Nike Air Max Fury

The Nike Air Max Fury is one of many appealing offerings from Nike’s popular Air Max line. Having been in production for three decades, Nike has had a great deal of time to refine this line of high-collar running shoes. Some of the changes in this model are significant enough to justify the upgrade, but others leave you questioning why they tried to fix something that wasn’t broken.

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Where to Buy
Where to Buy
Pros & Cons
  • Fantastic style
  • Excellent cushion
  • Ample foot protection
  • Flexible forefoot
  • Snug upper fit
  • Cons
    • Heavy and bulky construction
    • Questionable heel durability
    • Key Features
      At first glance, there isn’t anything particularly noteworthy that may stand out on these shoes’ outsoles. However, upon closer examination, you may notice some key design choices that give these shoes an edge when running. Flex grooves have been placed all along the forefoot and arch of the Nike Air Max Fury’s outsoles, offering a highly controlled level of flexibility. This results in a more energy-efficient running stride when emphasizing the forefoot without sacrificing any stability due to the high level of control.
      The midsole of these Nike running shoes makes a bold statement with their construction and overall aesthetic. A generous amount of cushioning has been placed in the midsole which aims to absorb the majority of shock that can come about from repeated foot strikes. A great deal of focus has also been placed on the heels of these shoes, with a sizable drop providing extra cushion in this region. Finally, a special pocket of air placed in the heel section provides even more cushion, literally separating your heel from the ground while running. This results in a highly comfortable and absorbent shoe, thanks to the exceptional midsole.
      Nike Air Max Fury’s upper was designed for the purposes of providing excellent ventilation and a secure fit. The high breathability is accomplished with the implementation of a monolayer mesh upper, designed specifically to allow for air to flow freely throughout the shoe. Tightness is achieved near the top of the upper, with the addition of flywires alongside standard shoelaces. These function similarly to cables on a suspension bridge, providing tension and support. The end result is a stylish upper portion that allows for cool feet while running and ensures a tight but comfortable fit.
      It’s difficult to find an exact value for how much these shoes weight, but the closest approximation is roughly 9 ounces. This is impressive considering just how much material is used for the construction of these shoes. The air pocket located in the heel of the midsole certainly helps keep these shoes from weighing down your feet as much. However, this weight is still on the high side when it comes to serious competition running shoes. At this weight, energy expenditure may start to become an issue over the course of longer running events. This is why many runners usually choose shoes weighing in at 7 ounces or less.
      The level of airflow offered by the Air Max Fury is dampened by the addition of a much higher rear portion on the upper. This is a departure from the common modern running shoe design which usually places the mouth of the shoe significantly lower, close to the ankle. However, the use of a single layer mesh fabric for the majority of the upper manages to make up for this design choice to a degree, offering a lightweight and highly ventilated foot cradle. It will certainly be an adjustment for runners used to running shoes with a lower profile, but it can be much worse.
      One of the major focuses of this shoe’s design is an excellent level of comfort. In order to accomplish this, much of the material used in the overall construction was placed in the bottoms of these shoes along the midsole and outsole. What little comfort may be lost due to this uneven weight distribution is more than compensated for with the soft cushioning invoked by this design. Additionally, features of the upper portion such as the flywires near the laces and the partial internal bootie help to provide extra comfort with a tight fit and superb airflow.
      As is standard with Nike products, the style of these shoes is superb. With a vintage feel evocative of the classic Air Jordans, the shape of these shoes has a timeless appeal. A number of color options are available depending on where you look, but the black and white versions, in particular, look exceptional. The minimalist color scheme drives the point home, resulting in a shoe that is subtle but still eye-catching. That said, the air pocket in the heel comes off as a bit tacky, and the high tongue may bunch up and turn into an eyesore. Other than these two mild inconveniences, you are looking at an extremely fashionable shoe with the Nike Air Max Fury.
      One aspect where durability is lacking in these shoes is the air pocket. A few customers have remarked that this pocket had blown out on them after a few months, requiring them to send these shoes back and wait for a replacement. This can be avoided if you run on softer surfaces, but the likelihood is still there. Due to the monolayer design of the Air Max Fury’s upper, this area is more susceptible to tearing if you try using these shoes on rougher terrain. Other than that, the damage-resistant material used for the outsole and midsole will last for quite a long time if treated properly.
      Despite its lighter weight, the Nike Air Max Fury offers an impressive level of protection. The protection isn’t as impressive as most trail shoes, but it does feel a bit closer to this realm of footwear than the average running shoe. An air pocket in the heel accentuates a greater degree of cushion which works to protect your heel from discomfort, and the partial internal bootie helps to keep your feet in place while protecting your upper foot. Even the back of your feet and ankle are protected thanks to the extra high rear portion of the Air Max Fury’s upper.
