, will need to look elsewhere. The flyknit upper is forgiving, and the updated flyknit upper now provides a really wide range of flexibility in terms of width. The Pegasus 36 continues to provide a prominent arch and heel cup, with the overall fit of the shoe feeling really contoured to your foot.

Feel

The new Pegasus 36 uses the same Zoom Air and EVA foam as previous models in the Pegasus line, and the full-length Zoom Air unit makes the shoe feel light and fast. Comfortable for easy runs as well as for faster tempos or workouts, the Pegasus has a pretty wide range of applications. It’s not going to feel as performance-oriented as the new Pegasus Turbo 2, but it is fast enough to serve multiple purposes for most runners. Overall, the Pegasus 35 is a softer performance-oriented trainer. Lighter and more playful than the Vomero, it actually feels similar to the Ghost in terms of under-foot feel. The flyknit upper helps the transition and flexibility of the shoe and creates a soft step-in feel. But, that step-in feel is dominated by the constrictive nature of the toebox.

 Function

As THE standard weight neutral shoe, the Nike Pegasus 36 the longest-running classic neutral trainer. From what we’ve seen from the Pegasus 35, the 36 is going to allow your foor to pretty much function as it pleases, so while great for neutral runners, it’s not going to provide any guidance to prevent pronation.

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Comparisons:

Nike Pegasus vs Brooks Ghost:

In their current versions (Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 36 vs Brooks Ghost 12), the Pegasus now feels lighter and lower. The Ghost is a little plusher and has a much more consistent/level platform underneath your foot. The Pegasus is a lot more contoured throughout the shoe, creating some high and low points along the sides that some runners might like and others might not like. The upper of each shoe also provides a different experience. While the Ghost provides a pretty standard upper fit and feel, the Pegasus continues to be very cradling. The Pegasus has a much narrower and shallow toebox, and is a little on the short side. The drop is 10mm on the Pegasus 35 vs 12mm on the Ghost, and with the slightly beefed-up Ghost, you can actually tell the difference. In terms of weight, the Pegasus is slightly lighter than the Ghost and combined with the smooth transition and flexible upper actually feels a little lighter on foot. Early analysis is showing that the slight changes that Brooks has made to the Ghost might give it a little bit of inherent stability, whereas the Pegasus function as a pure neutral shoe.

Nike Pegasus vs Vomero:

With the newest updates of each shoe, the Pegasus remains consistent with Nike’s attempt to make it more of a faster feeling shoe. The Pegasus is lighter and less substantial, with less of a “plush” feel, but not by much. The Vomero’s recent move to more of a slim, performance-feeling shoe has left little room between the two. To Nike’s credit, the Vomero really feels like a slightly beefed-up version of the Pegasus. The two feel remarkably similar, with there just being a little more to the Vomero. Neither shoe provides any noticeable guidance for runners who pronate. The overall widths of the shoes are pretty similar, with the Vomero having much more depth and width in the toebox.

Nike Pegasus vs Pegasus Turbo:

Despite sharing the same name, the experience in the Pegasus and Pegasus Turbo are remarkably different. The ZoomX foam makes an enormous difference in the overall feel. Compared to the ZoomX Turbo, the Pegasus 36 feels stiffer, heavier, and kinda lumpy. The Turbo does feel a little higher than the 36, but the energy return of the ZoomX foam still allows for a fast-feeling ride.  The difference in weight on the scale is pretty amazing (~2 oz in a men’s 11,) and you actually do feel that difference while running. Neither are designed to provide any amount of guidance and the differences in inherent stability are negligible between the two.

Nike Air Zoom Pegasus vs Nike Structure

Both made by Nike but with completely different runners in mind. The Pegasus is designed as their standard-weight neutral shoe while the Structure is Nike’s moderate stability shoe. From a function standpoint, not many runners would be comparing the two as neutral runners would probably be thrown out by the guidance in the Structure and runners needing some guidance to prevent pronation would be ill-served by the lack of stability of the Pegasus.

Pegasus 36 Review

 

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