Nike Flyknit Trainer

8.6
8.6 score
[Editors rating (8.6)] = (TheGearHunt) score (8.6)/10


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Editor rating: 8.6 / 10
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Nike Flyknit Trainer Review Facts

Running has so many health benefits beyond a healthier physique. Running also helps build strong bones, it helps strengthen muscles, helps improve the runner’s overall cardiovascular fitness and, helps with depression and anxiety. Running offers a superior workout due to the bodies ability to keep its heart rate higher for longer, offering a higher intensity workout. Running is also extremely accessible meaning it can be done nearly anywhere. It is also very cheap, at the minimum all that is really required is a good quality set of runners. Running is also excellent for individuals on a budget as runners come in a wide range of price points. Running is as easy as lacing up runners and hitting the pavement, hence why the activity is so popular.

This article is a single product review on the Nike Flyknit Trainer. Nike is a company that has been around for over 50 years. They have become somewhat of a staple in households. One would be hard pressed to find a home that does not have at least one Nike item. They make everything from running shorts to running jackets. They have become extremely popular for their quality athletic gear but also their line of more fashionable gear. You see everyone from white collar to models to athletes wearing their attire both in the gym and out and about. Nike has several lines, the one we are looking at in this article is the Flyknit series. The Nike Flyknit trainer is a runner meant for training for a marathon. It is supposed to offer superior support, cushioning and breathability in order to aid a runner with their distance and time. This article is a comprehensive review based on consumer reviews, materials used and construction of the shoe. So, let’s get into it. This is our full review of the Nike Flyknit Trainer. We hope this helps you in the purchase of your next training shoe.

Editor's Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Durable
  • Breathable 
  • Attractive design
Cons
  • Stiff soles
  • Stiff upper
  • May require sizing down

BREATHABILITY

The Flyknit technology invented by Nike has two primary advantages, closer support, and breathability. What the Flyknit system is supposed to do is offer a superior support system (to make the shoe feel more like a sock) while offering a trainer that also breathes. Luckily they did well with it. Though there are some complaints about the stiffness (discussed more below) reviewers did say that the shoe breathes really well. This shoe has the Flyknit system throughout the upper which would make the entire upper of the shoe breathable rather than a comparable product which only offers mesh at the toe and possibly some punctures at the back of the heel. Overall, the breathability of this shoe is very good.

COMFORT

As mentioned above, the Flyknit system is supposed to provide a closer, more secure fit, as if the runner was wearing just a running sock rather than a shoe. The issue with this runner, in particular, is that the Flyknit system is a little tougher than other shoes with the same system. It's not explained why it is so tough on the website but those who wore the shoe said that it made the shoe a little uncomfortable to wear. The shoe also offers Flywire cables that are supposed to keep the shoe supportive with an 'adaptive fit', but this seems to counter what reviews are saying about the shoe. Those who wore the shoe said, as well that though the insole is supportive it is also a bit stiff.

DURABILITY

The Flyknit system is supposed to also be very durable. The shoe also has a full toe bumper (that is a little small because the toe of this shoe is quite narrow) and has a reinforced outsole for both better support and durability. Those who wore this shoe said that the shoe was durable and lasted through quite a few miles and years. Often with shoes you see mesh deteriorating quickly or the uppers disconnecting from the outsole. Luckily with this shoe, the shoe has no mesh (which is weaker than full fabric) and the outsole glue does stick to the upper quite well. Overall, these shoes are durable and tough. Unfortunately, they are almost too tough as there were numerous complaints about how stiff they are. This is discussed more below.

UPPER

The upper of the shoe has the Flyknit technology mentioned numerous times in this article. This allows the shoe to both breathe, hug the foot closer and adds better support. Though the technology does offer the highlights and benefits that are associated with it, the upper is reviewed as being very stiff. This is great from a durability point of view, however, isn't great comfort wise. Those who wore this shoe did say that the foot does feel supported especially with the lacing system integrated with Flywire cables however it made the upper really stiff and uncomfortable. They also said that the upper can't really be broken in either which is a problem when buying this shoe because this would mean the shoe would always feel tight and stiff. Those who wore this shoe also said that the heel of the shoe felt like it was really short because their foot kept slipping out of the shoe due to how low the back of the shoe is. This is definitely an issue when running and could be quite dangerous. Even when tieing laces tighter than they would have, the found their foot still slip out of the shoe. This wasn't a common complaint so this could be a sizing issue but should be noted regardless.

