Saucony Endorphin Pro
The Saucony Endorphin Pro is a very good lightweight carbon-fiber plate shoe that offers a comfortable and responsive cushioning.
It's a lightweight shoe (221 grams for men, 190 grams for women) with a thick sole (35 mm under the heel) that features a brand new cushioning technology: PWRRUN PB. It translates into Pebax fused granules with a texture reminiscent of Adidas Boost. Inside, the carbon plate is there to make the ride more responsive by facilitating a snappy rebound. So what's the verdict?
First of all, what surprised testers the most was the firmness of the cushioning despite the high stack height. They note that the cushioning is very bouncy but without offering the "trampoline" effect of the Nike ZoomX Vaporfly NEXT%. This configuration has the advantage of giving a more stable and natural ride with a good ground feeling. It may not perform as well as the Nike Vaporfly—only time will tell—but overall, Saucony's approach is convincing and original.
Regarding the upper, the FORMFIT mesh gives a strict foot lockdown for more safety when you go fast. The runners were impressed by the excellent ventilation of the foot during the effort. However, the shoe has a tapered profile, so it can be too narrow if you have wider feet.
Finally, the carbon rubber of the outsole ensures good durability and excellent traction on urban surfaces.
All in all, the Saucony Endorphin Pro is a very good carbon-plate running shoe that's already a solid contender to Nike's NEXT% collection.
- Great overall comfort
- Responsive cushioning
- Carbon plate that works well while encouraging natural movement
- The soft and well-ventilated upper that keeps the foot secure in the shoe—ideal for racing
- Lightweight model
- An overall rigid platform which may not be suitable for all runners
- The slightly narrow profile of the shoe may not please athletes with wider feet
Model: Saucony Endorphin Pro
- The outsole of the Saucony Endorphin Pro features carbon rubber, a solid rubber that protects the platform from wear and tear on roads. Carbon rubber often equips the part under the heel as it’s the zone where most athletes hit the ground when they run.
- The foam of the midsole is exposed under the shoe to offer a softer run by reducing the quantity of rubber. Such setup can decrease the durability of the shoe but overall midsole foams have become more solid so this is less of a problem.
- PWRRUN PB is a lightweight and bouncy midsole compound made of thousands of tiny Pebax pellets fused together around the carbon plate of this Saucony shoe. According to the brand, PWRRUN PB is 20% lighter than regular thermoplastic polyurethane midsole compounds.
- Also, the carbon-fiber plate promotes a good stability to guide your stride to go fast comfortably and safely. This technology was invented by Nike with its Vaporfly series and has quickly received high praise with its performance.
- SpeedRoll makes the foam and the carbon-fiber plate work together as smoothly as possible to offer a comfortable and bouncy run. As a result, the cushioning is firm under the forefoot and the sole has a high stack height.
- The upper of the Saucony Endorphin Pro is an engineered mesh that comfortably and securely locks in the foot inside the shoe while facilitating airflow.
- The upper also uses the technology FORMFIT to offer a fit that’s comfortable and safe enough for racing.
Frequently asked questions (FAQ)
Is the Saucony Endorphin Pro true to size?
Yes, this shoe fits normally. Indeed, runners who tested the shoe confirmed that it fits as expected. Therefore, you can buy your usual size for running shoes. Having said that, if this your very first pair of Saucony shoes, it’s recommended test them in a shop to be 100% sure.
I have overpronation. Can I run in these shoes?
Yes, this model is suitable for everyone as it’s a neutral running shoe. As a result, it aims to suit all runners regardless of their pronation type. It’s not equipped with stability props to correct the movement of the foot and help with overpronation. In any case, let’s remember that there’s no scientific evidence that stability shoes are better than neutral shoes in preventing injury.
I'm a heavyweight runner. Are the Saucony Endorphin Pro suitable for me?
Yes, these shoes are a good fit even if you’re a heavyweight runner. Indeed, so far, there’s only one research study that has explored the link between athlete’s weight, stack height, and the injury risk. Its results showed that minimalist shoes could increase the risk of injury for runners who weigh more than 157 lbs (71 kg). Apart from that, they were no problems with other categories of running shoes. The Saucony Endorphin Pro has a 35 mm stack height under the heel, so it’s not a minimalist model so so it should be safe for all runners
Is the Saucony Endorphin Pro recommended to run a marathon?
Yes, Saucony designed this shoe, especially for the marathon. Of course, this also depends on the personal preferences of everyone. Testers noted that the cushioning is quite firm, almost harsh (despite the 35 mm stack height), so it may not suit runners who prefer a soft cushioning.
Comparisons – Saucony Endorphin Pro vs:
Nike ZoomX Vaporfly NEXT%
These two carbon plate shoes have a similar configuration for stack height and heel to toe drop. However, athletes who have tried both models note that the Vaporfly has a much more pronounced rocking effect and energy return. However, this configuration has the disadvantage of altering the stride. Thus, even though the propulsion may be better and more efficient, it may confuse runners who prefer to maintain a more “normal” running form. In that sense, the Saucony Endorphin Pro is closer to a “classic” running shoe while offering the advantages of a carbon plate. For the rest, the Vaporfly Next is a little lighter with about 25 grams less. Also, the upper of the Endorphin Pro provides a tighter foot lockdown and is narrower.
Saucony Endorphin Speed
The Speed is, as its name suggests, a shoe designed primarily for speed (e.g. tempo, fartlek training). It offers a more basic cushioning, which gives an even firmer feeling under the foot. Moreover, while it provides a good bounce with its nylon plate, it doesn’t match the Pro with its carbon plate. As a result, the Pro is more comfortable overall and offers greater versatility. Nevertheless, the Speed is a little cheaper: 180 euros compared to 220 euros for the Pro. See the side-by-side comparison.