La Sportiva Bushido 2 - Women's Review
Compare prices at 3 resellers Pros: Sensitive, stable, precise fit, great for technical surfaces
Cons: Heavier, lacks cushioning, best for narrow feet
Manufacturer: La Sportiva
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La Sportiva Bushido 2 - Women's
|Price||Check Price at REI|
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|$130 List||$103.61 at Amazon||$84.73 at REI|
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|Pros||Sensitive, stable, precise fit, great for technical surfaces||Superior comfort, light on foot, protective cushioning, stable architecture, breathable upper||Light, very protective, excellent mud shed, superior traction, surprisingly stable||Protective, comfortable, wider toe box, excellent beefy traction for soft surfaces, huge value||Sticky traction, protective, rainbow design is fun, great value, all surface capabilities|
|Cons||Heavier, lacks cushioning, best for narrow feet||Lace pocket is difficult to use, tight collar can bite into the ankle||Narrow fit, runs small, rigid construction takes time to break-in||Not ideal for roads, huge sizing||Less stable than most, harder midsole is less comfortable, narrower fit|
|Bottom Line||A sensitive yet protective trail runner best for technical terrain, with a little less cushioning in the forefoot||Our favorite shoe offers a well-balanced ride with one of the stickiest and most confidence-inspiring outsoles we've ever seen||Stable and deliciously sticky, this contender is just a crusher all the way around, built for training runs and long distances alike||A great all-around trail shoe with high value that's superb traction on soft surfaces||This rainbow contender has the ability to tackle all kinds of trail with excellent protection and sticky traction|
|Rating Categories||La Sportiva Bushido 2||Salomon S/Lab Ultra 3||Dynafit Feline SL -...||Salomon Supercross...||Merrell Antora 2|
|Foot Protection (25%)|
|Comfort And Fit (15%)|
|Specs||La Sportiva Bushido 2||Salomon S/Lab Ultra 3||Dynafit Feline SL -...||Salomon Supercross...||Merrell Antora 2|
|Measured Weight (per shoe, size 9)||10.4 oz||9.8 oz||9.8 oz||10.5 oz||9.6 oz|
|Heel-to-Toe Drop||6 mm||8.6 mm||8 mm||10 mm||8.5 mm|
|Stack Height (Heel, Forefoot)||19 mm, 13 mm||26.8 mm, 18.2 mm||Not disclosed||29.3 mm, 19.3 mm||28.5 mm, 20 mm|
|Upper||AirMesh, Thermal adhesive microfiber, High frequency welded ripstop||Textile/synthetic||Mesh, continuous nylon||Continuous ripstop nylon||Mesh and TPU|
|Midsole||1.5 mm dual-density compressed EVA||Energy Cell, polyurethane foam||Feline SL midsole||EVA Foam||EVA|
|Outsole||Dual-Density FriXion XT V-Groove with Impact Brake System||Rubber||Sticky Pomoco Outer||Contragrip TD||Vibram TC5+ rubber sole|
|Rock Plate?||Yes||Not disclosed||Not disclosed||N/A||Yes|
|Wide Version Available?||No||No||No||No||Yes|
|Sizes Available||36 - 43 EU||4 - 13||5 - 11||5 - 12||5 - 11|
Our Analysis and Test Results
The Bushido II boasts stand-out sensitivity that offers just the right amount of protection. This low-profile shoe has minimal yet responsive cushioning that'll keep you plugging away the miles. It's great for technical trails, and with some calluses, can perform on long trail runs.
Ultimately, this shoe provides just the right amount of foot protection for most technical trails, but it's far from being a super protective shoe. The midsole has a stack height of 19mm in the heel with 13mm in the forefoot, with an integrated rock plate. If you're a midfoot striker, like our main tester, you'll find your feet getting sore from taking impacts after running over sharp rocks. Heel strikers can expect more protection. While the integrated rock plate does a good job at dispersing these direct impacts, you can still feel sharp rocks underfoot, which adds to sensitivity but takes away from protection.
The toe cap in this iteration seems to be about the same as the previous, offering a harder and rubberized collar of protection from toe stubs. The rubber isn't super hard, so enough impact won't ultimately be completely protected.
The overlay offers fantastic breathability and does a great job of keeping out trail debris like sand, small sticks, and the like. Overall, foot protection is a little less than average, which might be perfect for those who appreciate an intimate trail experience.
The Bushido II has the same outsole as the previous version. The lugs are directed towards the front for good traction on downhills. However, we'd love to see a more multi-directional design as we noticed our foot slipping out on slippery and steep terrain.
Aside from that, we tested this shoe on dirt roads, hard-packed trails, over kitty litter, and snowy surfaces. In all these conditions, the outsole does a great job of grabbing and sticking to the surface.
The shoe itself is pretty rigid, which makes it easy to kick in a snow step for enhanced stability on technical surfaces.
Foot protection is "about right" for those who prefer a thinner shoe, and sensitivity is ample. You can really feel where your toes are placed, which ultimately helps you keep your balance and stand upright. While this is a technical shoe, it offers an immense amount of sensitivity that we appreciate. This shoe can take a beating for many miles, but you might find that you can have to condition your feet to get used to the impact.
We love the stability of this shoe. It has a harder construction surrounding the midsole and outsole with integrated shanks in the heel. The outsole is fairly flexible back and forth but doesn't offer much lateral torsion, keeping your foot straight on the trail.
The stack height isn't very high, which aids in providing better stability as well. The forefoot offers a little more room than most trail runners but isn't as wide as it once was in the previous iteration. This hasn't changed the stability but is an important construction consideration.
Comfort and Fit
The compression foam in the midsole is harder and quite responsive, offering a pop to your running stride. It's not seriously cushioned and is not the most comfortable trail runner out there. The fit is specific, though, which we love. Our narrow-footed runners prefer this shoe, but it also works for those with wide feet as the upper is soft and flexible.
The lacing system integrates a TPU overlay that completely wraps the foot for the right amount of tightness and precision.
The arch has some support, and the heel cup fits nice and tight. There is no "extra" material inside the shoe, providing lots of room for a versatile fit. We recommend the fit of this shoe, but can't say it's the plushest or the most cushioned.
In the world of trail runners, this one is a little heavier than average. It weighs about 10.3 oz for a size 9 where most trail runners fall into the range of about 9 oz.
The Bushido II fits right smack in the middle compared to most trail running shoes. This ultra-classic has proven itself time and time again as a fair price for its performance. After 400 miles of running, the lugs have worn down quite a bit and the outsole is starting to finally pack out. Still, it's pretty durable overall, minus the lugs beginning to wear down after just 100 miles on buffed and rocky trails. It's of value if you seek a 6mm drop shoe that offers a stable and sensitive ride.
The La Sportiva Bushido II received a new update that makes it a more responsive but more narrow trail running shoe. It still has the same construction that optimizes a fine balance between protection and sensitivity. It's not a great shoe for those who need ample cushioning, but best for those who appreciate an intimate and stable experience on the trail. Take it to the tops of mountains, on zoomy track, and everywhere in between.
— Amber King