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Adidas Energy Boost Running Shoe Review

This is one of the more challenging reviews I have tackled. It was complicated by the amount of marketing hype, the amount of reviews I read, the Adidas Energy Boost is the first shoe I have run in since I broke my foot in January, and the opinion of a trusted friend and mentor Peter Larson.

I admit I am a sucker for good marketing. The marketing of this shoe was a little over the top. You might have thought they invented anti-gravity shoes. Even though the shoes were over hyped Adidas had my interest piqued. To capture the traffic from the excitement over the shoes a lot of runners posted reviews. So there were plenty of opinions rolling around in my head as I tried to generate my own. Recovering from the broken foot plays two roles in the review. First, how much of my enthusiasm for the shoe is from just being ecstatic about running again. Second, I adjusted my foot strike a little to protect the injured area. Finally, I have always trusted Pete’s opinions on running shoes, typically Pete and I agree on a shoe. This is not one of those times.

The Good

The Adidas Energy Boost upper fits like a glove. I have gotten used to shoes with wider toe boxes, at first I thought the forefoot of the shoe was going to be too tight. The material is quite stretchy and I had no issues with the fit. I actually have come to appreciate the snugness of the upper. The bounce of the thermoplastic beads that are fused together to form the midsole of a shoe takes a little getting used to. The cushioning gave me confidence to run on my healing foot. The Boost maintained a bounce throughout my runs and never seemed to diminish.

The Bad

There isn’t much bad for me to report. The bouncy-ness of the shoe did create some sloppiness when running through turns. My foot runs on the narrow side so I did not have any issues with the fit of the upper. I have read reviews where people with wider feet felt the Adidas Boost was too narrow and too tight.


These shoes have a higher heel to toe drop (10.5 mm) than I was running in before my injury. To protect my foot I attempted to land further back on my foot, the extra drop helped achieve a mid/heel strike. I do wonder how I would have reviewed the shoes before the injury since I preferred more minimal shoes. I used a different pair of shoes for one run and found myself wanting to go back to the Boost. I ended up really liking the the ride and felt safe in the shoe due to the extra cushion. I also really like the way the shoe fits and looks. I ended up being a big fan of these shoes and they are reluctantly one of my favorite shoes. I really didn’t think I would like them as much as I do. The shoe won best new debute from Runners’ World, I believe this shoe merits the title.

From Adidas

Product Information

Note on sizing: For a traditional fit, order 1/2 size up. You put a lot of energy into your run, and the men’s adidas Energy Boost shoes give some of it back. Designed with an energy-returning boost™ midsole, these running shoes feature a techfit™ upper and the TORSION® SYSTEM for support.

  • Weight: 9.5 ounces (size 9)
  • Energy-returning boost™ midsole keeps every step charged with an endless supply of light, fast energy; TORSION® SYSTEM for midfoot integrity
  • techfit™ technology for lightweight and flexible upper support
  • Flexible textile upper with welded synthetic overlays for support and stability
  • External heel counter for maximal heel fit and running comfort; miCoach® compatible
  • ADIWEAR™ outsole offers the ultimate in high-wear durability



Have something to say? Leave a Comment

  1. Kelly says:

    Hmm. I’ve been very skeptical of this shoe from all the marketing hype but I used to love Adidas’ shoes. And I am curious. Perhaps it’s time to buy a pair and try them…

  2. These shoes have been getting alot of good reviews.
    I am going to have to look at them.

  3. George says:

    I agree with you on the feel of this shoe and also having a recent injury the cushion on this shoe and heel lift actually helped the situation. The cushion is more than I have ever felt on Adidas shoe.

  4. Sam Winebaum says:

    Great review. Agree in all respects. The upper is snug…like a sock… it stretches with the foot. The narrow part for me is on landing at least compared to shoes like the Altras. I am for sure running Boston in them. Except for some racing flats my last Adidas were about 30 years ago. Always too firm but the Boost is the opposite and super responsive in terms of rebound. My review is here

    1. Thanks Sam. I am posting a link to your review on the BITR facebook page and twitter feed too. Enjoy Boston!

  5. Sam Winebaum says:

    Thank you Thomas! It’s been a while that something other than shoe geometry or upper materials has come along. Hokas took a massive approach to EVA cushion, Adidas as found a new material all together for midsoles and integrated it into the torsion “plates and strips” and outsole really well in my opinion.

    1. And the adidas look sweet!

  6. Carsten says:

    While I love the energy Boosts’ fit and the feeling while running in it, I am very skeptical regarding the durability of the rubber patches on the sole in my case. I have now run around 100km in my pair and I am already seeing some serious wear in some of those patches in the forefoot region. I expect the shoes to be unusable latest at 300km if wear continues at this pace. I wonder why Adidas chose to combine a midsole with – as they claim it – higher durability with such a sole. This was my first Adidas running shoe in nearly ten years, it might have been the last one for while.

  7. Anil Sahu says:

    I got a techfit shoe a week back. Believe me, its not for someone with a wide toe. Its just killing.

  8. As we look back from 2013 to 2018. The boost was unquestionably the most revolutionary running shoe foam ever made. It was so much better than every other running shoe companies brand of foam. It revolutionized running forever………

    I still think today (coronavirus times) that this boost foam is still top 3 in the world in energy return. I feel the only other foam that has more energy return than it in comparable stack height is the hyper burst by skechers which for feel to me, is the best foam in the world right now.

    Nike mixing zoomx and react foams are pretty good, but if they’re stack heights were 28mm heel and 20 mm forefoot, would they still be as fast??? Probably not. As the higher stack height, and the shoe putting you into a forward leaning stance along with a carbon plate underfoot all add to the vaporflys and alphaflys speed.

    Hoka one one was onto something early with the super tall stack height and responsive foam. Once their shoes starting getting lighter after 3 years they became one of the worlds best running shoe companies.

    The fuelcell by NB is pretty good, I’ve ran in 3 shoes so far by NB with fuelcell, as the TC outshined the propel by a little, and the rebel by even more( the rebel with its low stack height left my quads, calves and feet sore for 2 days afterwards on runs of 6 miles or more).

    The floatride foam in Reebok is outstanding. Pretty close to boost in energy return.

    Now the rest of us are waiting on the Saucony Endorohin foam and either the Brooks Hyperion foam and the all new Brooks Levitate 4, with a new energy returning DNA midsole, forward leaning stance rocker and a carbon plate.

    Adidas single handedly created a running shoe foam arms race. We’ll probably never see anything like it ever again. (I realize the minimal movement was huge, and the vaporflys were huge as well).The boost foam single handedly put running shoe companies out of business or caused them to fade from prominence with the introduction of boost foam, because those companies could not pour millions into research to produce a foam that was even mildly close to the energy return of boost foam. See examples: Karhu, Avia, Scott, Zoot, Newton, Pearl Izumi, Merrell, Vibram, and to some extent Under Armour and Mizuno ( I feel Mizuno will turn it around, they are too big with alot of experience with carbon waveplates underfoot).
    These companies have disappeared from the US market, or most serious runners don’t even consider these companies as viable running shoe choices anymore when they goto make a purchase, as the Adidas boost foam changed the running shoe world so much………

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