I am a person who loves jogging and taking morning walks. And over the years, my top choice for walking shoes has been Nike Free. However, over the years, the shoes have gotten pricer and pricer. That is exactly why I started looking for shoes like Nike Free.
In the last decade, several brands tried to Nike a fight, but not all were able to. After a thorough analysis, we found a few brands as Nike alternatives. Such as Under Armour, New Balance, Reebok, Saucony, etc. These brands provide a similar design to Nike free with many other excellent features.
If you want to know more about them in detail, continue reading this article.
A Short Review On Nike Free
Ever since Nike entered the market in 2005, they have been a priority pick for walking shoes. They provide good cushioning and comfort when walking while giving your feet a sturdy grip. Their shoes are extremely flexible and up-to-date with recent fashion trends. The shoe also has low-density foam to make you feel the ground more.
However, the brand’s reputation as the top pick for walking shoes over the years started to deteriorate.
As one customer reviewed, the walking shoes are not the best for long distances. The soles are just not strong enough, she said. When used for long-distance walks, the rubber outsole wears down really quickly, and the midsole loses its ability to cushion your feet.
In addition to that, another user complained that the shoes are extremely difficult to clean. The outsole gaps are too big, resulting in small stones getting stuck in them, which is rather challenging to remove.
Best Shoes Like Nike Free In 2022: A Quick Comparison
The brands mentioned below solve all the issues Nike free has. The shoes are up to date with the latest designs and feature extreme durability without compromising comfort. Furthermore, all the shoes are really stylish, so you don’t have to compromise your style when going for a walk.
Let’s quickly look at the alternatives we have found for you.
|1.||Ryka Women’s Sky Walking Shoe||High||Affordable||High||Short memory foam|
|2.||Reebok Realflex Run 2.0 Running Men’s Shoes||High||Affordable||Moderate||Low-quality mesh|
|3.||New Balance Men’s Minimus 20 V7 Cross Trainer||Moderate||Expensive||Low||Shoe shape uncomfortable for some|
|4.||Under Armour Men’s Charged Assert 9 Running Shoe||High||Affordable||Moderate||Gets dirty quickly|
|5.||Saucony Kinvara 11 Running Shoe||Moderate||Expensive||Moderate||Not suited for wide feet|
Best Shoes Like Nike Free In 2022: A Detailed Discussion
Now that you have gotten a quick overview of the shoes. Let us jump into a more detailed review.
1) Ryka Women’s Sky Walking Shoe
Ryka has become a renowned brand with its brilliant collection of walking shoes for both men and women. Their shoes are budget-friendly, with prices primarily depends on the design you choose.
But they are not just known for being a cheap alternative; these shoes offer high-performance quality, perfect for people who love taking long walks. The material is durable, giving your feet the comfiest feeling.
- Product Dimensions: 12 x 8.1 x 4.8 inches; 12 Ounces.
- Item model number: SKY WALK.
- Department: Women’s
- Date First Available: October 19, 2016.
- Manufacturer: RYKA (Caleres, Inc)
The materials used in this shoe are 100% leather and mesh. These materials are a perfect match as the mesh provides breathability to your feet so that they don’t get sweat and the rigid leather overlay gives it enough strength to endure harsh conditions. It also has rubber toe caps to protect your feet while walking.
Furthermore, it offers a synthetic sole, which gives you a sturdy grip when walking. The sole is designed so that no rocks or pebbles get stuck in it, all while being easily cleanable.
In addition, it also features a skeletal guidance system, which provides build-in arch and midfoot support for maximum safety.
The shoes are designed to fit unique foot shapes and offer a narrower heel.
Lastly, the lace-up systems provide a secure and firm fit.
- Soft foot cushioning.
- It fits all types of foot shapes.
- Available in various colors.
- Comfortable to wear.
- The memory foam does not cover the entire footbed.
- Treads come loose after a while.
2) Reebok Realflex Run 2.0 Running Men’s Shoes
Rebook Realflex Run is another Nike Free alternative that we had to keep at the top of your list. The price point for this pair of shoes is also cheaper than Nike Free. But don’t let it make you think the brand sacrifices features to keep the price low. The quality is excellent.
This shoe is known for providing the maximum protection possible to your feet by using its platform sensors. Alongside that, the shoe is also incredibly lightweight and flexible.
- Product Dimensions: 11.5 x 4.5 x 7.5 inches; 1.76 Pounds
- Item model number: V46843
- Department: Men’s
- Date First Available: February 19, 2013.
This shoe’s most mention-worthy feature is its high-quality heat and breathability management. As it has its body made of mesh material, the shoe is extremely breathable, ensuring your feet have the cool air passing through while all the hot air built within exits.
In addition, the soles are made out of foam using specialized Rebook technology, which makes the foam sturdy, flexible and elastic. All while providing a soft feather-like sensation every time you take a step.
Furthermore, the shoe also is covered with reinforced leather which ensures the shoe is rigid enough to last long walks.
- Foam sole for comfort
- Low-quality mesh.
3) New Balance Men’s Minimus 20 V7 Cross Trainer
The third shoe on our list is the New Balance Minimus. Available for both males and females, this shoe provides excellent performance.
These shoes have been engineered to ensure your feet’ natural movement is not interrupted while giving you the utmost support. The lightweight cushioning makes long walks extremely comfortable in them.
- Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 7.9 x 4.5 inches; 5.6 Ounces
- Item model number: WX20BP7
- Department: Men’s
- Date First Available: August 19, 2017.
- Manufacturer: New Balance.
