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Saucony Endorphin Pro 4 - Women's Review

This softer take on a super shoe lacks stability at slower speeds, but will help you crush your PRS if its fit feels comfortable
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Saucony Endorphin Pro 4 - Women's Review (For a strong rolling sensation, check out the updates to the Endorphin Pro.)
For a strong rolling sensation, check out the updates to the Endorphin Pro.
Credit: Ally Arcuri
Price:  $225 List
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Manufacturer:   Saucony
By Ally Arcuri ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Jun 12, 2024
71
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#10 of 24
  • Cushioning and Landing Comfort - 25% 7.0
  • Responsiveness - 25% 8.5
  • Stability - 20% 5.0
  • Upper Comfort - 15% 6.0
  • Weight - 15% 8.8

Our Verdict

The updated Saucony Endorphin Pro 4 is a slightly softer take on a super shoe. With an embedded carbon plate, a weight of only 6.13 ounces per women's size 6.5, and an aggressive rocker, this shoe is ready to tackle speedy workouts with you. Its rocker and heel stack, which sits at 39mm, feel aggressive and cause a bit of compression toward the forefoot. A few minor comfort issues aside, this is a great shoe for runners who are ready to try a true racing shoe. A daily trainer, it is not, but it makes a solid addition to any runner's shoe collection.
REASONS TO BUY
Speedy
Strong landing comfort
Feels propulsive
REASONS TO AVOID
Imposing rocker
Crowded toebox
Expensive
Lacks stability

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Bottom Line This less intense version of a super shoe offers a unique fit, which will serve some runners better than othersThis running shoe offers the performance technology and comfort needed to be your go-to shoe, no matter your running goalsFor epic versatility in a single shoe, we recommend this lightweight superstarWith strong responsive bounce and enough comfort for long runs, this shoe will suit marathon hopefuls and speed demons alikeWhile not a race-focused shoe, this affordable and bouncy option will keep your legs turning over quickly and easily
Rating Categories Saucony Endorphin P... Asics Novablast 4 -... Hoka Mach 6 - Women's Puma Deviate Nitro... Saucony Kinvara 14...
Cushioning and Landing Comfort (25%)
7.0
9.0
8.0
7.0
7.5
Responsiveness (25%)
8.5
7.5
7.0
8.5
7.5
Stability (20%)
5.0
8.0
7.0
7.0
5.5
Upper Comfort (15%)
6.0
8.0
7.5
7.0
6.5
Weight (15%)
8.8
7.4
8.5
7.7
9.5
Specs Saucony Endorphin P... Asics Novablast 4 -... Hoka Mach 6 - Women's Puma Deviate Nitro... Saucony Kinvara 14...
Sizes Available 5 - 12 US, regular 5 - 12 US, regular 5 - 11 US, regular & wide 5.5 - 11 US, regular 5 - 12 US, regular & wide
Style Racing Neutral Daily Neutral/race Neutral
Measured Heel Stack Height 39 mm 40 mm 34 mm 34 mm 30 mm
Measured Heel-to-Toe Drop 3 mm 9 mm 2 mm 8 mm 5 mm
Plate Type Carbon None None Carbon None
Rocker Angle 24.5 deg 22.0 deg 24.5 deg 12.5 deg 26.0 deg
Rocker Apex Location 65.38% 69.48% 65.38% 68.82% 68.15%
Measured Weight 6.13 oz 7.36 oz 6.27 oz 7.02 oz 5.55 oz
Upper Engineered mesh Engineered knit mesh Creel jaqquard Mesh Mesh
Midsole PWRRUN PB/PWRRUN HG FF Blast Plus Eco Supercritical EVA Nitro/Nitro-Elite PWRRUN, PWRRUN+
Outsole Rubber AHAR outsole Rubber PumaGrip ATR Rubber XT-900 rubber
Heel Tab Type None Finger loop Extended heel pull None Finger loop

Our Analysis and Test Results

While the fit of the Saucony Endorphin Pro 4 may feel slightly unnatural, its performance benefits are undeniable. This 3mm drop, lightweight, plated road shoe could be the key to unlocking your elusive PRs.

Performance Comparison



saucony endorphin pro 4 for women - while the overall upper comfort of the endorphin pro isn't our...
While the overall upper comfort of the Endorphin Pro isn't our favorite, it has the other elements needed to lay down epically fast miles.
Credit: Ally Arcuri

Landing Comfort and Cushioning


The Endorphin Pro 4 has a heel stack of 39mm and a 3mm drop. Though this is rather standard in the world of racing shoes, the configuration of this shoe's undercarriage feels more extreme than others.

The epic rocker of this shoe provides a prominent rolling sensation.
Credit: Ally Arcuri

When moving at slower paces, the heel stack feels high and kind of off-kilter, which we will discuss more in the stability metric. The PWRRUN PB/PWRRUN HG midsole provides the snap and energy return we seek in a racing shoe without compromising underfoot comfort. If you loved the previous iteration of the Endorphin, know that the landing pad of this one feels a bit different. The additional layers Saucony stuffed into the midsole feel a bit more rigid underfoot, but they combine well with the rocker to create inherent speed.

saucony endorphin pro 4 for women - the precisely layered midsole helps create a launchpad that is...
The precisely layered midsole helps create a launchpad that is perfect for shorter, speedier races.
Credit: Ally Arcuri

Responsiveness


Saucony set out to make a racing shoe with the Endorphin Pro, and they certainly succeeded. While it doesn't top the chart when placed head-to-head with some of the other super shoes on the market, it holds its own. In fact, the responsiveness ride that the Endorphin Pro offers might suit some runners better than comparative options by Nike and Puma. Let's get into it.

saucony endorphin pro 4 for women - the midsole and rocker of the endorphin pro help make it one of the...
The midsole and rocker of the Endorphin Pro help make it one of the most responsive road shoes in our lineup.
Credit: Natalie Kafader

The rocker of the updated Endorphin Pro is wildly aggressive. This leads to a sensation of your feet being pushed toward the front of the shoe as your paces heat up. Since the upper is stretchy and forgiving, this is not the worst thing, but it is unexpected on a shoe where the heel sits a mere 3mm higher than the forefoot. The updated layering in the midsole provides a strong snap as you bound through your strides.

