Nike Zoom Fly 5 Review

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Type of supportUniversal (neutral)
Inclination of the sole10mm
Sole thickness (heel)41mm
Sole thickness (forefoot)31mm
Weight (men’s model)273g
Weight (female model)238g
Better cushioning thanks to ZoomX (foam)Less dynamic and efficient than higher models
The most affordable carbon plate shoe on the marketToe box that remains narrow
A more versatile model than previous versionsLittle grip outside of dry roads
A good compromise between comfort and performance
Good lifespan


The Nike Zoom Fly 5 offers a good compromise between comfort and performance , thanks to the association between the carbon fiber plate, the FlyPlate, and the new ZoomX foam. The great evolution of this Zoom Fly 5 comes from its much softer cushioning , which makes it significantly more comfortable than previous models. And this, with better shock absorption .

Its price of 160 €, identical to the previous models, makes it the most affordable model of shoes with carbon plate on the market . And a good option for anyone who would like to try this type of shoe.

Indeed, those accustomed to the brand’s higher-end models will regret a reduced rebound effect , comfort outweighing dynamism. The stability of the sole has been reviewed and improved, as well as the support of the foot to make it accessible to a wider audience.

The Nike Zoom Fly 5, however, remains demanding in terms of running techniques and pace, although less elite than the Vaporfly or the Alphafly Next. The sensation of forward propulsion is present. And this, even (and especially) at the end of long rides. Because the Zoom Fly 5 is more a running shoe for regular training and long outings, than for competition and pure speed training.


Just eight months after the release of the Nike Zoom Fly 4, Nike offers a new version of a model well known to the general public by providing it with more comfort and cushioning.

If the only difference between the Zoom Fly 3 and 4 was mainly the introduction of a new component, the Flyknit, for its upper, the Zoom Fly 5 brings a real revolution on the cushioning side. Thus, the ZoomX foam, hitherto reserved for high-end models, replaces the old Rect foam for the first time on this model.

This offers unexpected softness and comfort for a speed shoe. Carbon plate purists will say, however, that it lacks dynamism and grip compared to other more advanced models.

Despite everything, it remains a good alternative for all runners wishing to discover the rebound effect specific to carbon plates for the first time. All in a running shoe that’s less technically demanding than the hugely popular Vaporfly Next. And more affordable too.

Although the Zoom Fly 5 has the characteristics of a fast running shoe, we will see that it is more suitable for distance.


The Nike Zoom Fly 5 is visually imposing. Not least because of a heel height of 41mm. However, the drop remains at 10 mm. A classic Nike feature.

The big difference between the Nike Zoom Fly 5 and the previous version is in the midsole. Indeed, Nike has chosen to integrate their famous Zoom foam, instead of their old React foam.

Zoom X foam is lighter and offers denser cushioning as well as better protection and shock absorption. We also find in the midsole the new SR02 foam which allows to increase the damping capacity, as well as its durability.

The Nike Zoom Fly 5 thus offers much more “soft” cushioning than the older versions of the model. Which makes it an ideal shoe for long distance. However, owners of the Nike Zoom Fly 4 might be surprised or even disappointed with its dynamism. Indeed, the combination of Zoom X and React foam, by increasing comfort and cushioning, reduces the return of energy.

The Nike Zoom Fly 5 remains a “dynamic” shoe, but on a smaller scale compared to last year’s model or the Vaporfly 4%. However, this has the advantage of making it much less demanding than an Alphafly Next.

Foot support (upper)

We find on the Nike Zoom Fly 5 a mesh designed using Flyknit technology, the same that made the success of the 2021 model.

Flyknit offers good breathability to the upper. But above all good foot support. The lacing of the shoe is also extremely precise, in order to adjust to the foot without compressing it.

In addition, the presence of reinforced side walls improves the stability of the stride and helps keep the foot centered.

Although the shoe appears wider visually than on the old version of the model, thanks to a wider sole at the forefoot and at the level of the heel, the kick remains relatively narrow. A half size or even a size above your usual size may be necessary.

With its 273 grams (238 g for the women’s model), the Nike Zoom Fly 5 is heavier than all other carbon plate shoes which are often less than 200 grams. This is explained in particular by the greater cushioning and the use of a recycled version of the ZoomX. This is heavier than the original material. In addition, it happens that there is a difference in weight between the two feet of the same pair. And this, again because of the use of a recycled version of the ZoomX.

Adhesion and durability

The Nike Zoom Fly 5 features a smooth outsole with relatively little grip. Absolutely avoid when training conditions are wet and/or slippery, at the risk of gliding. As well as on the trails. The Nike Zoom Fly 5 is an exclusively road shoe.

Using the ZoomX has a double advantage. In addition to providing more comfort, it is also a durable and solid material. This will allow you to chain the kilometers without getting tired. But also to see the sole last over time.

Finally, the presence of a carbon plate makes the sole rigid to optimize the return of energy. This offers a great reactivity to the stride.

Running sensations

The Nike Zoom Fly 5 is positioned as a compromise between comfort and performance. This explains why the feedback from testers is mixed. If they appreciate its comfort and cushioning, they regret its lack of dynamism compared to the old version or to the other shoes in the range. In fact, the Nike Zoom Fly 5 is much less dynamic than the Vaporfly or the Invincible Run.

Testers accustomed to running in other carbon-plate shoes were left unsatisfied with the Nike Zoom Fly 5 and lamented the lack of rebound feel. However, testers who had never raced with this type of model were less disappointed with the energy return. And found it on the contrary very satisfying.

Like all carbon plate shoes, the Nike Zoom Fly 5 takes time to get used to. Testers liked the shoe’s features the moment they started using it on long runs rather than intensity training like interval or threshold. They thus have the feeling of being able to “easily” chain the kilometers, at a pace slightly faster than their usual endurance paces. And this, without getting too tired.

Smooth and stable running

The presence of the carbon plate, the FlyPlate already present on the Nike Zoom Fly 4 and high-end pairs, offers good fluidity when placing the foot. The testers kept that feeling of forward propulsion, unique to carbon plate shoes.

The testers also liked the increased stability of the Nike Zoom Fly 5. Between the lateral reinforcements, a snug fit and a wider sole, they felt they had the “safer foot”. Indeed, the lack of stability was one of the big weak points of the Zoom Fly 4.

Although it requires time to adapt, the Nike Zoom Fly 5 is much less demanding and elitist than its counterparts. However, good running technique is essential. Runners who are used to running shoes with a low drop and/or wide footwear could be disconcerted by this Zoom Fly 5.


This Zoom Fly 5 offers a good compromise between comfort and speed. But those accustomed to running shoes with a carbon plate might regret a lower energy return. This running shoe seems rather to be a good option for a first experience with this type of model, as part of the preparation for a half-marathon or even a marathon. Indeed, this alliance between comfort and speed thanks to the carbon plate and the ZoomX foam makes it a long distance shoe, more than a pure competition shoe.

However, it does require some running technique and a good pace to stay comfortable. Thus, it is not intended for beginner and/or slow runners.

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