The outsole of this updated version of the shoe bears a striking resemblance to that of its predecessor, the TR V7. Still made up of full-length rubber foam, this outsole is designed to be durable enough to withstand the wear and tear of high-intensity training
. Like in many Nike Freestyle sneakers, the outsole features deep laser-cut grooves in a hexagonal pattern that are designed to provide maximum flexibility in any direction. The soft outsole also serves as a shock absorbing component of the sneaker to help protect you during your workout. There are rubber pods placed strategically throughout the foam of the outsole to deliver multidirectional traction. One updated part of this sneakers’ outsole is found in its heel; this version features a flatter and wider heel compared to its predecessor in order to deliver extra support and stability during exercise. The front of the toe area on the outsole boasts a haptic print rubber pod for added durability.
The TR V8 has a similar midsole to its predecessor, made of full-length EVA foam
. There are a couple of updates however including the thickness of the midsole. In this update, the midsole is thicker and extends up on both sides in order to cradle the foot for extra stability during side to side movements. The lateral side of the sneaker’s midsole does not feature the company’s well-known swoosh, but the medial side does which is a nice little touch. The EVA foam present in this sneaker will help absorb shock and flex with your movements throughout a high-intensity workout.
Compared to its predecessor, the Nike Free TR V8’s updates are most evident in the sneakers’ upper. Overall, the silhouette of the sneaker resembles the TR V7 but, really, the upper received a pretty big overhaul. One similarity to the previous design is the half-sleeve bootie-like upper
and fully attached tongue. However, the lateral and medial sides of the midfoot now feature TPU wings that integrate with the lacing system for extra reinforced support. These wings are designed to lock the foot in place in the ankle area to provide extra stability.
The TR V7 featured visible cables running along the midfoot. However, in the updated version of the TR V8, Nike utilizes their FlyWire cable technology. These are small cables that run from the bottom of the sneaker, wrapping up around the midfoot within the upper and attach to the lacing system. This technology has been proven to provide excellent support, stability, and a flexible fit.
The rest of the shoes’ upper is made out of a breathable double-layered mesh material. This material extends throughout the forefoot of the shoe, while the midfoot to heel area is made of a tighter-knit mesh which is still breathable, but slightly more supportive. At the heel, you will find a comfortable heel cup made of flexible textile material. This heel cup is designed to deliver additional support and works with the TPU wings to keep your foot locked in place. The shoes’ upper features a higher padded tongue
and heel area that not only helps to get the sneaker on and off easily but aids in supporting you through high-intensity movements.
These sneakers are relatively lightweight thanks to the materials in their makeup. The outsole and midsole are made of soft EVA foam and the outsole does not boast a heavy rubber lug system. The upper is made of lightweight breathable mesh materials. This shoe will not drag you down throughout your workout.
The double layer mesh that makes up most of the sneakers’ upper provides excellent breathability which is something you want when you are cross-training. The rear portion of the shoes’ upper is made of a tighter knit mesh
. It is still breathable, however, the TPU wings that support the midfoot go over the middle of the shoe and may detract slightly from the breathability but not too much since there are holes in the wings to allow air in and out. With that said, you should feel a decent amount of airflow in and out of the foot chamber.
As you may surmise, it is difficult to make a cross-training shoe that is both extremely comfortable and reliable for performing in multiple cross-training activities. However, the Nike Free TR V8 has been tested and proven to not only perform well but act as a comfortable sneaker for various training activities. The great thing about this sneaker is that it provides comfort for not only training activities like jumping and weight lifting, but they also deliver exceptional support while running, which cannot always be said for cross-training sneakers
The material that makes up the shoes’ upper provides an adaptable comfortable fit while the EVA midsole delivers enough cushion to keep your foot comfortable. The heel cup is made up of a firmer textile material but is moldable with your foot, therefore it is comfortable. One user commented that sometimes sneakers with a bootie-like construction may sometimes cause irritation on the heel but these shoes did not do that.
In general, cross-training sneakers aren’t meant to be the most stylish shoes out there because they are specialty shoes, designed to deliver excellent performance when you are participating in various training activities. The upper of this sneaker does feature a couple of unique qualities that will prevent it from being a versatile sneaker. The silhouette itself is more of a high-top
bootie design because the tongue and the heel come up a little higher than typical sneakers, giving them a unique silhouette. Also, the TPU wings that surround the shoes’ midfoot area give the sneaker more of a specialized look. With that said, these are great looking sneakers for cross-training, you just might not want to wear them out on the town.
