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Founded in Pennsylvania in 1898 and relocated to Cambridge, MA in the 1960s, Saucony is one of the oldest running shoes brands.

Over the past couple of years, Saucony revamped most of their shoe designs thanks to two main innovations: the ISOFIT upper construction and from this year the EVERUN sole material.

Saucony classifies their shoes in a very traditional way based on Pronation support, Road vs Trail and Racing/Track shoes.

Within each of these categories live different shoes for different runners. We are going to break the line down to make it easy to understand, and don't forget to keep reading for an overview of Saucony’s main technologies.

Saucony Neutral Running Shoes

Some of Saucony's neutral running shoes have become incredibly successful staples in the running word. The Kinvara took the world by surprise when it launched almost 10 years ago and since then Saucony hasn't stopped innovating and refining their neutral line of running shoes.

Here are the main models and an explanation of key features and differences.

Saucony Ride ISO - Pair
The Saucony Ride ISO branches into new territory of the Ride line, improving on fit comfort and overall running efficiency. Comfort combined with a modern design makes this shoe a good choice for daily training. Read full review »

Pros

  • Comfortable ISOFIT upper
  • Extra cushioning from EVERUN foam
  • Sleek design upgrades

Cons

  • Might feel narrow to some.
Saucony Triumph ISO 5 - Lateral Side
The Saucony Triumph ISO 5 is a high-cushion, high-mileage trainer that can work for any neutral runner. Although it is very pricey, you get a lot for the money. Read full review »

Pros

  • Incredible cushion
  • Good support on the upper
  • Great construction
  • Good traction on multiple surfaces
  • Lots of energy return

Cons

  • A little heavy
The Saucony Kinvara 9 is substantially similar to last year's version 8, retaining the soft, smooth ride.

A few minor improvements to this 9th iteration include a low-profile tongue and revised configuration of blow-rubber in the outsole.

Loyal Kinvarans will continue to enjoy the lightweight and highly-responsive ride that make this shoe the perfect daily trainer and marathon race shoe. Read full review »

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Soft, yet responsive ride
  • Versatile
  • Smooth heel-to-toe transition
  • Improved outsole for traction

Cons

  • Pro-lock technology in the midfoot upper is unnecessary and can restrict natural foot movement if not adjusted properly.
Saucony Freedom ISO 2 - Pair
The Saucony Freedom ISO 2 improves on the very popular and highly regarded first version. By adding more EVERUN and focusing the shoe more towards a comfortable ride the Freedom ISO 2 exceeds its lofty expectations. Read full review »

Pros

  • Improves on an already incredible shoe
  • Full length EVERUN sole is cushioned and springy
  • Durable
  • Comfortable Upper

Cons

  • Price
Saucony Breakthru 4 - Pair
The Saucony Breakthru 4 is a lightweight daily trainer that can double as a racing shoe. What sets the Breakthru apart from other similar shoes is the durability at a low price. Read full review »

Pros

  • Durable shoe that can handle daily training and races
  • Feels light under the foot

Cons

  • Loose midfoot regardless of lacing
The Echelon is the cushioning/neutral cousin of the Redeemer.It has a layer of EVERUN to ensure a soft, cushioned ride without the motion control elements present in the Redeemer.It has a wide, stable base, a flat foot arch and it was made to accommodate (eventual) custom orthotics that you might need.

Saucony Support Running Shoes

Saucony approached their lineup in a very logical way, giving almost each shoe in their neutral line a counterpart in the stability line. Here are the main models for runners in need of support.

Saucony Guide ISO 2 - Lateral Side
The Saucony Guide Iso 2 is an exceptional mid cushioned stability daily trainer, fit for any type of run. Read full review »

Pros

  • Incredibly Smooth and Natural Ride
  • ISOFIT upper
  • EVERUN topsple

Cons

  • Lack of Breathability
Saucony Hurricane ISO 4 - Pair
Saucony Hurricane ISO 4 surrounds your foot with superb cushion and a secure lock-down, offering light stability with a balanced toe box: not tight, not roomy; not wide, not narrow. Read full review »

Pros

  • Soft, comfortable cushion throughout
  • Snug, comfortable, secure upper fit

Cons

  • Midsole isn't stable, outsole lacks grip
  • A touch heavy
  • Price
Saucony Omni ISO - Pair
The Saucony Omni Iso is a tried and true stability trainer. It’s superb fit and feel allows runners to run whatever distance at whatever speed. Read full review »

Pros

  • ISOFit Upper
  • Everrun Technology
  • The overall fit and comfort

Cons

  • Upper lacks breathability
The Saucony Redeemer ISO 2 is so close to be a great stability/motion control running shoe for runners with flat feet (or particularly unstable gait) but a very heavy and warm upper and an issue with heel slippage ruined the fun for me. Read full review »

Pros

  • Very very stable without feeling constrictive
  • EVERUN cushioning makes it very comfortable at each step

Cons

  • Heel is too wide, keeps slipping of my feet
  • Upper is very very hot and not very breathable