INSOLE

The insole of this product offers a very good support, molding to the foot and cushioning system. The benefits to these qualities are that a good support will support the heel, arch, and ball of the foot better. In doing so the person wearing the shoe would have better control and precision when stepping down in the shoe. This is a pro. Better molding also plays into this, as when shaping the foot more similarly to a sock, there is a more natural feel and control over the foot. Finally, having a better cushioning system not only increase the comfort level of the shoe but also offers better impact reduction. This will ultimately help keep the bones and joints safe as well as enable the runner to go further and for longer. This shoe has these benefits, however, those who wore this shoe had issues with how stiff the insole is. They said that it is almost hard, however, the insole can be broken in which is beneficial. There might be some sore heels and arches, though, in the meantime. This should be taken into consideration.

MIDSOLE

The midsole of this shoe has Nike's Zoom Air technology from the heel of the shoe to forefoot which is supposed to provide a better, more secure and lightweight, level of comfort. The shoe does actually have a very secure and comfortable hold to the foot. Those who wore the shoes did confirm that the shoe fit like a glove. The biggest issue that seems to come up is how stiff the shoes are in general. Another issue with the shoe is that it is quite narrow which would impact those with wider feet the most. Some had to size up which may be where the heel slipping out of the shoe mid run issue. The midsole offers a good arch support, a good hold and helps the runner step down with better and more secure precision. This factored into our overall rating of the shoe.

OUTSOLE

The outsole of this shoe has reinforced pods which are supposed to offer better durability in high wear areas. Those who reviewed this shoe did say that it is very durable and that they didn't find the shoe itself to break down too easily. The outsole also has a rubber waffle outsole for both durability and traction. Again, reviewers said that the shoes held up, that they were really easy to train in (from this perspective) and have good traction. This product is their line of shoes that are attempting to look a little more retro and as a result of it, some of the issues that persisted in the past might be resurfacing as a result of it (like the heel slipping issues for instance). Additionally, the shoe is quite narrow so being narrow those who wore the shoe found some balance issues, the narrow outsole counters with the good traction because the smaller surface area impacts the 'stickiness' and balance.

TREAD

The tread on this shoe, as discussed a bit above, is created with the shoe's rubber waffle design. This design is popular with Nike shoes because it works pretty well. The rubber allows for better grip on the surface being stepped on. The waffle pattern also adds some 'stick' to each step due to the suction created when stepping down. Those who wore this shoe liked the traction of the shoe, saying that they could feel the traction in them in comparison to other shoes they have worn which is positive. The base of the shoe is also quite durable due to the added reinforced pods added to the outsole too which is a plus. Overall, the traction in this shoe was praised but with the slipping issue in the hell, this does decrease the effectiveness of the traction so this is an issue and unfortunately did impact our overall rating of the trainer.

STYLE

The highlight of this shoe is its design. This shoe is quite attractive in design. Nike, it appears, is attempting to bring back the old 'retro' look and they've done a good job in bringing a more modern look to the old design (sort of an oxymoron, isn't it?). This runner is quite stylish, offering a more narrow design with a smaller toe. It is offered is quite a few colors and has the Flyknit pattern on the upper which is both a strong and supportive material but also looks really sleek. One recurring issue that was listed in the reviews by a couple reviewers is that the photos taken for the website are different than the actual coloration of the shoe. They said that when they got the physical shoe, it was much different in person than online. Outside of that issue, it is quite attractive and is easily transitional between nightwear and day wear, as well as sportswear and fashion attire. This makes the shoe more versatile and aids justification for the price tag of the shoe.

PRICE

This runner is a little more expensive relative to the market. It does help eliminate the need for a sports shoe and a fashion shoe, however, because it does have some comfort issues (due to the general stiffness of the shoe), it is hard to justify the cost of this product. The stiffness of the insole can be broken in. Though the runner does get the proper (some might say excellent) support from the upper, the upper is very hard to break in and could be uncomfortable for a very long time. Additionally, between the need to size up because how narrow the shoe is and the heel slippage issue, this shoe may not work for everybody. The shoe does work as a running shoe, the support is there, the impact reduction is there, the style is there but the stiffness may present some real issues to some runners. On the bright side, Nike has an excellent customer service team so returns are easy.

THE BOTTOM LINE

Overall, this isn't a terrible shoe, it just may not be for everyone. It would work for those who are okay with a stiffer shoe and for those who have either average or more narrow feet (probably more on the narrow side than the average side). The shoe is very supportive if sized correctly and offers a snug, sock-like fit too. Plus the shoe is beautiful and easily diversifiable, allowing the runner to wear the shoe as a sports shoe or as a fashion shoe. The shoe is pretty expensive as well so it would need to work in order to really justify the price of the shoe. It is definitely not meant for those on a budget but rather those looking for something a more stylish alternative to a classic running shoe.