The Nyjah Free 2 is the second Nike SB pro shoe for Nyjah Huston. Just like its namesake, the shoe has a distinctive style and is packed with tech. Therefore, we took a closer look at the Nike SB Nyjah Free 2 skate shoe.
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Nyjah Huston is a name that stands out in the skateboarding scene. Whether you love his style or not you can’t deny that he is one of the most famous skateboarders of all time. What makes him so good and his 360 Flips so flawless? It must be the shoes! With that in mind, I tested out the Nyjah Free 2 shoe.
First impression of the Nike SB Nyjah Free 2
The shoe is inspired by the original Nike Air Zoom Spiridon, which is made with breathable mesh and a supportive rubber upper. The first thing I noticed was how extremely light the shoe is.
The Nyjah Free 2 has all the style cues of the original Spiridon but is customized to suit skateboarders. The shoe’s insole is much thinner compared to other Nike skate shoes because the outsole is way thicker.
Nike SB Nyjah Free 2 – fit, sizing, and comfort
Putting them on, the first thing I noticed about the Nyjah Free 2 skate shoes was how stiff they were. Despite the soft bootie-liner, the shoe wasn’t very flexible. I walked around the house in them for a week to stretch them out a bit.
The Nyjah Free 2 fits true to size. If Nike SB Blazers are too narrow for you, you don’t have to worry here. In the arch and the ball of the foot, the Nyjah Free 2 fits mush like the Janoski RM, which has more room around the arch. If you have problems with the fit of the new Janoskis, the Nyjah Free 2 could give you a hard time breaking in. However, I didn’t get blisters at any point.
First sessions – Nyjah Free 2 board feel, grip, and cushioning
As a fan of Nike SB technology and their more advanced models, I was looking forward to a shoe that may offer the board feel of the Koston Hyperfeels but with impact support.
At first, the shoe was still quite stiff but very supportive. The impact protection felt better than most shoes on the market. Despite the thin mesh material, my feet felt safe in the Nyjah Free 2 skate shoes. In this regard, the rubber upper sits in the right places.
However, the rubber upper makes the shoe so stiff that I had problems feeling my board. Especially with high concave decks, I had a difficult time finding the right foot placement for some tricks.
The side of the shoe’s cup sole has a special shape. It has squared-off edges at the point of contact with the deck. Therefore, the Nyjah Free 2 shoes have similarities with putting on brand-new vulcanized skate shoes. However, the outsole is much stiffer in the beginning and feels a little less grippy. On the other hand, the Nyjah Free 2 has above-average ventilation.
Pro tip: I don’t recommend microwaving this shoe to make it more comfortable. The shoe upper uses temperature-sensitive glue which could make the shoe crack in critical points where the shoe bends a lot, particularly where the mesh and the rubber join.
The durability of the Nike SB Nyjah Free 2
After 20 hours, I’d have expected the skate shoe to be worn down a lot. However, the Nyjah Free 2 showed little wear. It’s built like a tank while being extremely lightweight. Although I had some problems with the consistency of my flip tricks in those shoes, they provided fantastic support and protection during every session.
Ten more hours down the road the shoes didn’t look or feel much different. The Nyjah Free 2 is built to last and it seems its only obstacle is the stiffness of the rubber, which has become more flexible after a total of 30 hours of skating.
Important note on the look: the shoe collected dirt like a magnet. Something about the material made it particularly susceptible to staining and after one weekend of skating street this mostly white shoe was very dirty, particularly in the mesh parts.
The Nike SB Nyjah Free 2 is very supportive, extremely durable, and has great impact protection. Once the edge of the outsole rounded off, I had no issues whatsoever and felt confident about jumping down stuff. I could easily skate this shoe for another two to three weeks.
Who is this shoe for?
The Nyjah Free 2 from Nike SB is the perfect shoe for any beginner. If you’re just starting to skate I could see you enjoying this shoe. It offers a lot of support and keeps the foot safe. Also, it lasts very long and therefore your money is well spent. This shoe is also great for anyone who jumps down a lot of gaps.
Who might have problems with this shoe?
If flexibility is the most important thing in a shoe for you, it may take a long time for you to like the Nyjah Free 2. I would simply walk around in them for about a month before skating them. The shoe does eventually become very flexible and comfortable though. I also don’t recommend this shoe for anyone that has a wide foot. I even tried a larger size and found that it didn’t help with the width of the shoe at all.
- Very durable
- Very breathable
- Very lightweight
- Good impact protection & comfort
- Long breaking-in period
- Not the grippiest outsole
- Stains easily