New Balance has introduced a new series of four shoes under a banner called the Minimus. We tested the lightweight road shoe.
The recently launched Minimus range from New Balance shows the brand’s firm interest in the minimalist trend. The Minimus Road is lighter than most running shoes, but the 16mm heel seems – at first glance – a little high for a minimalist shoe.
However, even with the heel, the difference between the heel and forefoot is just 4mm. The less this drop, the more your stride will accentuate a midfoot strike rather than the heel bearing the brunt of the landing force. New Balance’s slogan for the Minimus range is ‘Like barefoot, only better’, which is more suited to the Minimus Trail than to the Minimus Road.
The road shoe is too high off the ground to give you that responsive feel that shoes like the Merrell Glove and Vibram Five Fingers have. The tread is made up of a substance called NDurance, cleverly designed in a honeycomb pattern to spread the force from the point of impact of the foot.
Feeling left out
One of the reasons the shoe is lighter than regular road shoes is that the inserts have been done away with and the midsole is thin and flexible.
The shoe is designed to be worn with or without socks, although our initial sockless testers did battle with blisters.
A great way to manage the transition to minimalist shoes. To experience a more realistic feel of barefoot running, try the NB Minimus Trail.
Available: New Balance Stores