10 Best Nike Running Shorts Rated
Loaded with Dri-fit technology the best Nike running shorts are shaped for any type of runner. We thoroughly studied each pair on the line-up and beyond to make sure we were surely giving you the best running shorts Nike is currently offering.
Scroll through and check out our Criteria section to see what we compare to make a pair of running shorts the best. We use all the information from consumers FAQs and reviews to help guide our research and review process. Runnercklick is geard to making sure you are getting the best of what you need in the best running gear.
In a Hurry? The test winner after 15 hrs of research
Wick away moisture and sweat
Lots of color options
Small pocket for storage
Nikes 10 Best Running Shorts
1. Dri Fit Tempo
Wick away moisture and sweat
Lots of color options
Small pocket for storage
Sizing runs large
Nike’s Dri-Fit Temp shorts a simple design with great material technology. They offer high comfort and breathability at a great price. You get all the good in Nike without all the flash and you’ll have them for a while as they reign supreme in durability.Read more
Understanding the importance of comfortable running gear is something Nike has mastered. They put all that into these running shorts without overloading it for those that just want a classic comfortable fit and design.
100% polyester and 100% DryFit makes these superb in comfort and feel. Tempo works all that rapid drying, soft, airy breathability in a great pair of shorts for any running occasion, whether you're going for distance or just a warmup.
We honestly cannot say enough about the Dry-Fit durability. It seems everything Nike makes has it in the fabric so obviously, it plays into this.
You also get the mesh inside that helps keep the material fresh and prevents a more rapid breakdown. The mesh aids in more than just breathability, it gives a skin layer of protection. IT also prevents them from riding up.
Nike is offering the best option with a good value with simplicity and comfort. You can also choose from a variety of colors so choosing just one might be the only issue you come across when buying them.
2. Crew DriFit
Stretchy and breathable
Polyester and elastic waistband
3 inch inseam for ideal coverage
Some find them too short for their taste
Nike's Crew Dry running shorts are comfortable, and breathable. They have a perfect 3-inch inseam for ideal coverage. The sides have a stretchy panel that makes the shorts move with your body for zero distractions, and so they don't scratch against your skin. Customers rave about how comfortable, and breathable they are. They have Nike's signature dry fabric with Dri-Fit built into them.Read more
These shorts are made out of polyester, with an elastic closure. They have Nike's Dry-Fit technology to wick sweat away. They have a 3 inch inseam for added coverage. These shorts are super comfortable and stretchy.
The side panels will make the shorts move with you so they won't chafe against your skin. They come in seven different colors so you can choose whatever color you want, or get one in every color. You could have a different color for every day of the week!
Cost and value
These shorts are more affordable than some of the other shorts. They're cheaper when you compare them to other Nike shorts. Plus when you are running you want to be comfortable, and able to breathe in the shorts you are wearing; so you don't want to buy any old shorts just because they are cheap.
3. Pro Bash Compression
Comfortable and lightweight material
Dri-Fit fabric wicks sweat away
Body skimming fit
Some consumers have said that they run small
These affordable Nike compression shorts are a great pick for runners who like a tight and secure fit. You can also use these to layer under another pair of shorts if you like--either way they are a breathable, comfortable, and flexible pair of shorts that will keep you comfortable during all of your runs.Read more
Materials & breathability
These shorts are made of 92% polyester and 8% spandex. This blend allows them to be body skimming, stretch, and compressed. They also utilize DriFit fabric to keep you cool and dry as well as provide maximum breathability.
Comfort and style
Their flat elastic waistband won't poke out and you can rest assured you will be comfortable. While many runners wear these solo, others prefer to use them as a base layer--either way they are a comfortable and attractive running short.
Cost and Value
These shorts are moderately priced and come in lots of color and pattern options to choose from.
4. Flex Stride Running
Breathable and lightweight
Has pockets on the side and back
Comes in a couple different colors
Flex fabric stretches with you
More expensive than some other pairs of shorts
These Nike shorts are great for guys who enjoy long distance running. They provide optimal comfort and breathability during your runs and are built to last.Read more
Comfort & Style
These lightweight running shorts are flexible, breathable, and have an adjustable waistband. They allow for full range of motion and have a layered design. They have a zippered storage pocket in the rear as well as side and back pockets.
