One thing is for sure; on this overcast, rather gloomy day nobody is going to miss my feet. The Flow Velociti Wind’s ‘WARP’ upper features a dazzling white base with a stupendous riot of fluro orange, white and black lattice that make the shoe look like it’s been wrapped in a spider web. The Spidey vibe continues with the aforementioned absence of rubber cushioning. Who needs a soul, I mean a sole, anyway?
Okay, so how does a shoe without a sole actually feel? In one word: light. Without a rubber outsole, that just leaves the midsole foam, the FLOW, the outside edge of which is threaded for grip. This worried me at first, particularly with those threatening clouds overhead, but to be honest they actually feel grippier than your average runner - if you ran up a wall you feel like you might actually be able to climb it (if only there was a Mary-Jane to kiss inverted in the rain! . . .). Overall, the combination mid-and outsole mean the shoes are not only featherweight but ultra-responsive - I suspect they’d be great for tempo runs and possibly even intervals on a track. I do find the firmness of the heel a little pronounced but expect I’ll get accustomed to it on subsequent runs.
As well as being eye-catching, the WARP upper is also reassuringly robust, cocooning your foot in motion while seeming to back off when you’re merely walking.
Of course, this is an Under Armour shoe, which means it comes with some impressive tech. Embedded sensors not only track your routes but also deliver metrics such as stride length and ground contact time. By connecting to UA’s Map My Run App, as I do, you can even receive real time coaching. I found the coldly clinical voice of a middle-age woman at the mile marks useful, although I wished they were in kilometres.
- Web-like WARP upper creates a snug fit
- Absence of a rubber sole sheds excess weight
- Combo sole increases responsiveness, promoting speed
- Some may miss rubber cushioning. The shoe is responsive, yes, but not forgiving.
I finish my run feeling like I could keep going, always a good sign. This will appeal to those who like their running shoes light, bright and responsive.
Under Armour Men’s Flow Velociti Wind Running Shoes, $220 underarmour.com.au