The Pegasus range is Nike’s longest running shoe range. It started out in 1983 as an affordable but adaptive shoe that could be used by all kinds of runners.
Since then, it has gone through 36 iterations! That means 36 cycles of design, development, and customer feedback. You’d think that eventually, Nike would go stale on the Pegasus, but the truth is they keep coming up with ways to make the Pegasus shoes even better.
In the 36, the focus was on the tongue and the upper design. In the 37, the major changes are to the midsole and the Zoom Air pockets.
Like the 36 and others before it, you have a lot of choice when it comes to the color of your shoes. We appreciate that this doesn’t affect the run, but it is always appreciated when you have the option to match your shoes to your aesthetic.
Let’s start with the bottom half of the shoe. This is where we see the biggest difference between the Peg 37s and the Peg 36s.
While the Peg 36 had a full length Zoom Air sole, the 37 focuses that Zoom Air technology on the forefoot area. This decision seems to be in response to complaints that the full length Zoom sole made the 35 and 36 slightly less responsive.
The Zoom Air technology essentially consists of an air pocket containing tensile fibers that run from the top to the bottom of the pocket. When you step on the pocket, the fibers compress and cushion your foot along with the air.
Following compression, the fibers provide explosive power to help lift you through the rest of the step. It’s a great technology that provides a good balance between support and comfort.
In focusing the Zoom Air tech on the forefoot, Nike has been able to increase the size of the air pocket without increasing the price.
The other major difference in the midsole. In the Peg 37, the midsole is made from React foam rather than the standard Cushlon ST foam. The React foam hits a beautiful sweet spot between cushioning and responsiveness, durability, and softness.
With the upper, you’ll notice that the Flywires are gone from the lace system. Instead, a midfoot band is used to provide support around the waist.
That characteristic high heel tab is still present in the Peg 37 as well as the asymmetrical wrap around tongue.
What is different is the mesh material. On the Peg 37s, the mesh is more breathable, but it seems to retain more water if you do run through puddles or creeks.
- Increased Zoom Air pockets.
- Zoom Air technology focused on the forefoot.
- Ergonomically designed tongue and heel tab creates sock-like fit.
- Breathable, durable mesh upper.
- Comfortable, well designed lacing system.
- Great value for money.
- Provides reliable traction on a variety of surfaces.
- Uses enhanced React foam in the midsole for a comfortable ride.
- Difference between Zoom Air pocket PSI for men’s and women’s styles.
- Heel fit seems a bit loose for some.
What We Love
Let’s start with the Zoom Air pocket found in the forefoot section. Now, we’ve long been a fan of the Nike Zoom technology. It creates a responsive base and has excellent energy return capabilities.
We were initially hesitant to see that they had reduced the size of the Zoom sole. In the 36, the Zoom technology covered the entire length of the foot, and we loved it. Naturally, when we discovered that Nike were limiting the tech to the forefoot, we had our reservations.
However, it seems like Nike made the right choice. With the Zoom technology focused on the forefront, you’re getting focused energy returns rather than wasted material.
We also love the fact that they’ve been able to increase the size of the pocket. This combined with the React foam adds about 2 mm to the stack height of the shoe.
What is interesting, is that despite the increased stack height and extra foam you don’t lose any snap back. Normally incredibly soft and cushioned shoes end up giving you less energy return, but this is not the case for the Peg 37s.
Somehow, they’ve managed to keep it soft, light, and responsive. Honestly, we’re in awe.
Interestingly, the air pockets are inflated to different levels depending on whether you buy the women’s or the men’s shoes.
Women’s shoes are inflated to 15PSI while men’s are inflated to 20PSI. Apparently, this is because women seem to prefer a softer ride than men. However, if you’re a man who likes a softer sole, you could buy the women’s version.
The change that we were relieved to see was to the lace system.
The 36s had Flywires that were supposed to gather the top of the shoe for a closer fit. What actually happened is that when combined with the thin laces, the Flywires caused pressure points along the top of the foot.
In the Peg 37s, Nike dispensed with the Flywires. Instead, we get these thick, leatherette loops that hold the laces higher off the foot. This helps to reduce a lot of the pressure from those thinner laces.
We would have liked to have seen slightly thicker laces, but I suppose you can’t have everything.
In terms of the upper design, it is awesome to see the same asymmetrical tongue and long heel tab. They work wonderfully together to give you a beautifully snug, sock-like fit.
The extended heel tab cups the Achilles and provides comfort and support. It also helps to dissipate any pressure around the heel that could potentially cause blisters. Honestly, you can run these into double digits straight out of the box and your heel will come away unscathed.
The fit of the shoe seems to overcome some of the historic sizing issues faced by Nike shoes. Most users find that they have plenty of room without becoming sloppy. You won’t find your foot slipping around in these shoes.
The midfoot band provides incredible stability to a region that is difficult to support. You also get enough room in the toe box for your foot to splay on impact without crushing your toes.
Looking at the outsole, we see a lot of rubber. The lateral side has two rows of long treads. These provide stability over tricky terrain and also offer great protection against wear and tear.
The lateral edge of the sole typically ends up getting wrecked first, so it’s awesome to see Nike taking some initiative and providing protection.
On the medial side, you get thick rectangular treads. Again, they provide lots of traction making these shoes good for roads or technical trails. They’re also great for transferring power from heel to toe. You get a lovely, smooth action with these treads.
All the rubber on the bottom does add a little bit to the weight, however you don’t really notice the additional weight thanks to the Zoom Air pocket.
Room for Improvement?
Honestly, it is difficult to find something bad to say about these shoes.
Some people find that the heel fitting isn’t quite right. There are reports that they get some slippage around the heel. It's strange because this wasn’t an issue with the 36s. It seems that one of the changes, perhaps the removal of the Flywires, has made the shoe just a little bit too loose.
On the upside, even though the shoe feels loose at the heel, it doesn’t cause blisters. The pressure is spread evenly so that no one spot gets rubbed.
On the downside, the loose heel does make you feel insecure, particularly over rougher terrain and in sharp turns. If you’re using these for team sports like basketball or soccer training, you’re going to notice that space in the sharper movements.
The other thing that comes up is the weight of the shoes. The Nike Zoom Air Pegasus 37s weigh 10.5oz which is 0.5oz heavier than the Pegasus 36s and about 0.7oz heavier than your average running shoe.
We wouldn’t say that their weight is particularly noticeable, especially if you’ve just upgraded from another set of Pegs. However, if you’re coming from an ultra-lightweight brand, the additional bulk will take some getting used to.
The Nike Zoom Air Pegasus 37 is an incredible shoe. Honestly, we weren’t sure how they were going to improve on the Pegasus 36s, but they did.
The focused Zoom technology combined with the use of React foam in the midsole makes for a shoe that is incredibly soft on your feet and joints. However, somehow, Nike have also managed to keep these shoes speedy, responsive, and bouncy.
We’re a little disappointed about the heel fit, especially when they got it so right on the 36s. Hopefully this issue is sorted out in the Pegasus 38s.
Overall, the 37th iteration of the classic Pegasus range is a triumph. It remains a great value, all round, running shoe suitable for every kind of runner and athlete.