Mobility & advanced features
They have a 5 inch inseam that gives you perfect coverage without limiting your mobility. It has small pockets on the side so you can carry small items with during your run. The back yoke and gusset are perforated to enhance the ventilation so you will get comfortable shorts with great breathability. The back pocket has a vapor barrier to help protect items from sweat.
Cost or Value
These shoes are on the pricey end but are a great investment! You know you are going to get a good quality pair of shorts when it comes to Nike so the money you spend will be worth it.
5. Fly 2.0
Several color options
Drawstring waistband for adjustable fit
Minimal reflective details
These shorts are breathable thanks to their mesh lining and will keep you cool and dry during all of your runs. While they may look simple, they definitely get the job done when you need them to.Read more
Material and Breathability
These shorts feature DryFit fabric to keep you cool and dry during your runs and their breathable mesh lining allows for maximum ventilation, so you can keep running with no risk of overheating.
Range of motion & visibility
These shorts feature motion vents along its sides--which allows for full range of motion and flexibility. While they only have minimal reflective features, they do have to side pockets to store your belongings and an adjustable waistband for a more custom fit.
Cost or Value
These are pretty affordable, especially for Nike shorts and they come and several color options to choose from.
6. Aeroswift Race
Stretch fabric and side vents let you move freely
Comfortable bonded hem
Waistband doesn’t cause any skin irritation
Small inner pockets allow you to store small items
This type of Race runners shorts highlights a quick drying texture that decreases sticking from sweat and a work belt for included breathability in the high warmth zones.Read more
Comfort & Style
The Nike Aeroswift Race running shorts are made with recycled polyester/spandex. It has a perforated stretch waistband for breathability and an inner drawcord.
Materials & breathability
The Dri-Fit fabric used in making these running shorts helps keep you dry and comfortable. It also has a liner with zoned mesh which increases airflow.
Cost and value
The price of the Nike Aeroswift Race is slightly on the high side of the spectrum.
Built in liner
Can restrict movement
The NIKE Men's Challenger Running Shorts are a great pair of running shorts--they're comfortable, durable, and ready to take on anything you throw their way!Read more
Comfort & Style
The shorts are made of 100% Polyester and feature DriFit Technology to keep you cool and dry during your runs. They have a built-in liner with additional moisture wicking capabilities and their side panel mesh maximizes ventilation and breathability. They also have an adjustable waistband and are machine washable.
Cost or Value
These shorts are affordably priced. They are priced pretty fairly and have a large collection of colors to choose from.
8. Flex Repel
2 In 1 inner knit layer provides a body-hugging fit
Nike Flex fabric stretches with your body
Hidden pocket on the inner right side to hold storage
2 zipper pockets
Ribbed elastic waistband provides a comforting fit
Nothing to note
Versatility is built into the Flex Repel running shorts. They are ideal for those that like a bit more of a runners warmup followed up with some Crossfit. Nike makes room for all the running, lifting, jumping you can get in without constraint or discomfort, making these an obvious choice for more active runners.Read more
Quick-drying Dri-Fit technology tied in with water repellent makes for one great active running short that won't build up sweat. They keep you dry no matter your elements or Mother Nature’s.
Moreover, Nike added their Flex fabric that moves with the body without constricting. Also, adding soft elastic to the waistband with some fly-vent action gives it a flexible soft and secure fit that breathes and moves.
Another sweet little detail is the inside zipper pocket. This adds a more convenient option for entertainment or mobile devices as well as having the two zipped hand pockets. You get a lot of secure storage to bring your necessities.
Nike’s Dry-Fit technology redesigned their brand and rightfully so as it is slightly magical. Soft and breathable but mostly it makes the best Nike running shorts highly durable.
The polyester spandex blended fabric is made for activity. It isn't just woven together, the magic is in the science of the blend. Flex Repel is not just sewn together, they made these to work with you no matter what.
Flex Repel running shorts are a midrange price at a high-end Nike standard. They give to a lot of movement, offering solid versatile technology so you don’t have to switch your threads to switch your workout. This is one of the best options for those with an extensive workout schedule that need something that is going to last.
