The Axon is designed for any neutral runner, as it can handle long miles, high paces, and everything in between. I would recommend this shoe to all neutral runners.
All should be able to, but with a 4mm drop, it will take some people a while to get used to them. But seriously, this shoe would work for anyone.
Over the last 2-3 years, Saucony has completely upped their game, and created a line up of shoes that rivals, if not beats, any other on the market.
Through the introduction of the Endorphin line and it’s three tiers of shoes designed to work together; then there are the updates of the Triumph, Ride, and Kinvara; and lastly the introduction of an Endoriphin-inspired Axon to provide an introductory-level trainer.
In the Axon, they have produced a budget-conscious option that checks off most of the premium trainer, for half the price.
At $100 list, easily found for less than $90, At that price point the Axon will compete against the New Balance FuelCell Propel, Brooks Launch, and Nike Winflo. But I believe that the Axon provides more than any of the other offerings in that price point.
When these shoes showed up, I was really impressed by the looks of the update. I got the yellow colorway, and I really liked the initial look in the box.
When I put them on my feet, I was even more impressed by the how they looked. However, the most impressive thing was the feeling on my foot. They were light, soft, and the toe-rocker just made one step flow into the next.
When I took them out on the road and started out, my plan was just to do a 5k at an easy pace. Instead, I felt so good that I pushed it to a 5-mile run and cut 30-seconds per mile off the previous average I had been running. That number came back to earth a little later, but they just felt amazing.
Falling in line with the idea of the Axon, the upper is nothing complicated. It is a simple engineered air-mesh which is soft and breathable. However, simple sometimes can be great.
This upper is true-to-size, and has great proportions throughout. It starts in the heel with a hard, structured area that helps lock the foot into the shoe. It is not particularly narrow, but the hard plastic cup cradles the heel, and the collar is soft, but not plush.
From the heel, the shoe stays in a normal-to-narrow width through the midfoot. However, the mesh flexes with your feet through your run, and feels supportive, using a printed decal to add structure to that area of the foot. From there, it opens up into a much wider-feeling toebox than the original Axon.
A small update to the upper from the Axon to the Axon 2 is the added toe structure to ensure your toes won’t slide off the sole unit.
In the Axon, there are not a lot of technical advances. Saucony does not use their top-line PWRRUNPB or even second-line PWRRUN+. Instead they used their old staple of the PWRRUN, something the Triumph used a few years ago.
This midsole doesn’t offer the same bounce as their other products, but there is plenty of bounce there. By putting the PWRRUN into the mold of the Endorphin sole unit and its aggressive rocker design. This design helps your foot roll through transition of landing to toe off, and helps you propel yourself forward. Technically, the midsole is nothing special, but with the rocker and the slightly firmer cushion it works very well.
The one miss on this shoe is something I have been complaining about from most companies, other than Brooks, is the grip on wet surfaces. The carbon rubber outsole is fantastic on dry surfaces, but can be a little splashy on wet cement. For some reason, many companies are using this thin carbon rubber and it just does not hold up well on wet cement. It wasn’t so bad that I felt unsafe, but I needed to adjust how I ran on wet surfaces.
Simply put, this shoe has been my favorite of the year. I cannot recommend it enough. In fact, I have recommended it to multiple runner friends, and all of them have told me they agree.
This shoe is simple, and there are no frills involved. However, that is part of the appeal to me. This shoe has cut out all the unnecessary things, and just focused on delivering a solid trainer that can run all the different workouts and bring a smile to your face.
Even if this shoe were more expensive, say $120-130, I would say it is worth the price based off my runs. However, at $100, this shoe is a legitimate steal. T
o me, there is no reason this shoe should not be a part of every runner’s rotation. When you can find a pair for less than $90 fairly regularly, there’s really no reason not to. To that point, I have actually added a second pair to my own collection because of how enjoyable these were during testing.
Is everything perfect? No. The outsole needs some traction work for the next model. But this is definitely one of those shoes that I hope a company like Saucony will not mess around with too much.
This shoe is nearly perfect for what it is. And you should definitely give them a try.