3M: A reflective material made by the company 3m.
ACG: All Conditions Gear - A sideline brand by Nike focusing on outdoor clothing and sportswear; often incorporates Gore-Tex, and other waterproof or weatherproof materials.
Air: Nike's 'air' cushioning system, provides impact protection for the foot. Not always visible from the exterior of the shoe.
AF: Air Force.
Air Max: Nike Air technology, using maximum air volume for superior cushioning. Always denoted by a visible air 'bubble' cushion. See Air.
AM: See Air Max.
Beater: A (usually older, or cheap) shoe that is worn in situations where the wearer does not want to spoil a better pair.
Boost: Adidas' revolutionary energy-return midsole technology (looks like polystyrene!).
BHM: Shoes or clothing produced by Nike to commemorate Black History Month.
BRS: Blue Ribbon Sports, the original name of the 'Nike' company.
Colourway (or colorway!): A combination of colours used on a shoe (or garment).
Considered: A range of Nike products designed and manufactured to be especially environmentally friendly.
CW: See colourway.
Deadstock: A totally brand new shoe, usually applied to older shoes which are rare to find in new condition. One of the most commonly used, and overused, terms used amongst sneakerheads Often confused by people as simply being a rare/out of production shoe.
DS: See deadstock.
Elephant: Classic, usually embossed 'elephant' print pattern, usually featured on Nike Air Jordan shoes, but also present on other clothing and shoes across the Nike range.
Flyknit: Nike's patented technology, uses single strands woven into different textures and densities to create a strong but incredibly light material.
Flywire: 'Wires' providing support at various places on the shoe, allowing for either less material, or lighter materials to be used.
Free: A segmented sole, allowing the foot to flex naturally to imitate 'barefoot' running.
GS: Grade School - Smaller sized shoes produced specifically for kids, may (or may not) have slight design differences to their full-sized counterparts.
General Release: A shoe that is widely available and is available at most retailers, not limited, and easy to obtain.
GR: See General Release.
Grail: 'Holy Grail', an individual person's most sought after pair of sneakers. May, or may not be rare or special.
GTX: Gore-Tex (A totally waterproof, and breathable material).
Heat: Used to refer to rare, and usually to some degree famous, pairs of shoes.
HOA: 'History of Air' pack - A 'pack' of shoes released in 2005, containing retros of the original colourway of each shoe.
HTM: A set of shoes designed by Hiroshi Fujiwara, Tinker Hatfield, and Mark Parker. HTM is the first letter of each designers name.
Hyper Strike: A shoe that is released in extremely limited quantities, similar to Tier Zero releases. The release receives no promotion, a 'surprise' release.
HYP: See Hyperfuse.
Hyperfuse: Heat-bonded construction technique, allowing for lighter weight, and improved breathability.
ID: Nike 'Individual Design' - shoes (or clothing) that can be designed individually, online, with custom colour and material options.
Infrared: An individual colour used by Nike. Often used as a term to refer to the original Air Max 90 colourway, but also features on many other Nike shoes, and in many other colour combinations.
'J's: Abbreviation for the Nike Air Jordan line of shoes.
LE: Limited Edition.
Lunar: Nike's lightweight 'Lunar' sole technology.
NDS: See Near Deadstock.
Near Deadstock: A shoe that has been worn, but not heavily, and is close to deadstock condition. See deadstock.
NL: No Liner.
NSW: Nike's premium sub-brand, incorporates designer-quality materials and construction methods, usually with a price to match!
Pack: A collection of shoes released at the same time, either in the same/similar colourways, or following the same theme. e.g. 'Black Pack' - a collection of all black shoes; 'Crepe Pack' - a collection of shoes featuring a 'crepe' sole.
Plus: Nike+, a system for analysing running performance.
PS: Pre-School, kids sized shoes, usually run from a size 10.5C-3Y (UK children's size 10 to adult's size 2.5). See GS.
Retro: A shoe that is re-released some time after the original release (usually several years), sometimes with some slight design changes.
Quickstrike: A shoe that is released in limited quantities in specialized retail stores.
QS: See Quickstrike.
Safari: Classic 'safari' print, often embossed. Most famously used on Nike Air Max 1s, but also features on other shoes and clothing.
Sample: A shoe that is used for promotional or test purposes, usually released some time before the official release of the shoe.
SB: Nike's skateboarding sub-brand. SB shoes use skate-orientated construction, e.g, more durable materials, and more padding on the uppers.
SC: Sports Classic.
Torch: Nike's 'Torch' material, a lightweight grid-backed mesh.
TN: Nike 'Tuned' - technical air cushioning technology, adding resilient plastic pieces to the Air Max unit, allowing the cushioning to be 'tuned'. See Air Max.
TZ: Tier Zero (Tier 0), a very limited Nike release only available at a small amount of selected retailers.
Vans 'Vault': Vans' premium range, often incorporating leather and other luxury materials.
Very Near Deadstock: A shoe that has been very lightly worn and has barely perceptible signs of wear, 'like new'.
VNDS: See Very Near Deadstock.
VNTG,VTG: Abbreviation for 'vintage', also used for shoes with Nike's 'vintage' effects (artificial sole yellowing and/or dirt or wear to parts of the shoe).
'X' (collaboration): Used to signify a colloboration between two companies on a product, e.g. Nike X Stussy.
Zoom: An alternative to 'Air' cushioning, allows for low-profile midsoles.
'+': Usually added after a shoe model name - See Plus.