What Did Our Mens' Testing Team Think?


On the men's side, the Saucony Endorphin Pro 4 scored slightly higher than our female testers ranked it. While both teams agree that this is a high-tech shoe, the men's team found the Endorphin Pro to be more balanced and responsive overall. We suspect these differences relate to the slight learning curve associated with this shoe coupled with differences in gait patterns between genders and testers.

This new style of underfoot technology feels super propulsive once you start pushing your paces. We do not recommend the Endorphin Pro to runners needing mellow distance shoes. The slightly uncomfortable features and rigid technology make this a great racing shoe for shorter races.

saucony endorphin pro 4 for women - the shape of this shoe does not lend itself well to mellow miles. if...
The shape of this shoe does not lend itself well to mellow miles. If you are looking for a shoe for your recovery runs, this is definitely not going to be it.
Credit: Ally Arcuri

Stability


The stability feels all wrong when moving slowly in the Endorphin Pro. Even on slightly slanted roads and sidewalks, these shoes almost make you feel like you will slide right off them. When taken on straightaways and level curves, though, the stability feels decent. The lateral edges of the Pro are more built than those on most racing shoes, but the thin mesh of the lateral midfoot is too stretchy to provide much support. After careful consideration and a few somewhat dangerous maneuvers, we found the Endorphin Pro to be more stable than it originally presents. It stays with you as you power around corners without imposing upon your gait. We don't recommend this shoe as a stable super shoe, but it is worth checking out.

saucony endorphin pro 4 for women - the security of the heel cup helps you fly around curves in the...
The security of the heel cup helps you fly around curves in the Endorphin Pro. The upper mesh, however, does not provide much security across your upper forefoot.
Credit: Ally Arcuri

Upper Comfort


As we mentioned, the aggressive rocker of the Endorphin Pro 4 feels like it forces your foot slightly forward, pressing your toes against the front edge of the shoe. The overall upper engineered mesh is very stretchy, which doesn't do a lot to hold your feet in place. The stretchy tongue is comfortable even without any cushion.

saucony endorphin pro 4 for women - we pick apart each element of the shoes we test so that we can...
We pick apart each element of the shoes we test so that we can accurately compare them to their competitors.
Credit: Natalie Kafader

We had a bit of trouble getting the lace bed tamped down properly. The stretch of the upper textile prevented the usual snugness we prefer. We threaded the laces through the additional eyelet to rectify this, but that didn't help us find a midfoot lockdown. Instead, the tension of the laces dug into our ankle joint, and the midfoot felt floppy. The bootie-like fit allowed us to run in moderate comfort, but this wasn't our favorite fit. If you find that the upper creates a fit you like, then the mesh and breathability will definitely keep you comfortable.

saucony endorphin pro 4 for women - the stretchy upper is super accommodating, but we did have trouble...
The stretchy upper is super accommodating, but we did have trouble finding a comfortable way to lock down the laces for prime performance.
Credit: Ally Arcuri

Weight


The 6.13 ounces of the Endorphin Pro feels incredibly light underfoot. The comfortable underfoot stack feels nearly weightless. There are a few super shoes that weigh an ounce to an ounce and a half less, but the underfoot foam of this one makes it worth it. The weight of the Endorphin Pro shouldn't sway your decision in either direction.

saucony endorphin pro 4 for women - the endorphin pro is lightweight and feels that way when strapped to...
The Endorphin Pro is lightweight and feels that way when strapped to your feet.
Credit: Ally Arcuri

Should You Buy the Saucony Endorphin Pro 4?


We enjoyed our runs in the Endorphin Pro and think you probably will, too. It is not our favorite super shoe, but runners seeking a more approachable super shoe option might enjoy the sensation. It is expensive, though not out of the realm of typical when it comes to racing shoes. If left to our devices, we would probably spend our money on a different racing shoe, but the Endorphin Pro might offer what you want. If it does, its responsiveness is worth the price.

saucony endorphin pro 4 for women - the endorphin pro might not be our top super shoe recommendation...
The Endorphin Pro might not be our top super shoe recommendation, but it has plenty of solid attributes that will appeal to many runners.
Credit: Ally Arcuri

What Other Road Running Shoes Should You Consider?


For a truly approachable racing shoe, we recommend the Puma Deviate Nitro 2. The Deviate Nitro offers significantly more stability than the Endorphin Pro. This offering by Puma feels a bit more traditional but has a strong carbon plate for propulsion. The Saucony Endorphin Speed 4 is similar, but scored higher across our metrics. The Endorphin Speed has a softer crash pad, a minutely-less-responsive nylon plate, and a significant amount of upper comfort, making it one of our favorites for speed days. Because of these attributes, the Endorphin Speed is more equipped to act as your daily speed trainer. Finally, if a serious super shoe is what you are after, check out the latest and greatest offerings from Nike, the Alphafly 3 and the Vaporfly 3.

Ally Arcuri