The partnership with Nike began over 25 years ago when Michael Johnson Performance’s (MJP) founder, Michael Johnson, became a Nike athlete. In 1996, Nike and Michael embarked on the first of two revolutionary Gold Shoe Projects, focused on high performance innovation and the idea of providing only the absolute necessary equipment for Michael to perform at his highest potential. With these iconic, custom-designed Nike gold shoes, Michael was able to reach new heights. He captured the 200m and 400m Olympic titles in the 1996 Games and repeated his 400m success four years later in Sydney, becoming known as the “Fastest Man in the World”.
Nike has been a partner with Michael Johnson Performance from the day MJP opened its doors in 2007. Because Nike saw an opportunity in MJP to learn more about athletes and produce better products, they established an extension of its famed Nike Sport Research Lab (NSRL) inside the Michael Johnson Performance center in McKinney, Texas. Staffed by two full-time Nike sports researchers, the NSRL at MJP is Nike’s major extension of its original lab at the world headquarters in Beaverton, Oregon.
Gained from a scientific understanding of athletes and athletic performance, the lab’s research encompasses fundamental questions to unlock product innovation. In addition, with the researchers’ focus on biomechanics, physiology, sensory/perception and data science, they are able to test theories and conduct studies in the pursuit of:
PERCEPTION & FEEL
Our partnership not only gives Nike the access to MJP’s unique athlete population for product insight and innovation, but gives MJP access to Nike’s learnings and data collected over the last 30 years. With their decades of data and research, we are able to develop the best training systems from the latest sciences and technologies to help every athlete reach greatness.
— Matthew Nurse, Senior Director of the Nike Explore Team Sport Research Lab