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Saucony Endorphin Shift 3 Review (2024): Top Daily Trainers?

Saucony Endorphin Shift 3 review
The Saucony Endorphin Shift 3 is a max cushion daily trainer with a firm and smooth ride.

Our Verdict

9.1Overall Score

A comfortable, stable maximal cushioning shoe, ideal for daily training.

Don’t have time to read the full review? Here’s what you need to know.

The Saucony Endorphin Shift 3 is a max cushion daily trainer featuring PWRRUN midsole foam for a rather firm underfoot feel, but softer than on the previous version.

This model is not the most responsive (even the Saucony Ride 17 does better), but the SPEEDROLL rocker technology helps to deliver smooth transitions for an overall pleasant ride. The FORMFIT mesh upper offers plenty of comfort and breathability and is suitable for most foot shapes (except runners with wide feet).

The XT-900 rubber outsole offers good traction and durability on all surfaces.

In short, the Shift 3 is more versatile than it looks and proves to be a comfortable daily trainer, albeit not the most exciting in the Endorphin line-up.

Please read our full review of the Saucony Endorphin Shift 3 for more information.

Foot lockdown and protection


  • Maximum cushioning for good shock absorption
  • Good grip and stability even on wet surfaces
  • Durable model
  • Breathable, comfortable upper
  • Smoother ride than in the past


  • Lack of responsiveness
  • Slightly narrow fit for runners with wide feet


review Saucony Endorphin Shift 3

With the advent of carbon plate shoes, several brands, such as Nike, Adidas, and Mizuno, decided to complement these rather exclusive products with daily training models. Saucony’s ENDORPHIN series comprises five models to address all potential running scenarios.

The Endorphin Speed 3 and Pro 3 are designed for fast sessions and competition. The Elite, on the other hand, is dedicated exclusively to Race Day and the Edge to trail running. Of all these shoes, the Endorphin Shift 3 is dedicated to daily workouts and is an alternative to the Ride and Triumph series.

Saucony Endorphin Shift 3 unboxing

We’ll see how does the Shift fare overall and whether you should consider it as part of your rotation. We’ve based our analysis on test runs totalling over 200 km/124 miles and the feedback of several reviewers to put everything into perspective and reach a consensus.


Saucony Endorphin Shift 3 cushioning foam

The midsole uses a thick layer of PWRRUN foam that equips many Saucony shoes. The composition is different from the previous version, with a softer feel while retaining an overall firmness. As a result, the underfoot feel is more balanced.

The stack height increased to 39 mm in the heel and 35 mm in the forefoot. This max cushion delivers optimal shock absorption, similar to what you find on the Saucony Triumph 21. This means you can confidently tackle any distance on asphalt.

Saucony Endorphin Shift 3 heel counter

We didn’t have any concern regarding the suitability of the shoes in terms of runner’s weight or distance. It’s sturdy and cushioned enough to suit anyone for the longest distances.

The only potential point to look out for is the low 4-mm heel-to-toe drop, which may take some time to get used to if you usually run with 8-12 mm drops. However, the SPEEDROLL rocker technology makes it less noticeable.

Energy return

Saucony Endorphin Shift 3 on feet

The Shift 3 is lighter than the previous version with 263 g/9.3 oz in EU size 42. However, the softer foam and low responsiveness and a little less responsive, which offsets the lower weight.

Nonetheless, SPEEDROLL offers a fairly pronounced rocker that enables a very fluid heel-to-toe transition, perhaps more for heel than forefoot strikers. In other words, the shoe’s responsiveness is similar to its predecessor, enough for most daily sessions at an easy to moderate pace.

Support and stability

Saucony Endorphin Shift 3 road running shoes review

With such height under the foot, you wouldn’t expect the same stability as on models closer to the ground. However, we found the stability quite satisfactory.

Indeed, the firm ride, secure fit and good grip allow the foot to roll-off safely even in turns.

The Shift is for neutral runners and Saucony indicates that it can be suitable for runners with slight overpronation. This matches our experience, but of course, you should give it a try first if you typically need extra support.

