Home » Nike Free Metcon 4 Review | Best Nike Training Shoe for HIIT?

Nike Free Metcon 4 Review | Best Nike Training Shoe for HIIT?

The Nike Free Metcon 4 is the fourth model to debut in the popular Nike Free Metcon training shoe line. This model boasts a reworked upper and huarache-inspired heel strap as a nod to the legendary 90s huarache Nike shoe line. Overall, the Nike Free Metcon 4 is somewhat similar to the Nike Free Metcon 3, but there are a few key differences worth noting.

After grabbing the Nike Free Metcon 4 the day it came out and having them overnight shipped to me, I’ve been putting them through a variety of tests. To be honest, when I first wore them I wasn’t a fan, but they have since really been growing on me — and now, I have to admit, I’m a fan.

If you’re interested in this model, then read on below as to why I didn’t like these right away but have since changed my mind. In this Nike Free Metcon 4 review, we’re going to break down multiple topics including.

For my visual friends, check out the video below for the Nike Free Metcon 4 that I made to increase your user experience with this review. Find your perfect pair of cross-trainers with the TF2 cross-training shoe calculator.

 

Who Should Buy the Nike Free Metcon 4?

If you’re someone that loves versatile training and Nike Free technology, then I could see you really enjoying this model. It’s a fantastic shoe for agility training, plyometric work, sprints, and lighter lifting.

I will say, before you buy, make sure you read on below for my sizing and fit thought and detailed performance notes to make sure this model fits your weekly training needs perfectly.

Nike Free Metcon 4

$120

Nike Free Metcon 4 (1)
4.4
Stability
4.1
Versatility
4.6
Durability
4.4

Best For

  • HIIT Workouts
  • Classes
  • Light Lifting
  • Shorter Runs

Falls Short

  • For Heavy Training
  • For Fitting Wide Feet

 

Nike Free Metcon 4 Pros

Over the course of my training sessions, I’ve found four things that I really enjoy about the Nike Free Metcon 4s.

  1. Nike Free Tech
  2. Reworked Upper
  3. Huarache Heel Strap
  4. Light Construction

The first that makes this training shoe pretty solid is the Nike Free technology. I’m always generally a fan of shoes with the Nike Free tech because their maneuverability tends to be really great, and this model is no exception. Across the board, these shoes feel agile, lightweight, and maneuverable throughout the forefoot and mid-foot.

Another aspect that I like about the Nike Free Metcon 4 is the reworked upper construction. For this model, Nike brought back the chain-link upper that they originally used in the first Nike Free Metcon (which is one of my favorite general training shoes to date!). This upper is lightweight, breathable, and decently durable across the board.

Nike Free Metcon 4 Construction

On the heel, Nike has used a huarache-inspired strap to promote stability and a locked-down feeling. Overall, I enjoyed this addition and thought it did its job really. I never had heel slip issues in this model whatsoever.

The last thing that I enjoy worth noting is the lightweight construction of this shoe. If you want this model for versatile training, then I think you’ll enjoy this model. It feels light on the feet and the bootie construction feeds really well into this.

Suggested Read: Nike React Metcon Turbo Review

Nike Free Metcon 4 Cons

Despite having multiple things that I like about this shoe, there are a couple of cons that I think everyone should be conscious of.

  1. Tight Sizing
  2. Not the Most Stable

The first con worth mentioning is the sizing of this shoe. I actually didn’t like how this model fit when I first put them on, as they felt incredibly tight through the toe and mid-foot. This could definitely be problematic for those with wider and flatter feet.

Nike Free Metcon 4 Detailed Review

Since wearing them for multiple training sessions, the upper has stretched a bit to accommodate for my foot and they’re feeling better. However, I do think going up a half size would make this model more comfortable especially on a day-to-day basis, so assessing and scaling the sizing for yourself is going to be a good move here.

