Fall 2006 Shoe Review



Fall 2006 Shoe Review

Take a trip down memory lane with Expert Reviews of the best running shoes from 2006.

Shop by your shoe category. What that means.
Stability, Stability+ or Performance Stability
Neutral, Neutral+ or Performance Neutral
Motion Control
Nike+ Ready Shoes

Stability

 

adidas SUPERNOVA CONTROL 9
Replaces: SuperNova Control '05

What's NEW: The most noticeable change to the new SuperNova Control is the addition of the Ground Control System (GCS) to the heel. Previously available only in more expensive shoes, GCS softens impact and controls over-pronation at the heel rather than later in your gait cycle. You get over-pronation control in a smooth ride along with advanced technology at a lower price. The fit and stability (most stable shoe at this price point) remain constants.
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MIZUNO WAVE ALCHEMY 6
Replaces: Wave Alchemy 5

What's NEW: The Wave Alchemy has evolved in its last two seasons and is now established as a workhorse shoe for many runners. It fits a wide variety of feet. It corrects over-pronation without too much control and doesn't feel like you're wearing bricks. Its lightweight feel is what keeps runners coming back for more. And don't worry, there were minimal changes to the upper so you'll get the same great fit as you did with the 5.
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NEW BALANCE 767
Super Dave Pick
Replaces: 766

What's NEW: Although this shoe series has a following, the competition in the category is fierce. For new runners or runners with no brand preference, the 766 just didn't stack up to the other brands. With the 767, New Balance managed to maintain most of what made the 766 good but added a new fit form that allows a more generous fit. Also, the 767 is softer and more comfortable than the 766 because of the layer of ABZORB stitched in beneath the sock liner and from the change to blown rubber from carbon rubber in the outersole. This shoe will even amaze loyalists of other brands. If you're new to running or simply looking for a different shoe, the 767 should be on your short list of shoes to try.
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SAUCONY GRID TRIGON 4 GUIDE
Replaces: Grid Trigon 3 Guide

What's NEW: Compared to the previous model, the changes in this shoe are minimal. The biggest, most important change is that the forefoot has been opened up to give wider feet a better fit. From a ride standpoint, it's tough to find the differences between the 3 and 4. The same soft feel within a solid base combine to give you a smooth and stable ride. If you were in the 3, buy the 4. If you are looking for a good shoe to rotate into your mix, give this a try. You'll like what you feel.
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Stability+
 

BROOKS TRANCE 6
Replaces: Trance 5

What's NEW: The biggest change in the Trance 6 is the revolutionary MoGo midsole. Most midsoles are stamped out from a foam sheet (like a cookie cutter). MoGo uses pellets that expand to create the midsole based on the shoe size. There's less waste and more consistency between the same shoe sizes. Besides the brilliant MoGo, you'll get a soft resilient ride that lasts for miles. The Trance hasn't been a favorite of mine until now -- it's got the feel most runners are looking for.
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NEW BALANCE 1222
Replaces: 1221

What's NEW: In a long line of highly successful premium footwear comes the New Balance 1222, the first update to this shoe in almost three years. It's got the durability you expect and the immediate "this shoe is different" comfort. Although New Balance is known as the brand with the best fit, the biggest improvement in this shoe is the fit. Your feet just feel more "welcome" in this shoe instead of feeling uninvited. Better materials were also used in this update so it's very stable and well-cushioned. Your ride will be softer but still control your feet where you need it. A great new fit combined with some technological modifications -- this shoe live up to its price.
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REEBOK TRINITY KFS
NEW

What's NEW: The three components of the "Trinity" are its toe piece, the midfoot saddle and the heel lock zone. KFS stands for Kinetic Fit System. Bringing it all together means the upper moves with your foot to create a shoe that works with your natural mechanics. The ride is very smooth and should give Reebok a boost as a legitimate choice in the Stability Plus running shoe category. It's also a great value shoe in this category. If early results are any indication, it will win over more runners than any other new shoe on the market.
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Performance Stability
 

SAUCONY GRID TANGENT 2
Replaces: Grid Tangent

What's NEW: If you passed on the Grid Tangent because of its bright color, you passed on an outstanding performance stability shoe. It had the best feel in its class last year. Now, the color has been toned down and it still has the same great ride. What are you waiting for?
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Neutral
 

ASICS GEL-CUMULUS VIII
Replaces: Gel-Cumulus VII

What's NEW: With any change in a shoe model, you can expect to feel some difference. A change in the materials used or a slight upper change can make the same midsole feel different. In this case however, the Cumulus VIII fits and feels almost identical to the Cumulus VII. The VIII follows the same format as its predecessor and has a great right-out-of-the-box ride. If you're a neutral runner new to the sport without foot problems, this shoe should be your starting point.
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NIKE AIR PEGASUS 06
Replaces: Air Pegasus 05

What's NEW: The Pegasus is like the weather in Texas: if you don't like it now, just wait. The '05 Pegasus was too firm overall and the fit for both men (too narrow) & women (too short) was sub-par. But the Pegasus '06 goes back to its roots and you're going to love it again. It's a neutral, built to last shoe with just one frill: an AirRide liner that rests between the midsole and your foot to give you a soft, yet secure feel. The upper has opened up to fit more men's feet. Women should be able to buy your pre Pegasus '05 size. We're thrilled with the '06 Pegasus.
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SAUCONY GRID TRIGON 4 RIDE
Replaces: Grid Trigon 3 Ride

