Nike’s ‘Flyease Story’ (Inspired By A Teen With Cerebral Palsy) Goes Viral

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‘Flyease  Story’, a Nike film that coincides with the release of a new basketball sneaker, is a powerful piece of storytelling that links an individual’s letter, a designer’s creative response to the challenge and an NBA superstar.


Shot in simple, yet powerful documentary style, the ad has three different stars – a teen with cerebral palsy called Matthew Wallter, a Nike designer called Tobie Hatfield and Nike athlete ambassador LeBron James.


It tells the tale of Walter’s open letter and social campaign challenging Nike and features Hatfield discussing how the company responded by designing shoes specifically for people with limited mobility and ends with a star-struck meeting between client and endorser.


An American teenager with cerebral palsy, Walter is heading for college and says ‘My dream is to go to the college of my choice without having to worry about someone coming to tie my shoes everyday.’


The five minute film then highlights the creation of the Flyease trainer and ends with Matthew being presented with the very first pair and then meeting his sporting hero LeBron James.


A simple spot showcasing a genuine consumer need, a true brand challenge a innovative and life-improving design solution – this is not a schmaltz spot but a true emotional story.



With little supporting promotion, ‘Flyease Story’ was shared 27,000 in its first release week and rapidly generated more than one million YouTube views.




It eschews the glitz and the style and feels like a fresh (and real) direction for Nike’s online video branding.


This feels like a genuinely profound piece of personal storytelling.


It is yet another demonstration of the diversity of Nike’s creative output.


For a brand so well known for its cohesive mainstream marketing approach and its consistent application of its swoosh logo and ‘Just do it’ tagline, Nike certainly creates vast variety of bold work from fresh perspectives.




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