Adidas has been fairly quiet over the last couple of years when it comes to exciting new running shoes. Although the Ultraboost has been a favourite amongst runners and fashion-folk alike, there haven’t been any vast improvements to the technology for quite some time.
Where adidas were once one of the favourites when it comes to race shoes, other brands, specifically Nike, have dominated the technical side of the running shoe market with a deluge of new designs and materials.
In 2020, things are very much carbon plate focussed, with loads of companies – including adidas – launching their own take on the technology that’s spattered Nike shoes across the start lines of races around the world.
The adidas SL20 isn’t a carbon plated shoe (that release is still to come), but it does incorporate a new foam call Lightstrike, a material designed to be lighter than Boost, as well as an updated upper.
At 230 g (size UK 8.5), it’s clear that the focus of the SL20 is speed. I’ve been wearing it from parkruns to a half marathon race and I’m an instant fan. It’s an incredibly speedy, light shoe that’s perfect for fast running over shorter distances. At 5k and 10k it was pretty much flawless, for half marathons it was a bit too hard and I felt that it lacked cushioning for the later miles.
The most impressive thing about the SL20 is the price. Although it RRPs at £100 (which is worth it anyway), you can pick it up for £60 from places like Pro:Direct, which is phenomenal value for such a great shoe.
It’s not an allrounder though, it’s a shoe that excels at speed, so if you’re looking for a nice comfy option for long training runs or marathon training, don’t expect it to be the most enjoyable ride. For speed and value, it’s an exceptional choice.
Here myself, Nick and Kieran talk about the adidas SL20 in our multi-tester review. Leave us a comment if you have any questions.