9. Dry Fly
The material is perfect for the summer
Great for many different sport activities
Keeps you dry and comfortable
This design may not be appropriate for everyone
Running shorts are great, but for some people, some shorts have very similar designs. If you would like to test something a little bit different, then go with the Nike Dry Fly 9.Read more
Comfort & Style
These are made of 100% polyester. This is a great news as this fabric is a great option for runners. It wicks the moisture very well; there’s no skin irritation or any rash.
Durability and advanced features
Many runners also have a problem with keeping their keys and other items as many shorts don’t have pockets. In this model, there are even two. They’re placed on each side so you can keep your belongings there. The internal drawcord provides an adjustable fit. It’s also double turned for a longer lifespan of the shorts.
Cost and value
The price is rather on the higher side but these shorts are also longer so more material is used while creating. High-quality shorts are worth this price.
10. Dry Attack
Dri-Fit material to keep you cool and dry
Several color options to choose from
No internal liner
The Nike Dry Attack shorts are an excellent running short for every lady out there--they are comfortable, breathable, and stylish. With these shorts, you will have lots of color options to choose from; you can rest assured they will comfortably get you through all of your runs.Read more
Performance & style
These lightweight shorts are a perfect option for short and long distance running. They have an elastic waistband that you can loosen or tighten with the drawstring.
Comfort and breathability
It features a 5-inch inseam to provide you with maximum coverage--and at this length, it also does not restrict your movement. They also utilize Dri-Fit material to wick away sweat moisture and keep you cool and dry during your runs.
These shorts are affordably priced and come in several color options.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
If you don't feel good when you're running your performance will suffer.
No matter what you're doing it's nice to feel good when you're doing it. Running is no exception and that's why we made sure to only include options on our list that have the right features and design as well as plenty of positive reviews to back it up. When it comes to running shorts, one of the most frequent complaints is that they cause chafing. This is obviously something that you want to avoid. It's also why many people wear running shorts that are much shorter than is what's considered to be currently stylish. By having less fabric brushing against your body there's less chance for chafing and abrasion. All of the shorts on this list are designed to minimize and hopefully eliminate this annoying and potentially painful condition, but keep in mind that everyone's body is different. Another thing that can cause discomfort and chafing is having too much moisture soaking the shorts. Because of this we also made sure that each pair on this list does a good job of wicking moisture away from the body and drying quickly, which is something we'll talk more about below in the breathability section.
As runners, we put in the work to go the extra mile. Your shorts should be tough enough to go along with you.
One great thing about Nike products is that for the most part, they are all long-lasting. Some options that are ultra-light in weight for race applications may not last as long as others, but you can usually count on your Nike running shorts being with you for the long haul. One thing you can do to help ensure this is by caring for them properly. Every pair comes with a tag on the inside that has the proper care and washing instructions. Even though we can b as guilty as the next person of not paying attention to these instructions, the company put them there for a reason and if you follow them you'll be sure to get the longest life out of your shorts. Some products may need to be hand washed while others are fine to go in the washing machine. However, if you want to maximize the lifespan of your shorts and keep them as breathable as possible we highly recommend that you air dry them instead of putting them in the dryer, especially on high heat. A hot dryer can shrink the shorts which will tighten the mesh, making it harder for moisture to escape, so even though it may take a little longer it's always a good idea to let your running shorts air dry naturally.
Running makes you work up a sweat and for maximum comfort and performance, it's important for that sweat to be able to dry quickly.
Nike knows running, and they know that runners tend to sweat a lot. They also recognize that if this sweat doesn't dry quickly it can lead to discomfort, chafing, and even blisters. Because of this, they design all of their running shorts to wick moisture away from the body to help keep you dry. Most of the products on this list are made with their famous Dri-Fit fabric. Dri-Fit first debuted at the 1996 summer Olympics. It's made of synthetic micro-fibers that are naturally moisture wicking. What do we mean? Well, synthetic fibers such as polyester and nylon, for example, are literally incapable of absorbing moisture. Because of this, your sweat moves around them to the outside air where it can dry naturally. Natural fibers such as cotton, on the other hand, are more than capable and all too willing to absorb moisture and they hold on to it for dear life, which makes them dry extremely slowly. So whether it's with running shorts, socks, shirts, or whatever other garments you wear when running, working out, or playing sports, be sure to look for gear that is made of mostly synthetic fibers to help you stay dry and comfortable so you can perform at your best.
