We spent 9.1 hours reading reviews from experts and users. In summary, this is what runners think:

7 reasons to buy

  • The breathable upper unit offers multidirectional pliable support, which is durable and secure.
  • Natural movement is afforded by the stretchable upper.
  • The collar is flexible, and it’s high enough to support the ankle.
  • The testers appreciated the inclusion of a dual-density mid-sole, which delivered plush cushioning and balance.
  • The many different color schemes make this shoe visually appealing.
  • The tri-star cut of the outsole unit expands and contracts in accordance with the movements of the foot, making the platform very flexible.
  • Solid rubber in the outsole protects the shoe from wear while also delivering traction.

1 reasons not to buy

  • Some testers noted that padding was needed for the collar, especially since it had a mid-cut design.

Bottom line

The Nike Free Train Instinct is a shoe that’s great for many athletic activities. Made from high quality components, it’s sure to deliver protection, cushioning and flexible support to those who need it. It’s a solid choice for those who keep an active lifestyle.


Terrain: Road
Arch support: Neutral
Weight: Men: 10.3oz
Heel to toe drop: Men: 10mm
Pronation: Neutral Pronation
Arch type: High arch
Use: Jogging
Features: High-top
Strike Pattern: Heel strike
Distance: Daily running | Long distance | Marathon
Brand: Nike
Width: Men: Normal | Women: Normal
Price: $130
Colorways: Black, Brown, Grey, Red
Small True to size Large
See more facts


A top rated Road running shoe
A top rated Nike running shoe
A popular pick
It has never been more popular than this March

Expert Reviews

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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77 / 100 based on 9 expert reviews

  • 84 / 100 | Nathen Mixon | Level 1 expert

    One of the most stylish and weightless shoes.

  • 82 / 100 | Jeffrey Smallwood | Level 1 expert

    This shoe is great for anybody that has a wide foot base pattern.

  • 80 / 100 | Complex | | Level 2 expert

    Meanwhile, the "Hustle Harts" are cushioned by a Free 3.0 midsole, with the Free Trainer Instinct using a new Free tooling setup.

  • 81 / 100 | Skoofe | Level 1 expert

    Pretty dope and comfortable.

  • 80 / 100 | Max's Best Bootcamp | | Level 1 expert

    A thumb's up. Worth the price.

  • 75 / 100 | WearTesters | | Level 1 expert

    As for the shoe itself, the upper features what Nike calls a warp knit, which appears in multiple directions for support in a wide arrange of movements.

Become an expert

  • Flexible support and comfortable cushioning; these are just some of the great features that are in store for the athlete when they are wearing the Nike Free Train Instinct. This shoe is one that’s made to accommodate the natural movement of the foot. There are no restrictions because it’s capable of giving way to efficient steps and the natural gait. Made from high-quality components, it’s going to stay efficient even after many uses.
  • The upper unit of this comfortable running shoe makes use of a flexible yet breathable fabric that’s also stretchable. It welcomes the natural dimensions of the wearer’s foot, making it feel snug and secure without any uncomfortable tightness. Air is encouraged to enter the fabric in order to keep the interior cool and dry at all times.
  • The midsole unit uses dual-density foam to provide responsible cushioning and durable support to the wearer. The top part of the foam serves as the main underfoot platform. It’s springy and it doesn’t feel stiff. The lower part is more durable and stable, enabling the mid-sole to actually handle the weight of the wearer and the effort of performing & exerting during the athletic activities.
  • Flexibility is afforded to the sole unit via the tri-star structure of the outsole. These are triangular-shaped cuts, which are meant to allow the foot to move as naturally as possible. Durable rubber is placed in critical sections of the forefoot and heel to make sure that the shoe is safe from wear and tear.

The Nike Free Train Instinct has a regular shoe length. It comes in sizes that adhere to the usual measurements for men. The heel, mid-foot and forefoot sections of this shoe has medium widths, so it is able to accommodate those with medium sized feet.

The outsole unit of this shoe makes use of an anti-abrasion rubber in order to keep the mid-sole free from wear and tear. Placed in certain areas of the forefoot and heel, it effectively shields the shoe from abrasion while also delivering traction.

The tri-star structure of the outsole allows the wearer to move more naturally through the stride. These triangular cuts in the outsole’s surface expand and contract with the foot’s movements, efficiently allowing natural flexibility to take place.

The Nike Free Train Instinct uses a mid-sole foam that has two densities. It’s a full-length unit that ensures responsive cushioning, durable protection, and balance over the roads & flat surfaces. It’s flexible, so it won’t limit the natural capability of the wearer to flex and bend their feet.

The warp knit upper unit is a breathable material that stretches in multiple directions when the foot is inside it. It essentially provides a snug and secure fit that’s not too tight. It allows the foot to move as naturally as possible.

The mid-cut collar of the Nike Free Train Instinct is flexible and stable. It covers the ankles and gives stability to the upper section of the foot. But it is pliable, so it won’t impede the wearer from performing freely and more naturally.


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.