With so many kicks on the market, finding the best of the best calls for a little bit more than just strolling into the shoe store with some spare change. To help you isolate the best of the bunch, our Sneaker of the Week is a chance for us to highlight some shoes that you need to add to your rotation. Thanks to some help from our partner Finish Line, we’re calling out the best sneakers on shelves today.
While the Sock Dart as we know it originally launched in 2004, the technology that it boasts stretches all the way back to 1984. With a lineage that builds on Nike’s experimentation with computer-knitted tech fabrics (something that would evolve into things like the Flyknit that we know and love today), the Sock Dart is both a retro runner, and a lightweight, contemporary design that stands out in a world with plenty of nostalgic basketball shoes.
Inheriting much of its design philosophy from the earlier Sock Racer model, the Sock Dart is a redefinition of the Sock Racer’s original brief: “a sock with a sole.” With a breathable mesh upper, the shoe feels closer to a pair of socks than a traditional running shoe; especially when you factor in the lace-less closure and midfoot strap for a personalized fit.
But these aren't just some flashy pair of socks. There's plenty of brands trying to spice up the once commonplace cotton sock, but the Sock Dart is much more than that. Worn below jeans or joggers, the forward-thinking design means that your 'fits will be blessed with contemporary comforts and futuristic finishes. Ironically, you can leave your traditional tube socks folded up—this shoe looks best when it's the only thing wrapping around your feet.
But just because the Sock Dart takes cues from your sock drawer doesn’t mean that it’ll wear out like a pair of plain old tube socks. Nike’s BRS 1000 high-carbon rubber fortifies the heel section of the Sock Dart’s rubber outsole, which is cushioned throughout by Phylon foam. In other words, sock-like footwear may sound familiar by now, but you’ve never felt anything like this before. It may have over 10 years in the public sphere, but there’s a reason that this radical design is still so coveted and sought-after. When it comes to the Sock Dart, it’s structure, stability, and support: streamlined. Not bad for a pair of shoes that’s supposed to be a sock.