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The Nike Metcon 9 versus Nike Metcon 8 is a fun cross-training shoe showdown to have in 2024. Since the Nike Metcon 9 is an odd-year model, multiple changes have been made to this iteration compared to the Metcon 8.
One issue I had with the Nike Metcon 8 was its blocky heel and its lack of versatility for hybrid-focused workouts, so I was excited to see what changes the Metcon 9 would implement.
In this Nike Metcon 9 versus Nike Metcon 8 showdown, I’ll discuss which pair you should go with based on your training needs. I’ve thoroughly reviewed and vetted both of these models to give you a full rundown of their differences.
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Metcon 9 Vs Metcon 8 At a Glance
The Nike Metcon 8 and Nike Metcon 9 have a lot in common with a few key nuances. These nuances will influence which training shoe will be best for your overall needs.
From a technical context, the Metcon 9 and Metcon 8 are both pretty similar. This is good if you like consistency with your training shoes and you’ve been a fan of the Nike Metcon shoes to date.
|Nike Metcon 9
|Nike Metcon 8
|12.9 oz (size 10 men’s)
|12.4 oz (size 10 men’s)
In the context of fit and overall performance, that’s where the nuance kicks in. From a general performance point of view, both of these shoes should be fine for recreational lifting and cross-training and I wouldn’t stress this too much.
Go with the model that has the best colorway and price for your needs. Now, that said, when it comes to fit — the Nike Metcon 9 is built to be wider than the Metcon 8 so it can be a better pick if you like more toe box and midfoot width.
Conversely, the Nike Metcon 8’s overall stability does tend to be a little better than the Metcon 9 and this is due to the more rigid midfoot. If you’re not concerned about width and primarily care about stability, then the Metcon 8 can be a great pick.
Nike Metcon 9
Nike Metcon 8
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Nike Metcon 9 Vs Nike Metcon 8 Performance
In the context of performance, I’ll cover how the Nike Metcon 9 compares to the Nike Metcon 8 in lifting, CrossFit, versatility training, short run, and daily wear settings.
Comparing the Nike Metcon 9 Vs Nike Metcon 8 for Lifting and CrossFit
When it comes to lifting, the Nike Metcon 8 and Nike Metcon 9 both do a pretty good job. These are both cross-training shoes that have a heavier bias toward lifting over versatility and running.
In both shoes, I’ve deadlifted over 500 lbs and have hit 405 lb squats and 225 lb lunges, and have never run into major stability problems. The midsoles in both models do a decent job of resisting compression.
The Nike Metcon 8 features Nike React Foam while the Metcon 9 features a dual-density EVA foam and both seem fairly comparable regarding density and stability when lifting heavier loads.
The Nike Metcon 9’s stack height does feel a little higher and if I had to pick one model that feels more “dense” and less compressive, then I actually think the Nike Metcon 8 takes the edge here. Additionally, both shoes feature Hyperlift plates in the heel.
For general strength training, I don’t think most lifters can go wrong with either of these models. If you want more toe box width then I’d opt for the Nike Metcon 9 and that’s one area where the 9 does excel over the 8’s slightly slimmer toe box width.
In the context of CrossFit, I think the Nike Metcon 9 takes the edge slightly over the Metcon 8. Both shoes can work well for this training vertical, so this is not to say the Metcon 8 doesn’t excel for CrossFit, too.
There are two reasons why I’d take the Nike Metcon 9 over the Metcon 8 for CrossFit. First, this model’s Hyperlift plate has been reworked and it doesn’t stick out as far as the Metcon 8’s Hyerlift plate did.
This rework has given the Nike Metcon 9 a little more forgiveness for WODs that include short runs. Granted, it’s still not a great shoe for CrossFit WODs with running, but it’s better than the Metcon 8, relatively speaking.
Second, the Nike Metcon 9’s reworked upper construction seems hyper-focused and curated to prolong this shoe’s lifespan for CrossFit WODs. While I think a lot of these upper changes are over the top, the Metcon 9 should last — in theory — a little longer for CrossFit.
