It happens like clockwork: Yoga class ends, and a curious yogi walks toward me, points at my feet, and asks, “What are those?”
The items in question are the Nike Studio Wrap, a product that Nike calls a “women’s training shoe,” but that’s more accurately described as a “not-a-sock, not-a-shoe, slipper thing that everybody will ask you about.”
I don’t mind the nonstop questions and inquisitive stares. After all, the wraps have been an absolute game-changer for me, so why not spread the love?
I first discovered the wraps back in 2014, when they first came out. I’d been practicing yoga for a few months, and while I was enjoying the classes, I was really struggling with certain poses.
Take, for example, warrior I. I couldn’t figure out how to fully square my hips toward the front of the mat. I wrote it off as my body just not being able to stretch that way, but as it turned out, I wasn’t pushing through the outer edge of my back foot enough. And that was happening because my sweaty feet simply weren’t gripping the mat.
Now, some people are magical yogi unicorns who don’t sweat during a typical vinyasa flow. They can sun salute from dawn to dusk and never have to worry about their mat turning into a Slip ‘N Slide. I, however, am not one of those people, so I needed to call in some backup.
Why not just wear socks? Well, I tried that. It wasn’t much of an improvement. Regular socks didn’t offer the extra grip I needed. Sticky socks (like the ones used for barre class or children’s jungle gyms) were a slightly better option, but something about wearing socks during my practice didn’t feel quite right.
After watching a video about the wraps’ origin story and product development, I was sold. They were exactly what I’d been looking for, and I was eager to put them to the test.
That was three years ago. I haven’t looked back since. I no longer struggle to root myself to the floor during a pose, and my feet no longer slip all over the place. The wraps provide much-needed traction and functionality while still looking cute and stylish. They fit comfortably yet snug, so I never have to adjust them during class. It’s like having a second layer of skin that grips the mat with ease, making each pose fluid and each transition seamless.
Perhaps what I love most about the wraps is that they’re part of what I call my “yogi tool kit,” which gets me in the right headspace for my practice. You have to “be in the present,” as they say, but of course, between daily stresses and to-do lists, that’s easier said than done. Having my designated tools—my mat, blanket, and wraps—ready to go helps clear my head, whether it’s for a 10-minute session at home or a 75-minute flow at a studio.
So now, when someone inevitably asks about what’s on my feet, I just respond with my well-practiced spiel: They’re the Nike Studio Wrap 4. Here’s why they’re cool (see above), how much they cost (at $55, not exactly cheap, but definitely worth it), and where to get them (at nike.com).