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We recently traded in our Nike ACG trail running shoes for the Adidas Kumasi XCRs.  We had beaten the Nikes to a pulp and it was time to try something new.

We got a pair of the regular Adidas Kumasi and a pair of the Kumasi XCR. The regular Kumasi and the XCR differs only in that the XCR has Gore-Tex uppers and are seam-sealed for complete waterproof protection. 

One of the most important considerations for choosing a pair of trail running shoes are traction and support. 

The Kumasi shoe has an aggressive tread pattern with excellent gripping rubber.  Incorporated into the sole is a plate which offers "push through" protection from sharp rocks and other trail hazzards.

Most hiking shoes offer support and traction at the expense of weight.  Normal running shoes are light but are designed to support forward movement.  Trail running shoes need to have stability support in all directions AND be as light as possible.

The Adidas Kumasi is pretty light, weighing in at 15 ounces per shoe.  It is about as light as the designers could go with the materials while still making the shoe durable enough for trail use.  The Nike ACG we had was 17 oz each.

The Torsion® System at midfoot supports and allows for the natural rotation between heel and forefoot, and allows the runner better surface adaptability.  Note the channel along the heel in the photo below, the channel allows the heel to a bit more flexible, independent of the midsole.

The lacing and the seude exterior of the Kumasi are very similar to most hiking footwear.  The material is abrasion resistant and in the XCR, waterproof.

In the XCR model, the Gore-Tex upper and waterproof lining means this shoe will be excellent for typical, muddy, New England trails!

The Gore-Tex feature also means the shoe will be breathable as well... an important feature for trail runners who like to run no matter what the conditions are outside.

We are looking forward to taking these shoes out for their FirstUse test. We'll report back after we have had a chance to try them out!




Kumasi XCR

By Wan Chi Lau

Trail running as a sport has really taken off. Not only is it a great way to get into shape, it is also a wonderful way to get out in the wild... if you are outside the city limits :-)

For us folks in Boston, we can approximate the experience by running in the Arnold Arboretum and along the Emerald Necklace, among other places.

Adidas made a pair of cross country running shoes back in the 1970s called "Country."  It had white leather uppers with the trademarked green triple stripe on the side and a gum rubber sole.  There wasn't much padding in running shoes back then, but everyone on the track team worn them for distance running.

Today, the story is much different.  Adidas' shoes have gone high tech and are extremely sophisticated piece of running gear.

In this FirstLook review, we'll examine the Adidas Kumasi XCR.  We'll show you what makes it different from your normal running shoes.

In the FirstUse report, we'll let you know how well it performed in a variety of trail running activities.


1. First Look

2. First Use

3. In The Wild Report


Review Summary:

Initial Impression- Light & stable

Usability- Puncture protection

Durability- Test in progress

Price- $70-$100



Photography by Wan Chi Lau
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