Nike Free RN Flyknit 2018 Review: Lightweight & Responsive

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Last updated: January 26, 2024

When it comes to finding the perfect blend of comfort and flexibility in running shoes, it’s tough to beat the Nike Free RN Flyknit 2018. I’ve laced up these sneakers and put them through their paces to give you the lowdown on their performance.

The Flyknit upper promises a sock-like fit that’s both lightweight and breathable, a claim that’s music to any runner’s ears. But does it deliver? I’m here to break down the details, from the innovative design to the responsive cushioning, and let you know if they’re worth your investment.

Stay tuned as I dive into the nitty-gritty of what makes the Nike Free RN Flyknit 2018 a standout choice for runners and whether they’ve earned a spot in my go-to gear rotation.

Design and Fit

When I first slipped into the Nike Free RN Flyknit 2018, the fit was like a glove. Crafted with a one-piece Flyknit upper, it offers a seamless and snug feel that’s second to none. There’s no denying that Nike’s investment in Flyknit technology has paid off, providing a combination of stretch and support where runners need it most. The design is sleek with a minimalistic approach, reflecting the functionality-focused ethic that runners appreciate.

The shoe’s lace-up system deserves a shout-out for its role in customizable fit. It integrates seamlessly with the Flyknit upper, allowing me to tighten or loosen the fit according to my preference. Plus, the absence of multiple stitched layers means there’s less likelihood of irritation or hotspots; I’ve noticed this reduces the break-in period significantly.

Let’s talk aesthetics. The Nike Free RN Flyknit 2018 is available in a variety of colorways, catering to all styles whether you prefer a subtle look or a statement piece. The signature Nike Swoosh is prominently displayed, as expected, but it’s the refined lines and contours of the design that catch the eye. They look just as good with casual wear as they do on the track.

In terms of sizing, they’re true to size for the most part. However, if you’re in between sizes or prefer a bit more room, especially in the toe box, consider sizing up. Remember that the Flyknit will give a little after a few runs, but not as much as shoes with more traditional mesh upper designs.

Regarding the overall feel, the Nike Free RN Flyknit 2018’s insole is designed to conform to the shape of your foot, and I certainly notice that personalized fit when tackling longer distances. The lower heel-to-toe drop pushes me to adopt a more natural foot strike during my runs, which can take a bit of adjusting if you’re used to a higher drop.

Breathability and Lightweight

When it comes to running shoes, breathability is paramount. I’ve found that the Nike Free RN Flyknit 2018 excels in this area. The Flyknit material isn’t just for looks; it serves a functional purpose by allowing air to circulate around the feet, keeping them cool even during a long run on a hot day.

The shoe’s design incorporates ventilation zones where they’re needed most. This strategic placement of breathable areas ensures that your feet aren’t just comfortable, but also that the risk of overheating and sweat accumulation is greatly reduced.

As for the weight, these shoes are incredibly light. My experience aligns with the data which shows that the men’s size 10 weighs in at 8.4 ounces (238 grams) while the women’s size 8 comes in at 6.9 ounces (196 grams). Here’s how they stack up:

Size Weight
Men’s 10 8.4 oz
Women’s 8 6.9 oz

The reduced weight translates to less fatigue and more efficiency in my stride. The absence of unnecessary bulk makes the Nike Free RN Flyknit 2018 a real asset for runners who want to feel unburdened by their footwear.

Cushioning and Responsiveness

When I first slipped on the Nike Free RN Flyknit 2018, the cushioning was immediately noticeable. Unlike traditional models, these runners deploy a softer foam that’s both plush and resilient—a balance that’s hard to come by.

Nike’s innovative sole technology gives a sensation of padding without compromising on the ground feedback. It’s essential for me to feel connected to my running surface while still being protected; this shoe nails that requirement.

In terms of responsiveness, the Free RN Flyknit 2018 does not disappoint. There’s enough bounce-back to fuel my stride, yet it’s not so much that it becomes jarring. The shoe adapts to my movements, efficiently translating my energy into forward motion, making my runs feel effortlessly dynamic.

Durability and Longevity

When investing in a pair of running shoes, longevity is a key concern. My experience with Nike Free RN Flyknit 2018 has shown remarkable durability despite regular use. The Flyknit material holds up well against the rigors of the road, resisting wear and tear far longer than I initially expected.

Part of this long-lasting nature is likely due to the strong yet lightweight cables integrated within the Flyknit. These cables act like a support system, reinforcing high-stress areas without adding bulk. Even after months of frequent runs, the shoes exhibit minimal signs of fraying or separation, a testament to their robust construction.

It’s not just the upper that’s built to last; the soles also demonstrate impressive resilience. They maintain their shape and responsive qualities, not succumbing to the flattening that often occurs with foam-based soles. Tread wear, a common issue for avid runners, is significantly reduced in the Free RN Flyknit 2018. Traction patterns remain intact, providing reliable grip through various weather conditions and terrains.

Nike’s commitment to quality craftsmanship is evident in how well these shoes withstand daily wear. By prioritizing both structural integrity and material innovation, the Free RN Flyknit 2018 ensures that runners don’t have to sacrifice performance over time. Whether you’re clocking miles on the track or navigating city streets, these shoes are built to serve as a long-term running partner.


Wrapping up my review of the Nike Free RN Flyknit 2018, I’m thoroughly impressed by their performance. They’re a stellar choice for runners seeking a shoe that feels as natural as it is functional. The combination of breathability, lightweight design, and adaptive cushioning makes for an exceptional running experience. I’ve found that they hold up remarkably well over time, a testament to their durability. Whether you’re pounding the pavement or hitting the trails, these shoes are up to the task, providing that much-needed bounce-back and ground connection every runner craves. If you’re in the market for a reliable, comfortable, and responsive running shoe, the Nike Free RN Flyknit 2018 should definitely be on your radar.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the main features of the Nike Free RN Flyknit 2018?

The Nike Free RN Flyknit 2018 features breathability, lightweight design due to Flyknit material, strategic ventilation, reduced weight for less fatigue, balanced cushioning for comfort, innovative sole technology for good ground feedback, and a durable construction.

How does the Flyknit material benefit runners?

Flyknit material benefits runners by providing a lightweight, breathable, and supportive fit that adapts to the foot’s natural movement. It helps reduce shoe weight which can lead to less fatigue during runs.

Does the Nike Free RN Flyknit 2018 offer good cushioning?

Yes, the Nike Free RN Flyknit 2018 offers a balance of plushness and resilience in its cushioning, providing a comfortable yet responsive running experience.

Will I feel connected to the ground when wearing these shoes?

Absolutely. The innovative sole technology of the Nike Free RN Flyknit 2018 provides a sensation of padding without sacrificing ground feedback, keeping you connected to the running surface.

Are these shoes durable for long-term use?

The Nike Free RN Flyknit 2018 is designed for durability with robust Flyknit material and lightweight cables. They maintain their shape and responsive qualities over time with minimal wear and tear, and the soles have reduced tread wear and reliable grip.

Is the Nike Free RN Flyknit 2018 suitable for various weather conditions?

Yes, the shoes are designed with a strong grip suitable for a variety of weather conditions and terrains, ensuring lasting performance in diverse running environments.