Looking for a trail shoe with a minimalist feel but protection from rugged trail? Score from our New Balance MT10v2 review: 97/100. The New Balance MT10v2 offers some of the great features of a trail shoe but the light weight and glove like feel of a minimalist shoe. If you are new to minimalist shoes, it is important to know a minimalist shoe does not offer support for the foot. Because of this, runners should learn and use proper running technique and a muscle build up schedule if wearing minimalist shoes for the first time. This will minimize the chance of injury: avid runners don’t like down time. What exactly does this shoe offer?
New Balance MT10v2 Photos
1. The inside of the New Balance MT 10v2 is smooth with no friction points meaning you can wear it without socks. There is comfy foam in the upper making the shoe feel like a good pair of socks. It won’t rub or cause blisters.
2. If you are running trails, you are likely to encounter rocks, debris and rough ground. The New Balance MT 10v2 is designed to minimize the “feel” of the trail (so the rocks don’t hurt your feet so much!). These shoes won’t cushion you from everything on the trail, the way a conventional trail shoe will, but it will protect your feet more than running barefoot. The Vibram rubber outsole offers some protection while still remaining flexible.
3. This shoe is very lightweight. At 6.2 oz you will feel you are wearing something, but not be weighed down with a heavy shoe. It is not completely minimalist but covers the foot, feels solid, and smooths the ride of rough terrain.
4. As for foot protection, the New Balance MT 10v2 is designed with multi-directional traction. The sole has 4 levels of tread, strategically placed to provide traction where it is most needed. However, only 1 level of traction is actually raised, the other three are recessed. This makes the shoe good for trail conditions and road as well. The shoe won’t grip on every surface, but it is a minimalist shoe. You can feel the trail, but not every rock. And if you want to take to the road now and then, this shoe can do that too.
5. The design of this shoe is great for mid strike runners wanting a wider shoe. Since it is a minimalist shoe, there is no cushion in the heel. If you hit the ground with your midfoot, the New Balance MT 10v2 offers traction at just the right points. The lacing and band over the top of the foot help the shoe feel snug. Some runners may find the band over the top a bit constricting but it was recently redesigned to feel snug but not uncomfortable.
This shoe is not the lightest shoe available, nor does it give lots of protection on trails. But it is a good balance between the two: lightweight with a minimalist design and moderate sole protection. It is carefully designed and comfortable.