Salomon Sense Ride
The last (and only other time) I wore and tested Salomon shoes, I was fairly happy with the fit. Since then, I’ve transitioned over to Altras, preferring the 0mm drop, but I was still eager to give these a fair chance. Salomon has done a decent job marketing these shoes and, as Gear Editor Ben noted in his review, the Salomon Sense Ride can do it all. So what, exactly, does doing it all entail?
- Comfortable cushioning
- Breathable and quick to dry with mesh upper
- Enough traction so that it’s good for technical trails but not enough to feel sticky
- Secure fit
- Good price point
Weight: 8.1 oz (Women’s Size 8)
Midsole Height : 27mm heel/19mm forefoot (8mm drop)
Weighing in between 8.1-9.7 oz, the Salomon Sense Rides aren’t the lightest trail shoe, but that doesn’t mean that they’re not made for long miles. Well-cushioned, these are the type of shoes that work for everything from a trail jog to a 50K. These might work for a longer race for folks who like a greater discrepancy between heel and forefoot, but the 8mm drop is too much for me.
The color is bright and, for a woman who isn’t a fan of the all-too-common pink or purple spectrum we see on most female running shoes, the blue is a real highlight for me (for women who can’t give up those shades, purple/magenta and pink/orange are also available.) For those familiar with the Salomon Sense Pro, these are vaguely similar, but with the added technologies that S-Lab series provides–minus the expensive price tag.
One of the best qualities of the shoe is its comfort, and it’s correctly marketed as such. The Ortholite sockliner–a type of foam that purportedly creates a cooler, drier, and better cushioned foot support–is nice and, despite two weeks of running on the shoe, didn’t lose its form. The Ortholite is just one of fourteen technologies that Salomon uses (including it’s Lace Pocket and QuickLace for easy storage and lacing, and Sensifit to achieve the trademark Salomon “snugness.”) While the added cushion does provide a more comfortable feel when your runs get up into the double digits, you do lose some of the proprioception allowed for in more minimalist shoes. The slightly wider toe box adds to the comfort, while the midsole is still firmly supported, meaning that any potential slipping or blistered toes is unlikely. The wide tongue sits comfortably atop the foot, preventing any hotspots. While I wasn’t totally sold on the fit for my particular feet, I didn’t experience any friction or rubbing. Salomon tends to run a bit big for me, so if you have narrow feet I might suggest dropping down half a size. I tested these shoes in size 9, but could have used an 8.5 quite easily.
Think of these shoes as having extra springs; the 8mm drop propels you forward while Vibe Technology (a combination of Energy Cell Plus, EVA, and Opal) supposedly control vibrations. While I didn’t necessarily notice the reduced fatigue, I was impressed by the smooth ride. I used these shoes on buttery trail, some semi-technical single track and, once or twice, while running errands on sidewalk and road.
Quality of the Salomon Sense Ride
I was impressed by the quality of the shoes, despite the reduced price of the Salomon Sense Ride as compared to those in the S-Lab line. For someone who prefers less precision and overall “shoe,” these fit the bill: comfortable, relatively light, and cushioned enough that I wouldn’t categorize these with other, more “European-styled” Salomon shoes. The lugs are solid without being overdone, and while I don’t recommend these as road shoes, they don’t clatter or slide on asphalt, either.
What I wished…
I wished the 8mm drop was reduced to 4mm, or potentially less. While I appreciate the cushion, these shoes felt awkward on my arch and seemed to have a negative effect on my calf muscles. I think that while loss of some spring is inevitable with this potential change, the benefits of being able to wear these shoes for much longer races is worth it.
Who are these for?
The Salomon Sense Rides are solid shoes for runners with narrow to normal-width feet who like a snug-fitting shoe that performs well on both smooth and somewhat technical terrain. For those longing for a more comfortable ride, these are hands down the best shoes that Salomon offers.
Would I buy them?
Personally? No. But that’s not because of the price (at $120, these are fairly reasonable shoes by Salomon standards; compare that to the $180 S-Lab series shoes), the fit (secure), or the look (these are colorful and clean without looking overdone). Rather, the amount of cushioning and drop is a turn off for a minimalist runner like me.
The Salomon Sense Rides are a turning point for Salomon: these are comfortable, smooth, and high quality shoes for a really great price point.
Where can I buy the Salomon Sense Ride?
If you’re interested in purchasing this shoe, please first check availability at your local, independently owned running specialty store. They need your business and are a great resource for the community.
If that’s not an option, please consider using this affiliate link for the women’ shoe. The return policy is great, and it’ll drop a few nickels into URP bucket if you decide to keep it. Thank You!
This review was written by Jade Belzberg from San Diego, California. The gear in this review was provided for testing purposes to URP and all words and thoughts are her own.