Each month we delve into a specific area of running gear and discuss our views on the topic. This month’s video is all about the world of cushioned running shoes, from what people look for when it comes to buying to what we think the future looks like for runners.
To listen to the full Run Testers Podcast, click here:
Jump right in:
00:00 – Intro
00:35 – What are cushioned running shoes?
02:20 – What is a max cushioned running shoes?
03:47 – What are the benefits of cushioned shoes?
10:24 – What do runners look for when buying?
14:06 – What’s the future of cushioned shoes?
17:36 – Our favourite cushioned shoes
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Hey Tommy from the Run testers in this Video we are going to be talking all About cushion shoes so we're going to be Discussing loads of different topics From what exactly is a cushion shoe what You might look for in a cushion shoe and Some of the good cushion shoes that We've tested over the past few months This video is also part of the audio Podcast so if you're planning on Listening to that at some point don't Watch this video because it's all Included on there right let's jump in And talk cushioning [Music] Okay so cushioned shoes We've do we're doing quite a few um Videos around different types of shoes At the moment cushion shoes is one that Obviously is very close to my heart Um but it's it's quite a tricky area Nowadays because there's lots of Different types of cushioned shoes and When people ask what what cushion shoes Should they buy it's a bit of a Minefield really Um so what we're going to do here is Talk through the types of cushion shoes What you should expect from a cushion Shoe what should what what people are Looking for in cushion shoes Um so let's start with a nice easy one Um how Nick you could do this one Because you're quite good at classifying
These things how do we classify cushion Shoes at the Run testers Uh I think well you can't just go on Stack height because most race shoes Have the highest stack Heights these Days but stack height is an indicator Usually they're quite a lot of Cushioning in the midsole well over 30 Millimeters often and it's more really About the design being Geared for easy Long runs daily training that kind of Thing they're not got very aggressive Setups really there's no plates in the Midsole there's no very springy Foams or Really wild forefoot rockers or anything Like that they're geared for easy runs To protect the legs probably first and Foremost and just be comfortable and Enjoyable just for yeah moving around at Your daily training Paces rather than Being speed focused That's good because a lot of people I Mean most there's a lot of shoes out now That are like ratios and stuff that you Would quite easily class as cushion Shoes Um but when we talk about it we're Really talking about the the core use of Them Um yeah exactly in a rotation they'd be A shoe that you'd pair with faster shoes If you were having more than watching Okay okay Mike [Music]
Max cushion shoes so we've got cushion Shoes now we've got Max cushion shoes It's a it's a buzz phrase at the moment Everyone everyone wants a Max cushion Shoe but what would you say is different About a Max cushion shoe to a normal Cushion shoe Um I think you know for me I think the Max cushion shoe is a shoe that's really Kind of separating that space between You know between basically from the Ground and creating a bigger stack in Between those two things and it's a shoe That I think we've seen that it is Immersed as a shoe that it's something That you would want to use for kind of Longer kind of easy runs really kind of Protecting your foot in a really kind of You know strong way Um and I mean there is plenty of debate Still about how well you know they are First in terms of doing that but you Know we are seeing a lot pretty much all Brands kind of offering a Max cushion Shoe option now they just need to be Getting bigger all the time yeah yeah With the way I look it's like you think About the classic even at the start of Our channel the main cushion shoes the Most comfortable shoes we'd ever talk About were things like the Brooks Glycerin and soccer league Triumph and Now those are almost cushion daily Trainers and uh Max cushion shoes have
Come in as a whole level above them Yes yeah and uh I suppose obviously There's a lot to do with the foam as Well in them um so max because you can Have a very different Focus depending on what's what's what Type of phone they've got in there Okay I'm gonna put you on the spot here With this one because I know you're not A massive fan of cushion shoes a lot of The time this is probably going to be a Tricky question for you answer but what What would you say the main benefits of Wearing cushioned shoes right I mean This is a bit of a Hot Topic as well It's a much kind of debated thing but I Think when people think about Max Cushion shoes often they're thinking About okay I've got something that's Gonna bring it bring me nice Comfort It's going to soak up some lumps and Bumps from underfoot so you're thinking About debris and stones and all that Kind of stuff that you know basically Takes away some of the the stuff that's On the road but also softening the Impact It's there's a lot of kind of science Around this and some of it doesn't agree Or in fact most of it doesn't agree There's actually been recent studies That sort of suggest that the opposite Is true that Max cushion shoes or big Cushion shoes actually increase the
