Saucony Ride 15 Review (Includes Guide 15 Review)
Over the last few weeks, I’ve been running around in my review pair of Saucony Ride 15, their neutral, everyday cushioned road training shoe. It is designed to be soft enough for those slower, comfy everyday runs and yet responsive enough for some fast running too, should it take your fancy. If you need a little pronation support then you could consider the Saucony Guide 15, which has all the same capabilities of the Ride 15 outlined below, but with some anti-pronation support built-in. If you ever need any help, simply get in touch.
One of the first things I like about the Ride 15 is that Saucony haven’t changed it to ‘follow the crowd’. The current trend in running shoes is to make the cushioning super thick and super soft. Almost pillow-like in feel. This is perceived as extra protection for your joints etc.. and although shoes this soft can reduce inflammation in the joints, they reduce foot function and therefore your body’s ability to absorb shock. Running helps makes your bones strong because it’s a weight bearing exercise. Your body responds to he forces it is experiences and makes itself stronger. If we make running shoes too soft, then we’ll lose some of the health benefits of running.
Don’t get me wrong, the Saucony Ride 15 isn’t a harder shoe like the Ride 14, but you don’t sink into an excess of “soggy” cushion. The energy return is quite noticeable, and you get a smoother responsive ride. It’s easy to start picking up the pace if you fancy it. Not because the shoe is designed to promote speed necessarily, but because the ride is so smooth that it’s easy to get into a nice rhythm and cruise along. This is despite the stack height being increased by 3mm in comparison to the Ride 14. This is a real compliment, as it’s often hard to find that blend of comfy, yet nimble feeling.
The midsole is made from an EVA blend foam with E-TPU insole and has an 8mm heel to forefoot differential. There is no rocker in the shoe, and it does have some flex, which is surprising when you consider how smooth the ride of the shoe is. I normally wear shoes with a lower heel to forefoot drop than 8mm but the drop isn’t instantly apparent when you put the shoe on. The midsole splays out in the forefoot, despite being a regular perhaps narrow-ish width, which makes the shoe feel very stable. The heel is curved to reduce the heel strike.
The outsole has a lot of exposed midsole foam with strategically placed rubber in the areas that are most likely to wear. This outsole is designed for road use only, as it would wear down if used on rough trails.
The upper is a very soft, light mesh. It pulls in around the foot really well to give a barely-there fit. The stability in the heel is maintained by a plastic heel cup. The toe box isn’t excessively pointed. We expect to receive a wide fitting Ride 15 very soon in summer 2022.
I found the Saucony Ride 15 easy to run in and it’s the type of shoe that you can forget is on your feet. The cushioning is genuinely a blend of softer and firmer, fantastically so. They where easy to trot a long in at an easy pace but I regularly picked up the pace and enjoyed myself. They are a comfortable, versatile everyday trainer, with it’s brother the Guide 15 for those reading that require support.
Karhu Fusion: The other grand that hasn’t followed the soft cushioning trend is Karhu. These aren’t quite as responsive. Feeling more like a sturdy shoe for putting in the miles. Here is our review: https://www.northernrunner.com/blog/6843-2/
New Balance 880 : These are much softer with a firmer foam in the forefoot to supply a positive push off. They don’t feel as smooth as the Saucony Ride but offer a softer ride for the long or easy runs. Here is our review: https://www.northernrunner.com/blog/new-balance-880v12-review/
Brooks Ghost: These are softer in ride and narrower in fit. Although they do come in two width Women’s and three widths Men’s. https://www.northernrunner.com/search/ghost