Nike vs. Adidas Athletic Shoes

Views 1 Like Comments Comment
Like if this Guide is helpful
Nike vs. Adidas Athletic Shoes

The market for athletic shoes worldwide is a large one. The popularity of sports on a global scale means that people want to obtain superior-quality athletic shoes. In some cases, these shoes are a status symbol or an important element of individual fashion. In the world of athletic shoes, there are two companies that stand above the rest. In terms of popularity as well as sales, Nike and Adidas are arguably the two most well-known shoe companies in the world.

There are some distinct differences between shoes made by these companies, and while fans of both brands have firm opinions, many are unsure when it comes to choosing athletic shoes from either brand. A comparison of the two in a variety of categories is called for. By understanding both brands and being aware of the available deals for women, as well as men, a consumer can make the choice with confidence. Although Nike and Adidas shoes are available at traditional brick-and-mortar stores, one can find a great selection online via eBay.

Comparison of Company Histories and Focus

Adidas is the older of the two companies, founded in 1924. Nike started later, in 1964, and is headquartered in Beaverton, Oregon, in the United States. Adidas, on the other hand, is headquartered in Herzogenaurach, Germany. Over the years, Nike has tended to focus on the American market and made shoes, clothing, and other equipment for a wide range of sports. Adidas became more of a global force with a particular emphasis on the wants of customers in Europe.


For decades, Adidas' primary focus has been on football shoes, a market that Nike did not shift focus on until later. Nike has a stronger reputation within the United States, particularly in regard to basketball shoes. Adidas, dominates the football market and has a stronger presence and reputation worldwide, although Nike has been able to win over many fans. Nike is particularly involved in sports sponsorships, meaning that the company's logo appears on many uniforms throughout the sports world, especially in college and professional sports in the U.S.

Comparison of Features in Nike and Adidas Athletic Shoes

While both Nike and Adidas make a number of products, their primary focus is on athletic shoes. Each company makes shoes for different sports, such as football, basketball, tennis, running, and golf. While there are distinct features needed for different sports, each company uses certain technologies in order to enhance comfort, support, and looks.


Comfort is important in athletic shoes, which are worn under intense physical conditions for hours at a time. For this reason, each company has done its best to create different comfort technologies for its shoes.


Adidas uses adiPRENE, a soft, pillowy material that is similar to the look and feel of neoprene. This material is mainly used in the heels of Adidas shoes. For the toes of its shoes, Adidas uses adiPRENE+, which is similar, but provides toes with more momentum. Additionally, the company uses BOOST, which is a substance that absorbs shocks and decreases wear on the athlete's lower body.


For softness in the shoes, Nike uses a number of technologies. Like Adidas, Nike uses air cushions in unique and distinctive ways.

Nike Cushioning Material



Nike Ground

Basic polyurethane bladder

Casual shoes

Zoom Air

Thin bladder of compressed air; keeps feet close to the ground; provides bounce when compressed

Expensive athletic shoes; preferred by basketball players; can be double- or triple-stacked

Max Air

Air forced into a preformed shape; keeps wearer higher off the ground

Slight decrease in speed; used by larger athletes who need greater stability

Nike Shox

Polyurethane foam columns; keeps feet parallel to the ground

Usually placed in the heel; occasionally found throughout the shoe

Nike uses a number of other materials, but these are less common and are usually found in custom shoes or in shoes that are not meant for athletics. Some shoes make use of a combination of these technologies.


As is the case with ensuring comfort, both Nike and Adidas make use of proprietary technology to increase support and stability in their athletic shoes. In the case of stability, the options are more limited. Nike uses Independent Podular Suspension, or IPS, a technology that incorporates small pods placed throughout the shoe to increase stability. Nike also uses the Monkey Paw, a structure built into the shoe to support the ankle and help the wearer avoid ankle sprains.

As for Adidas, the company uses a technology called TORSION, which is a piece of material placed in the middle of a shoe. This material allows rotation between the heel and the front of the foot for more natural functionality. It has the added benefit of increasing support in the midfoot. TRAXION is a support design found outside the shoe. It consists of cleats outside the shoe to grip in all directions so that there are no harmful pressure points on the foot. This technology is primarily used in golf shoes, football shoes, and shoes meant to be worn on grass.


The design differences between Nike and Adidas are quite significant. It is difficult to classify them since what appeals to one person may not to another. It suffices to acknowledge that Nike shoes tend to feature newer designs more frequently, while Adidas shoe styles tend to remain more constant, with fewer changes over time. Nike is also more involved with celebrity endorsements, while Adidas prefers to sponsor professional athletes and teams. Obviously, Nike does this as well, but Adidas has earned a reputation, especially amongst football fans, for quality and professionalism. In practical terms, it may be easier for buyers of athletic shoes to find more choices in designs from Nike than from Adidas.

How to Buy Nike or Adidas Athletic Shoes on eBay

Many savvy buyers know that eBay is a great source for athletic shoes. Not only is there a wide selection available, but it is also possible to find affordable shoes of high quality. Both Nike and Adidas shoes can be found on eBay, thanks to a network of sellers located in a number of places. 

Once you have determined the right fit, it is easy to search for shoes using the search bar located on every eBay web page. Typing in a search term, including brand style and size, can provide a quick means of finding specific shoes. Simply entering a term such as 'Nike athletic shoes' or 'Women's Adidas athletic shoes' leads you to a wider selection.

When buying used shoes, be sure to read the listing description carefully to identify any potential problems. It is also worthwhile to take the time to verify the seller's background before you make a purchase. Working with a seller who has maintained a great reputation on eBay goes a long way in ensuring your satisfaction with the transaction.


Quality athletic shoes prevent accidents and injuries caused by physically demanding activities. For this reason, many athletes gravitate towards Nike and Adidas shoes, both of which enjoy great reputations. However, it is difficult to actually choose between the two, as shoes from both brands have their share of advantages.

Both Nike and Adidas make use of unique technologies that help cushion feet and make shoe performance greater. Some people look to Adidas, which has a long-standing reputation, particularly in the world of football. Others look to Nike, which offers more interesting designs and a history with more diverse sports. Once the consumer identifies the preferred brand of shoes, buying them online is easy and convenient, thanks to the large product inventory on eBay.

Have something to share, create your own Guide... Write a Guide
Explore more Guides