Foot Lockdown

Saucony Endorphin Shift 3 engineered mesh upper

The mesh upper uses FORMFIT technology to ensure a fairly stretchy fit. Specifically, the fabric wraps around the foot and relaxes as it goes along to avoid pressing on it uncomfortably.

However, some runners with wide feet complained about the narrowness of the last, with a toe box that’s not roomy enough. I also have wide feet and I found the Saucony Endorphin 3 to offer enough volume in the forefoot, especially as the upper stretches after I’d like to qualify this point, as I have rather wide feet and didn’t feel that way, especially as the mesh start to stretch after 50-100 km/30-60 miles. It’s true that it’s narrower than other models I have tested, so it’s best to try them before if you have wider feet.

Saucony Endorphin Shift 3 toe box

The lightweight, breathable fabric offers good ventilation as you run to avoid feeling too warm as you increase the effort. The gusseted tongue paired with stretchy laces secures the top of the foot without slipping.

Also, the new heel design translates into a lighter, more effective heel counter (cup) for a precise ankle lockdown. The PWRRUN+ insole and various padding (including in the collar) offers a sensation of premium comfort.


Saucony Endorphin Shift 3 rubber outsole

The XT900 rubber outsole is very similar to the previous iteration. Traction is excellent, even on wet surfaces.

Also, the numerous multidirectional flex grooves ensure excellent flexibility and it gets better as you break-in the shoes. However, pebbles can get stuck in them, so it’s best to stick to urban surfaces (in case you were thinking of wearing these shoes on dirt paths).


julien guyod testing Saucony Endorphin Shift 3

As we have seen throughout our review, responsiveness is not the strong suit of the Saucony Endorphin Shift 3. This makes them primarily suited for moderate or slow paces, such as recovery jogs and long endurance runs.

Even then, the rocker does help to pick up the pace when you need to. As such, tempo runs at marathon pace are completely within its range. We would just recommend to avoid shorter speed work like interval training or fartlek.

For competitions, the Endorphin Speed, Pro or Elite would be a much better choice, but if you’re a one-pair type of runners, there won’t be real hindrance either come race day.

Quality and durability

Saucony Endorphin Shift 3 vegan running shoes

The Saucony Endorphin Shift 3 is a durable product. The outsole showed no early wear after all our rounds of testing. Likewise, the mesh uses quality materials and the foam is dense enough to retain its properties over time. So the value is pretty good.

Last but not least, the Saucony Endorphin Shift 3 partly uses recycled materials and is 100% vegan.


Saucony Endorphin Shift 3 road running shoes

The Shift 3 is not the most exciting Endorphin shoe, but its popularity is well-deserved as it’s proving to be a very valuable daily trainer for runners looking for a smooth and firm ride.

The lack of bounce limits its use for faster sessions, but overall it’s a reliable and effective model that will appeal to many runners from beginners to experienced athletes.


Technical Specs

Pronation typeNeutral
Drop4 mm
Heel height39 mm
Forefoot height34 mm
Weight (men)263 g/9.3 oz
Weight (women)228 g/8 oz
FeaturesVegan, Recycled materials, Rocker
Release year2022
PriceCheck prices




OutsoleXT-900 Rubber
UpperFORMFIT, Engineered Mesh


SpeedSlow, Moderate
DistanceMid, 10K, Half marathon, Long, Marathon
WorkoutDaily running, Recovery


Endorphin Shift 3 Saucony

Saucony Endorphin Shift 2

There are several new features:

  • Significantly lower weight despite added foam and stack height
  • New upper for even greater comfort and breathability
  • Smoother ride with a softer, more flexible platform
  • New heel counter

These changes enhance this new version, particularly in the upper. Both versions are equal when it comes to the energy return. In short, the v3 is better, but the the v2 can be more interesting if you find it heavily discounted.

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Julien Guyod

Julien Guyod

Julien Guyod, 40, is a math teacher and freelance writer. He took up running in 2015 and specializes in marathons, clocking in with a 2:38 personal best at the La Rochelle marathon in France. He's passionate about running shoes and loves to share his impressions of the models he's tested, always pushing the mileage further to discover more insights!

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