DiscontinuedUpdate: Nike Free RN 2018
Neutral / cushion / high arch
Shoes for runners who do not need any additional arch support (Around 50% of runners). Best for people with normal, high or medium high arches. See the best neutral shoes.
Stability / overpronation / normal arch
Shoes for runners who need mild to moderate arch support (Around 45% of runners). Best for runners with a low arch. See the best stability shoes.
Motion control / severe overpronation / flat feet
Shoes for runners who needs a lot of arch support. Best for runners with flat feet. See the best motion control shoes.
Good to know
Cushioned shoes for your daily easy running. Great comfort. See best shoes for daily running.
Lightweight shoes good for races, interval training, tempo runs and fartlek. Here are the best competition running shoes.
Good to know
If you want just one pair of shoes, buy a shoe for daily running.
WeightMen: 8.3ozWomen: 6.8oz
Heel to toe dropMen: 8mmWomen: 8mm
The height difference from the heel to the forefoot, also known as heel drop, toe spring, heel to toe spring or simply drop.
There are many opinions about what a good heel drop is. We do not recommend any in particular. Lean more in this video.
Heel heightMen: 21mmWomen: 21mm
Forefoot heightMen: 13mmWomen: 13mm
WidthMen: normalWomen: normal
Release dateJun 2014
Experts are runners, who post reviews at youtube, directly at RunRepeat or at their own websites. Each expert is categorized from level 1 to level 5 based on expertise. See stats on expert reviews and how we calculate scores here.
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83 / 100 based on 19 expert reviews
The updated Free 5.0 does not feature a gusset, and the tongue is free to go where it pleases, within the confines of a lacing loop. Leaving aside a few functional advantages over last year (we’ll cover that, as usual), it is constructed traditionally.
The sole of the 5.0 has the characteristic siping grooves that are featured on all Nike Free shoes. The sipes make for an extremely flexible sole that bends and rolls with ease.
Outsole rubber is extremely limited, located only at the lateral heel and medial big toe. There's minimal capacity for venturing off-road, so you'll lose some grip and responsiveness going from pavement to dirt.
Flywire loops lead to undesirable degree of midfoot lockdown, underfoot heating, and potential irritation from inner seam.
Updates to Nike Free 5.0
- Protection, comfort, security and natural movement. That is what the Nike Free 5.0 has to offer. This running shoe delivers lightweight cushioning and underfoot support that’s great for those who are just starting to get acclimated to running shoes. It’s easy to pick up and use, and it makes sure that the stride is as freeing as possible.
- The mid-sole unit of the Nike Free 5.0 has a low-profile design to permit more natural movement of the foot. A more natural foot strike is encouraged because of a rounded heel that evenly supports and cushions the landing. Deep flex grooves make sure that the platform truly bends in accordance with the foot.
- The outsole uses a waffle pattern to absorb the impact shock when landing the foot on the ground. Durable rubber is placed in critical areas where wear and abrasion are most likely to occur. Protection from impact and abrasion is quite a great feature for the external unit of this running shoe.
- The upper unit uses a highly breathable material that covers the foot in a secure yet comfortable way. It allows air to enter the shoe to keep the foot dry and cool at all times, even when standing idly. Dynamic Flywire cables have been integrated in this shoe, making the fit more exact and tailored to the needs of the runner.
Nike Free 5.0 size and fit
The Nike Free 5.0 is true to its size. The available sizes for this running shoe adhere to the standard measurements for men and women. The width is medium, so it accommodates the runner who has a medium sized foot. Its semi-curved shape follows the natural curvature of the human foot.
The outsole unit uses a rubber material to protect the sole unit from abrasion and wear. A Waffle Pattern assists in absorbing impact shock and making sure that each step is as comfortable as the last. This outsole pattern is also used in other Nike running shoes.
Hexagonal flex grooves are deeply cut into the sole unit. They offer six points of flexibility, letting the foot feel free when moving in every direction that it wants.
A low-profile mid-sole unit maintains the lightweight nature of the Nike Free 5.0. The Phylon, which is also used in the Nike Downshifter 7, is made from EVA Foam Pellets that were placed into a mold. It’s responsive and very comfortable, so the wearer’s foot stays safe and secure when standing on this platform unit.
A rounded heel encourages a more natural striking of the foot. It keeps the heel in place while also providing some cushioning to the sides. The combined mid-sole and outsole designs enable shock absorption to be highlighted to the wearer.
The upper unit uses the engineered mesh to provide a breathable and comfortable coverage that’s also durable and appealing to look at. It doesn’t have a heavy weight, so the runner won’t feel as if their foot is dragged down by the material.
No-sew overlays are placed into the upper to provide structural integrity to the unit. The Flywire cables are connected directly to the lacing system. It offers an adaptive fit that’s well-structured, causing the foot to feel snug yet secure when wearing the Nike Free 5.0.
The sandwich mesh tongue is soft and easy on the skin. It allows air to circulate, thus keeping the skin dry and free from odor-causing sweat.
A removable molded insole gives contoured underfoot support. The arches and metatarsals are cradled, thus letting the runner feel constantly buoyed.