Force impact and and Ah so it's a it's a bit of a difficult One because I know most people probably Put them on and think I'm going to use These so that I can reduce the the Impact on my joints uh they're going to Make the less fatigue for the muscles All of those things but I don't I'm not Entirely sure that the science kind of Backs that up but that's one of the Benefits that people will be looking for I think there's also an argument for Some of them that they and this will all Depend on what the foam is and you know What the geometry is but they boost Stability as well so some of the big Kind of Max cushion shoes have a wider Base uh many of them actually I think Have gone you know Hoka kind of led the Way with this but they sit with they've Got like a bucket kind of seat Um foot placement so you sit lower in The bed as well so you've got higher Walls that come up around that can Enhance those feelings of stability as Well Um Yeah so I think you know you've got more Stable wider than average bass Um soak up lumps and bumps and then There's that idea that they're supposed To kind of soak up from the cushioning And I think the overarching thing as Well is some people kind of like a
Heavier shoe perhaps that will slow them Down by force when they're going to do Their recovery runs I'm kind of the Opposite I I don't really like to feel Like I'm working Harder by them to lift My feet on a soft sort of cushioned shoe For my recovery runs I'm happy to do Them in in kind of regular shoes but I Think those for me are the four or five Main benefits that people look for Anyone else get any uh any other ones I Think maybe durability might be might be Yeah you know durability a shoe that Maybe you look to and say well look this Is the one shoe that I'm going to get I Know these are the kind of runs I'm Going to do and I really want it to Cover a lot of my mileage and I think That would for me that would be a thing That I would kind of look to from a Cushion shoe that it's gonna be able to Absorb a lot of running time and what You know if it's one shoe that you're Going to choose to get I think I worry about I wonder about Sometimes is whether just because we are Anonymous like outstandingly fit really But we're all fairly lightweight and Maybe if you're a bit of slightly Heavier you get a bit more Joy from those midsoles compared to the Slightly lower stack ones that maybe Bottomed out a bit for runners in the Past and maybe that doesn't happen with
The max cushion shoes but I've got Nothing to really bear that out it's Just a hunch yeah yeah yeah I I think It's one of those things that makes it This is where it all sort of comes in Because you know different Runners put In different levels of force through Every single shoe and we'll all have our Own kind of unique amounts of force that Are going down and how that interacts With the ground and and the density of The Foams and what they do you know we Probably all need our own kind of unique Setup in an ideal world but and it's why It says some of the videos will have Very different experiences and you can Have comments from run test of viewers Will say how on Earth do you find that About that shoe or novoblast is one that Springs to mind for me that people some People love and I can't get on with but Yeah I think we get a lot of stick Because none of us really like that Which is a big you know big stack of Cushioning to me it feels very soft but I think to other people it feels it Feels very kind of springy but I found It felt amazing first run but then Really dense yeah same the other thing There's another important thing to say That not all big cushion shoes are Necessarily pillowy soft either So you can have firm cushioned shoes as Well just to make it even more
Complicated particularly look at some of The outras and those kind of things and Also when you come to the max cushion Shoes I think many of them will when They've got the higher stats will start To kind of introduce the rocker as well Um to help with that But so there's there's a lot going on I Mean I yeah I think it's it's quite a Complicated one to to nail down I think that if you are not a run tester And you don't have loads of different Shoes and you're constantly running in All these different cushion shoes I Think if you're new to running or you Maybe you've only ever running one type Of cushion shoe your understanding of The different Foams and stuff in cushion Shoes is is quite limited so Um it's so if you're a buyer if you're Going out to buy a Christian shoe it's Very very difficult to sort of look at a Shoe and go that's the one I want Because ultimately you've got to try Them all really Um it's a bit different I think with Speed shoes because if you know you can Sort of see what they're designed for You can see you know people winning Racism and stuff like that so there's a Little bit more guidance in terms of Which are the best ones but when it Comes to cushioning I've got you know About 10 different cushion shoes that I
Like wearing but all for different Reasons Um it's very difficult to choose which One to buy yeah it is getting really Complicated now with the fact that this Cost foam decided like so lightweight Lots of speed shoes are now putting Massive stacks on not just the racing Shoes like these the super trainer area We're talking about we're all testing a Shoe right now which we probably can't Talk about yet but just a massive stack Far shoe the Asic super blast I've just Got in it feels absolutely incredible so It can't wait to run in it but you'd Look at that if you were you know that Into running oh that's a really good Cushion shoe and actually it's really Really lightweight kind of do everything She was not really a traditional Cushioned shoe but it's got a 45 Millimeter stack right something like That so yeah everything is a bit Everything's messy because phones are so Light now I I when I did that the first Review of the super blast I got so many Comments going it's not a Tempo shoe It's not this sort of shoe and Somebody's saying it's just a cushion Daily shoe and all these sorts of things And nobody seemed to know exactly what That shoe was for I see even now I'm Still like not 100 sure the best use for It you can use it as a just a daily
