Nike SB adapted their Free sole technology for skateboarding and introduced it in January with the release of the Nike SB Free. To continue the focus on their new skateboarding sole, Nike SB recently released the SB Free Nano. Trevor Colden, one of the most hyped-up Pros right now, was selected to back the model and shot an awesome commercial at an extremely hard to skate dream spot in LA.
We got our hands on a model and was lucky enough to meet Trevor at the Street League event in Barcelona and asked him a couple of questions about the SB Free Nano.
Hi Trevor, so you had the commercial for the Free Nano, what features did you like most about the shoe?
I like how light they are, super light. The different rubbers on the sole make it a different feeling. It is really narrow on your feet and you feel like you have a lot of board control.
The shape of the toe cap is asymmetrical, did you need some time to get used to that?
I need time to get used to all my shoes but that one was a little easier to get used to. It is so light and there is not so much stuff on it, so it was easy to break in.
Are you skating your shoes right out of the box?
I take some time and walk around with them for a while. I put them in the microvace, too. It works fine, the shoe gets softer and molds to your feet.
You have been skating the Janoski and the Lunar Janoski a lot, how was it for you changing between the Janoski and the Nano Free?
I really like to skate one specific thing, so for me the Janoski is hands down the best skate shoe.
Are there any shoes from the Nike SB product line that you can do certain tricks better in?
There are definitely certain shoes that I like to skate more than the others, like the Janoski for example, because I am used to them. I feel more comfortable with them.
Is there anything you think could be improved for the Nano?
The sole has different types of rubber and I would prefer a less type of rubber for the next one. There are four or five different kinds of rubber and I think two would be enough.
The Nano Free does not have a reinforcement element in the heel. Did you notice it or was it easy for you to get used to it?
Honestly, it is hard for me to skate anything besides Janoski because I am so used to it.
If you would have the chance to design a Nike SB model, which one would you choose and how would it look like?
I really would like to have a Blazer or a Dunk mid top with a Janoski sole – that’s it.
The Nike SB Free Nano fits true to size.
As expected, flex is one of the most characteristic strengths of the Nike Free sole construction. That’s quite important when it comes to skateboarding, especially in the front foot area. The heel area of a Nike Free running shoe usually features a more stable construction with added cushioning.
As shown in the pictures above, the Nike SB Free Nano is cut quite slim. The shape is pretty parallel, ending in a flat toe area and a blunt tip. The shoe molds tightly to your foot, thus creating great foothold in the mid and frontal area.
Boardfeel and grip
The Nike SB Free clearly puts its focus on boardfeel and grip. The Nike Free Technology generally aims to recreate the natural movement of your feet. This shows especially when looking at the sole. The 8 deep grooves in the toe area ensure maximum flex, which in turn, constructively affects grip and boardfeel. This, in combination with its thin sole construction in the toe area, creates great contact between board and shoe. The grip is balanced pretty well too, not too little and not too much. All in all, the Free technology was adapted pretty well in terms of skateboarding needs like boardfeel and grip.
Comfort and stability
The Nike SB Free Nano is a very lightweight shoe which is a big factor for comfortability. Surprisingly, the Free is rather stiff during the first session, but slowly gets softer and softer with more wear. Luckily, it never gets too soft, which ensures the shoe’s stability and shape. The heel almost feels like it is being hugged, but without providing enough stability. This improves comfort during wear, but leaves something to be desired when it comes down to protection.
Nike SB once again revealed their potential and demonstrated their commitment in terms of technology and innovation. All in all, the Free Nano is a convincing model, especially due to a great balance between boardfeel and grip.