Clinical Analysis of Running, Running Footwear, and Injury Prevention/Performance. The Doctors of Running, using knowledge of human movement, clinical biomechanics and performance, bring you cutting edge articles, reviews, and research reports.

Post Page Advertisement [Top]

 

Saucony Omni 20 Review
By Guest Reviewer Ryan Flugaur

The Omni 20 continues to carry over the tradition of being a robust stability shoe in the Saucony lineup. Becoming a model “20” is no easy feat and Saucony has continued to deliver a consistent, highly stable shoe with the Omni 20. As a mostly neutral runner I was a bit nervous to try a stability shoe, however, after putting nearly 50 miles on the shoe, I am pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed it. It offers a stable ride yet still provides some of that bounce that I typically enjoy thanks to the PWRRUN foam that was introduced in the Omni 19. The shoe has been updated with a new midsole geometry and width. This is a shoe I found to be very comfortable and will likely continue to run in even after the review. This shoe opened my eyes to a type of shoe I didn’t even know I would benefit from.




Specifications (per Saucony)

Weight: 11.7/ 332 g (men’s) 10.3/ 292 g (women’s)

Stack Height: 34 mm

Drop: 8 mm

Classification: Premium high stability Daily trainer


RUNNING SHOE SUMMARY

The Saucony Omni 20 provides a stable ride without limiting too much of the natural pronation of the foot. The PWRRUN foam offers a well cushioned landing while providing a spring energy return. The upper is constructed of an engineered mesh that provides a comfortable lockdown of the foot and never feels too tight even during my longer runs where the foot is known to swell a bit. With new improvements to the width of the mid foot and continued soft ride thanks to the PWRRUN foam, Saucony continues to improve with the Omni line.



FIT (LENGTH / WIDTH / COMFORT)

The Saucony Omni 20 fits true to size for me in my normal men's US size 9. I found the width to be fairly normal throughout the length of the shoe. The heel feels snug without slippage thanks to the internal heel counter and the well padded tongue which holds the ankle into place. The upper is made of an engineered mesh with the Saucony logo on the side. There are multiple venting holes throughout the mesh over the dorsum of the shoe to help with breathability. I had no issues with excessive warmth even on my 10 mile plus summer runs. The toe box was slightly more snug when first putting on the shoe but stretched out nicely to fit well after my first run. The mid foot provided plenty of room and I had no issues with blisters or rubbing in the shoe.




PERFORMANCE (RIDE / SPEED)

The Saucony Omni 20 is a high mileage stability shoe. Coming in at 11.7 oz, it is a very heavy shoe which is noticeable when first putting on the shoe. I used it mostly during recovery run pace however I did test it out over a few faster pace runs. It was able to hold up nicely over those faster pace runs but this would not be my first choice for these types of runs. This shoe performs best for longer recovery pace runs when your foot may need a little break.

When picking up the speed on the Omni 20 the transition from the heel to the midfoot felt a bit more clunky than I would have wanted and it was difficult to really push the pace. However, it performed very well at my slower recovery pace. The PWRRUN foam helped to cushion the long miles and increase the comfort of the shoe. After nearly 50 miles on the Omni 20, it displayed very little wear. I expect these shoes to last average to above average mileage for most runners.



STABILITY

The Saucony Omni 20 provided a relatively stable ride for me without being overly stiff. The PWRRUN foam does a good job of cushioning the ride while the more stable midfoot and post provide the stability needed during a long run. You will likely not even feel the post which is different from most classic support shoes I have worn in the past. The laces and padded tongue also help to provide a more secure fit. Saucony increased the width of the midfoot this year with the Omni 20 to help give your foot a little extra support.

The posting in the midfoot was not noticeable during my runs and actually provided me some relief for my tibialis posterior tendon issues I have been having on and off for a year. Following most of my runs in other shoes, I would have some lingering soreness over the posterior tibialis tendon the next day. After wearing the Omni 20 for a few weeks, I no longer noticed this pain. Maybe a little guidance was just what I needed and the reason I may continue to add these shoes to my collection.




