Nike Air Force 1 High Top Review

9.4 score
(WalkJogRun) score (9.4)/10

Our WalkJogRun score is based on 3 different factors: Editor's rating after in-depth testing. User ratings submitted on this page Overall score from the "reviewmeter" based on reviews across the web the weight of each factor is: 40% editor rating 15% user ratings 45% reviewmeter.
Editor rating: 9.7 / 10
User's rating: based on 7 user ratings
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Nike Air Force 1 High Top Review Review Facts

When Nike came out with the Air Force  1 High Top in 1982, it quickly blew up and became one of the most wanted sneakers in the world. Named after the president’s airplane and inspired by Nike’s Air Approach hiking boots, the Air Force 1 revolutionized the basketball game. The Air Force 1 was the first basketball shoe to feature Nike’s patented Air technology cushioning and a circular tread pattern on the outsole. The upper also brought some changes with its slanted top, that provided support while not skimping on flexibility. Nike discontinued the shoe in 1984, but due to popular demand, brought it back in 1986 and kept producing it to this day, making this shoe the first ‘retro’d’ shoe ever. Since the 80s, Nike has collaborated with many hip hop and rap artists and there are almost two thousand different variations of the sneaker today. It remains one of the best selling sneakers of all time and not without reason.

Editor's Pros & Cons
  • Premium leather upper
  • Breathable
  • Very durable
  • Comfortable
  • Great ankle and heel support
  • Versatile
  • Almost two thousand different versions
  • Excellent padding
  • Creasing in the leather upper
  • Somewhat pricey
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Reviews were analyzed here:
We read, analyze and sort reviews into positive & negative categories to give you the complete picture.
What are buyers saying?

We have spent 4.5 hours analyzing a total of 500 reviews.

These reviews are then categoried into "Positive" and "Negative" feedback.

Below you will read a summary of them:

  • Great neutral shoe, can be worn with tons of different styles. I love the price too, very affordable.
  • Great shoe for all ages, I would recommend these shoes to anyone!
  • Perfect shoe for those don’t want to a spend a crazy amount of money, but still want a great durable shoe.
  • Purchased for my wife, she needed a great fitting shoe that was extremely comfortable and this was perfect.
  • Perfect everyday shoe for those looking for extremely comfortable, I would highly recommend.
  • Great shoe for all weather conditions, very durable! I love them.
  • Purchased these for my boyfriend, he loves them! He’s able to use them for a wide range of activities.
  • Been a huge fan of Nike for years now, and I can’t find a more iconic shoe than the Nike Air force 1 High top!
  • Great simple shoe, I’m able to walk miles in this shoe and play ball. It’s perfect.
  • Great ankle support, and awesome color shoe! Very secure.
  • Super nice looking shoe, very sharp. I’m super impressed with this shoe.
  • Very comfortable, expected a bulky shoe but they were perfect size.
  • Great shoe to flaunt, I love these. Very comfy and stylish!
  • Fit true to size, a little hard to put on but they’re super comfortable and very happy I bought these shoes.
  • My son and I both own a pair, we love them. He loves them for the style and comfort, and these shoes are perfect for me because of their clean look.
  • I knew these were a great choice the minute I put them on!
  • Had to break them in, but after they’re worn they feel amazing! I can’t find any shoe to compare.
  • Great shoe, I got them because I needed a new pair of shoes. So happy, they’re very comfortable.
  • These are my go to walk around shoe, I had to purchase a size bigger for more space, so I didn’t have to break them in.
  • My husband loves them, very good quality and easy to clean with just a wipe.
  • Some customers said the shoe was hard to put on.
The Reviewmeter shows you an overall score that you can easily refer to. The highest rating is 10 (100% positive feedback)
Of the 500 reviews we found in total, 10% were negative, and 90% were positive.


Nike has not only introduced a new technology when it comes to basketball shoes, but it revolutionized the basketball game forever. Up until 1982, when the Nike Air Force 1 came out, the majority of shoes featured a herringbone-like pattern in their outsoles for traction. However, since basketball players need to bring their top form on the court, Nike opted for a rubber outsole with a circular tread pattern. This type of pattern is excellent for pivot points and many other movements that basketball players need in their arsenal. The outsole has an excellent surface grip and it will keep your feet firmly on the ground, preventing slipping-induced injuries. The rubber material of the outsole is high quality and very abrasion-resistant, ensuring the wearer will be able to enjoy this pair of sneakers for a long time. Many reviewers also use the Nike Air Force 1 as a casual shoe and are satisfied with the durability of this shoe.


