Saucony Endorphin Pro 2 - Women's Review
Our Analysis and Test Results
From the moment we unboxed the new and improved Saucony Endorphin Pro 2, we knew we were in for a fast and furious ride. From its carbon-plated bottom to its ultra-light engineered mesh upper and streamlined fit, this shoe is made for speed. Each women's size 7 shoe weighs in at a mere 6.35 ounces, an impressive feat considering how much tech is housed in the Endorphin Pro 2.
The Saucony Endorphin Pro 2 is a running shoe unlike any other we've tested (apart from its predecessor), especially when it comes to the responsiveness metric. The S-shaped carbon plate is paramount to this shoe's design and overall foot feel. Saucony calls this their "Speedroll" effect and based on the top speeds we are consistently able to hit in these shoes, this is aptly named.
The PWRRUN PB foam adds to the responsiveness of the Endorphin Pro 2 by enhancing the energy return you feel with each footfall. Saucony's patented speed-promoting features combine with its streamlined fit to create a shoe that earned a near-perfect score in this metric. The bouncy, curved-like feel of the shoe's base can take some getting used to, and frankly, it can be a bit scary the first time you descend a steep hill in them. But if you want a shoe that is going to add some pep in your step and shave seconds off of your PRs, this version of the Endorphin Pro should definitely be a contender in your race to find the perfect shoes.
Despite its ultralight weight, the Endorphin Pro 2 comes equipped with a reasonable amount of underfoot cushioning. It is by no means a plush ride compared to the rest of our test lineup, which is par for the course when it comes to speed-focused running or racing shoes. However, there is enough underfoot cushioning to provide protection if your speedy runs creep up into double-digit mileage territory.
The Endorphin Pro 2 offers mild arch support - enough so that you know it is there but not enough to feel intrusive. Since the upper material is the antithesis of a maximalist style shoe, the scant cushioning that is provided doesn't pack out like the more plush models we have tested. The body of the shoe is on the narrower side with a narrow sole. If you have super wide feet, you might feel like your feet are spilling over the edges of this more slender platform. As usual, we recommend trying on shoes before you buy them if possible. Our tester with average width feet found the Endorphin Pro 2 to be comfortable and suitable for her feet, even with a more diminutive landing platform.
The engineered mesh upper of the Endorphin Pro is not as strong as that of other shoes we have tested, which renders it a bit less laterally stable. This shoe lacks the structure of other shoes that are meant to be extra stable because it is a shoe made for speed.
The Endorphin feels like it has a higher stack height than many of the other shoes in our test group. The stack height isn't higher than standard, but because most of the weight of the shoe rides underfoot, it elicits this sensation. A high-feeling stack height can often make running shoes feel a bit less stable than they are, which is something to keep in mind as you're shoe shopping.
Ultimately, the Endorphin Pro earned an average score in the stability metric. Since this is a shoe made for speed, it isn't necessarily designed to provide postural support for fatiguing muscles on long runs. It offers an average amount of stability, so overpronators looking for a stability-enhancing shoe will have better luck looking at shoes with more specified support.
The upper comfort of the updated Endorphin Pro 2 is incredibly breathable and very comfortable for how minimalistic it is. We don't often award shoes without any upper cushioning high marks in this metric, but the engineered mesh and overall shape of the Endorphin's upper allow it to stand out as a lightweight and comfortable option.
Of course, the upper of the Endorphin is not super plush nor does it feel like a shoe that you'll want to do ultra-long road runs in. The upper is comprised of a single piece of mesh with laser-cut holes for prime breathability. The mesh is forgiving and thin enough, so we never had any issues with pinky-toe blisters or hot spots. The tongue and lace bed are made up of one piece of stretchier mesh. This piece is anchored bilaterally under the insole, which creates a sock liner-like feel. The stretchy mesh is comfortable and easy to flatten as you are strapping the shoes on, which is a major reason why the Endorphin scored so well in this metric. This built-for-speed shoe is not stuffed full of any extras, but its thin upper is intelligently designed for comfort and speed.
Saucony excels at constructing shoes that are low-weight and high-performance. The reconfigured Endorphin Pro 2 is no exception. With each women's size 7 shoe weighing in at just 6.35 ounces per shoe, it is one of the lightest running shoes we have tested to date.
Because of its outsole design and thoughtfully-constructed upper, the Endorphin feels virtually weightless while running. At times, you'll notice that most of the weight is housed in the sole of the shoe, but if you want to feel light on your feet, seeking out a speedy, lightweight shoe might be the best choice for you.
The price of the Endorphin Pro 2 is on the higher side, so determining its value is going to be more of a personal decision than with other shoes. This is because it is a shoe that is made for a specific type of running - speed. If you are seeking to buy one pair of running shoes for all different types of road running, the Endorphin Pro might not be versatile enough to suit your needs. If you are looking for an incredibly responsive shoe to add to your well-rounded quiver, it could be a great value for you.
The Saucony Endorphin Pro 2 rides like a dream for runners looking to hit quick paces. We love how light, springy, and responsive it is. While not a winner for long-distance running, this shoe earned its title, Top Pick for Speed, by performing in all of the ways it is advertised to. If you are looking for a versatile running shoe, the Endorphin Pro might miss the mark. But if you are looking for a featherweight shoe that will help you hit faster paces, it is sure to get you moving.
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