Physical Therapists Using Clinical Analysis To Discuss The Art And Science Behind Running and The Stuff We Put On Our Feet

Post Page Advertisement [Top]


Saucony Endorphin Edge Review: Super Shoe for the Trails
By Chief Contributor David Salas, Contributor Andrea Myers and Chief Editor Matthew Klein

The Saucony Endorphin line has gained a good amount of popularity with the Endorphin Speed, Pro, and Shift models. Saucony continues upon this lineage by introducing another responsive model for the trails. The Endorphin Edge uses the same PEBA based PWRRUN PB midsole seen in the Speed and Pro. The Edge uses a carbon fiber plate and a full-contact lug system to bring the Speedroll design to the trails. 

Price: $195.5 at Running Warehouse (coming soon)
Weight: 9 oz, 255 g (men's size 9), 7.8 oz, 221 g  (women's size 8)
Stack Height: 36 mm / 30 mm
Drop: 6 mm
Classification: Super/Uptempo/Racing Trail Shoe


Matt: The Saucony Endorphin Edge is the first carbon plated, full-length superfoam trail shoe. Featuring a Carbitex plate that stabilizes a high stack of PWRRUN PB, the shoe provides a highly cushioned and responsive feel on the trail. A slightly wider fitting upper will work for a variety of feet and does well over long mileage accommodating foot swelling. It also features a wide sole with plenty of grip for both smooth and somewhat aggressive trails. A fun shoe that can handle slower training efforts, workouts and fast race efforts over a variety of longer distances, the Saucony Endorphin Edge is a go-to trail shoe no matter what lies ahead.

David: This has quickly become a favorite of mine. The Saucony Endorphin Edge is a versatile trail running shoe that can do a little bit of everything. The ride is balanced underfoot and the rocker is well integrated but still noticeable. The shoe uses a carbon fiber plate and PWRRUN PB to bring some additional responsiveness to the trail scene. The design works well for both fast and slow runs. The shoe balances weight, cushioning, and responsiveness in a nice, versatile package.

Andrea: The Saucony Endorphin Edge has quickly become my favorite Saucony trail shoe. The Carbitex plate and PWRRUN PB provide a cushioned, responsive, and snappy ride in a variety of trail conditions. The multi-directional lugs provide exceptional traction on the trails, most notably in mud. At 7.8 oz for a women's size 8, the Endorphin Edge is a lightweight shoe with plenty of cushioning for easy runs, faster paces, and racing. 


Matt: The Saucony Endorphin Edge fits me true to size in my normal US men's size 10. The fit is fairly normal to slightly wider fit. Despite the normal width fit, the midfoot is easily locked down thanks to the laces and their ability to quickly cinch up the upper. The tongue is also fully gusseted, featuring an inner wrap that further locks down the midfoot. The heel fits normally in width with a small and flexible heel counter in the rear. Despite there not being much padding, I had no trouble with the counter and those that are sensitive to them most likely will not either.

Due to the solid upper security, I did not have to lace lock the shoe for the majority of my rooms. However, the toebox does taper a little due to the toe guard and on steep descents. I may consider lace locking in case of sliding. I did not had an issue with that (but for ultra runners, have not taken these beyond 20 miles at a time to be sure for those major distances). This does a great toe of protecting the toes without being overbearing, so it is worth the trade-off. I would suggest wearing socks for that reason.

While the mesh is on the lighter side for a trail shoe, a thin mud guard film sits along the bottom part of the upper. While this upper is not waterproof, it has done a great job keeping my feet dry. I have tried a few stream crossings up near Mt Hood (visiting for a potential move) and found that it not only kept mud at bay,  my feet also dried fairly quickly. So those looking for an upper that has a normal amount of room but still want a performance shoe level of security will enjoy the Saucony Endorphin Edge.

David: The Saucony Endorphin Edge fits true to size in my normal Men's 9.5. The fit throughout definitely leans towards a performance fit. The material hugs close to the foot and gives the shoe a nice snug hold throughout. The lacing system is well-integrated and has an extra piece of material before the final eyelet that widens out the strap to pull up the material around the proximal midfoot and make it even more snug. The tongue is lightly padded, but still relatively thin to keep weight down. The mesh material is breathable and provides pretty good support with minimal stretching when turning. There is a heel counter that holds the structure in the rearfoot with a small amount of flexibility. The width is normal to slightly narrow in the heel, normal in the midfoot, and normal in the forefoot. The heel collar is pretty thin, but still lightly padded. The fit throughout holds the foot well and gives pretty good security throughout. The one thing I did notice was that the material in the heel collar has a tiny bit of expansion when landing. This didn't change security as the lacing system still kept everything in place, but I would get wood chips or pebbles flying into my shoe on occasion. It happened enough times to where that could probably be refined on the fit a little more. Overall, the shoe has a pretty good trail upper and and should work for most situations someone will need to go through on the trails.

