SSG Sports Executive Profiles
As science, technology, engineering, arts and math dramatically impact existing and new businesses within sports and entertainment, “STEAM Sports Executive Profiles” intend to share stories about many of those who are literally changing the face of those industries. The backgrounds for these individuals are what many would call non-traditional entries into sports and entertainment, but that’s the point.
STEAM truly is changing the world of Sports & Entertainment.
Matthew Nurse Vice President, Nike Sport Research Lab
There are some at Nike who believe that Matthew Nurse is literally the magic maker in Beaverton, OR. In his 16th year with the company, Nurse oversees a group of 50-plus brilliant researchers and inventors who continually push boundaries and remake the Nike aura. Most of his team holds masters’ and PhD. degrees. Nurse himself holds a bachelor degree in kinesiology and a PhD in bio-mechanics. To say, “he’s good”, would be a vast understatement.
The Nike Sport Research Lab is a vital part of Nike’s Advanced Innovation Team. With its focus on physiology, biomechanics, data science and sensory perception, the team is constantly cranking out innovative products and services for professional and amateur athletes based on the insight and knowledge gained from its exhaustive research.
Recent examples include:
- the historic quest to break the 2 hour marathon (Breaking 2: https://news.nike.com/news/breaking2-results)
- the Nike Zoom VaporFly Elite which is redefining running shoe performance and rewriting PR’s across the globe (https://news.nike.com/news/nike-zoom-fly-4-percent)
- the Nike Zoom Pegasus Turbo (https://news.nike.com/news/nike-zoom-pegasus-turbo)
- Nike’s first Flyknit Apparel Innovation: The Nike FE/NOM Flyknit bra (https://news.nike.com/news/nike-flyknit-sports-bra) to name just a few.
Rest assured there are many more exciting innovations in the pipeline as Nurse & Company is just beginning to see the full application of its collective innovation capabilities.
“The mission of our team is to leverage science to make athletes of all abilities measurably better,” says Nurse. “We are constantly seeking new ways to create and leverage emerging technologies to get athletes moving and allow them to reach their full potential. Through a host of testing methods, we help create footwear and apparel solutions to solve the unmet demands of athletes across different sports like running, basketball, global football, and essential athlete needs like thermal regulation, speed, endurance & recovery and support.
“We are huge advocates of STEAM because we believe that it has never been more important to have both a healthy body and a healthy mind. Science, technology, engineering, art (design) and math are literally changing the way we look at things every day. There has been a significant shift in the core capabilities of the talent we look for in innovation, and STEAM backgrounds are a critical part of our workforce. To be successful, you have to be a blend of both left and right brain – we are all very creative in our approach to both the art and science of innovation. “