Nike Free Haven 3.0 Shield (Review)

Updated: December 28, 2012


Shoe: Nike Free Haven 3.0 Shield

Colour: Black/Electric Green – Cool Grey
Recommended for: Runners who want to keep “barefoot running” as a part of their training regime throughout the colder seasons.
Suggested Retail Price: $139.99 CAD
Where to purchase: SportChek @SportChek and Nike Stores @NikeToronto across Canada.


As you may have noticed, I enjoy running… a lot but winter is not one of my favorite seasons for running. Mainly because it’s more difficult to train during the cold winter months. With shorter days, colder temperatures and higher rainfall, the chances of getting in a decent run are slim. I usually keep up with my training routine by using a treadmill or going for shorter runs outdoors but it’s never the same as going for a long distance run during the spring and autumn months. This winter, Nike introduced their new HyperShield line of running shoes, which includes a number of benefits such as being waterproof and wind resistant. The Nike Shield running shoes also come equipped with reflective materials for those nightly runs.


With Nike Shield technology in the Nike Free Haven 3.0 Shield, you can now push your training even further during the winter months. The DWR (Durable Water Repellent) coating makes the shoe water resistant while keeping your feet dry and provides great agility on any surface. Whether it’s dry, icy or wet outside – The Nike Free Haven 3.0 Shield will keep protected against the elements during your runs. The shoe also comes with a laser perforated skin that moulds to the contour of your feet. It is also combined with a reflective upper, which makes this shoe ideal for night running.


The Nike Free Haven 3.0 Shield also has a water-resistant rip-stop tongue that prevents water from getting into any area of the shoe. This especially comes in handy around the lace area where water tends to make it’s way through the upper area of most running shoes. With Dual-pull lace technology, this shoe also provides a more secure fit around various foot shapes while allowing dynamic movement.


With less daytime hours during the winter months, one of my favorite features of these running shoes are the reflective materials that aide visibility in darker conditions. Night running can be intimidating but knowing that you have added safety features such as this helps a lot and encourages evening runners to go running without fearing the darker hours.


Another great feature of the Nike Free Haven 3.0 Shield’s are the soft padded fleece around the ankle and achilles that provides warmth, in addition to comfort and support. I prefer wearing light low-cut breathable running socks when running on the track or on trails. The extra padding allows me to keep wearing the gear that is most comfortable, without having to worry about layering up my feet with thicker socks and extra apparel to keep warm.

With the Nike Free Haven 3.0 Shield, you will get all the great features and benefits of barefoot running without sacrificing too much additional bulkiness and weight. The synthetic upper, soft inner lining and reflective material gives added support, comfort and security to this shoe. The flex grooves in the soles keep this shoe dynamic and able to react to any strike a runner may occur. There are also extra tread grips on the soles that prevent slippage on icy or wet surfaces. Whether it’s taking a sharp turn or avoiding an icy patch with a short jump, you will feel confident when running in any bad weather conditions with the Nike Free Haven 3.0 Shield.

I have become a big fan of the Nike Free line. The addition of the Nike Shield technology has increased my experience with this shoe. I was impressed with everything about this shoe from the moment I laced them up and went for my first run. The Nike Free Haven 3.0 Shield’s are one of the most comfortable running shoes I have ever worn. I would highly recommend the Nike Free Haven 3.0 Shield as the most functional and lightweight running shoe this winter.


Additional Notes:

I should mention that the Nike Free Runs may not be recommended as an everyday trainer, especially if you run on hard surfaces for long distances. It does provide basic cushioning and support but Nike recommends that you ease yourself into Nike Free running progressively. It may take a few weeks for you to get used to the barefoot running style of Nike Free running. Try wearing these shoes once or twice a week (according to your training schedule) for relatively short runs – 3km-5km. You can then start to increase your mileage week by week. Your foot muscles will also get a workout, so try not to over train when starting out with any Nike Free Run shoes.

*Over pronators tend to prefer the Nike Free Run 5.0 soles, while neutral runners can approach the 3.0. The 5.0 Nike Free Runs have a bit more added support and also come with the ability to add the Nike+ sensor inside the sole of the shoe.





Digital Designer, Avid Runner & Sneaker Addict.

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