Either way, I think both shoes work well for CrossFit if you’re not super concerned about your shoe’s runnability and versatility. These shoes are stable and do a fairly good job with durability.
Winner: For lifting, both shoes work well. Opt for the Nike Metcon 8 if you’re not super concerned about toe box width. For CrossFit, the Nike Metcon 9 takes the edge slightly, but both models also work fine here.
Comparing the Nike Metcon 9 Vs Nike Metcon 8 for Versatile Training
When it comes to versatile training including things like HIIT, plyometrics, and athletic-focused training, the Nike Metcon 9 and Nike Metcon 8 are just “okay” shoes especially compared to some of their peers.
In both shoes, you can expect to have a forefoot construction that’s a little more flexible and responsive which gives them a good feel for things like jump rope, box jumps, and forefoot-dominant exercises.
The React Foam in the Metcon 8 feels “bouncy” and the dual-density midsole of the Nike Metcon 9 also feels fairly plush and lively through the forefoot. Between the two, the Metcon 9’s midsole does feel a little more responsive.
I picked up on this when doing a longer workout that had a lot of unilateral work. I also like that the Nike Metcon 9 has a wider toe box as this gives you more surface area in this shoe for gripping the floor.
One interesting thing that I did notice with these two models is that the medial midfoot support on the Nike Metcon 9 feels lacking a little bit for single-leg plyometrics and jerks so if you traditionally overpronate and like more arch, then go Metcon 8.
My main knock against both of these shoes for versatile workouts is their heel constructions. I was really hoping the Hyperlift plate was going to be removed in the Nike Metcon 9, but unfortunately, Nike kept it while reworking its shape.
The heels of these shoes are not the most forgiving and this can be annoying for versatile workouts where you’ll be making more heel contact. For example, when doing broad jumps I don’t find the Metcon 8 and 9 to be the most comfortable.
That said, I do think the Nike Metcon 9 has a slight edge for versatile training. Its reinforced upper construction gives you nice security when training and the dual-density midsole feels a little more plush through the forefoot.
Winner: Nike Metcon 9, but not by much. The same heel issue that I had with the Metcon 8 is still present in this model, granted, it’s to a lesser extent.
UA Project Rock 6
- Recreational Lifting
- Light Running (1-3 miles)
- Thicker Midsole Lovers
- For Budget Shoppers
- For Minimalist Lovers
- For Deadlifts
Comparing the Nike Metcon 9 Vs Nike Metcon 8 for Short Runs and Daily Wear
For short runs, the Nike Metcon 9 and Nike Metcon 8 can both work for workouts where you’re sprinting and doing running intervals that are around 800 meters in distance or lower.
Basically, if you’re doing any form of running where you’ll be more forefoot and midfoot strike dominant then should be okay in both of these shoes but this is the only running context where I like using these models.
For runs that are longer than a mile, I’d pass on both of these shoes. Neither of these shoes will be great hybrid training shoes and the Hyperlift plate is the bane of both of these shoes’ performances for running.
When it comes to daily wear, I don’t love the Nike Metcon 8 and Nike Metcon 9 either. You probably already guessed this but the heel in both of these shoes takes away from their walking and all-day comfort.
I do think the Nike Metcon 9 is a little more comfortable for day-to-day use due to its wider toe box and reworked midsole, but it’s still not a training shoe I’m actively reaching for because I enjoy them.
For example, I wore them all day to work and ended up walking around 12k steps in them and I was somewhat beginning to take them off toward the end of my day.
Winner: For sprints and short runs, both shoes can technically work. However, for long runs and hybrid workouts, pass on these models. For daily wear, neither of these shoes does a great job.
Nike Metcon 8
- CrossFit and CrossFit-Style Workouts
- For Wide Feet
- For Running
Nike Metcon 9 Vs Nike Metcon 8 Construction
There have been a lot of construction updates made to the Nike Metcon 9 compared to the Nike Metcon 8. Below, I’m going to break down the construction of these models into different sections to make this section more digestible.