THOUGHTS AS A DPT / FOOTWEAR SCIENCE

As I mentioned above, I have had lingering tibialis posterior issues that I have been working through for the past year. The tibialis posterior tendon is located on the inside of the foot and ankle that moves the ankle inward as well as assists with holding up the natural arch of your foot. An injury to this tendon could happen for a variety of reasons including but not limited to overtraining and a strength deficit of the muscles that help to stabilize the foot and ankle. I believe mine was likely the combination of the two. Currently, research does not suggest that pronation itself can cause injury but having some guidance from a shoe may help support the foot musculature and prevent breakdown. There are a variety of exercises that can be performed to strengthen the muscles on the bottom of your foot to assist with the tibialis posterior and hopefully avoid injury. For a list of recommended exercises and more information on this topic, Matt wrote an excellent post titled: Running Injury Prevention: Midfoot Arch Support and the Posterior Tibialis.

References:
Nielsen, RO. (2013). Foot Pronation is not associated with increased injury risk in novice runners wearing a neutral shoe: a 1-year prospective cohort study. British Journal of Sports Medicine, 61(4)

Lynn., S., Padilla, R., Tsang, K. (2012). Differences in Static and Dynamic Balance Task Performance After 4 weeks of intrinsic foot muscle training: the Short Foot Exercise Veruss the Towel Curl Exercise. Journal of Sport Rehabilitation, 21: 327-333.



RECOMMENDATIONS 

A change in the Omni 20 that I would love to see is for the shoe to drop a couple ounces of weight which may open it up to quicker paced runs. At 11.7 oz, this is a very heavy shoe which is very noticeable when first putting on the shoe. The Omni 20s large full contact outsole, wider midfoot, dense foam, and thicker mesh upper are the characteristics that make it a stable ride but also add to its weight. It may be challenging to decrease the weight without sacrificing some of the stability the Omni 20 offers.


 


WHO THIS SHOE IS FOR (Conclusion)

The Saucony Omni 20 is for anyone that is looking for a stability daily trainer that can be used for high mileage running but offers a more springy ride. The posting as well as the increased mid foot width from the previous model does a great job of adding stability without sacrificing the bounce. The lower cost of the shoe, $130, is also a good entry point when comparing it to other stability shoes.



GRADING (SHOE CATEGORY)

Ryan
Fit: B+
(Good heel lock, a bit snug in the forefoot at first but easily breaks in after the first run.)
Performance: B-
(Great recovery long mileage running shoe. Shoe is a bit heavy for faster runs and it is noticeable during uptempo runs.)
Stability: A-
(Overall offers good stability without the shoe feeling stiff or clunky.)
DPT/Footwear Science: B+
(Shoe companies are beginning to change how stability shoes function. They are beginning to rely less on a true post and more on stability through other components of the shoe. This allows the shoe to be more comfortable and soft while still providing the support someone needs. This shoe is a good example of that.)
Personal: B
(I was pleasantly surprised by this shoe. It provided a stable yet well cushioned ride that also helped with some long-standing tibialis posterior pain I have been having.)
Overall: B
(The B score is mainly due to the fact that I feel it is just a bit too heavy. If you will be using it mainly for recovery, long distance mileage, this may be the shoe for you.)

SHOP | SUPPORT DOR

Keep an eye out on Running Warehouse for the Saucony Omni 20 drop here!

Are you in the UK or Australia? Use the following links to help support our work! We appreciate the love from overseas: Running Warehouse EU | Running Warehouse Australia

FURTHER READING

Compare Premium Stability Trainers
Asics Kayano 28 -
A bit change for the Kayano as it incorporates Flytefoam Blast to soften the ride
Saucony Hurricane 23 - Combining PWRRUN+ with a smooth ride, the Hurricane takes a big leap forward in comfort and stability in the long running line
New Balance 860v11 - Fresh foam fans will enjoy the ride of the 860 which rolls along nicely. For those who want a heavily posted shoe that can run high mileage
Mizuno Wave Horizon 5 - Those looking for a very stable, non-posted shoe may want to seek the Horizon 5, with it's unique wave design to help guide runners
Brooks Adrenaline GTS 21 - The long running stability favorite of many continues to develop it's Guide Rail technology which helps propel runners forward
Hoka Arahi 5 - The J-frame system wraps around the runner to help guide them forward in Hoka's unique stability design, and provides some firmness to help cut the traditionally soft Hoka ride