Andrea: The Saucony Endorphin Edge fits true to size in my usual women's 9.5. While I need to go up 1/2 size in the road Endorphin line, I found the fit of the Endorphin Edge to be nearly perfect for me. The forefoot is slightly wider than average, allowing for some toe splay and foot swelling over longer runs. The mesh upper hugs the foot nicely without any hot spots or irritation. I was really pleased with the overall fit of the upper and how natural it felt immediately upon step in. There is a small, flexible external heel counter and the internal heel collar has mild padding. The built-in flexibility really allows the shoe to hug your heel without causing any irritation. The thin tongue is gusseted and has very light padding. I had no issues with the tongue moving or bothering the dorsum of my foot. The laces are attached to the tongue through its entire length, further adding to the Edge's excellent lockdown and security. When testing shoes, I often need to stop several times on my first couple of runs to get the lacing dialed in, but I was able to achieve comfortable lockdown immediately in the Edge. Overall, I am very pleased with the fit of the shoe and found it to provide excellent foot lockdown, even on very technical trails. 


Matt: The Saucony Endorphin Edge is a unique trail running shoe. It is one of the first to feature both a super foam (PEBA) and a carbon fiber (Carbitex) plate. It also has the versatility to be used as both a training and racing shoe on the trails. The PWRRUN PB foam is softer underfoot, providing both a high amount of protection as well as responsiveness. It is stabilized (somewhat) by both the plate and durable outsole, which provide a contrasting firmness. The ride is rockered well in the forefoot thanks to Saucony's Speedroll technology. Despite the plate, the toe-off feels smooth thanks to both the Speedroll and the softness of the foam. The rearfoot is only slightly beveled which feels fine on trails, but can feel a little clunky initially on road. As soon as the foam breaks in though, this smooths out. The lugs on the outsole grip well, but are not so aggressive that it cannot handle road. I have actually used this shoe for mixed road/trail runs exclusively and it has done well. There is plenty of cushioning underfoot that it feels fine on both surfaces, however it does tend to wear down the lugs a little fast. That being said, the lugs and outsole have held up extremely well despite using these for way more road miles than I should. Durability is excellent and I would expect an incredibly high number of miles out of these, especially if you minimize road use (but they do fine there).

The Endorphin Edge has two personalities. The cushioning and design is plenty comfortable for easy runs and it excels over long runs/longer efforts. The combined PWRRUN PB and Speed Roll make for a smooth ride which is balanced out by the plate and outsole. I have used this shoe for 15-20 mile runs on trail and have experienced less of my usual fatigue, in the same way I tend to feel better after using super shoes on road. Once the pace picks up, this shoe changes. The plate becomes more apparent at faster speeds and the resilience/rebound from the foam comes alive. I have done uptempo and tempo efforts in this on smoother trails and it feels like I can keep going forever. The shoe is larger, so it isn't the most nimble shoe, but the security of the upper and outsole lugs lends itself to being able to handle some technical terrain. The best purpose is bombing down hills, long steady stretches and mild to moderately technical trails where you can pick up the pace. The protection underfoot lends itself to being able to handle longer distance efforts and races, making this an excellent choice for trail half, full and ultramarathons. It doesn't feel quite light enough for a cross country or shorter race. This, however, would be my first choice for any of those longer distances given the responsiveness, protection, plate and double personality for whatever pace I need to go.

David: The Saucony Endorphin Edge is a versatile trail running shoe that brings some of the fun components seen on the roads to the trails. The shoe uses the midsole PWRRUN PB that is also in the Saucony Endorphin Speed 3, Endorphin Pro 3, and the Tempus. The foam is decently soft underfoot but still holds its structure well. The Endorphin Edge also uses a Carbitex carbon fiber plate that provides rigidity, some rock protection, and some responsiveness when loaded. The ride of the shoe is definitely rockered with the Speedroll Technology that Saucony has been using. Though being rockered, the rolling effect does not feel over done. You get a constant rolling sensation without feeling like you are falling off of the shoe. The heel transition into the midfoot is quite smooth and the forefoot roll combined with the PWRRUN PB provide a nice bounce to the toe off. The geometry being a little more forgiving is nice because it lets the shoe run both slow and fast. I have been able to cruise through some trails as well as push others. The PWRTRAC outsole gives the shoe good traction. The rubber itself isn't crazy sticky per se, but I had no problems with wet conditions. The lugs are just deep enough and wide enough to allow for some use over technical terrain or really soft terrain without having the ground sticking to the outsole. Because of the forgiveness from PWRRUN PB, this shoe also has done well as a road to trail option for me. I feel I can take the Endorphin Edge on nearly any surface (though the road isn't the right home for it). From a ride and weight standpoint the Edge knocks it out of the park for me and something I can take for easy trail runs and may even consider racing in depending on the race distance and the course.