The best feature of this shoe is its natural feel technology. It has a one-piece Vibram outsole that gives you maximum grip when walking on most terrains while maintaining your natural stance.
Furthermore, the shoes have an engineered knit upper made using nylon-infused yarn to give your feet the lateral support it requires without compromising the flexibility of your body’s natural movements.
Moreover, it has a REVlite midsole that gives superior lightweight cushioning, making your underfoot as comfortable as possible.
Lastly, the molded foam asymmetrical collar ensures a natural fit on most foot types with the addition of mesh lining for breathability.
- 100% synthetic
- Supportive and flexible upper
- All feet types can wear it.
- Not as durable
- Nonnatural shape shoe.
4) Under Armour Men’s Charged Assert 9 Running Shoe
This Nike Free alternative is a fan favorite for being affordable while providing various upbeat designs in several colors.
But style is not the only thing this shoe is known for. It has a high-quality sole for maximum grip with the added benefit of having shock absorption. The shoe provides good body balance and cushions to ensure you have the best time taking a walk.
Under Armor shoes are incredibly cheaper than Nike Free, making them a top pick for those wanting a budget walking shoe.
- Product Dimensions: 15 x 5 x 9 inches; 10.58 Ounces
- Item model number: 3024590
- Department: Men’s
- Date First Available: April 29, 2020
- Manufacturer: Under Armour
The rubber outsole is the first and foremost feature to discuss. It is made of rigid and durable rubber, giving excellent grip in almost all terrains while providing high shock absorption. It ensures your feets’ safety when you walk or run.
Alongside that, the sole also has high impact zones, which gives additional durability while remaining lightweight.
It also features lightweight mesh for complete breathability and a durable leather overlay for stability by locking onto your midfoot.
It also has an EVA sock liner for soft step-in comfort with charged cushioning midsole for greater responsiveness and durability. The midsoles are made from foam, increasing the comfort your feet feel when walking.
So, wear the shoes and walk at your heart’s desire without hurting your feet!
- Available in a variety of colors
- High flexibility and cushioning.
- Soles detach comparatively quicker
- Mesh gets dirty easily.
5) Saucony Kinvara 11 Running Shoe
The last shoe in Nike Free alternatives is the Saucony Kinvara 11. It is another running shoe available for both genders.
It provided a soft and responsive ride when walking with its specialized new midsole and modified outsole. They are extremely lightweight and provide excellent balance.
The shoes are affordable, and the price usually depends on your chosen design and color.
- Product Dimensions: 13 x 8 x 5 inches; 2 Pounds
- Item model number: S20551-35
- Department: Men’s and Women’s
- Date First Available: August 20, 2019.
- Manufacturer: Saucony.
The mention worthy feature this shoe has is its PWRRUN cushioning. These cushions within the shoe provide a firm fit while remaining comfortable to ensure it is the most responsive shoe.
The flexible sole is sturdy and is designed to transition from landing to taking off quickly. It makes it a perfect fit for people who walk short distances and athletes running miles.
The form fit technology ensures firm fit throughout your feet, thus keeping your feet safe from any slips or accidents.
- Synthetic and mesh material
- Various colors available
- Good for running distances
- Not suitable for wide feet.
- The inside cloth tears quickly.
Things To Consider When Buying Walking Shoes
Shoes, as usual, are expensive investments, so it is important to do proper research before purchasing any. If you end up buying walking shoes that are not right for you, it will be nothing but a waste of money and time.
Here are some things to consider before buying a pair of walking shoes.
Yes, this is a rather less spoken topic, but it is crucial. Not all walking shoes are suitable for all types of terrain. Some shoes are made to be used for road running, while others are trail running.
So it is crucial to keep in mind what terrain you will be walking on before purchasing a shoe.
- Grip and Stability
No matter where you walk, grip and stability are two important factors. Whether walking or running, your body, especially your feet, will go through the continuous and tedious movement. If the shoe does provide the required grip and stability, your feet may be prone to injury.
A way to test whether a shoe has enough stability is by holding it by its heel and bending the toe upwards. If it does bend, then it will provide you with good stability.
Walking can be rather strenuous on your feet, so it is crucial to make sure you buy shoes made with materials that are comfortable enough for you. Always check how soft the material is and the quality of the cushioning it has.
We recommend trying on the shoe and walking in it for at least 5 minutes before purchasing it. In addition, buy from the site where you have the return options for online purchases.
- Is Nike free discontinued?
No, not all Nike Free shoes are discontinued. Nike usually launches a model of its Free shoes and keeps it in the market for about a year before discontinuing it and launching a new model.
- Is Nike free good running shoes?
Yes, indeed they are. Nike Free shoes are lightweight and comfortable. Not to mention, they also provide the required grip and stability you need to run for a long period. So, if you want shoes for running, consider Nike Free as your best friend.
- What is Nike Free good for?
The Nike Free shoes are designed to absorb the maximum stress released when walking before reaching your feet. It makes the shoe extremely comfortable and suitable for most tasks such as jogging, running, walking, etc.
Without a doubt, Nike Free is one of the best walking shoes with excellent comfort and stress absorption qualities. They are lightweight on your feet and provide excellent comfort.
However, as the brand has seen a slight downfall in its quality assurance, we have done a broad market analysis and found shoes such as New Armour, Rebook, Saucony, New Balance, and Ryka to be the best shoes like Nike Free.
Remember not to depend on reviews blindly; alongside our advice, it is also important to know which shoe is comfortable for you. We suggest trying all of them out before purchasing.