Recently at Doctors of Running
Mizuno Wave Rider 25 Review - The Rider reaches a landmark year, now featuring soft full length Enerzy foam for a next generation ride
Adidas Boston 10 Review - Boston gets revolutionized as it leans into its racing sibling the Adios Pro 2 with Lightstrike Pro midsole and energy rods
Coros Apex 46mm Review - David Salas checks in on the Coros Apex which he's used extensively for track and trail running these past few months

Thanks for reading!

ABOUT RYAN FLUGAUR





Ryan Flugaur, PT, DPT, TPI Certified

Ryan Flugaur is a Doctor of Physical Therapy at Point Forward Physical Therapy in Stevens Point, WI. He works with variety of orthopedic conditions but specializes in treating injured athletes including runners, throwers, and swimmers. Dr. Flugaur graduated from the University of Wisconsin- Stevens Point with a bachelor’s degree in biology. He attained his doctorate from Concordia University Wisconsin. Since becoming a physical therapist, Dr Flugaur has completed advanced training through the Movement Performance Institute in advanced biomechanics of running, Washington University (St. Louis) in movement system impairment syndromes, and the Titleist Performance Institute in golfing biomechanics.

Dr. Flugaur began running four years ago when he was looking for a change to his current exercise program of body building. He continues to do some light strength training but running has become his true form of exercise to stay healthy. He has met some great friends through running and loves the comradery that the running community brings. He typically runs 20-40 miles a week depending on his training schedule. Dr. Flugaur lives in Wisconsin with his wife Oliva and 2 kids, Lucy and Jack. When not running he enjoys mountain biking, fat biking in the snow, camping, and cheering on the badgers, brewers, and bucks.

PRs Include: 5K:20:05 (2021) 10 K: 43:36 (2021) Half-Marathon 1:42:22 (2021)


Editor's Note: As always, the views presented on this website belong to myself or the selected few who contribute to these posts. This website should not and does not serve as a replacement for seeking medical care. If you are currently injured or concerned about an injury, please see your local running physical therapist. If you are in the Los Angeles area, I am currently taking clients for running evaluations.

Matthew Klein, PT DPT OCS FAAOMPT
Doctor of Physical Therapy
Board Certified Orthopedic Clinical Specialist
Fellow of the American Academy of Orthopedic Manual Physical Therapists

Nathan Brown PT DPT MS
Doctor of Physical Therapy 
Masters in Anatomy and Clinical Health Science
Movement Performance Institute Certified in Advanced Functional Biomechanics 

David Salas PT DPT CSCS
Doctor of Physical Therapy
Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist

Bach Pham MS
Marketing and Social Media Manager
Master of Arts in Cultural Anthropology

***Disclaimer: These shoes were provided free of charge in exchange for a review.  We thank the  people at Saucony for sending us a pair.  This in no way affected the honesty of this review. We systematically put each type of shoe through certain runs prior to review. For trainers and performance trainers, we take them on daily runs, workouts, recovery runs and a long run prior to review (often accumulating anywhere from 20-50 miles in the process). For racing flats we ensure that we have completed intervals, a tempo or steady state run run as well as a warm up and cool down in each pair prior to review. This systematic process is to ensure that we have experience with each shoe in a large variety of conditions to provide expansive and thorough reviews for the public and for companies. Our views are based on our extensive history in the footwear industry and years testing and developing footwear. If you are a footwear rep looking for footwear reviews or consultations on development, we are currently looking to partner with companies to assist, discuss and promote footwear models. Partnership will not affect the honesty of our reviews.

Like and Follow Doctors of Running
Facebook: Doctors of Running Youtube Channel: Doctors of Running 

Please feel free to reach out, comment and ask questions!

Featured Post: Asics Novablast 2 (New Guest Review added 7/4)

ASICS Gel-Kayano 28 Review

Bottom Ad [Post Page]