Did you know that one fourth of all the bones in your body belong to your feet? In fact, there are 26 bones in each human foot. The toes account for 14 of these bones. In addition to this, hundreds of muscles and tendons wrap around these bones to create the foot as we know it.
If you have ever stubbed your toe, you know exactly how painful even a minor bang can be. For professionals and hobbyists who consistently work with heavy objects or questionable terrain, it makes sense to invest in protective footwear.
The Red Wing Shoe Company started selling steel toe boots in 1930 for exactly this reason. Since then, hundreds of other shoe companies have taken a stab at producing their own versions. However, this does not include one of the most popular brands in the world, Nike. Yet Nike does make several protective boots, referred to as tactical boot. If you want to learn more about these protective boots and shoes available from Nike, keep reading.
Nike Tactical Boots
With spokespersons like Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods and Mia Hamm representing their shoes, there is no doubt that Nike produces some of the most internationally recognized athletic shoes. However, those are not the only types of shoes Nike makes.
Tactical boots have reinforced toes that help to protect your feet from injury. While this reinforcement is not as strong as steel, many users find them comfortable, durable, and worth the investment. Let us take a look at some of Nike’s tactical boots currently on the market.
1. Nike Air Max Goadome Boot
The Nike Air Max Goadome Boot is fully waterproof, making it great for any type of weather condition. Made from leather and rubber, this boot keeps moisture out and your feet well protected. Nike’s Air-Sole cushioning helps to make these one of the brand’s most comfortable boots. The Nike Air Max Goadome boot also features lugged tread, which increases its durability and traction.
- The Air-Sole cushioning help make this boot ideal for those who are on their feet all day.
- As a waterproof boot, the Nike Air Max Goadome is ideal for all kinds of environments, including wet and humid areas.
- The rubber sole is bonded to the leather; some customers have claimed this bonding comes apart sooner than anticipated after continuous wear.
2. Nike SF Air Force 1 High Boot
Military-inspired, the Nike SF Air Force 1 High Boot offer durability without sacrificing mobility and style. In fact, the included rope laces, lace loops and metal lace locks allow for total personalization. They also provide a dynamic closure system that keeps your foot securely in your shoe no matter how you decide to lace them. Premium leather overlays help increase the boot’s durability and protective layers.
- The dynamic lace system means you can customize your boot’s look without sacrificing stability.
- Pivot points integrated throughout the boot mean they remain flexible despite their rugged durability.
- As with the Air Max Goadome boots, users have complained about poor bonding between the rubber sole and the boot itself.
3. Nike SFB Gen 2 Boot
Nike designed this boot with speed and flexibility in mind. The SFB Gen 2 is a lightweight tactical boot for rough terrain. It features Nike’s patented aggressive tread pattern to ensure the best traction on any surface. An added internal rock shield helps to prevent the boot from being punctured and keeps your toes a bit safer. An added reinforced heel strike zone and rubber outsole increase your traction and provide even more protection for your whole foot.
- The water resistant Gore-Tex lining keeps your feet dry in most conditions.
- These boots are lightweight but offer serious protection.
- The Nike SFB Gen 2 is DA PAM 670-1 compliant, which means our brothers and sisters in the United States Army are permitted to wear these boots while in uniform.
- With an 8-inch collar height, these boots wrap snuggly around your ankle and calf to ensure they protect more than just your toes.
- Some owners have complained that these run narrow, even when purchasing the “wide” versions.
Steel Toe & Composite Boots
If you still want to invest in a true steel toe or composite boot, there are plenty of options out there. Below are some of our favorites!
1. Timberland Pro Titan Safety Toe
A true steel toe work boot, the Timberland Pro Titan Safety Toe meets ASTM F2412-11, ASTM F2413-11 and ASTM F2892-11 standards. With its waterproof membrane, this boot helps protect you from blood-borne pathogens. It is also surprising lightweight for a steel toe boot. The heat-resistant, durable rubber sole helps ensure you never slip. The ergonomically designed interior components keep you comfortable all day long. Best yet, the Timberland Pro Titan Safety Toe Boot comes in both men’s and women’s model so you can keep your toes safe no matter who you are.
- Waterproof leather keeps you dry regardless of where you are and helps to control odors.
- The Timberland Pro Titan Safety Toe Boot meets ASTM F2412-11, ASTM F2413-11 and ASTM F2892-11 standards.
- Some users have complained about the lining thread wearing thin when wore continuously.
2. Thorogood American Heritage Classic Safety Toe Boot
The Thorogood American Heritage Classic Safety Toe is considered a “top of the line” boot. Made of 100% leather, this boot is designed with both protection and comfort in mind. The removable Ultimate Shock Absorption Footbed cradles your foot with every step while the durable steel toe construction protects you from drops, falls, and dangerous objects.
- The overall construction offers style, durability, and quality artisanship.
- The Thorogood American Heritage Classic Safety Toe Boot is extremely comfortable according to the majority of wearers.
- Slip-resistant, electrical hazard resistant, and lightweight – these boots are ideal for any working or hobbyist environment.
- The Thorogood American Heritage Classic Safety Toe Boot is not waterproof. (Coating the boot in beeswax, however, can help protect it from all the elements.)
- Unlike almost every other boot on this list, this model is only available in one color.
3. Carhartt Rugged Flex Waterproof Work Boot
Carhartt’s Rugged Flex Waterproof Work Boot does not have a steel toe. But it is a composite toe, which is an acceptable industry standard. Lighter in weight than a steel toe, these boot offer durability and are considered a suitable substitute. Entirely waterproof, this boot includes a padded tongue and collar as well as a dual-density OrthoLite insole to ensure comfort from top to bottom.
- With a fully padded interior, the Carhartt Rugged Flex Waterproof Work Boot is extremely comfortable.
- The composite toe makes this boot much lighter than anticipated.
- Completely waterproof, you can rest assured your feet stay dry and comfortable in any environment.
- A composite toe is less sturdy than a true steel toe.
Protect Your Feet without Sacrificing Comfort
Nike may not make steel toe boots, but they certainly make several models used by industry, military, and hobbyists around the world. These boots are known for their tactical durability, as well as their stylist appearances. However, if you are looking for a true steel toe or composite toe boot – there are plenty of trusted brands producing them. We named a few, but there are certainly more. This includes boots from name brands such as Sketchers, Caterpillar, Dr. Martens, and Dickies.
At the end of the day, it is all about your personal preferences. Comfort, durability, protection and style are all important features. If you are looking for a comfortable boot that offers mobility and style, the Nike SF Air Force 1 High Boot may be a winner. However, if you need a true steel toe boot that will keep you protected from bacteria and meets all the standards, the Timberland Pro Titan Safety Toe Boot is an ideal selection.