Another con worth noting is that the Nike Free Metcon 4 is not going to be the most stable training shoe on the market. Contextually speaking though, that’s to be expected. The Nike Free Metcon 4 isn’t really designed to be used for maximal barbell training — even though Nike does say on their site good for your “heaviest lifts”.

If you’re interested in a Nike training shoe that can accommodate maximal stability, then I’d highly suggest checking out Nike Metcon 6 or Nike React Metcon Turbo.

Performance

As mentioned above, the Nike Free Metcon 4 has grown on me after wearing it for a few training sessions. Here’s how the model performs in the gym, a plyometric/agility setting, and a day-to-day/shorter run basis.

Nike Free Metcon 4 Performance

Lifting

When it comes to lifting, the Nike Free Metcon 4 performs as you’d expect for a training shoe designed for versatility with Nike Free technology. It does okay for moderate and lighter loading, but this is not going to be a great model for heavy barbell training.

For example, when I worked up to about 300 lbs, I started to notice some compression throughout the forefoot and mid-foot. If you plan to lift loads lighter than the above though, then I think the stability of this shoe will be just fine for you.

Agility and Plyometrics

For agility training and plyometric work, I really like this model. The Nike Free tech gives the forefoot and mid-foot a nice level of maneuverability and this model’s outsole traction has done really well for supporting multi-directional activity.

Nike Free Metcon 4 Performance Thoughts

Additionally, I like the bootie construction and how it feeds well into the lightweight “athletic” feeling that comes with this shoe. On top of that, the huarache heel strap prevents heel slip in this model.

Day-to-Day and Shorter Runs

On a day-to-day basis, I like this model and think the midsole and outsole are comfortable. While this model is a comfortable ride, do make sure you get the sizing right. If I went up a half size in this shoe, then I think it would be even better on a day-to-day basis as right now it’s fairly tight.

For shorter and mid-range runs (1-5ish miles), this model is fairly solid. The Nike Free tech is great for supporting and promoting forefoot running and the chain-link upper is breathable and lightweight.

Sizing and Fit

This model’s mid-foot construction and toe box are pretty slim. Out of the box, it makes this model feel super tight — even without socks on. Over a couple of training sessions, the upper has stretched a tiny bit and feels better, but all of this brings us to my sizing thoughts.

I think for most folks, you’ll want to size up a half size in this shoe. If you have a wider and flatter foot, then a full size might be the call. As always, I’d recommend trying these on first before you buy.

Price

For the Nike Free Metcon 4, you can expect to pay $120 USD. I think this price can be justified if you get the sizing right and you’re able to wear this model on a day-to-day basis and for your training sessions. And, if you want them to go the distance then limit their wear for only training sessions.

Nike Free Metcon 4

$120

Nike Free Metcon 4 (1)
4.4
Stability
4.1
Versatility
4.6
Durability
4.4

Best For

  • HIIT Workouts
  • Classes
  • Light Lifting
  • Shorter Runs

Falls Short

  • For Heavy Training
  • For Fitting Wide Feet

 

 Takeaway Thoughts

Overall, I’ve been enjoying the Nike Free Metcon 4 for my versatile training and lighter runs. It took a minute for this shoe to grow on me due to its tight sizing, however, after a few training sessions this model has felt much better.

If you’re not looking for versatility and instead a trainer designed for stability, then I’d recommend checking out some of the other Nike Metcon models.

That Fit Friend is a site that is supported by myself (Jake Boly) and its readers. If you purchase products through affiliates links on this site, then I may receive a small commission on the sale. These commissions help keep the lights on here at That Fit Friend so I can continue to create content and they help me purchase new models to review!

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Jake Boly

I've been in the fitness and strength training industry for nearly a decade. In that time, I've trained hundreds of clients, written thousands of articles, reviewed over 100+ pairs of training shoes, and have produced a large list of training videos. I live and breathe fitness and training gear, and I think it's important that reviewers walk the walk with the gear they're testing. As for my educational background, I have my Masters in Sports Science, Bachelors in Exercise Science, and have my CSCS.

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