Andrea: I had a lot of fun testing this shoe in a variety of trail conditions here in CT: grass, mud, rooty and rocky singletrack, loose dirt, sand, and even some pavement. I was really impressed by the ride and performance of the Endorphin Edge in all of these conditions. My longest run in the Edge was a 15 mile run on a bridle trail, which is a combination of dirt, sand, and rocks. My feet were comfortable and my legs felt great from start to finish. Traction is one of the most important features of a trail shoe, and I found the shoe to provide excellent grip in every condition except sand, where you will always have some slippage. I was particularly impressed by its grip in mud and on rocks. It is important to trust your shoes when trail running, and I felt I could trust the Endorphin Edge to grip in almost any condition. The Endorphin Edge was also extremely comfortable on pavement, which is a nice feature if you are connecting two trail systems. I wouldn't choose the Edge for a pure pavement run due to the lugs, but it can definitely handle a few miles of pavement if your route requires it.

The ride of the Endorphin Edge is different from any of the other Endorphin models. The Speedroll Technology was most noticeable to me in the forefoot rocker and toe spring. It does provide a rolling sensation, but not to the point where you feel like the shoe is pushing you forward. The forefoot has some flexibility, which I found helped the shoe accommodate better to uneven terrain, gave better ground feel, and made steep uphill running feel a little more natural. I find that overly stiff or excessively rockered shoes are annoying to run uphill in because they do not allow me to fully use my 1st MTP joint for push off. Midfoot landings feel cushioned but immediately responsive due to the Carbitex plate, PWRRUN PB, and Speedroll. This shoe feels like its stated 6mm drop and I am glad that Saucony made this shoe lower drop than the Endorphin Pro or Speed. I generally find that lower drop trail shoes feel more nimble because the heel does not feel like it gets in my way. The lower weight of the shoe will make it ideal for both training and racing, although some runners may prefer a little more cushioning for ultra distances.  


Matt: The Saucony Endorphin Edge is a neutral shoe. There are a few elements however that provide some inherent guidance. The heel and forefoot are a bit wider than average, also featuring some sole flare that is typical for Saucony. The midfoot doesn't narrow as much as others. There are small but full-length PWRRUN PB sidewalls from the heel through the midfoot on both the medial and lateral sides. The full ground contact outsole improves connection with the ground, while the speed gets you rolling forward as soon as you hit the forefoot.

All these methods are great, but the PWRRUN PB does run a little softer. For road this actually does well, but on softer surfaces, this can be a little fatiguing. The medial/lateral stability is a little challenging in places that are extremely soft, so like any neutral trail shoe, those with stability needs may need to ease into this and continue to work on their own inherent stability. 

The Endorphin Edge is not a stability shoe, but does some things pretty well. The upper material is pretty supportive and holds its structure well when pulled or abrased. The carbon plate provides some rigidity and structure to the softer PWRRUN PB midsole. The sidewalls from the midsole are integrated pretty well with the upper and keep the foot feeling like it is on the platform and moving forward. The full contact outsole helps give some rigidity and a grounded feeling to the platform as well. With that said the shoe is still in that neutral category and I do notice the medial/lateral stability can be a little tricky from the softer PWRRUN PB midsole, which is noticeable in nearly any shoe using these softer foams. Overall, the stability is pretty good for taking super shoe DNA and putting in a trail offering. 

Andrea: The Endorphin Edge is definitely a neutral shoe, but does have some features that contribute to a smoother, more secure ride. The number one feature for me is the security of the upper. I experienced absolutely no foot translation when running in this shoe, even on steep, rocky descents. The upper hugs the foot exceptionally well and provides comfortable lockdown without any discomfort. The outsole runs wide throughout the length of the shoe, providing greater stability on uneven terrain. There is also some sole flare that helps to guide motion. As a runner who has sprained both ankles numerous times from childhood to adulthood, I found the Endorphin Edge to provide enough medial-lateral stability that I never felt like I was going to roll an ankle. This is likely due to the wider outsole and sole flare. 


