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Newton Running Motion+: Filling a Void
By Content Manager Bach Pham and Chief Editor/Founder Matthew Klein

Newton Running shoes have always been unique. From their forefoot lug system and rare forefoot posting in their stability shoe, the Motion series has consistently been different from others on the market. The Motion+ is an upgraded, new entry in the lineup this year, adding a performance aspect to their typical training model. Newton has added a second unique feature of their shoe line as of 2021 by making a huge leap forward into sustainability. Each pair of Newtons are now made with recyclable materials, including a recycled upper and quickly biodegradable soles thanks to an additive called EcoPure which activates through chemicals in landfills to help facilitate the shoe breaking down 75% faster than a traditional shoe that typical takes decades to decompose. With new entries like the Motion+ and Gravity+, Newton is showing that you don't have to sacrifice performance to create a highly sustainably minded shoe for the future.

Price: $190 at Newton Running
Weight: 8.8 oz, 250 g (men's size 9), 7.4 oz, 210 g  (women's size 8)
Stack Height: Low (Not Provided)
Drop: 3mm
Classification: Mild Stability Performance Trainer


Matt: The Newton Motion+ is mild stability performance trainer with a lower stack height and a unique forefoot lug system. A rare posted medial forefoot provides support on the front inner side of the shoe, perfect for those with stability issues along the front half of the arch. A new Hytrel Foam Strobel provides a softer and more responsive ride regardless of where you land. As with all Newton shoes, the forefoot lugs continue to provide a snappy forefoot transition. Combined with an extremely soft upper, the newest Motion+ continues to push performance while also improving comfort. The shoe provides uptempo pacing abilities and lower stack height while being a bit more forgiving both on the feet and the environment. 

Bach: There aren't many fast medial posted shoes in the market today, especially lower stacked, plated ones. The Newton Motion+ delivers on all of that in a really fun package. This mild stability performance trainer will absolutely be a racing option for some looking for these elements. The shoe follows the brand's sustainably focused future, which makes the Motion+ even more impressive in bringing a very performance driven, competitive design while being one of the most sustainable shoes in the market at the same time.
SIMILAR SHOES: Saucony Fastswitch, Asics DS Trainer 26


Matt: The Newton Motion+ fits me true to size length-wise in my normal US men's size 10. The length almost feels short, but the flexible mesh upper adapts and stretches to the foot. The width is normal to slightly wider. The heel and midfoot fit normally while the forefoot fits slightly wider. The toe box does taper, making for what initially feels like a shorter fit. On the run, this ends up being perfect and I completely forget about the upper being there. The normal fit in the midfoot did require me to tighten down the laces a little there, but the fit is secure enough that I have not had to lace lock the shoe. The tongue is not gusseted, but is secured by both a lace loop on the top and two small mesh pieces in the rearfoot. This secures the tongue well and I did not have any slippage issues.  There is a mildly flexible and rounded heel counter in the rearfoot that has some padding throughout the entire inner side of the upper. This did not bother me at all, although those sensitive to heel counters should approach with mild caution. The heel collar is only mildly padded and sits comfortably against my foot.

The entire upper is soft and comfortable against bare skin. I have worn this shoe sockless extensively but caution that those choosing to do this need to really lock down the upper. There is little structure outside the heel counter, which can cause some sliding on turns. The heel stays secure, but the midfoot does need to be locked down. I experienced one small underfoot blister running sockless in this shoe, so those who are experienced with sockless running and lock down the midfoot will be fine. Those not used to it may want to use socks or ease their feet into sockless running in this shoe. 

Bach: The Motion+ fit very true to size for me. Like the Fate 8, there is a good amount of space throughout the shoe that immediately locks down and conforms to your foot once laced. I did not lace lock the shoe, and like the Fate 8 would recommend not doing it as the direct lacing holds the foot down exactly where it needs to be, whereas lace locking loses some of the magic of what Newton has done with this upper. The upper in general is very comfortable and dialed-in. The heel collar is fairly minimal, providing just enough cushion to get you through your miles.

I felt like I had a good amount of space around the excellent toebox. The shoe runs a tiny bit short and tapered laterally, but the width around my forefoot helped alleviate that. Finally, the breathability of the shoe was excellent during my summer runs. This is a very good upper, something that Newton time and time again seems to always delivers on.


Matt: The Newton Motion+ is a performance stability trainer. The ride is on the firmer side overall thanks to the NRG Foam midsole (EVA) but is softer than previous versions thanks to a full-length Hytrel Foam Strobel. The strobel board is the area that sits under the insole, where this new foam is placed. The forefoot lugs are noticeable when you transition over them but compress well after they break in. The heel is slightly firmer while the forefoot is slightly softer thanks to the presence of the lugs. The forefoot also features an XPS+ plate which creates rigidity over the lugs while allowing for flexibility right after. There is a deep flex groove at the forefoot that is fairly flexible after you get over the lugs, providing a smooth transition after you pop off the lugs.

Like previous versions of the regular Motion, the 3mm drop is noticeable. This is a low-drop shoe that will require adequate calf flexibility and strength. The lower drop, lower stack height and softer Hytrel foam make this a great daily trainer for those who want good ground feel. The bouncy foam combined with the lugs also make this a great uptempo/faster shoe. Despite the 8.8 oz (men's size 9), the Motion + almost feels like a racing flat and responds as such when you push the pace. This has made this shoe excellent for track work, fartleks, and intervals.