Cushion shoe with slow cushion a slow Run shoe Um so it feels like a shoe that's come Around and has become a massive sleep Here a bit like the original Nova Blaster Asics didn't really push and it Became incredibly popular I feel like The superlast is I mean it's really Expensive so that will stop it doing That but it does feel like a lot of People just using it for everything yeah Well I'm looking forward to hearing how You going with it I cannot wait I just Been walking around in it at all times All right so move it carrying on with That so if you're a runner and you're Maybe you haven't tried lots of cushion Shoes and you're fairly new to it what What what are people looking for in a Cushion shoe we talked about this a Little bit earlier but you go into a Shop like you know uh trying on some Shoes what what are the sort of things That people are going to be trying out To find I don't know I feel like if I Was new I was just biased by my own Experience but I still if I was looking At a cushion shoe I would still not be Going for a match cushion shoe from the Off because I think it is quite a Different thing I I always thought I'd Do it Go in first shoes I'd look at the Secondary dry of the Brooks glister in The Brooks ghost and just get a really
Dependable shoe that's Works quite well For lots of people it's reasonably Cushioned but actually it's still then Able to do a lot of different runs as a New running don't really know what kind Of Runner you're going to be and I struggled to the idea that first shoe Out of the box would be a Max cushion Shoe but maybe I'm just being a bit Old-fashioned and again I think there's There's research that sort of backs that Up which is this similar argument it's Kind of barefoot running you know if You're If you go into one if you go into Basically one extreme it can affect your Biomechanics and if you're not kind of Eased into it it can change the way that You run and lead to lead to injuries I Think it's the same for kind of Max Cushion shoes is for if you're going for The minimal shoes so yeah probably Somewhere in between is where you start If you want to kind of graduate up then Do it slowly I definitely think that race shoes like Can't play race shoes and cushion shoes Are very similar in the way that you It's like princess and the P isn't it if It doesn't completely work for you You're not going to enjoy it I was Talking to a guy the other day Um about he was saying I need to get a Cushioned shoe he's fairly new to
Running and I said just get just get the Triumph right it's like fantastic really Enjoyable nice solid shoot you can you Just slightly versatile and he got it And he just said I hate it absolutely Hate it and he ended up getting a Bondi Um I can't remember which one he got uh Just because it I think it just felt a Triumph was just too soft so Bondi just Worked for him he wasn't like the bundle Is not even really mad because it wasn't Until quite recently yeah Bandai and Like you look at stack I think it's Quite an awkward and shoot but yeah that Kind of set the trend I suppose and now It is quite a big stack I think yeah so So on the first one I mean that poker With Matt's cushioning right that was Their first yeah Clifton was second was it But Clifton Iowa was first I first Started reviewing shoes Cliffs and I Also that's a big old shoe there you Know it's quite light but it's big Cushion shooter now it's yeah it's quite A quite a good daily trainer well Balanced but if anything it's got bigger But I just don't view it the same way at All anymore Yeah yeah well basically when it comes To cut shoes I always think you you do Need to try them on like yeah it's a bit Of a risk isn't it especially with you Know I would never say to somebody get
The Nike invisible three if I didn't Know the sort of Runner that they were Because that's so I mean it's a lovely Shoe if you if you want that sort of Thing but I'd never say to anyone to get It I I hate it I wish somebody said to Me I want a really really soft shoe for A very comfortable runs and that's all I Want to do I might go okay principal Food is broken with you if this guy I Was speaking to was actually he wanted a Shoe just to do his training in and he Said I want it quite cushioned so I'd Never say that because it you know if he Starts getting a bit faster and trying To do some intervals and stuff he's Going by another pair of shoes Oh I think also when the stat gets that Big you really definitely a lot of times You've got to try them on because you've Got to make sure it it works with your Gate essentially because they've they've Got they've got big heel bevels to make Everything quite smooth and everything But yeah you might not you just this Might just be too big in a weird way All right well let's let's talk a bit Bit wider than specifics now Um so uh we did this with car and plate Shoes in uh an earlier video where we Talked about how it's going to be Developing uh over the next Couple of years or whatever how do we Think uh car cushion shoes are gonna are
