Nike Metcon 3 Review

8.5
8.5 score
[Editors rating (8.5)] = (Garage Gym Ideas - Ultimate Home Gym Design) score (8.5)/10


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Editor rating: 8.5 / 10
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Nike Metcon 3 ReviewReview Facts

Nike has always been known for producing excellent shoes, especially ones made for working out. The Metcon is a range of sneakers just made for the gym, and its style and features just keep evolving and improving. The Nike Metcon 3 is the next evolution of the very popular Nike Metcon range of training shoes. In this article, we’ll provide a full review of the Metcon 3, with a focus on its application in a gym setting.

Editor's Pros & Cons
Pros

Very good looking

New & Improved outsoles, extending to the sides with triangular lugs for extra grip

Very supportive and responsive

Runs true to size

TPU plastic on the heel, increasing durability and improving support

Cons

Heels Still Slip Out

The Insoles still make squeaky sounds

May be a bit too pricey for some people

Style

Style

The Metcon 3 is a stylish looking shoe. It's definitely one of the best looking Crossfit shoes out there. Of course, it features the iconic Nike swoosh which is quite large and very visible. The upper is either very colorful and blended masterfully, or it has one solid color that makes the sneakers complement every outfit you wear. There are twelve different colorways to choose from. The sole of the Metcon 3 comes up way higher than on the Metcon 2, providing you with a whole lot of protection when you are performing exercises such as rope climbs.

If you want us to convince you how beautiful the shoe is even more, just flip the pair over, and check the outsole out. It looks urban and futuristic, with the triangle-like shapes extending to the sides of the shoes. The outsoles play into the color-scheme, completing the look of the Metcon 3.
Durability

Durability

The Metcon 3 is a very durably constructed shoe. The upper of the shoe is mesh, not, as has been erroneously reported, fly knit. It's easy to be confused when you just glance at the shoes, and also when you get to hold them, but the actual confusion existed because the leaked photos showed a different model, the Nike Metcon DSX Flyknit, which, as the name suggests, has a fly knit upper. This doesn't make the Metcon 3 any less durable though!

The thermal wrap that was a feature of the Metcon 2 has been minimized. The wrap is useful in that it afforded a measure of rigidity, but users found that it began to crack over time and was quite heavy and thick. The thermal wrap is now less of a feature. It is more pliable and not as likely to crack. The TPU plastics on the heels really seals the deal here. This material was used before by Nike in many of their models, and the Metcon 2 is one of them, so why not keep an excellent feature and transfer it over to the newer model? The Metcon 2 had plenty of durability issues though. They arise mostly thanks to the upper. The upper is quite rigid, and you do need to bend your feet a lot when exercising, especially when rope climbing. This creates creases, and then later cracks, along the upper. Some users even report that the thermal wrap unglues from the mesh! The Metcon 3 has this solved because the upper and the heel are fused together.
Heel

Heel

The thing that really sets the version 3 Metcon apart from its predecessor is the addition of TPU plastic on the heel. The heel clip which protruded from the heel of the Metcon 2 has been reworked due to customer feedback. It has been placed lower and less of a prominent feature. This clip was designed to assist in exercises like handstand push-ups to keep your feet from slipping on the wall. It is no longer a bright separate color, so it is clear that Nike is de-emphasizing this feature, which turned out to be a bit of a dud.

The heel clip adjustment on the Metcon 3 has allowed for the addition of rigid TPU plastic to enhance the rigidity. This does give you a locked-in feel but it does not completely get rid of the slight heel slip problem that customers have complained about with the previous incarnation of the Nike Metcon. The heel also sits quite low. This does give you much more freedom and makes the sneaker quite flexible, but you may discover that you crave more support. One common complaint many users report is that their heels keep slipping out of the shoes, which can be quite dangerous when you're running and jumping around. You really do need a lot of support when you partake in CrossFit, and the Metcon 3 may be lacking here.
Outsole & Insole

Outsole & Insole

The outsole of the Metcon 3 is a standout feature. It extends up the sides of the shoe to protect from rope burn, making it very functional. Besides that, it looks great. It's also stickier than the previous version!

The insole, however, is another story. They have changed just slightly when compared to the 1st and 2nd versions of the Nike Metcon. That means that the squeaking problem which plagued those former versions has not even been addressed, let alone resolved. The insole now has a flex groove, and it's a bit thinner than what was seen in the previous model. Do not let this worry you though, because the Metcon 3 is quite comfortable, as many users report. The bottom of the insoles are a bit sticker than what was seen before, so they may not squeak right away. But as moisture builds up in the shoe, that tacky layer will wear off, and you will just have to listen to what the shoe has to say.
Performance

Performance

In terms of performance, the Metcon 3 performs very similarly to Metcon 2 in the gym. However, its big advantage is that it feels lighter, almost as if you are training in socks rather than shoes. This is a good thing and is largely due to the minimization of the toe wrap, which added considerable bulk to the front of the previous version of this shoe.