      While the weight of this shoe can negatively affect some runners’ level of responsiveness if they are used to a lighter shoe, some design choices have been implemented that help in this regard. One such design choice is the flywires that secure the upper laces, which provide enough tightness to maintain a solid grip on your feet. This extra tension on top also helps to alleviate the bottom-heavy sensation that is common for shoes with this level of outsole and midsole cushion. Finally, the heel air pocket helps to reduce the weight a bit without sacrificing cushion, giving these shoes a slight advantage over the similarly designed but significantly heavier trail shoe.
      The primary focus of the Air Max Fury’s support is on the heel. For runners who accentuate the heel during ground striking, this will come as a terrific benefit to them. The combination of a generous 10 mm heel drop and a shock absorbing air pocket in the heel accomplish this feat. On the forefoot and arch, more effort has been placed into providing superior energy dispersal rather than support from ground impact. Because of this, a compromise between heel support and forefoot efficiency has been made in regards to these shores, sure to please a heel striker but almost guaranteed to annoy a forefoot striker or flat-footed runner.
      Nike’s Air Max Fury running shoes are best suited for standard running surfaces. This includes grass, soft dirt and running track, but they also provide adequate sole protection for smooth running on concrete, cement, and asphalt. You may be able to get away with trail walking while wearing these shoes since they do offer a decent amount of midsole cushioning, but running on trails or up inclines is strongly discouraged. The level of traction and support is simply not good enough to facilitate high-intensity running sessions in these environments. That aside, these are fairly durable shoes that can handle most forms of terrain.
      These shoes carry a price that is higher than some other brands of running shoe. However, this price isn’t nearly as high as some of the more designer shoes on the market and is far from the most expensive pair of Nikes. With that in mind, the price seems wholly reasonable and is justified by the plethora of features included in the package. For those looking for a running shoe that offers a decent amount of traction and a high level of cushioning, this is one of the best offerings in the price range. If you shop around, you may even be able to find it at a discount and save a bit of money, but the base price isn’t bad at all.
      Adequate traction can be found when using these Nike running shoes on the majority of surfaces. What helps to make the Air Max Fury’s a good casual shoe as well as a running shoe is the level of traction provided by the hard rubber outsole. In addition to providing excellent support while running on common competitive surfaces such as track and grass, these shoes offer enough protection and stability to run on harder surfaces such as the sidewalk or road. For these reasons and many others, these running shoes are perfect whether you’re on the track or off it.
      The forefoot and arch of these shoes are made to offer a comfortable amount of flexibility without sacrificing too much stability. This is accomplished through the use of flex grooves, which separate several hard rubber plates in a style unlike an armadillo or pill bug. This type of design allows for comfort and protection from excessive shock while running but still manages to offer enough give that each foot strike efficiently takes advantage of your energy and maintains a steady momentum.
      There are good and bad aspects of a heavier, larger running shoe design in regards to stability. One one hand, the extra material can be used toward reinforcing the midsole and outsole to better maintain control over more difficult terrain or while running on an incline. While this is true to an extent with the Nike Air Max Fury, the generous cushioning in the midsole and outsole are still inadequate when it comes to any terrain rougher than hard dirt. On the other hand, greater weight in a shoe often makes it harder to control due to air and muscle resistance. This is thankfully avoided in these shoes due to the extra focus their design placed on providing a tight fit through a snug yet comfortable upper.
      A high heel drop is common practice for standard running shoes, and these shoes are no exception to this rule. The Air Max Fury features a 10mm difference in midsole thickness from the heel to the forefoot. In conjunction with the flex grooves added to the front of these shoes’ outsole, this design choice results in a shoe that favors forefoot striking. Heel striking is also possible while wearing these shoes thanks to this generous drop, but some of this extra height can be attributed to the lighter but significantly less durable air pocket in the heel.
      Key Features

      • High collar upper with ankle protection

      • Flywire fasteners on shoelaces

      • Air pocket cushion in the heel

      • Flex grooves on the outsole

      • 10mm heel drop

      • Breathable mesh fabric upper

      Bottom Line
      At this point, runners know what to expect from Nike’s Air Max line of running shoes. The common threads among all models, including this one, are the heel air pocket and the classic design. Some features that were added to this model attempt to improve on some of the Air Max’s shortcomings, but this model of shoe is definitely starting to show its age. If you appreciate a retro style of shoe and don’t mind the extra weight, the Nike Air Max Fury is an excellent choice.
      Where to Buy
      By Mike Valverde
      Last updated:
      Where to buy
      Best offer on: Jul. 28. 2021

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