The Nike Free TR V8 has been proven to be a fairly durable sneaker. The foam midsole and outsole have held up well during testing and after putting the shoes through the wringer, one user said they couldn’t see any visible signs of wear and tear. The small rubber toe bumper
will protect the front of the shoe from tearing during activities such as burpees or quick stops. Also, the upper’s material is fairly flexible and will mold and flex with your foot movements and should not tear easily. Some mesh bootie-style cross trainers have a tendency to tear easily but the material used in the engineering of this sneakers’ upper has been proven to be pretty durable.
The main thing you want your cross-training sneakers to protect you from is shock and slipping. These shoes have been tested to a great extent and the findings are pretty positive in terms of protection. The small toe cap will protect toes and wear and tear on the shoes during burpees while the heel cup firmly grasps your heel to keep it stabilized during lifting. The bootie-like construction of the shoe will keep your foot in place as you move from side to side because it will prohibit movement within the sneaker. The outsole does not boast a lot of grippy rubber so that may be the one downside in terms of protection.
Generally speaking, cross-training sneakers do not feature a large amount of midsole material so they don’t offer a ton of response. However, the Nike Free TR V8 offers enough response to deliver a high-quality cross-training experience because the EVA foam of the midsole absorbs shock and returns to its original shape easily. This will cause the energy from the pressure applied to the foam to return back to your foot and propel you forward or upward. There isn’t a large amount of responsiveness but there is more than if you were barefoot.
The solid full-length EVA midsole and outsole of this sneaker give this shoe a great amount of support. It creates a great platform for lifting weights but also allows you to pivot and turn if need be, all while supporting your foot. The TPU wings on either side of the midfoot hug the foot and support it by keeping it locked in place. The heel of the shoe boasts a semi-flexible heel cup
that locks the heel in place, supporting it as you perform activities such as lifting or box-jumping.
These cross-training sneakers are engineered to perform best in the gym. They will work well on a solid track surface as well. The outsole does not boast a heavy rubber lug system so you may not want to wear them out in harsh weather conditions or on technical terrains. They will perform really well on solid gym-type surfaces.
For around $100, you can own these great-performing cross-training sneakers. Nike has proven time and time again to engineer exceptional sneakers that deliver great performance. At this price, it is definitely worth trying them out.
These shoes do not offer a lot in the traction department. The outsole of this sneaker does not feature a large amount of grippy rubber. However, it does have areas of rubber where Nike determined it was needed most. These are not going to serve you well outside on wet surfaces, but they should perform well indoors.
The great thing about the outsole of these shoes is their flexibility. Like many current Nike models, the company chose to use laser-etched flex grooves in the EVA foam of the mid and outsole to make the sneaker super-flexible. The grooves are etched in a hexagonal pattern which allows the sneaker to bend and flex multi-directionally. Because there is no heavy rubber outsole, the bottom of the sneaker is very flexible. Additionally, the upper part of the shoe is made up of a two-layer mesh which is also very flexible.
The Nike Free TR V8 is an excellent cross-training sneaker that offers a decent amount of support. However, some users have said that the stability of this shoe is not as great as the support it offers. This is mainly due to the lack of heavier rubber on either side of the outsole and midsole. This means that lateral movements may not be very stabilized. However, if you don’t plan on doing a ton of side to side movements, you may not have to worry because the rest of the shoe offers a decent amount of stability thanks to the TPU wings, heel cup, and FlyWire cables.
Cross-training sneakers typically do not have a large drop and these sneakers follow suit. They offer enough cushioning and support so that you shouldn’t have too much ground feel but you won’t be lifted high off the ground in these sneakers.
- TPU wings on the midfoot area of the sneaker provide support
- Flex grooves in the foam of the outsole and midsole deliver excellent flexibility
- FlyWire Cable technology in the upper helps to support and stabilize your foot and keep it snugly in place
- Two-layer mesh upper is flexible enough to mold to your foot shape and delivers great breathability
- Firm yet moldable heel cup helps to lock your foot in place
Shopping for a cross-training sneaker that offers both comfort and performance can prove to be pretty daunting. However, Nike has improved the Nike Free TR V8 to be even more flexible, breathable, supportive, and comfortable than its predecessor which was a highly acclaimed model. The bootie-like construction allows for great breathability while the TPU wings at the midfoot area deliver support and stability. Nike employs their popular FlyWire cable technology for added support and for a comfortable and adaptable fit. These sneakers will look great at the gym and have been proven to perform well in both cross-training activities and in running short to moderate distances. With a name like Nike and at such an affordable price, you can’t really go wrong with these cross-trainers.