The Metcon 2 was a sneaker that was ideal for lifting. This did make them a bit too supportive for jumping and plyometrics though. The Metcon 3 has all the right features that make it an ideally balanced shoe. Squatting in the Metcon 3 feels just as good as in the previous models, if not even better thanks to the improved construction. The lateral stability also gives you a solid ground to both lift and move in every direction, keeping you safe at all times. The outsole actually slopes, which translates the power you put into lifting into your entire pull.
Breathability

Breathability

The Metcon 3 is quite a breathable sneaker. The Metcon 2 was also breathable, but the mesh has slightly bigger perforations on the 3 which make it more suited for sweaty feet. The construction is durable and hardy, but that doesn't mean that there aren't any places and holes for air and moisture to escape out of! The mesh upper makes that a possibility, expelling air as you move.
Price

Price

Truth be told, the Metcon 3 is quite a pricey pair. And why should you go for the Metcon 3 when you can get a perfectly good pair of the Metcon 2 for half the price? Well, for starters, some people like the brand name and the possibility to show off. We're not saying that the Metcon 3 is a bad pair though - it's excellent and functional, excusing the price it has completely. Then again, the Metcon 2 and other shoes from competitor brands have the same level of excellence at a lower price. The Metcon 3 does look much better, and the fit is improved, with the squeaking issues somewhat resolved and the outsole extending to the sides. If you value these things more than the money you may invest in the shoe, then dig in!
Size

Size

If you already own a pair of Metcon's, the 1 and the 2 specifically, just go for the same size as you already have. Although Nike shoes have the tendency to run small, this is simply not true for the Metcon 3. They are actually quite true to their size, so don't worry about going a size up or down. Some users complain that the fit is a bit on the narrow side though, so if you have wider feet be careful here. The Metcon 3 does not come in a size made for wider feet, and if you really have been blessed with wider feet, you might want to skip these.
Weight

Weight

Since the Metcon 3 was made to support many strenuous activities, you should not expect it to be lightweight. The Metcon 3 has models for both males and females, and their weight varies. The men's is a bit heavier, measuring at 11.5 oz, while the one made for women weighs a bit less than 9.5 oz. The midsole is almost non-existent here, so it's not the one that's adding all of that weight, but the hardy upper and the outsole that extends laterally are the ones that play into the weight factor. Do not worry about the weight though, because these shoes really do have to be a bit heavier if you want them to remain functional!
Support

Support

One thing that sets the Metcon 3 apart from the competition is the lacing system. As we all know, a proper lacing system is one of the most important factors that play into the support, and the Metcon 3 has that covered. The Metcon 3 does not have regular laces - instead, it has Flywire guides. These guides are connected to the actual laces, which allows you to adjust the fit to your foot precisely and with ease. The TPU heel also supports your feet, although some users still reported that they feel it's a bit too supportive. The heels still don't hold onto your feet and let them slip out, but the upper is solid and keeps you locked down instead.
Flexibility

Flexibility

As you slide your feet into the pair, you may be surprised by how firm the sneakers feel. They will need a period to be broken in, just like any pair out there, but don't let the rigid midsole scare you into believing that the shoes will lock you down in place. The outsoles, equipped with the triangular lugs and grooves on the front, are quite flexible and allow you to move freely. The upper does genuinely feel more elastic than before. This solved the creasing and cracking issues the previous model had, and it also made the Metcon 3 a much better fit. The breathability also plays into this aspect, and the Metcon 3 is quite the breathable pair!
The Final Word

The Final Word

The Metcon 3 is a truly excellent shoe. When compared to the previous model, it has many aspects that were improved and fixed, making it a much better option. The upper is redesigned, with beautiful colorways and a logo that complements the whole look. Although many people are convinced that the upper is fly knit, that is sadly not the case. But the mesh used to create the upper is excellent too, promising breathability and flexibility. It also does not crack like the upper of the previous models did. The insole is almost the same though, and the squeaking is still there to plague your ears. The outsoles extend to the sides of the shoes, making them perfect for rope climbing, and they are merged with the upper, keeping the safely together, as opposed to the Metcon 2 which had some durability issues.

With all of that being said, the Metcon 3 is a pricey shoe. You can still find the Metcon 2 for half the price, and it's still a formidable shoe! It's up to you to decide whether you feel like the Metcon 3 is worth the investment.