Saucony Trail Running Shoes

Saucony has one of the most popular trail running shoes - the Peregrine - but the other ones in the line are not to be ignored. Here they are:

Saucony Peregrine 8 - Lateral Side
The Saucony Peregrine 8 is a lightweight trail shoe that performs as any trail shoe should. It offers ample support for the foot and grips on all types of surfaces from loose gravel to packed dirt. The shoe keeps the foot in pace which eliminates slippage which can lead to injury or worse yet…blisters. Read full review »

Pros

  • The shoe is lightweight, and the design locks the foot into place providing stability
  • The upper material is porous, and it breathes extremely well
  • The shoes cushioning is solid recovers well after long runs over multiple days
  • The shoe is durable

Cons

  • The shoes runs a half size large
  • The knit material allows water and melting snow to soak your socks
  • The tread while a nice edition to the shoe catches on carpet causing me to stumble multiple times.
Saucony Xodus ISO - Medial Side
The Saucony Xodus ISO is a rugged yet comfortable trail shoe that is at the top of its class. The shoes are incredibly comfortable; there was virtually no stiffness during my first run with them.

The lugs handle all trail terrain — mud, sand, dirt, rocks, etc. — with an unrelenting but reassuring grip for the runner. Read full review »

Pros

  • Excellent gripping shoe
  • Responsive
  • Handles various trail surfaces with ease

Cons

  • On the expensive side ($130)
  • Laces seemed on short side
Saucony Koa Tr - Top
The Saucony Koa TR bills itself as a hybrid solution for those seeking a running shoe that will handle both trails and paved surfaces. While the shoe is comfortable and supportive, it falls short of expectations for both road use and trail running. Read full review »

Pros

  • Comfortable almost immediately out of the box.
  • Firm yet responsive cushioning.
  • Roomy toe box

Cons

  • Lugs have less grip than is necessary for muddy terrain.
  • For shoes intended to be for roads and mild trails, they are heavy.
  • Lack of a rock plate.
The Saucony Koa St is a trail shoe that features 8mm lugs and can handle a variety of terrains. These shoes can be used on dry trails, but excel on muddy, loose, and even steep terrain. The oblique toebox allows for a natural toe splay, although women did find the toe box allowed for more room than the men’s version.The midsole of the Koa St features a 3mm EVERUN topsole for comfort and responsiveness. It distributes shock evenly while conforming to the shape of your feet.A synthetic upper keeps moisture away, although this feature makes the shoe less flexible than the Koa TR. Furthermore, while the upper is great at keeping moisture away, it is not very breathable so you may find your feet getting hot in warm weather. Flex Film overlays on the upper help the shoe wrap firmly around your feet for a more secure feel. In addition, the reinforced heel aids in keeping your feet in place while protecting your Achilles.The outsole is where the shoe really shines. It features PWR TRAC outsole is tacky, durable, and keeps traction on all types of terrain. The outsole also has 8mm lugs that face in different directions to help with traction.

An explanation of Saucony’s technologies

ISOFIT

ISOFIT is the relatively new upper construction that Saucony places on all their higher-end models.

It is such a drastic change according to Saucony that once a model gets the “ISO” treatment, the numbering starts from 1. For example after the Triumph 12, there is the Triumph ISO and after that one the ISO 2.

What is ISOFIT?

Saucony IsoFit
(image from Saucony.com)

It’s an ultra-soft inner sleeve made of stretchable air mesh, that morphs to the foot for a sock-like feel with a floating support cage around it that cradles the foot.

There’s a little more to it. The inner mesh sleeve is actually made of 4 different kind of meshes, on the midfoot, midfoot sides, toebox, tongue…

The external support cage is where the 4 eyelets are and locks the foot securely to the shoes. The cage extends over the heel, leaving a window open.

ISOFIT is quite a substantial change to Saucony’s previous models and it commended a $20 to $30 price increase, depending on the model.

FlexFILM

FlexFILM is what Saucony calls their new overlay tech. Instead of sewing plastic pieces to the upper to provide support and structure, the overlays are now melded to the upper in order to both save weight and reduce possiblities for irritation and blisters.

Flexfilm

Powergrid and Powergrid+

Powergrid+ is the evolution of Powergrid, which in turn is the evolution of the original Progrid technology.

In a nutshell, the “grid” system is a perforated layer between the insole of the shoe and the midsole that acts as a net. Landing your foot over a net design helps spread the shock of the impact on a wider surface.

Saucony Powergrid

Powergrid evolved on the Progrid system by utilizing a lighter material.

Powergrid+ differs from Powergrid in the way that instead of being a separate layer on top of the midsole, now the midsole itself incorporates the holes that create the grid system.

EVERUN

EVERUN is the newest Saucony technology and it’s slowly but surely being incorporated in all new premium Saucony running shoes.

EVERUN

As you can see from the image above, EVERUN is an additional layer of cushioning material that lives close to the foot, providing a more immediate cushioning. According to Saucony it provides an 83% energy return and it does not break down with usage.


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