As already mentioned, Nike revolutionized the basketball sneaker back in 1982, and the fact that the design of the shoe remained almost the same as the first model, even after more than three decades, speaks for itself. Namely, Nike was the pioneer company to introduce their patented, never-seen-before Air technology into the Air Force 1’s midsole construction. The foam midsole features an Air pocket in the heel of the shoe. This lightweight cushioning contains pressurized air which compresses with every footfall in order to absorb the shock of impact and give the wearer a bouncy and springy feel, which is especially important for basketball players who need to move fast and be able to jump a lot. In addition, this type of cushioning is extremely comfortable and will keep its shape even after extensive use.


The original version of the Nike Air Force 1’s featured mesh paneling in its upper’s construction, however, the revamped model is made of premium leather all around for a smoother look that will stand the test of time. As for breathability, Nike included strategically placed perforations in the upper for proper ventilation that keeps the feet dry and cool on and off the court. Perhaps, one of the most interesting details on this shoe is the slanted top. Inspired by Nike’s Air Approach hiking boots, the top is higher around the tongue area and lowers towards the heel. This feature allows maximum flexibility to the wearer, while still providing sufficient support and stability to the ankles due to the padding in the collar, tongue, and heel. The lining inside the shoe is also quite plush and soft, adding to the breathability and comfort this shoe provides. The lacing system is made of flat laces that will not get untied during use and give a customized snug fit to the wearer. Last but not least, the Air Force 1 High Top features a Velcro strap around the ankles for additional support. In some models, this strap is removable and it also helps keep the laces tucked in and out of the way on the court.


Every shoe needs breathability, especially sports shoes. While the Nike Air Force 1 High Top is made of leather, it does not lack breathability. The upper features strategically placed perforations on the toe box and the sides, which help the air to circulate in and out of the shoe, leaving the feet dry and preventing overheating, which is especially important during long practice hours and basketball games. However, this shoe will serve the average user just as well. The soft lining inside the shoe also contributes to the overall breathability of this shoe.


Almost everybody who has ever tried the Nike Air Force 1 High Top, praised it as the most comfortable shoe ever made. While this might be an exaggeration, the Air Force 1 does have a lot of features that enhance its comfort levels. After all, it was made specifically for basketball players who needed all the comfort they could get during games. The midsole features Nike’s patented and by now renowned Air technology, a lightweight, compressed air cushioning that is highly comfortable and does not tire the feet out. The upper has a plush and soft lining to balance out the leather, making for a very comfortable in-shoe feeling. The collar, tongue, and heel area are also endowed with padding, that not only serve as excellent support to the ankles, but are also comfortable without causing blisters or irritation to the wearer.


Taking inspiration from Nike’s Air Approach hiking boots and named after the president’s airplane, the Air Force 1, the first Air Force 1 High Top was created back in 1982 and became an instant hit, that persisted even after more than three decades. The overall design stayed pretty much the same, which speaks for itself. The Nike Air Force 1 was the first sneaker ever to be brought back into production, after Nike discontinued it in 1984, starting the ‘retro’d’ trend. At first featuring a leather and mesh paneled upper, the Air Force 1 is now available in leather, textile and synthetic materials, depending on the colors. There are almost two thousand different variations of the shoe today, with many famous collaborators, such as Jay-Z, Nelly and Kanye. The upper and the midsole are customizable and the Velcro strap is removable in some models, however, the most popular pairs are the ‘white on white’ and ‘black on black’ respectively. Although made for basketball players, the Air Force 1 became extremely popular among the hip hop and rap crowds of the East Coast especially, which kickstarted the limited edition models. The sleek and minimalistic look the Air Force 1 has makes it very fashionable and easy to style with casual or dressy clothes as well. The Air Force 1 High Top is a crowd favorite that never goes out of style.


Meant for heavy-duty wear, the Nike Air Force 1 High Top is a very durable pair of sneakers. The outsole is made of a durable, abrasion-resistant rubber material with circular treads for excellent grip and traction. The midsole features Nike’s Air technology cushioning, which is a lightweight, supportive cushioning that will keep its shape for a long time. The modernized Air Force 1 sports a premium leather upper, that is highly durable and can withstand extensive use without compromising its structure. All in all, the Air Force 1 High Top is a very durable pair of sneakers, beloved by basketball players and casual wearers alike.


