FROM THE LAB What happened to stability?
Before 2012, we reviewed nearly as many stability shoes as neutral. But only a handful of shoes in our spring 2017 guide qualify as stability. Why is this?
In part, the trend is a result of the brief but influential ‘minimal’ era. Brands abandoned heavy and expensive support features for less visible devices: Nike, Puma and Altra now use a few degrees of internal wedging, for example, as an invisible but effective stabiliser. Even medially posted classics such as the Brooks Adrenaline GTS and Saucony Stabil (pictured left) have evolved to carry less weight and construction.
The need for traditional pronation control is also under siege. Biomechanists are unsure about the connection between pronation and injury, and the effectiveness of pronation control in running shoes. In our view, some runners can benefit from a shoe with stability features, but they need less support than once thought.