Verdict from 6 experts and 100+ user reviews

9 reasons to buy

  • The Nike Air Max 2016 was suitably lightweight for many testers.
  • The variety of colors that are available for this model made it aesthetically appealing, noted some runners.
  • Many took note that this running shoe was ‘comfortable’.
  • Several users wrote that the upper unit’s fabrics were smooth and non-irritating to the skin.
  • It had an adequate width and length, according to a number of reviewers; their feet acclimated well to it.
  • The 2016 model was more superior compared to its predecessor when it came to its features and service, some runners commented.
  • The underfoot cushioning gained praise for its springy and responsive performance.
  • A reviewer wrote that the shoe was a bit heavy, but not cumbersome.
  • Some testers stated that with the responsive mid-sole, the heel-to-toe transitions became smooth and effortless.

2 reasons not to buy

  • The Nike Air Max 2016 looked awkwardly bulky for several testers, and they wrote that the bulky look didn’t make it visually endearing.
  • Some runners reported that the Air Max unit of this shoe burst, rendering the mid-sole unit virtually unusable.

Bottom line

The Nike Air Max 2016 was trusted by many runners with neutral gaits and under-pronated foot motion. For them, the mid-sole supported their feet and gave adequate cushioning. They were able to run comfortably using this product. The upper also received great reviews because of the smoothness of the coverage. But it wasn’t very endearing to a number of testers. They stated that it wasn’t a great investment because the Air Max platform burst on them, as if it was made from cheap materials.

Tip: see the best running shoes.

Good to know

  • Nike introduces only a few changes in the 2016 model of the Air Max. Avid fans of this line will notice the slight change in the location and setup of the Flywire technology. The Flywire cables are arranged neatly and more streamlined. They are bunched together in 6 groups instead of the 5 that were previously used. The groupings are evenly spaced going towards the halfway point between the midfoot and the forefoot for a more customizable and comfortable fit.
  • The prominent forefoot overlay is removed in this version for more room and breathability in the forefoot.

The Waffle Pattern Outsole remains to be the outsole configuration in this line as it helps with traction and even distribution of weight with each stride. Nike uses the tough BRS 1000 carbon rubber in the outsole for exceptional durability. There are also gender-specific flex grooves for better flexibility.

The iconic Air Max Unit is still located in the heel and forefoot for superb shock-absorbing and cushioning features. Spanning the entire length of the shoe is the lightweight and durable Cushlon foam. It has decent responsiveness and adds to the plush feel of the shoe.

An engineered mesh provides breathable coverage and a more adjustable fit that works very well with the Dynamic Flywire cables. Nike adds another group in the Flywire construction to enable runners their most comfortable and personalized fit. These cables are directly attached to the sole and the laces, which is why they hold the foot extremely well. Nike’s use of the Notched Inner Sleeve makes sockless wearing a great option for runners.


How Nike Air Max 2016 ranks compared to all other shoes
Bottom 45% road running shoes
All road running shoes
Bottom 42% Nike running shoes
All Nike running shoes
Bottom 47% neutral running shoes
All neutral running shoes


The current trend of Nike Air Max 2016.
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Jens Jakob Andersen
Jens Jakob Andersen

Jens Jakob is a fan of short distances with a 5K PR at 15:58 minutes. Based on 35 million race results, he's among the fastest 0.2% runners. Jens Jakob previously owned a running store, when he was also a competitive runner. His work is regularly featured in The New York Times, Washington Post, BBC and the likes as well as peer-reviewed journals. Finally, he has been a guest on +30 podcasts on running.