When talking about Nike’s advanced technology, the Nike Tuned Air technology definitely deserves to be in the conversation. It transcended not only as a runner, but as a solid lifestyle staple as well. And the Nike Air Max Plus, or commonly known as the Tuned 1, is highly responsible for the Tuned Air’s quick rise in popularity.
The perfect way to describe the Nike Tuned 1 is that it’s a cultural phenomenon. Its futuristic attributes paved the way for the other Tuned Air models that followed suit. Introduced in 1998, the Nike Air Max Plus was a masterpiece by Sean Mcdowell, who drew sketches years before landing a job at Nike. With his imaginative vision, Mcdowell thought that the palm trees in Florida beaches would look great on a shoe. He took the sketches and stored them for future use.
Luckily, Sean Mcdowell ended up working at Nike in 1997. Tasked to create a new running trainer featuring a new Air Max advancement, he quickly put his Florida beach sketches to good use.
With the word “sky” in mind, Mcdowell showed various colour combinations that resemble a sunset.
These design cues brought the Nike Air Max Plus to life. Wavy TPU strips on the upper are inspired by the palm trees, while a whale tail midfoot shank completes the summery vibe of the Tuned 1.
Another unique feature is the tiny Swoosh on the sides. Mcdowell had no design reference and had to recreate the Swoosh himself. As a result, the Swoosh became longer and thinner than the usual version.
Mcdowell’s ambitious and brilliant plans for the shoe were in full display when he and the innovation team managed to pull off the fading effect on the mesh upper.
We haven’t even discussed the Tuned Air yet. Nike’s Tuned Air launched in 1998 and aimed to innovate the already coveted Air Max. By using blow-moulded processes, Tuned Air bags featured rubber pillars which increases the overall support. At the same time, it makes the Air units more durable than regular airbags.
Tuned Air made its debut in this Air Max Plus/Tuned 1 model. And the rest is history. It remains a fan-favourite across the globe. When you mention “Tn”, the silhouette easily comes to mind.
With the model’s massive success, it continues to release both new and classic colour schemes. Check out some of the most recent Nike Tuned 1 releases below.