What's NEW: The Neutral category is full of really good running shoes and the Trigon 4 Ride fits right in. This shoe has built a loyal following. Now that the narrowness in the toe-box has been corrected, it should attract more converts. I generally judge a shoe by how "quiet" it runs and how my feet feel during and after a run. This shoe does run quiet which simply means it's soft and smooth. As for how my feet felt? Even after 15 miles, I didn't notice the shoe and that's a good sign. I can't say that about too many shoes.
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Neutral+
 

ASICS GEL-NIMBUS VIII
Super Dave Pick
Replaces: Gel-Nimbus VII

What's NEW: You spoke and Asics listened (it does happen!). Nimbus VII buyers and those who passed on the shoe said its forefoot was too sloppy. Asics changed a pattern so the VIII fits closer to your foot. You said the forefoot was a bit flat. Asics adjusted the outersole materials for a much softer feel. You said you wanted it in wide sizes, and Asics has delivered for both men and women. This shoe is a great go-to when you need a lighter weight but still heavy-duty shoe. Enjoy the ride of the VIII and continue with the feedback.
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NEW BALANCE ZIP 8505
NEW

What's NEW: The world of composite midsoles (only those that aren't made with foam) welcomes New Balance to the mix. A composite midsole like Zip feels the same for miles and miles, day after day. It won't break down like a foam midsole does. It has a slightly firm and lively feel, designed to help propel you forward. The Zip design also adds some stability, plus it has a fresh new look. This shoe is a bit heavy but what you give up in weight, you get back in durability.
AVAILABLE IN LATE AUGUST: Pre-Order Yours Today!

     
 

adidas adiSTAR CUSHION 4
Replaces: adiStar Cushion

What's NEW: Slowly but surely, adidas is getting it. You asked for a softer ride because the previous model of this shoe was too firm. The adiStar Cushion 4 is the softest adidas running shoe so far. Though not wide, this version also has slightly more room in the upper. With a snug heel fit and less stitching in the construction, the inside of the shoe is softer with less chance for rubbing or irritating your foot. All in all, this shoe is moving in the right direction for more runners.
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NIKE SHOX TL4
Replaces: Shox TL3

What's NEW: Since the TL hit the market, it's been very popular. Comments like, "I can run again", or "This shoe changed my running for the better", are common. I'd bet there isn't another shoe out there that gets that kind of praise. The new Shox TL4 features a more a traditional looking upper that also performs like a traditional running shoe. It hugs your midfoot and locks it in place. It still has the same sole unit from the TL3. Now, even more runners will try this shoe and make comments like the ones above.
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Performance Neutral
 

ASICS GEL-SPEEDSTAR 2
Replaces: Gel-Speedstar

What's NEW: If you train, race and are competitive then this is your shoe. Few people found fault in the simple design and super soft feel of the Gel Speedstar, however the bright colors were a bit much. The colors have been changed and are rather "blah" but for you runners who want fast over flash, the Speedstar 2 will turn your engines just like the first version.
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MIZUNO WAVE PRECISION 7
Replaces: Wave Precision 6

What's NEW: A true "sleeper" shoe in this category. Runners who tried the Precision 6 liked its simple design and go-fast feel. The new version will grab the attention of more runners just based on the appearance. It's not flashy but different with its open air-moving mesh. The basics remain: a superb go-fast fit and a go-fast ride.
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Motion Control
 

BROOKS BEAST 9/ARIEL 9
Super Dave Pick
Replaces: Beast/Ariel '04

What's NEW: Even the old dogs can learn new tricks, but the MoGo midsole that's been added to the Beast and Ariel is no trick. It's a bit softer than Substance 257, it's also lighter and more resilient. Mile after mile the feel of the Beast/Ariel will be there. Otherwise, the Beast remains the same, perfect for the larger runner who has flat feet. What more should change in the most popular Motion Control shoe 8 years in a row?
AVAILABLE IN LATE OCTOBER
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Here's the Inside Scoop on these Nike+ Ready Shoes!

 

NIKE AIR MAX 180
NEW

What's NEW: The Air Max 180 has an Air Unit in the heel so you get exceptional heel cushion like the Air Max 360 with a soft flexible forefoot for a really smooth cushioned ride. The fit is also similar to the 360 in that it hugs your foot but the upper has some stretch to it. The ultra flexible forefoot satisfies the runners who find the 360 too stiff or simply too much shoe. Nike excels in this category and the Air Max 180 is just another example of getting it right.
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NIKE ZOOM MOIRE+
NEW

What's NEW: Part Nike Free and part everyday trainer, the Zoom Moire+'s midsole/outersole design takes its cues from the Free so it's really flexible. The everyday trainer features are the Zoom Air units and the supportive sock liner. These components combine to provide some substance under your foot. The upper has a seamless design for added comfort. This shoe is not for everyone. If you like minimalist shoes with little to no support, try the Zoom Moire+.
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NIKE ZOOM+
NEW

What's NEW: I ran in these at the launch of the Nike/Apple partnership. My test run was a 5.73-mile loop through Central Park. My iPod nano told me my exact mileage. When I finished I realized I hadn't noticed my feet while running, my ultimate compliment to a shoe. It feels like a cross between the Zoom Miler and the Air Pegasus. This shoe will fit a wide variety of feet but still feel fast. To try the new Nike+ system, start with these runner-friendly shoes.
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