Nike Free Run+ Men’s Running Shoe Review
Not quite ready to run barefoot? Nike has a solution for all those who desire to join the minimalist running revolution but aren’t quite ready to toss out shoes altogether. The Free Series by Nike combines the concepts of improving foot strength and emphasizing toe and mid-foot contact over heel contact. Unlike other minimalistic shoe designs, the Nike Free Series look just like regular sneakers and the magic is in their structure and design.
Nike released their first “Free Series” shoe in 2005. Since then, the new models released each year have been refined and improved versions of the original. The first model closely resembled a real bare feet feel and more recent models have added arch support to prevent injury and strain. The shoe’s overall goal is to support and strengthen your entire foot (Yes, even shoes set goals now days.) Asymmetrical laces relieve pressure on the top of your foot and grooved soles to encourage you to incorporate your toes in each stride, encouraging you to put less pressure on your heel. Notice the laces? Look a little closer. See the text? The “lace up and save lives” campaign is geared towards helping to fight AIDS in Africa.
Back to the shoes. Every runner knows that heel stomping is a no-no, but that doesn’t make it any easier to avoid – after all your brain is a long way from your feet. Another one of Nike’s aims with the Free Series was to build a shoe that actively encourages runners to use their metatarsals, toes and arch, while minimizing heel stomping when running. The shoes achieve this by simply decreasing the amount of rubber in the heel of the shoes. Genius.
The Nike Free Run+ is a particularly lightweight and flexible. Your feet will immediately feel at home in the cozy, yet firm and comfortable fit. Nike has also made a point of increasing mid-foot support in particular to decrease the soreness many barefoot runners experience.
Come on, set your feet free with these shoes! The shoes of the day: Nike – Free Run+ (Neutral Grey/Black-Sport Red-White) – Footwear
Pros: Light. Weight-less. Nike. Always a plus.
Cons: Everyone’s got ’em.
Buy them if: You want the feeling of running barefoot, but your feet still need some convincing.
Forget about them if: You’ve had enough, and just want to go barefoot.
Oh, and Dallin, thanks for allowing us to take a picture of your foot.