Verdict from 13 experts and 100+ user reviews

8 reasons to buy

  • Plenty of users have praised the comfortable and snug fit of the Metcon 5.
  • The majority claims that the firm heel and wide platform make this trainer one of the most stable CrossFit shoes on the market.
  • The raised sidewalls have delighted many wearers. Not only do they protect the shoe during rope climbs but they also offer excellent grip on the rope.
  • Multiple CrossFit buffs state that the flexible forefoot construction makes the 5th Metcon a bit more running-friendly than its predecessor.
  • Several shoe experts have praised Nike for the reinforced tongue and the new Haptic layer on the upper. These updates seem to contribute to the shoe’s overall durability.
  • The new traction tread on the outsole has received a myriad of compliments for being grippy.
  • A number of users have found the Hyperlift add-ons beneficial for workouts with squats.
  • An expert reports that this iteration doesn’t seem to produce the squeaking sound like the previous versions did.

4 reasons not to buy

  • A good number of buyers wish there was a more gradual transition between the softer and the harder components of the midsole. The line where they meet tends to create a pressure point.
  • Some wearers state that the rubber panels have detached from the upper after only a few weeks of use.
  • Several reviewers agree that the shoe may not be the best option for walking and day-to-day wear because it’s more geared towards stability.
  • The large rubber panels make the trainer look clunky and less aesthetically pleasing, based on more than a few comments.

Bottom line

The Nike Metcon 5 is considered a worthy addition to the Metcon collection. Its precise fit and comfort have been highly appreciated by the purchasers. The presence of a dual-density midsole with a firmer heel and a more flexible forefoot also make it a great all-around option for CrossFit and weightlifting. On the downside, the midline between these two densities has caused discomfort for some wearers. Another major gripe concerns the bulky style of this version.

But all in all, the majority of users and experts still find it a solid choice for daily WODs and CrossFit competitions.

Tip: see the best crossfit training shoes.

Good to know

If it wasn’t for the Swoosh logo and the name, one could hardly recognize this shoe as the 5th iteration of Nike’s flagship CrossFit trainer. Given that it’s an odd-numbered model, Nike Metcon 5 features an entirely updated design from the ground up.

In the creation of this shoe, the brand took into account the success and failures of the previous editions, the feedback from the CrossFit community, and the invaluable contributions from the CrossFit stars Mat Fraser and Lauren Fisher.    

Even though the form of the trainer receives lots of updates, the intention behind it stays the same: to provide wearers with an ultimate cross-trainer that is ready to follow them from weightlifting and jumping to running and rope climbing.

Reliable base. By looking at the bottom of the Metcon 5, it can be observed that the shoe is crafted with a flat and wide base. It is meant to provide a larger contact area with the floor to help the wearer feel steady when lifting heavy weights.

Grippy rubber. The outsole fuses two types of rubber to deliver a more efficient combination of traction and durability. The more hard-wearing compound called the RS 001 RB is placed at the bottom and the sides of the shoe. It makes use of a new, sharper tread pattern to help the shoe bite the surface and reduce the chance of slippage. The grippier 004 STICKY RB wraps around the forefoot. It protects the upper material in this area while also acting as a toe bumper. 

Protection during rope climbs. The rubber panels on the sides are extensions of the outsole. They cover up a significantly larger area in this iteration as compared to the previous Metcons. This update was made in response to the extremely damaging nature of rope climbing exercises. The texture on these panels has also been made much more aggressive and reminiscent of razor blades. That way, it helps to grip the rope on the way up but doesn’t get in the way when sliding back down.

Support for lifting, running and jumping. Building upon the success of its predecessors, the Nike Metcon 5 inherits the drop-in midsole component. This time around, it’s been crafted with a dual-density characteristic, which is apparent even to the untrained eye. Its heel part is made of firm, barely-compressible foam to keep the wearer surefooted under a heavy-loaded bar. Contrariwise, the forefoot section has been made extremely pliable and soft to accommodate those agile portions of the WOD that involve lots of foot bending. The overall thickness of the sole also keeps the foot rather close to the ground, aiding in better proprioception and responsiveness.

Option to change heel height. The default drop of the shoe’s midsole measures at 4 mm, which is a golden standard among the current CrossFit models on the market. This small differential helps the foot stay parallel to the floor, thus achieving more control over the movement. But what makes the 5th Metcon stand out is the addition of the Hyperlift insert. This add-on comes for free with each pair and comprises of two firm wedges that can be put underneath the drop-in midsole.

In the men’s version, if you add the Hyperlift, the heel receives an 8-mm increase in height with. In the women’s shoe, you can get an increase of 6 mm. The primary function of this component is to provide additional help with ankle mobility during squats. However, it is not meant to replace the firm base of a full-fledged weightlifting shoe.

Added wear-resistance. The biggest portion of the upper is made of a tightly-woven mesh. It helps in creating a snug embrace for the foot. The mesh is reinforced by the new Haptic chain-link layer, which came as a replacement of the Tri-Star. Despite its lightweight and seemingly delicate nature, this synthetic overlay is designed to protect the mesh against wear-and-tear. 

Firmer foothold. The rearfoot part of the trainer also receives a secure brace with the help of a padded heel collar, the thick synthetic leather wrap, and the hard TPU heel clip. The latter also guards the shoe’s integrity during wall push-ups.  

Flywire for side-to-side support. At the midfoot, the fit is regulated by the lacing system. It includes six pairs of eyelets where the top pair is placed as close to the edge of the collar as it is technically possible to help secure the fit. In the four out of six pairs, the laces are interconnected with the Flywire threads. These thin yet sturdy strings stretch from the bottom of the upper to the eyelets, offering enhanced lateral support without adding weight.


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The current trend of Nike Metcon 5.
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Nicholas Rizzo
Nicholas Rizzo

Nick combines 10+ years of experience in the health and fitness industry and a background in the sciences in his role as the Fitness Research Director. During his competitive powerlifting years his PRs have him sitting in the top 2% of bench presses (395 lbs), top 3% of squats (485 lbs) and top 6% of deadlifts (515 lbs) for his weight and age. His work has been featured on, LiveStrong, Healthline, WebMD, WashingtonPost, and many more. Along the way, collaborating with industry leaders like Michael Yessis, Mark Rippetoe, Carlo Buzzichelli, Dave Tate, Ray Williams, and Joel Seedman.