What a Time to Be Alive
By David Salas

The road running market is saturated with "super shoes" at the moment. The main feature of these shoes is that they normally incorporate a rocker design, a new generation midsole (normally PEBA/PEBAX), and a plate or stiffening agent. Saucony is taking this DNA that is seen in the road running scene and bringing it to the trails. This is a bit of a wild west from a research standpoint and studies are just now starting to catch up with the road running scene. With that said, some things have been found with "super shoes" in relation to normal shoes. Hebert-Losier et al. (2022) found that wearing a "super shoe," specifically the Vaporfly 4% in this study, compared to a minimalist shoe or the runner's preferred running shoe showed an increase in flight times and vertical pelvis displacement, as well as lower stance hip range of motion. Though this was performed on a treadmill in a controlled setting it is worth looking into as we transition to having these new foams out on the trails. PWRRUN PB is Peba-based as well and the shoe does feel like it keeps you up vertically a little more compared to some other shoes. Keeping this in mind, it will be very important to have increased security in other aspects of the shoe to give the runner confidence when navigating terrain that is not always predictable. Saucony did that in this model by using the carbon fiber plate, full contact outsole, and using an upper that locks down really well throughout. This is an exciting time for footwear and I'm curious to see where this material science boom takes us.


Hebert-Losier, K., Finlayson, S., Lamb, P.F., Driller, M.W., Hanzlikova, I., Dubois, B., Esculier, J-F., & Beaven, C.M. (2022). Kinematics of recreational male runners in "super", minimalist and habitual shoes. Journal of Sports Sciences, DOI: 10.1080/02640414.2022.2081767  


Matt: The Saucony Endorphin Edge is easily my favorite trail shoe. The traction has been solid and I know I have both the protection and responsiveness to do whatever type of effort on trails I want. The only changes I would suggest would be to increase the sidewall depth and see if the weight can drop a little further. While small sidewalls are present, I would increase them in the midfoot to combat the fact that the midfoot narrows slightly compared to the rest of the shoe. This will also provide a little more inherent guidance to offset the softer PWRRUN PB. I would also challenge Saucony to see if they can drop the weight further without sacrificing the ride or the upper security. This is the first carbon-plated super trail shoe, so I want to see them establish their dominance in this area.

David: I really enjoyed the Endorphin Edge and it has found a place in my rotation when I am not testing other shoes. With that said I would like to see the fit of the heel material altered a little bit. I normally don't get debris kicked up into my shoe and that seems to be a somewhat common theme when running in them if I don't lace the shoe down tighter. Whether that is padding the collar more or adjusting the heel counter itself a little more I am not completely sure. Otherwise, from a lockdown standpoint it is pretty solid and I don't have sliding in my foot. 

Andrea: This is the best fitting Endorphin shoe I have tested. It is comfortable, secure, and provides exceptional traction. I actually have no recommendations regarding this shoe, except to keep it exactly the same in version 2. The Endorphin Edge has definitely earned its place at the top of my trail shoe rotation. 


Matt: The Saucony Endorphin Edge is a trail running shoe that doubles as a fun training shoe and a fast/uptempo shoe for longer racing. The full-length PWRRUN PB midsole combined with a Carbitex plate makes for a faster ride when the pace picks up. The Speed Roll and softer midsole also maintain easier efforts, especially as the distances get longer. This shoe can handle mild to moderately technical terrain and does well even with road transitions. Those wanting a longer racing and training option for the trail that also has all the features from super shoes on the road will enjoy the Saucony Endorphin Edge.

David: The Saucony Endorphin Edge is a trail running shoe that provides great versatility. The shoe works well for running both slow and uptempo through trails. This a shoe I could see doing well in everything from 25k to ultra marathons with minimal problems. The shoe does okay in technical terrain but really shines in runnable to moderately technical trail conditions. It is trustworthy enough to take into pretty much any terrain including road with decent comfort. Those that like having a rolling sensation and a bouncier ride in the forefoot this could be a trail option worth looking into. To me it is almost like a lighter and more responsive Speedgoat, though a little less sticky on the traction. 

