Archive for February, 2010

Two Shoes, One Goal: Get Runners To Try Zoot Footwear

February 22nd, 2010
Mens Zoot Energy 2.0 and Advantage 2.0

Men's Zoot Energy 2.0 and Advantage 2.0

To be a serious player in the running shoe market it is essential to have a good selling neutral shoe and support shoe at or around $100 MSRP.  In 2009, Zoot attempted to accomplish this with the introduction of the Energy (neutral) and Advantage (support) at $110 MSRP. While the shoes were decent performers, they had no wow factor. They were often see as a more affordable alternative to the go-fast TT and Tempo. Well, that has now changed.

Click here for the Men’s Energy 2.0 or Advantage 2.0

Click here for the Women’s Energy 2.0 or Advantage 2.0

Noticeable improvements without a price increase.

From the initial step-in, the improvements made to the Energy 2.0 and Advantage 2.0 are apparent. Caressing the foot in a glove-like manner the two shoes just ooze refinement. The feel underfoot is has been greatly enhanced. Although the midsole materials have not changed, the distribution of the shock absorbing Z-Bound material has been separated into two distinct zones. A resdesigned outsole is a bit thicker and aids in providing better cushioning. The result of these changes is a ride quality that is much more lively than last year’s shoes. Reminds us a bit of the Brooks Launch, which has been selling in huge numbers.

Why all this talk of the two shoes together?

The Energy 2.0 and Advatnage 2.0 share the same tooling (chasis) and have nearly identical uppers. Some may be wondering if it makes sense to build a neutral shoe and support shoe from the same mold. Well this is not new. The first Asics Landreth was a neutral version of the popular Asics GT-2000 series. The Brooks Defyance is a neutral version of the preceding year’s Brooks Adrenline GTS and until recently the Saucony Ride and Guide shared the same tooling. Although the level of success of these different models has varied, runners have certainly found a favorite in a shoe that may otherwise not have existed.

Read more…

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Brooks Adrenaline GTS 10 Shoe Review

February 15th, 2010

For several years now, the Brooks Adrenaline GTS has been a category leader in the maximum support category. Shoes in this category offer support just beyond moderate over-pronation but not so much that they become motion control shoes. This niche is filled by other shoes like the Mizuno Alchemy and Saucony Omni (Ultimate now 8), but the Adrenaline has been the sales leader and is one of the most popular shoes in the industry. Thus any update to this shoe is always critical.

What’s New

1. The heel design has greater decoupling and a beveled angle to slow the rate and degree of pronation while also providing a smoother ground impact and transition.

2. The medial TPU support has been removed, as it is no longer needed as a result of the heel redesign.

3. Asymmetrical midfoot wrap has been added to provide a better fit.

4. Profile Sockliner replaces standard sockliner for greater cushioning and enhanced arch contour.

Does this version run better than last years?

No longer just about good pronation control and a reliable fit, The Adrenaline GTS provides a noticeably smoother ride compared to past models. Our wear testers were all in agreement that the ride of the shoe was fairly smooth and, in comparison, the ride of the Adrenaline GTS 9 was a bit abrupt. Jonathan and Phil felt the shoe was a bit softer than average, whereas Bonnie noted the shoe was a bit firmer than average. All wear testers assessed the energy return as good but felt there was a slight delay in the energy return. Another consistent evaluation was the flexibility of the shoe was a tad toward the stiffer side. Read more…

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K-Swiss K-Ruuz. Racing Flat or Bowling Shoe?

February 10th, 2010

K-Swiss gets serious and enters the racing category.

K-Swiss K-Ruuz

K-Swiss K-Ruuz

New for Spring 2010 is the K-Swiss K-Ruuz racing shoe. With it’s three color upper, a top down view of the K-Ruuz looks strikingly like a bowling shoe. After trying it on, I noticed it fits a bit like a bowling shoe. You know, like the one’s you rent. It’s very roomy in the forefoot and runs a little big (better size down). The K-Ruuz even feels a little like a bowling shoe in as much as it’s very light and close to the ground. But when it comes to performance the parallels end.

It better be light and flexible with a good road feel.

It is. At 7.1 ounces (size 9) the K-Ruuz is an average weight racing shoe. With a 19mm-9mm heel-to-toe ratio the shoe offers a good road feel and smooth ride. A multi-piece outsole is quite flexible and  delivers great traction. The roomy upper is super breathable, light and provides a great option for runners with wider feet. Rounding out the shoe construction are drainage ports in the sole, which allow excess fluid to drain out and keeps the weight down.

How does the K-Ruuz compare to the competition?

As a support racer, the K-Ruuz is most comparable to the adidas adiZero Mana and Mizuno Musha 2. It’s lighter than both the  adiZero Mana and Musha 2 and sits closer to the ground than the adiZero Mana. However, the low weight comes as a result of less pronation control. Granted, the Mana doesn’t offer all that much more control, but the Musha 2 does a respectable job for bio-mechanically challenged runners. Thus, the K-Ruuz is best suited for mild over-pronators or neutral runners competing in 5k and 10K distances and has the range to carry faster runners over longer distances.

Bottom Line:

K-Swiss enters the racing shoe market with a very mild support shoe, that has a roomy fit and weighs a touch less than it’s competitors.

Click here for the Women’s K-Swiss K-Ruuz

Running Shoes , , ,

New Balance Blow Out Sale

February 5th, 2010

Just in, 3 of our most popular New Balance men’s and women’s trainers from last season at a very nice price.  Widths are available as is our free 2-Day Shipping and Free Returns on orders shipped to the 48 Contiguous States.  As an added bonus, if you buy 2 or more pair at the same time, we’ll knock $10 off each pair.  Hurry, supplies are limited.

The 769 is an excellent combination of support and cushioning, usually one of out best sellers regardless of brand.  The 769 normally lists for $100, we have available at $59.88.

New Balance Men’s 769 in Widths

New Balance Women’s 769 in Widths

The New Balance 1011 is a heavy duty motion control model that provides maximum support.  A high quality, full feature motion control shoe is extremely difficult to find under $100 and in fact, the New Balance 1011 lists for $120.  We have it available for $69.88 each.

New Balance Men’s 1011 in Widths

New Balance Women’s 1011 in Widths

The 1063 is New Balance’s neutral cushioning model that has the top bells and whistles in New Balance’s stable of technologies.  This maximum featured shoe normally lists for $120, we have it available for $69.88 each.

New Balance Men’s 1063 in Widths

New Balance Women’s 1063 in Widths