Review: Nike Free 5.0+

The barefoot inspired series continues for 2013…

Continuing on from 2007 and the first Free 5.0, Nike Free 5.0+ is the latest version of the trainer giant’s minimalist approach to running footwear. Utilising Nike’s new Flywire technology to deliver a lightweight, glove-like fit to runners, the premise of the shoe is still to offer runners a barefoot experience whilst helping to improve the natural running motion, strengthen foot muscles, increase foot flexibility and improve balance.

And this shoe does achieve this, though it’s important to clear up one key factor first: if your running style requires a supportive shoe, you can’t really slip on a pair of these and start pounding the streets without the risk of causing yourself some damage. There needs to be a transition in your running style to match these shoes, not the other way round.

That quite obvious message of concern aside, if you’re already well rehearsed in the lighter side of running then these shoes could well be the ones you’re looking for. They are incredibly light and comfortable and the range of flexibilty offered up from the ergonomically sliced up midsole is, as the pictures demonstrate, pretty impressive.

If you wanted to go one stage further, the Free 4.0 and Free 3.0 series offer an even more stripped back versions of the shoe, the number of the series relates to how close your foot is to the ground, but the 5.0+ is a great starting point for those new to the Nike Free series.

There is a pretty extensive range of colours available, but even then if you’re not satisfied then you can always lose some hours designing your own in Nike iD.

Where to buy: Amazon

By Ben Hobson (