This factor goes beyond mere price and takes into account the performance and durability of a product in relation to its cost.
Ever hear the saying, "penny smart and dollar stupid"? What this means is that sometimes we can get so focused on just saving money that we make decisions that end up costing us more money in the long run. For example, let's say you buy a pair of cheap running shorts that cost $10 less than a good pair of high-quality Nike shorts. You're happy because you saved some money. But those shorts fall apart quickly and after just a few months need to be replaced. So you go buy another pair and there goes that $10 you thought you were saving. Plus, you have to take the time to drive to the store to buy them and spend money on gas and wear and tear on your vehicle and that's even more time and money out of your pocket. If you had just spent the extra $10 upfront to buy the quality pair of shorts you wouldn't have to replace them so quickly, and you wouldn't waste time with additional and unnecessary shopping. At RunnerClick we're value conscious like everyone else, but we believe in spending more upfront to buy high-quality gear that lasts so that we don't have to keep replacing it and spending more time, money, and hassle over the long term.
While it's not the most important thing to think about, liking the way you look in your running clothes can help motivate you to run longer and more often.
When you're shopping for a new pair of running shorts we definitely recommend that you prioritize their performance, comfort, durability, and breathability over their looks. But this is also a really important thing to think about. Studies have shown that people who like the way they look in their running gear run more often and longer distances than people who don't. So buying a pair of shorts that you look good in isn't vain (well not just vain anyway) because it can actually help you to stay on track with your training and meeting your health and fitness goals.
Most true running shorts are designed to be shorter than that is often considered fashionable. The short length helps to minimize skin to fabric contact which in turn can eventually lead to chafing. If you feel uncomfortable wearing such short shorts, and we totally understand if you are, choose a longer option but make sure that they're made of highly breathable, moisture-wicking fabric that will dry quickly so that you won't wind up with chafing and blisters.
Expert Interviews & Opinions
Although many of the products listed here offer impressive durability and should be able to last for quite some time, there will eventually come a point where you will need to replace them. For running shorts, some signs that it's time to find a replacement are a loose waistband, significant holes or tears, and transparency in some portions of the fabric.
In some cases, running shorts that offer special antibacterial or moisture-wicking properties can attract their own odor over time. Usually, this lingering smell won't even go away after running through a complete washing cycle. In order to treat this, soaking your active apparel in vinegar or a mixture of water and baking soda before washing can help to remove this scent.
Other Factors to Consider
Do you need pockets?
This can be more of a personal choice, but some people need to have a pocket in their shorts. It may seem strange at first to have pockets in the running shorts but to be honest, this is one of the best features. Think about it- you run and you need to keep your keys somewhere. You're not going to take a bag with you, so the best solution is to use shorts with a small pocket. While choosing the shorts with pockets, you need to think about how big it should be. We are aware that most runners don’t like very big pockets as it makes shorts less stylish and it’s easier to lost things. However, the pocket must be big enough to store your keys. Some people say your pockets should be big enough to keep a credit card in it.
The next thing you should think about is where your pocket should be placed. Most shorts have a small pocket on the inside of the waistband. This is a very popular option, but nobody said that there aren’t others. You can find pockets on the backside of some shorts; these are said to be the best when you run long distances. If you have a pocket close to the waistband, there’s less bouncing.
Think also how many pockets you want. The most popular option is one but there’s also the possibility of having two or more pockets in the shorts.
Whenever we read reviews and we see negative ones, they’re mostly about sizing chart. It may be really hard to choose the size, especially if you look for the product on the Internet. Have you ever wondered what does it mean good size? Well, this means that the shorts have an appropriate length and they have rather snug fit- especially when it comes to compression shorts.
Other types of shorts have a loose fit but they can’t be too loose in the waistband. The best way to get the best size for you is to measure yourself. You should do it regularly as the body is changing and many people forget about it. When you find durable, comfortable running shorts, compare your measurements with the official brand’s sizing chart. This will definitely help you with the choice but it doesn’t mean that the size will be good. If you had problems with sizing in the past, look for shorts that can be easily returned.
Frequently Asked Questions
q: I’ve heard something about different styles of shorts. Can you explain them?
