I must admit I was both excited and a bit leery when I received the Under Armour Spine RPM Running Shoes. Under Armour is not the first company I think of for running shoes, but that might change. Under Armour worked with Tom Brady and Lindsey Vonn to develop this shoe, creating a combination of lightweight performance and support. They are good-looking shoes – I received the Graphite version, which is subtle and attention-grabbing at the same time, especially the bright yellow sole and laces. These were shoes that felt comfortable on the foot, but different than other running shoes. First, the sole is very stiff, and feels like it is made of a hard plastic, not a typical running shoe sole, to say the least. The sole is also very slick feeling out of the box, again, not a typical running shoe. I’ve read some complaints that the Under Armour running shoes in general don’t work for wide feet, but that wasn’t the case for me – the laces are easily adjustable and hold well in a variety of configurations.
The Fundamentals– UA Spine chassis technology creates an incredibly light, flexible feel without sacrificing support.
– Micro G® foam encapsulated within the chassis delivers unrivaled rebound and energy return.
– Breathable mesh upper with seamless structural support at the midfoot and forefoot.
– Solid rubber outsole provides full ground contact and superior traction, while carbon rubber adds durability in the heel.
– Full length molded 4D Foam® sockliner and collar conform to your foot’s exact shape, eliminating slippage.
First time I ran in these shoes, I was surprised by the feeling of the stiff sole, as it felt not dissimilar to trail running shoes with rock plates. There was a bit of slap on the pavement, but that soon abated, and the slick soles I was worried about had no problem on wet sidewalks. I headed into Maple Woods Forest Preserve to check out their performance on the muddy, root-filled singletrack, as well as the groomed crushed grave paths. Surprisingly, the Spine RPMS worked well in both cases – the rigid sole gave me confidence to place my foot down without worry about sharp rocks or traction. The soles design also did not pick up pieces of gravel, something that happens on occasion with softer soles. By the end of that first run, the shoes felt like they had started to mold to my foot, the soles had softened (no more slap on the way home!), and I was feeling pretty good about these.
The next test was to take them to my Box and try them out for CrossFit. I had a feeling that their light weight, snug fit, and rigid support would work well for me. We happened to be working on Push and Split Jerks, and the shoes felt great underfoot, allowing me to feel the ground, yet supporting me at the same time. Tabatas of rowing, air squats, pull-ups, and push-ups made me happy I’d worn these – their lightweight comfort never made me feel like my feet were dragging. They didn’t do my pull-ups for me though. 🙂
This shoe might not work for everyone as a running shoe, as it did for me, though it’s definitely worth trying. I would definitely recommend it as an all-around fitness shoe though – great combination of light weight, support, and ground feel make working out a pleasure.
Check out all the Under Armour Running and Training shoes and come back tomorrow to get a chance to win a pair of the Spine RPMs for you or the man in your life!!
(Disclaimer: I was sent this item for free to review on my blog. I did not pay for the item, receive payment for this review, or agree to give a positive review. Aside from information gleaned from the company website, the opinions are my own.)