Skechers GOrun is designed to give you a more natural running experience and to allow you to interact with and respond to practically any surface, while at the same time offering the additional benefit of Resalyte cushioning. Skechers GOrun features M-Strike technology which fosters a
mid-foot strike and GOimpulse sensors for enhanced sensory feedback.
- High-abrasion rubber at strike points for extra stability and traction control.
- Innovative placement allows the GOimpulse sensors to move together and independently
- Dynamic interaction helps to enhance sensory feedback and to promote a more responsive run
- M-Strike Technology
- Radically lightweight
- 360 Degree Responsive Flexibility
- Sockless Running – Integrated OrthoLite anti-microbial sockliner
- Roomier Forefoot
- Resalyte Midsole – Proprietary lightweight midsole compound
- Nearly weightless synthetic and mesh fabric upper
- Nearly seamless flexible upper with lace up front
- Stay-put tongue
- Soft smooth fabric shoe lining for easy barefoot wear
- Measured Size 9
- Weight – 191 g (6.7 oz)
- Forefoot width – 101.3 mm (4.0 in)
- Stack height – 14 mm (heel), 19 mm (midfoot), 10 mm (toe), 4 mm (drop)
- Retail – $80
Most everyone knows the brand Skechers. They have been making lifestyle footwear for some time now. They currently can be found in over 120 countries and have 3,000+ styles. What is new is that Skechers is looking to get into the serious running market. When I first heard this, I was of course skeptical. Up until now, when I thought of Skechers, I thought of the Shape-Up shoes. Serious running shoes were not what came to mind. Even after the GOrun came out I was still skeptical. Skechers had signed Meb Keflezighi, which came as a surprise. I had also read a couple of positive reviews of the shoes which peaked my interest.
At the OR Show this last January I decided to set aside some time to stop by their booth and actually check out the shoes. The lower drop and light weight were intriguing, but I wanted to see if they were, in fact, a “real” running shoe. Skechers explained to me that they really were trying to make a new and innovative running shoe and had hired some top people in the industry to make it happen. They knew that their name was going to make it more difficult to break into the market but they have a lot of backing and reach in the market to make it happen. I must say that when taking a first hand on look at the show and talking with them I was intrigued and wanted to give them a try. Skechers supplied me with a pair of their GOrun shoes shortly thereafter for me to test. Here is my review.
I tested the Skechers GOrun primarily on roads. I would estimate the split to be 95% roads and 5% gravel trails. The weather this spring has not been especially warm so most of the runs were done on cooler but dry days. My runs varied from 3 to 13 miles.
The Skechers GOrun is different than any shoe I have tested. Skechers made a shoe that is meant to promote a midfoot strike. To do this, they made the GOrun have a 4mm hell to toe drop. This, in and of itself, is not really different but what makes these entirely different is that the midsole is the thickest part of the shoe. In fact, the midsole are 9 mm thicker than the toe and 5 mm thicker than the heel. Skechers calls this their M-Strike technology, which leads to a midfoot strike. Due to this curve in the bottom of the shoe, it is actually hard to land on the heel whether running or walking.
Skechers has branded the GOrun as a minimalist or even barefoot type shoe which I would say depends on how you define the category. The GOrun uses a Resalyte EVA which is a proprietary lightweight, injection-molded compound with memory retention. This EVA is supposed to have excellent energy return and cushioning t make the ride both comfortable and faster. Mixed into the sole are 9 GOimpulse sensors, which offer feedback to the bottom of your foot for a more responsive run. These sensors are independent of each other as not to affect the overall flexibility of the shoe. They are made of a rubber compound to add to the durability of the sole as most of the sole is made of the Resalyte EVA. The shoes as a whole is very flexible, it can flex in just about every direction allowing your foot to move with its natural motion as it would barefoot. The outsole itself is a combination of small circles for traction while maintaining the flexibility. Some of these circles have been replaced by the aforementioned GOimpulse sensors.
The upper of the GOrun is made of lightweight mesh to maintain lots of breathability. This mesh is not only lightweight but is soft against the skin for sockless running. The tongue is gusseted for further comfort and to keep it in place. The sockliner which is made by Ortholite has been integrated into the shoe for additional comfort. This sockliner and the rest of the inside of the shoe upper have been treated with an anti-microbial to prevent the growth of bacteria inside the shoe. This helps inhibit odor from forming, especially when the shoes are worn sockless. The upper has synthetic overlays on both sides, which add a bit of structure to the upper and connect to the top two eyelets of the lacing system to enhance fit. The last hole of the lacing system is called the Vari-lock and can be used to lock your heel into the shoe if you prefer this lacing method. The GOrun uses a barefoot last to have a more natural feel. What this means is the forefoot will be wider to allow the toes to splay naturally, and the shoe will have a lower drop than traditional shoes.
What is a disappointment with these shoes and Skechers in general is I was not able to find any information on sustainable or green practices in the materials used or company initiatives. They may, in fact, have them but in my experience, most companies will mention this. For this reason, I gave them a zero for sustainability.