Going to be changing in in the near Future Mike do you want to grab this one I think I think we've already started to See it a little bit I think some and We've talked about some of the kind of What we class classes kind of Traditional kind of cushion shoes have Evolved to be very different things I Think I look at stuff like the Nimbus Where I think the version of this Nimbus Is very different in terms of its use in Terms of what the previous Nimbus would Be and I think things in terms of what That kind of cushioning kind of delivers As well and what it offers I think you Know we've seen the kind of evolution of Kind of stability shoes and how we're Using kind of different ways of Delivering that support and guidance for People and I think you know look at Things that's the sucking 10 percent Shoes like that that how that cushioning Is going to be used and utilized and What it's going to be used for I think Is it's going to be interesting and Changing maybe how those lines were kind Of viewed in the past [Music] Yeah the stability I think is big I Think I've started to enjoy using Stability shoes like the car I know and The Tempest even though I am a neutral Runner just because just a little bit of Support doesn't really take away
Anything from the ride but yeah it'll be Interesting what would you guys guess The max stack height see we see in the Next couple of years is first for a Position I I I had a chat with uh Podcast with confusing the other day and We were chatting about this and um he Was talking about how Yes the stock car is constantly getting Bigger but as it as Foams develop you Actually probably won't need as much Stack height to get the same feeling That you get From won't stop them though they'll keep Adding it to them well we were talking About getting a 90 millimeter shoe More stuck in but uh I I reckon we'll go Up to 65. There will be a ridiculous shoe but no You're testing that I am I I think you Know what again I'm rattling on but About the kind of studies in the science And which it's kind of early days for Some of that I'd be interesting to keep An eye on How those bits of research kind of pan Out with whether or not people we don't Really know whether or not these shoes Are going to lead to more or less Injuries I don't think I think that's One to watch I think I might say there definitely Won't be a difference will there it's Like all the all the research it always
Just ends up with just get the one that Feels nice I'm just taking that 70 millimeter shoe Though Yeah I mean I I think there might there Might even be a reaction to it so I'm Kind of with Tom and confusion on this I Think they might yeah if they can get The same uh performance out of a lower Stack then And everyone stopped using those shoes After a while yeah I hope the future is The superpower style which is look we Put loads of stack on it's really bouncy And funny use it for anything anyways 260 grams here you go you've been very Swayed by the super blast very quickly Yeah I know I mean the little jogs Around the house It's so excited it feels really nice but I just feel like there'd be more of that I think they might you know there'll be A little bit of the all-rounders will Develop that oh actually you know this You can use this for everything but you Just need the price to start coming down Quite a bit unfortunately it seems the Price is going to keep going the other Way Thank you all right well let's finish This off with a nice easy question what Are our current favorite cushion shoes Gary do you want to start us off you Could pick we'll get one you get to pick
One okay well that's good because one of Them was apparently unclassified According to the next classification so My three that I had written down all Right for me I mean it's pretty simple I Think it's well two mach five on cloud Monster those two my favorites versatile Nice amount of cushioning balanced in Terms of weight can do everything feel Comfortable what did you pick in the Video Uh oh yeah I can't remember now I think I think it's B3 but that's that's um no You pick the surfer didn't you oh Cloud Surface I do Cloud Surfer yeah Cloud Surf is another great one I mean I've Loved the cloud Surfer more recently as Well yeah so all of those three weeks Later you can't change two different Parts yeah yeah no I think I may have Gone back to put I was running in the Mach 5 a bit more recently to do those The head to heads and that's uh but yeah All three of those are good well I'm Guessing Nick's gonna pick super blast That he's walked to the fridge with no No I'm still still stick to the velocity Nitro too I won't go on about it because People get very active now I can't Handle the comments yeah Sorry I keep recommending very cheap Good value shoe I don't want people so Angry at me like if I change my mind About all the best she was every week
That would be annoying I know still be Good as 50 Quid now oh shut up Got the mic I mean I was I'm initially when we did In the video I thought I'm always going To say the cloud surf but for me it's The GEL Nimbus Um 25 Um I always should have just picked up And if I want to go and run an hour Running I don't know you know I can't Necessarily do massively quick stuff in It but I just know the Opera is really Comfortable and that level of cushioning Is just the right side of plush for me In terms of what you get it and it's Just finished shoe that I still use on a Regular basis now and I'd be happy to You so that's one that's kind of really Stood out for me at the moment I think I've It's Tricky I I was I told you about it Nick wasn't on a video when I was There's something trying 20 Was it twice oh yeah yeah you were I'm Swaying real heartfelt trying 21. but For different reasons like I wouldn't I'd really struggled to choose between The new bands more V4 and the soccer Triumph of 21 because I don't use them For the same reason so that's where it Could start to get murky with cushion Shoes because basically I have two of Them now
Especially now I'm running 30 minute 5Ks Um right all right then lovely stuff Cheers guys That's it from us thanks a lot for Watching don't forget to like subscribe Click the little bell all of those sorts Of things and check the channel out for All the other videos we've got coming Out at the moment thanks a lot for Watching catch you next time Foreign