The Saucony Endorphin Edge is lighter weight trail shoe that provides exceptional traction and foot lockdown in a variety of trail conditions. It will work best for runners with neutral mechanics, but its wider outsole and sole flare may provide mild stability for runners prone to lateral ankle sprains. It is comfortable enough to use on pavement and for longer distances. The Speedroll technology and somewhat flexible forefoot makes the Edge a more responsive and natural feeling shoe than many other high stack and rockered plated shoes. This shoe will work well as both a performance trainer and racer. 


Fit: A- (Normal to slightly wider fit with secure upper. Solid midfoot lockdown with a combination of room and security)
A- (Dual personality with a responsive ride for longer distance racing and enough protection and comfort for daily training and long runs)
Stability: B [Neutral] (Neutral ride due to softer foam, mild sidewalls. Solid traction on a variety of surfaces)
DPT/Footwear Science: A- (Excellent job debuting the first true trail super shoe. Sidewalls could be a bit higher to offset high stack and softer foam. However, all designs are excellent for a responsive but well-grounded trail shoe that can handle training and racing)
Personal: A (My go-to trail shoe and what will be on my feet for any trail racing I do. I trust this shoe despite it leaning more neutral for anything that comes my way due to its ability to be comfortable, fast and keep my legs feeling fresh)
Overall: A- 

Fit: A- (Good dimensions throughout with solid and trustworthy lockdown. I tend to get debris in the heel somewhat often though if I don't lace tightly. No sliding though.)
A- (Very versatile trail shoe that serves all of my needs. Confidence on trails was really good. Could be a tad more secure in highly technical conditions but does really well in all other conditions.)
Stability: B (Pretty good job with the geometry, traction, and upper, though the midsole does have some give and the shoe still leans neutral a good amount)
DPT/Footwear Science: A- (Good job bringing super shoe DNA to the trails without botching security. Good outsole integration as well as upper security.)
Personal: A (The Endorphin Edge has become my go to trail shoe and something I keep reaching for when off road. For me it serves my needs as I don't go and mountain goat any really crazy technical terrain.)
Overall: A- (The Endorphin Edge is a versatile trail running shoe that brings the rocker, new generation foam, and a carbon fiber plate to the trails in a very runnable package.)

Fit: (Best fitting Endorphin shoe I've tested with exceptional lockdown, comfort, and security.)
Performance: A 
(Performs well on all types of terrain and at a variety of paces. Bonus points for being comfortable on pavement.)
Stability: B (This is a neutral shoe, but its sole flare and wider outsole provide enough stability for my frequently sprained ankles.)
DPT/Footwear Science: A (Saucony did a great job applying super shoe technology to a trail shoe. They managed to preserve ground feel while providing the cushioning and responsiveness we expect in a super shoe.)
Personal: A (I loved running in this shoe and it has become my favorite trail shoe. Great fit, ride, guidance, and performance.)
Overall: A


Price: $195.5 at Running Warehouse (coming soon)

Shop Men
| Shop Women

*Using the link to purchase helps support Doctors of Running. Thanks so much!

Check out Gear We Love
Ultraspire Fitted Race Belt: The best way to carry your phone and goods on the run. No bounce and various sizes for waist. (Also recommend the Naked belt)
Skratch Recovery, Coffee Flavor: Mental and physical boost post run. Coffee flavor is excellent and goes great straight into a fresh brewed cup
goodr Sunglases: Run in style with goodr's super fun sunglasses.
Feetures Socks: Massively grippy socks that will make you feel more one with the shoe
Amphipod Hydraform Handheld Water Bottle: Perfect for long runs when you need hydration in the summer
Trigger Point Foam Roller: Help get those knots out post-run and feel better for tomorrow
Theragun Massager: This small version is great on the go for working tired legs
Ciele Hat: Our team's favorite running hat of choice!


Saucony Endorphin Pro 3 - Bigger, with tons of cush for the long distance
Asics Metaspeed Sky+ - A big update to the super shoe stride racer
adidas adizero Adios Pro 3 - The latest in Adidas racing is the most marathon focused yet
Puma Run XX Nitro: A women's specific trainer with broad stability elements
Saucony Endorphin Speed 3 -
The fan favorite comes back more stable than ever before

Find all Shoe Reviews at Doctors of Running here.

Thanks for reading!


Facebook: Doctors of Running
Youtube Channel: Doctors of Running
Instagram: @doctorsofrunning
LinkedIn: Doctors of Running
Strava: Doctors of Running
Podcast: Virtual Roundtable
Pinterest: Doctors of Running

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.

***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 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.

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

Asics Metaspeed Sky+

Bottom Ad [Post Page]

// ]]>