Comfort of Inside (25%)
Foot Length (15%)
Foot Volume (15%)
Heel Width (15%)
Midfoot Width (15%)
Toe Box Width (15%)
The Skechers GOrun is an interesting shoe. They really are not very comfortable to walk around in for me. The extra cushioning under the midfoot pushes up on my arch differently then I have ever experienced and worried me a bit on how they would run. Now running in these was totally a different story. I am already a midfoot striker, so I was not worried about any transition period or growing pains trying to change my form. Rather I could go out and experience these shoes in their full glory right out of the box. The shoes feel much more comfortable on the run. They still have a bit of pressure under the middle of the foot that I am not used to but were not as strange as they felt just walking.
The best part of these shoes is definitely the upper. I mentioned in a previous review of the Skora Base that they were one of the few shoes I could wear sockless. Well chock this up as another one. The inside of the shoe is soft as felt comfortable both with and without socks. The sockliner and tongue were also very comfortable and pairing that with the barefoot last, and I must say I wish most of my shoes were this comfortable. As far as sizing goes, I tested out a size 9 in these as that is what I normally wear. The whole shoes fit me really well. The length was right on and there was a perfect amount of room in the forefoot. The midfoot felt okay, but it was tougher to tell as the cushioning made it feel so much different than I am used to. I am also a big fan of the heel on these, there is no counter and the heel has a mesh middle section so it can move with your foot and breathe. I really liked this, with the flexibility of these I did not have any heel slippage either.
Cushioning & Ground Feel (20%)
Like I mentioned above, if you walk around in the store in these, you will not be too impressed. Once on the road, however, you will find out just how well these shoes work. They truly do make you land on your midfoot. In fact, the sole of my shoes showed virtually zero wear or even dirt on the true heel of the shoes. It is almost impossible to land on them, and if you do it does not feel good. The shoes are very flexible and will move however your foot does. The shoes do have some cushioning as I mentioned. In the toes, there is only 10 mm so you can feel rocks and pebbles on the ground. What is strange to me is the 19 mm of cushioning in the midfoot. This gives the shoes a different feel. After many miles in these I am not sure if I like the extra cushioning in the midfoot or not. Most shoes are an even ramp from back to front; these have a hill in the middle. Since it is mainly EVA foam this will compress over time but the verdict is still out for me. I have read that other have had issues with this putting too much pressure on their plantar fasciitis.
The GOimpulse pods are great for adding durability to the sole of the shoes. I have not had nearly as much wear to them as I expected to get. The amount of wear will depend a little on proper form. For me I normally get wear on the outside of the forefoot and midfoot of my shoes so I was happy to see the pods in the right places. Other barefoot type shoes like the Saucony Hattori have their pods in interesting locations. I am not sure if the GOimpulse pods have increased my feedback or not. The forefoot is thin enough that you can feel the ground already. In the midfoot it is tough to quantify this change in feedback, I do feel like I can feel the ground fairly well in these shoes bit it is definitely less than a pair of true minimalist shoes.
The upper is my favorite part on these. It is very comfortable but also breathes really well. The synthetic overlays add just enough support without changing the flexibility or breathability of the shoes. The lack of heal counter and added flex gives the back of the shoes a great feel. The lacing system is fairly basic but effective. I did not have any complaints with it; it worked as advertised. The only negative I noticed on the shoes was in the outsole. It likes to pick up rocks in the back towards the heel. While I was not able to feel these rocks when I was running, I imagine they fall out and new ones stick as the shoe flexes, I had to pull a couple out after every run. I guess this is inevitable if you want to have a sole that flexes this much and has all these individual gaps.
Overall, these are very different shoes. I think that Skechers has done a good job coming out with something different for the market. It truly does make you land in the midfoot like it is intended to do. Unfortunately, with the built up cushioning in the midfoot the shoes do have a different feel that may not be for everyone. I am not sure whether to even call these a 4 mm drop shoe as there are 9 mm of drop from the midfoot where you strike to the forefoot. I have never had a shoe with this shape to it. If you are someone who is not willing to give these a shot due to this midfoot cushioning, you are going to miss out on some of the best uppers I have tested. The upper is awesome, and I hope they use something similar in the new versions coming out this year. Skechers is making a concerted effort to enter the running shoe mix, and I believe they are on the right track. With a couple of tweaks, they really may have a big winner here. I do like the shoe and would recommend it, just don’t base your opinions on walking around in it, take it for a run. The GOrun retails for $80, which is a good price compared to others in the category. As always, your mileage may vary.
Pros [field name=iFrame]
- Lightweight, even lighter than claimed
- Comes with extra laces of a different color
- An abundance of colors available
- Good Value
- Super comfortable upper
- Great flex to the sole
- Extra pressure under the midfoot from the extra cushioning
- Gaps in the sole can pick up rocks
- Will take time to establish Brand as a true running shoe
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