The Nike Metcon 8 features Nike React Foam throughout the entirety of its midsole and this was a construction feature that was consistent with the Nike Nike 7 as well.
The Nike Metcon 9 features a dual-density midsole which is designed to give the outside of the shoe a little more density while the internal part of this model’s midsole is intended to be a little more plush.
The Hyperlift plates are other components to consider when looking at both of these shoes’ heel construction. The Nike Metcon 8’s Hyperlift plate is a lot more aggressive than the 9’s and sticks out further.
In the Nike Metcon 9, the plate has been shorted and it’s a little more rounded which is great for giving this shoe a little more “forgiveness” when doing any form of heel strike.
The Nike Metcon 8 features a full rubber outsole and it has grooves in the forefoot for additional flexibility. The midfoot of this model has a different material to the rope guards on the medial and lateral side and you can also see the Hyperlift through the outsole.
The Nike Metcon 9 also features a full rubber outsole and has grooves in the forefoot for flexibility. There’s also a pretty large divot through the medial midfoot in this model which I’m not convinced is a good change, especially for overpronators.
The Nike Metcon 8’s upper is composed largely of a mesh and textile and it has haptic print overlays covering the toe box. This model has rope guards on the medial and lateral sides of the midfoot and the boot is padded with a low-profile construction.
The Nike Metcon 9’s upper is also built with a mesh and textile with haptic print overlays covering the toe box. The toe box of the Metcon 9 has a rubber material that covers the big toe side of the shoe.
There are also super aggressive rope guards on the medial and lateral sides of this model which is a feature that I find to be excessive. It adds bulk to the shoe and feels unnecessarily heavy. The boot of this model is padded with a low-profile build.
While there are components of the Nike Metcon 9’s upper that I like such as its toe box material and branding, the rope guards on this shoe are a bit much for my liking. They feel unnecessary as most lifters and athletes don’t rope climb that much to begin with.
Laces and Tongue
The Nike Metcon 8’s lacing structure is pretty standard and it has 5 core eyelets to provide midfoot security. The tongue is a padded mesh and it features a lace lock feature at the top.
The Nike Metcon 9’s lacing and tongue are fairly similar to the Metcon 8’s. This model also features 5 core eyelets and the lace lock feature has remained unchanged in this shoe. The tongue is built with a padded mesh.
Weight, Drop, and Insole
The weight, heel-to-toe drop, and insole are all pretty similar between the Metcon 8 and Metcon 9. While Nike hasn’t confirmed with me the heel-to-toe drop of the Nike Metcon 9, it feels unchanged at 4mm.
- Nike Metcon 9 Weight, Drop, and Insole: 12.90 oz (size 10), 4mm heel-to-toe drop, removable insole
- Nike Metcon 8 Weight, Drop, and Insole: 12.40 oz (size 10), 4mm heel-to-toe drop, removable insole
If you have additional construction-related questions about the Nike Metcon 9 versus Nike Metcon 8, drop a comment below and I can help you out accordingly.
Nike Metcon 9 Vs Nike Metcon 8 Sizing
For most athletes and lifters, I think you’ll want to size the Nike Metcon 8 and Nike Metcon 9 the same. Both of these cross-training shoes fit true to size for most.
The length of these models runs true to size and the width varies slightly between the two. The Nike Metcon 8 has a medium width while the Nike Metcon 9 is built to be a little wider through the toe box.
I have a medium to slightly wider foot width and I size both of these models true to size. Between the two, I like the fit of the Nike Metcon 9 better and that’s because of the toe box width.
In the Nike Metcon 9, I can wear different sock thicknesses without them feeling overly tight or snug. This model should fit a wider range of foot anatomies compared to the often thought to be “narrower” Nike Metcon 8.
- Nike Metcon 8 Sizing Thoughts: True to size for most.
- Nike Metcon 9 Sizing Thoughts: True to size for most.
If you have additional sizing and fit questions about the Nike Metcon 8 versus the Nike Metcon 9, drop a comment below or reach out to me personally via Instagram and I can help you out.
