Verdict from 100+ user reviews

7 reasons to buy

  • Many purchasers find the Nike Zoom Rival M 9 to be an affordable track shoe. Others also attest it has a quality pricing that is a great value for their money.
  • Several athletes claim that the Zoom Rival M 9 helped improve their running time. Some have also reported that they are more confident in their performance because of the shoe. 
  • Some runners with narrow feet are satisfied with the excellent fit of the shoe and say that it holds their foot properly.
  • The Nike Rival M 9 is a comfortable shoe, according to a number of wearers.
  • The shoe provides an efficient performance, especially at the starting blocks, a few athletes reported.
  • A lot of purchasers were pleased with the stylish appearance of the shoe and its various color options.
  • The Nike Zoom Rival M 9 presents effective features that are ideal for mid-distance running, a reviewer attested.

2 reasons not to buy

  • A few buyers think that the sizing scheme of the Nike Rival M 9 is a bit inaccurate.
  • One athlete noted that the spike pins included with the shoe are too soft.

Bottom line

Many users of the Nike Zoom Rival M 9 showed their appreciation through their positive comments that pertain to the shoe’s outstanding comfort, exceptional performance, and reasonable pricing. A lot of athletes who have tried the shoe report back their satisfaction and their willingness to recommend it to other users. Thus, making the Zoom Rival M 9 a worthy purchase and a reliable track companion.

Tip: see the best tracking shoes.

Good to know

Use - The Zoom Rival M 9 can efficiently handle sprints and middle-distance runs, as well as jumping events such as hurdles, long jump, and high jump. The shoe possesses unique structural elements, particularly in the outsole and upper, that allow it to be versatile and ready for competition.

Spike Type - A set of seven ¼-inch pyramid spikes come with the shoe. The spike pins can be attached to strategic locations in the forefoot area of the outsole, to provide traction on a variety of surfaces, therefore, catering to both indoor and outdoor events. Another track shoe from the Rival series, the Nike Zoom Rival S 9, also makes use of pyramid-type spikes.

Spike Plate - The Pebax spike plate used by the Nike Zoom Rival M 9 provides a flexible unit that allows the runner to move forward more naturally. The spike plate extends up to the arch area of the outsole.

  • The ninth iteration of the Zoom Rival series for mid-distance events presents a couple of updates that may be minor, yet still relevant and noticeable through the shoe’s performance. These include changes in the upper and midsole.
  • Most of the structural elements in the upper have been retained. The new addition to this part of the Zoom Rival M 9 is an arch band that helps give a locked-down fit for the foot.
  • The previous version has a Phylon wedge that acts as its midsole, which was removed in this iteration. 
  • A new detail was also added in the outsole, which is a unit of solid rubber that goes directly under the heel.

Like many other track shoes, the Nike Zoom Rival M 9 is built as a unisex-style shoe. This means the sizing scheme is generalized and the same for both men and women. Thus, women athletes would need to get 1.5 sizes down for accurate fitting. That aside, the dimensions of the Zoom Rival M 9 follow the foot’s anatomical shape, therefore allowing a narrow yet comfortable position around the heel, midfoot, and toes. Additionally, the toe box height is also kept low for a snug fit. 

A Pebax spike plate is placed underfoot, going across the length of the shoe from the toe to the arch. Unlike other track shoes with spike plates that are only under the forefoot, the Nike Zoom Rival M 9 extends its spike plate to the midfoot. This layout contributes to a springier toe-off and provides a support structure to the arch of the foot.

Meanwhile, the heel area is rimmed with a piece of solid, sturdy rubber for augmented grip and durability in the area. The rubber displays a horizontal pattern that contributes to the traction of the track shoe.

The synthetic mesh upper of the Nike Zoom Rival M 9 provides a lightweight—almost unnoticeable—breathability. The unique construction of the mesh allows optimum-level comfort as it actively and efficiently wicks away moisture and sweat, thus preventing build-up. Moreover, the mesh promotes a healthy in-shoe environment by allowing cool air to circulate.

A set of strategically-placed overlays accentuate the upper of the Zoom Rival M 9. These overlays can be found in the high-wear areas, ensuring resilience and durability.

Meanwhile, the midfoot area of the Nike Rival M 9 is supported by an arch band. This is a strap that is found in between the mesh and the internal lining of the upper. The arch band acts as a cinching system for the shoe by offering a secure and supportive unit, thus enabling the midfoot to have more control.

All these upper elements are incorporated together through a cleatie construction. This style eliminates unwanted layers and bulk, thus keeping the track shoe lightweight. The cleatie construction also gives the Zoom Rival M 9 a sock-like fit.

To finish it off, the shoe utilizes a traditional lacing as its closure system. This classic feature ensures a locked-in feel that is also adjustable.


How Nike Zoom Rival M 9 ranks compared to all other shoes
Top 46% tracking shoes
All tracking shoes
Bottom 46% Nike tracking shoes
All Nike tracking shoes
Top 49% running tracking shoes
All running tracking shoes


The current trend of Nike Zoom Rival M 9.
Compare to another shoe: