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SHOE REVIEW: Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 38

The 38th iteration of the Pegasus, one of Nike's oldest shoes, is available now

Photo by: Nike

The saying “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” is commonly used in today’s constantly evolving world, and it’s a good maxim to live by. The phrase might not have been on the minds of Nike’s design team when they created the Air Zoom Pegasus 38, but it might as well have been, because, like the many iterations of the shoe before it, this edition is quite similar to the original model. Sure, the Pegasus has seen a lot of changes since it was first introduced in the 1980s, but at its core, it’s the same shoe that never needed fixing. It’s a reliable, comfortable and lightweight trainer that has won the hearts of runners for close to 40 years, and the 38th version was built to carry on this tradition.  

Shoe category: neutral cushion

Weight: 269 g (men’s size 10) 

Stack height: 27.5 mm 

Drop: 10 mm

MSRP: $160 

Available: now on nike.com

The upper 

The Pegasus 38 actually comes in two models. There’s the traditional shoe and there’s a version known as the Flyease. For the most part, the Flyease is the same as the traditional model, but it differs in the upper, which has a no-tie lacing system. We reviewed the traditional model, however, so anyone interested in that no-tie lacing will have to dig a little deeper. 

Photo: Nick Iwanyshyn

Just like past versions of the Pegasus, the 38 has a comfortable engineered mesh upper. With the Pegasus 37, some runners complained that their heels slipped too much, but Nike has fixed that problem for the 38, and it does a great job of locking your foot in place. The upper is also quite soft, and while the 37 also saw complaints of blisters, the latest Pegasus is unlikely to rub uncomfortably. Finally, the upper is a bit wider at the forefoot, which will be welcome news to any runners with wide feet, as the 37 ran a bit narrow. 

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The midsole 

Like the 37, the Pegasus 38 has Nike React foam from heel to toe, which provides a wonderfully cushioned run while still producing great bounce. That energy return is thanks to a midsole feature that the company calls its Zoom Airbag (which anyone who used the 37 will know well). Interestingly, while the Airbag is included in both men’s and women’s shoes, its pressure differs between the two versions of the shoe. After running many tests, Nike discovered that women preferred a plush ride compared to men, who wanted more stiffness. Because of this, there’s a difference of five pounds per square inch between the men’s and women’s models. 

The outsole 

Like the 38’s midsole, the shoe’s outsole is very similar to that of the 37, and as always, it provides a reliable and stable run, regardless of the terrain. Whether it’s hot and dry or cold, wet and slippery, the Pegasus 38’s waffle outsole grips the ground well, ensuring that you’ll stay on your feet from the moment you leave your house until you get back. 

Photo: Nick Iwanyshyn

Final thoughts

Once again, if you’re a fan of Nike’s Pegasus line of shoes, then you’re going to love the 38. If you’re new to the shoe, then this will be a great introduction to the Pegasus, and you’ll quickly realize why it’s been a staple of the company for so long. With most of its changes found in the upper, Nike has made the shoe more comfortable, which is especially important for longer runs. There’s nothing worse than going out for a 10K or 15K, getting halfway through your route and realizing that your feet are beginning to blister. That’s a problem you won’t encounter with the Pegasus 38, and no matter how far you run, you’ll be happy with your shoe choice. 

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