As a basketball shoe, the Nike Air Force 1 High Top had to include the safety measures necessary for preventing injuries that could happen on the court. The outsole has a firm grip on the surface, thanks to the circular tread pattern it features. This prevents injuries caused by slipping. The midsole’s Air cushioning is not only there to provide supporting cushioning, but to absorb the shock of each footfall and thus lessen the risk of injuries, like ankle sprains or even knee injuries.

Since it was designed for basketball specifically, the Air cushioning can endure the heavy landings and turn that shock of impact into energy necessary for jumps and springy movements on the court. The upper is made of sturdy leather and the collar, tongue, and heel have plush padding that keeps the feet locked into their proper position. The slanted top helps keep the ankles stable, yet free to move naturally. To top it off, the standard laces give a customized snug fit to the wearer while the Velcro strap gives additional stability and ensures that the feet are locked down.


The Air technology used in the construction of the midsole provides supportive cushioning to the wearer without weighing them down, as it is very lightweight. The upper’s premium leather with its lacing system and Velcro strap keeps the feet locked into their proper position, preventing slipping inside the shoe, while the plush lining gives additional support inside the shoe. As for ankle support, the slanted top is perfect. It features substantial padding all around the ankles that help keep them in place, but also allow their natural flexing.


Designed for basketball, its main terrain type is indoor and outdoor courts. The circular tread pattern on the outsole provides good grip and excellent traction on these surfaces and does not slip. However, due to its classic silhouette, many choose to wear it as an everyday casual shoe.


This shoe is on the pricier side, due to its quality and the fact that Nike limited the number of shops that can carry the shoes as well as how many they could carry at a time. This was a strategic move on Nike’s side, to hype up the shoes and create demand for them, and it clearly worked, since this pair of sneakers is among the top best selling sneakers in the world. It also featured limited edition collaborations with famous rappers and designs, which made them even more special.


The Nike Air Force 1 High Top has excellent traction, thanks to its innovative outsole design. Namely, the tread pattern of this basketball shoe was one of a kind when it first hit the market back in 1982, revolutionizing the game forever. It features a circular tread, that is perfect for pivot points and other basketball movements. It lets the player switch speed and movement without the danger of slipping.


Although it might not look that way, the Nike Air Force 1 High Top has a decent amount of flexibility and it is mainly concentrated in the upper design. Specifically, the slanted top that is higher around the tongue and lowers towards the heel, provides stability and support while letting the ankles flex naturally.


Stability wise, the Nike Air Force 1 High Top has got you covered. The Air technology used in the midsole is excellent at absorbing shock while keeping the heels stable. The ankles are firmly locked down, thanks to the padding around the ankles, and the feet are secured into place with the standard laces and Velcro strap. The plush lining inside the shoe, apart from adding to the overall comfort level, helps with locking the feet into their right position.

Key Features

* Durable rubber outsole with a circular tread for pivot points
* Air technology cushioning for superb shock absorption and lightweight cushioning
* Premium leather upper with perforations on the forefoot and on the sides
* Slanted high top for enhanced flexibility
* Padded collar, tongue, and heel for support around the ankles
* Plush lining for a comfortable in-shoe feeling
* Velcro strap for extra support
* Standard Laces

Bottom Line

It’s safe to say that today’s basketball game would not be the same without the revolutionary Nike Air Force 1 High Tops. Since their introduction in 1982, this pair of sneakers has been one of the most sought after sports shoes ever to be made. Basketball players and casual wearers alike enjoy the Air Force 1, and it has become a collectors’ item as well. It features a durable rubber outsole with a circular tread, excellent for pivot points. It keeps the feet firmly on the ground and basketball players do not have to worry about slipping during games. The midsole consists of Nike’s patented Air technology, a lightweight cushioning consisting of pressurized air, that compresses with every footfall, absorbing the shock and returning the energy to the player for a springy movement on the court.

The modern upper is made of premium leather with perforations on the forefoot and sides for ventilation. However, the upper is fully customizable and the material changes with different colorways and editions of the shoe. Likewise, the midsole and Velcro strap is also customizable. The slanted top with the padding around the ankles gives a cushioned support to the ankles with the added bonus of flexibility. The Velcro strap is removable in some versions and provides additional support for the ankles, as well as keeps the laces out of the way during games.

Through the years, many famous hip hop and rap artists have collaborated with Nike to come up with limited edition designs for the shoe, making them even more desirable. Many NBA players and famous artists wore these sneakers and the fact that the design changed little over three decades speaks for itself. The Nike Air Force 1 High Top is on the pricier side, however, one must take into account the history and reputation of the shoe and consider it an investment that will more than pay off in the long run.