Under Armour Speedform Europa
The Under Armour Speedform Europa has Charged Cushioning that is also used in other UA shoes. It is excellent at spring back and energy absorption. When a runner is running short, medium, or long distances, the cushion is excellent at absorbing the impact. The Charge Cushioning is a bit more important than the drop.
Testers like the lock down, the upper, and cushioning. The drop and tread are adequate. The tongue is the wing fit tongue seen in other Under Armour shoes. It is better cushioned than some previous models. The shoes tend to run small.
The UA Speedform Europa is the ultra stability shoe and not right for everyone. Testers cannot give the shoes a resounding ‘Yes,’ because they are a bit of overkill in the stability arena. It functions at the halfway point between a heavy duty trail shoe and a standard track shoe. It is a combination of features from both designs. Not all the bold aspects pan out for many runners.
- Breathable upper
- Excellent fit
- Multiple color choices
- Phenomenal cushion
- Lackluster flexibility
The material used in the outsole is more responsive and springy than that used for trail shoes. The shoes are perfect for soft surface running. They have extra cushioning that supplements the outsole and the shoes work well on terrain that is somewhat tougher than soft surfaces.
The extra weight provides a level of cushion and stability that makes the UA Speedform Europa ideal for casual fare and tough running surfaces. The insoles are not a favorite of some testers. They would like to take them out and customize the shoes with other insoles, but that is not possible with these shoes.
Extra heel protection was achieved by adding additional material on the heel at the back. UA managed high-stability by using several taut straps in the middle of the upper along the shoelace hooks. The design elements make for a competent running shoe.
Runners’ preferences range from minimalist to shoes that have more of a drop. The shoes are neither lightweight or heavy. They do not cause legs to become fatigued, but they are not speed shoes. In terms of weight, they are in the middle of the spectrum when ranked against other road running shoes.
Tightening the straps along the lateral and medial sides of the shoes helps to offset the discomfort caused by the extra weight. It secures the shoes snugly to the feet. The manufacturer does not want the foot to turn inward which means the shoe does not have a lot of compression.
There is more compression on the outside of the shoe. The shoes are made for overpronation. Others may not like them. The shoes cause a bit of weird pain and funky actions in the knees and joints. Before jumping into a stability shoe, a runner needs to be assessed at a running store for feet, posture, and walking.
A stylish aspect of the shoes is the multiple color options. There are approximately ten color schemes which make coordinating them with a wardrobe easy. The Under Armour Speedform Europa offers an expectedly beefy style which makes it perfect for long-distance running on the road.
Runners may be successful when running on trails that are flat. It is best to stick to tracks or roads. Looking at the tread, lets the runner know the shoes are not going to be worn on rough terrain. They will not be taken on training tracks or the trail. Runners stick to the road with these shoes.
The strange design of the shoe emphasizes support and extra weight. The limited environments that are suited for these shoes may dissuade the casual runner who will likely opt for something lighter. The standard shoes sell for $130. Those that are record-equipped cost $160.
There seems to be inflation among running shoes. The prices continue to rise. Those who do a lot of running and want the record equipped technology that automatically collects data as they run may find the more expensive shoes to be something of value. If simple stability running shoes are what a runner wants, he or she may be paying $130 for them. The price point does not excite testers. They feel the shoes are a bit overpriced.
That is not to say the shoes have poor traction. It is just not as impressive as shoes of similar weight. Traction will never be a problem in dry climates on flat surfaces. Encounters with rainy weather and inclines require extra caution.
The shoes do not provide a reasonable amount of flexibility in this area. Impressive flexibility is present in the upper portion due to the snug and lightweight material used. It is easy to adjust the fit because of the mesh along most of the shoe’s upper and the flexible strap materials used.
A special heel cup on the lower half has been implemented. It helps keep the heel locked in place when running a level of rigidity coupled with the heel cup offers a heavily cushioned midsole. The shoe is seriously stable. Placed against other shoes in the stability category testers say there are better choices due to the big strip or structure inside the shoe that is meant to keep the foot from overpronation.
Two purposes are served that make the shoes ideal for running. First, the forefoot feels the surface better when it is closer to the ground and provides a little extra flexibility. Second, additional heel cushion absorbs most of the shock due to heel striking which helps prevent damage to ankles and Achilles tendons. Despite the drop, the shoe falls short in flexibility because of the gratuitous cushioning along the entire midsole. It restricts any extra flexibility
* Generous midsole cushioning
* Reinforced heel padding
* Tight upper with straps in the middle and breathable fabric
Every design detail decision was meant to appeal to marathon runners in a way different from any other shoe. The shoes will disappoint those outdoors types who like long runs and hikes around mountains or are casual runners wanting to train for track and field events.