Yes, there are three most basics styles of running shorts:
Compression shorts– they’re tight fitting as the title implies, and they have a snug fit. They tend to be much warmer than the others because they compress the legs. They’re very popular because they provide muscle support and are sometimes used for recovery. This type will be also the best if you want to avoid chaffing. These are said to be the most flexible of all the types.
Split shorts– they’re very popular to V-Notch Shorts. They have a nice loose fit, which means that they give you a full range of motion. They also tend to be shorter.
V-Notch Shorts– this type has a V-shaped cutout as the title implies. The same as with split shorts, they provide a great range of movement. They’re still very flexible and are the most popular type.
As you can see these are 3 basic types. You can also encounter the other types but they will be similar to one of those 3. The choice is yours!
q: What are some typical features of running shorts?
Buying good running shorts isn’t only choosing the best size or price. It’s also personalizing the shorts and choosing what additional features you really want to have. Here are the most popular features.
Dri-FIT Technology – This technology can be found while shopping many Nike products and it’s extremely popular amongst runners. It is usually for way stretch fabric. Special material is able to wick the sweat during running. This sweat quickly evaporates from the fabric so no worries about an unpleasant odor. You will stay dry during your running session and you will feel more comfortable. This function also makes shorts more breathable as there’s bigger air flow.
Quick drying– this is a feature adored by many runners who don’t like to have wet clothes on. Polyester and nylon are the most popular materials which are quick drying. This is a great option for people who tend to sweat a lot and they want to stay dry during running. You know that as a runner, you may encounter different weather conditions and when there’s rain, your shorts will be able to dry fast. This feature is also useful when it comes to drying the clothes after watching.
UPF protection– if we were asked what is the one thing runners forget about during running, it's sun protection. Maybe you have your glasses on, but do your clothes have SPF? There are different levels of protection; the higher the number you choose, the more protected you are. It’s not a must-have but it may be a nice feature, especially if you live in a very sunny area where the rays of the sun are very strong.
Inner liner- this is a feature that is adored by some people but there are the runners that hate it. We could say that it’s kind of underwear. This feature helps to wick the moisture and this is fantastic. Because of this, there’s much less chaffing. This option is becoming more and more popular as for some runners wearing shorts with inner liner is really comfortable.
Compression– when it comes to shorts, there is a special type called compression. It has a snug fit and it may help to recover muscles, which is why they’re also used after surgeries. Some runners think that they’re less comfortable than the other types because they’re too tight for longer runs.
Packable– it means that you can pack your shorts in the package and you can easily store them in the package. This is not common options when it comes to shorts, it’s more popular with running jackets.
Anti-chafing seams/ Chafe-free seams – this kind of seams are placed away from the areas with the biggest probability of chafing.
Reflectivity– this is the feature that we really love because it makes us safer and it also lets the drivers see us from long distances. When it comes to running shorts, the logo is usually the element that is reflective.
q: Do I need a pair of running shorts?
This would be another personal choice option, but we know how much shorts can benefit a runner. Running shorts lets you run more freely. There is no fabric to hold you back with every step you take, They are breathable and flexible in every way. If you live in warmer climates it is almost necessary to have a pair of running shorts. It can get way to warm outside to run if you don't have a great pair of running shorts.
Running shorts are an extremely comfortable thing and every runner should have at least one pair of running shorts in their wardrobe. Running shorts are adored by people who live in very sunny/ hot areas and they want to provide their legs some fresh air. Nike isn’t the only brand that offers great running shorts but it’s one of the best brands on the market. As we’ve said before, we are focusing on comfort and durability, and all of the products in our top 10 have it. Get some Nike running shorts and hit the road. Or maybe you’ve already bought a pair of Nike running shorts? What do you think of them? Let us know in the comments below.
q: What's the best way to care for a pair of Nike running shorts?
As always, we recommend following the care guidelines that come on the tag inside the shorts. Usually you can wash the shorts in the washing machine but in order to maximize the life of the shorts and to preserve their breathability we highly recommend letting them air dry instead of putting them in the dryer. Drying a piece of athletic apparel that's made of synthetic material such as the products on this list can make them shrink, which will tighten the weave of the fabric and make it harder for moisture to pass through to the outside air where it can dry naturally.