Nike Metcon 9 Vs Nike Metcon 8 Durability
The durability between the Nike Metcon 8 versus Nike Metcon 9 seems pretty comparable for the most part. I think if you’re using these shoes for recreational lifting and cross-training then they should last you a while.
For example, I would be shocked if these shoes didn’t last you at least 6-8 months if you’re only using them for lifting and versatile workouts in the gym and you’re not wearing them for daily wear, too.
As you get more niche with your training that’s where I think the durability can start to vary between these shoes. Generally speaking, if you run into durability issues with the Nike Metcon 8 you’ll typically start to see two things happen.
First, you’ll have the forefoot upper rip a bit and this was also an issue that the Nike Metcon 7 has. Second, the outsole can start to pull away from the midsole around the forefoot.
While the Nike Metcon 9 is still relatively new to the market and we need more data points to see where this shoe’s durability falls short, I think the upper should last longer in this shoe compared to the Metcon 8.
The one area that gives me concern with the Nike Metcon 9 is the outsole pulling away from the midsole at the forefoot. There’s a pretty pronounced foam area that could be problematic when doing outdoor workouts.
If you’ve worn the Nike Metcon 8 or Nike Metcon 9 and have experienced durability issues in either model, drop a comment below to let me know what happened.
Nike Metcon 9 Vs Nike Metcon 8 Price
The price between the Nike Metcon 8 versus Nike Metcon 9 has been a pretty significant change that I think is going to through some lifters and athletes off because it certainly threw me off.
Historically speaking, the price of Nike Metcons has always been $130 USD which is a price point in line with most premium cross-training shoes.
For the first time ever, the Nike Metcon 9 has received a price increase and this model now comes in at $150 USD. Typically, you’ll see companies increase prices slower like how Reebok has with the Nano line so a $20 jump was interesting.
To be honest, the Nike Metcon 9 doesn’t necessarily feel like an upgrade compared to the Metcon 8 as they both perform pretty similarly in the gym, so it’s tough to get behind such a sharp price increase.
On top of this, there are stronger cross-training shoes on the market that either cost less or the same as the Metcon 9. For example, the RAD ONE, STR/KE MVMNT Haze Trainer, and Nano X3 all outperform the Metcon 9 and cost the same or less.
Maybe the Nike Metcon 9 will grow more on me over time, but I’m pretty bummed that the Nike Metcon 9 costs $20 more and it doesn’t necessarily perform better.
I was really hoping this iteration would be a lot more versatile than the Metcon 7 and 8 which is where they lacked or at least feel like the older models which I loved such as the Nike Metcon 4 and 6.
If you want a shoe for lifting and some casual cross-training, I wouldn’t overthink these two shoes and I’d go with the model that has the best price point for your financial needs. They’ll both perform similarly in this context.
The Nike Metcon 9 “feels” more versatile, however, its $20 price increase is a bummer because it’s not a glaringly better shoe in the gym, in my opinion. Arguably, I think it’s one of the weakest Nike Metcon models to date, especially for the price.
If you have wider feet and you’ve found Nike Metcon to run snug through the toe box over the years, then it may be worth trying on the Nike Metcon 9. I think this model will have a wider range of foot anatomies it will work for.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Q:Are the Nike Metcon 9 better than the Metcon 8 for CrossFit?
Q:Can you run in the Nike Metcon 8 and Metcon 9?
Q:Is the Nike Metcon 9 wider than the Metcon 8?
Q:Is the Nike Metcon 9 better than the Nike Metcon 8?
The Nike Metcon 9 versus the Nike Metcon 8 is a fun topic of debate because the Metcon 9 has implemented a lot of changes compared to its two predecessors which were super similar.
I think for most lifters and athletes who want a cross-training shoe with a lifting bias to their construction, the Nike Metcon 8 and Nike Metcon 9 will be strong performers.
That said, these are not my favorite cross-training shoes on the market and the Metcon 9 was somewhat of a letdown regarding its changes and price point increase.
If you have additional questions about the Nike Metcon 8 versus Nike Metcon 9, drop a comment below or reach out to me via Instagram (@jake_boly or @that_fit_friend).