Like prior Newton shoes, the durability has been moderate for me. I am already seeing some wear in my normal spot at the posterior lateral heel and some mild wear on the lugs after 30 miles. This is fairly average for me, so I would expect normal mileage (~300 miles) out of this shoe. 

Bach: The Newton Motion+ is honestly a lot of fun for a stability model. As a lower platform, plated (XPS plate, made from castor beans) trainer, it's the combination of low-to-the-ground feel and propulsiveness that makes the shoe a uniquely fun ride in 2022. There is a lot of technology deceptively packed into this model to make it is fun and responsive as it is.

The medial post is integrated well and feels more like one with the shoe. Even with the posting, I found the Motion+ to be both relaxed enough to handle easy miles and responsive enough to pick up the pace. I also enjoyed this for longer efforts. Though lower stacked, it feels very protective and nimble. A new strobel board under the insole provides some nice cushioning and rebound underfoot. The Action/Reaction technology feels well done here, really turning you over fast and keep you moving. On track, the Motion+ is even more fun for steady uptempo paces. The lugs act like a pseudo track spike, which makes digging into the soft track. I wouldn't say I could rip my fastest paces in the shoe though; the stability becomes a bit more noticeable and makes me want to run more controlled paces. Half marathon to marathon paces feel best for me in the Motion+.

All that being said, the combination of 3mm drop and Newton's Action/Reaction system means your calves are working overtime. I definitely felt it a couple of times during my testing. By the end of my miles though, my legs were getting more and more used to it and feeling steadily more capable. If you've never used Newton, incorporating these slowly into your rotation is key.

The durability has been just average for me so far. The lugs in the forefoot have experienced some minor wear already. Being lower profile, I expect an average lifespan of 200-300 with the Motion+. The shoe, however, has great traction and is very confident on wet surfaces and even light trails.

One caveat for me and my personal needs: I had a bit of discomfort with my flat feet in the shoe, similar to the sensation felt in the Fate 8. This really put a bit of a hold on longer efforts for me in the Motion+. The shoe feels really excellent on the run until something triggers the discomfort and causes me to take some breaks. This will likely not be an issue for folks with normal to high arches. If you have a low arch and are typically sensitive to things underfoot, this is something to be weary of.


Matt: The Newton Motion+ is a mild to moderate stability shoe due to a forefoot/midfoot medial post. The post is mild, but noticeable during the second half of my transition. The XPS+ Plate also adds rigidity around the lugs, further stabilizing the forefoot along with the wider shape. The midfoot is narrower than I expected for a stability shoe. However, the post seems to support me for moderate mileage. Once I truly fatigue, it is not as helpful. Those needing extra heel and midfoot support may want to use this shoe for shorter to moderate miles. While the new internal foam provides a softer ride the previous, the underfoot feel is still on the firmer end. This provides a high level of proprioception regardless of where you land, making for softer and more stable landings in combination with the lower stack height. Overall, the Newton Motion + is mostly a forefoot stability performance trainer that has well-integrated mild to moderate support up front for those who need it.

Bach: While the Motion+ features a medial post, the real stability lays in the forefoot. The forefoot has a good deal of width while the lugs provide a ton of proprioception and grip to the ground. The unique medial post adds even more forefoot support by extending all the way into the lugs.

The medial post certainly adds some rigidity into the midfoot, but the rear is relatively narrow. I would still say it's a pretty stable trainer throughout for the purpose of workouts. The upper also does an excellent job of locking the foot down and keep you one with the shoe. The narrower midfoot does feel present though, making the stability really dependent on your use of the forefoot while just giving some mild support in the rear.


Newton no longer promotes this, but their prior purpose description of their lugs was to facilitate a more forward foot strike.
Whether this actually occurs is certainly debatable, as even when switching to minimal shoe conditions many people continue to heel strike (Larson, 2014). What the lugs certainly do provide is proprioceptive (body awareness) input. Specifically, along with the lower drop, they may facilitate certain runners to engage their calf muscles more to transition over them. This makes Newton shoes potential calf strengthening tools both due to the increased range of motion used at the ankle from the lower drop and a potential cue to facilitate plantarflexion. I have no evidence outside of testimonial evidence from myself whether this works for others, but can attest to how sore my calves are after running in their shoes (especially when I am not used to them). Like any tool, runners new to them will need to take time to transition into them to allow for range of motion, tissue adaptability and muscle strength improvements to occur. This reminds me of the research that suggests simply walking barefoot or in minimal shoes improves intrinsic muscle strength as well as doing specific strengthening exercises for them (Ridge et al., 2021). Whether this may occur with this shoe type is unknown. I would love to work on a study investigating this with Newton.

- Chief Editor Matt Klein


Larson, P. (2014). Comparison of foot strike patterns of barefoot and minimally shod runners in a recreational road race. Journal of Sport and Health Science3(2), 137-142.

Ridge, S. T., Olsen, M. T., Bruening, D. A., Jurgensmeier, K., Griffin, D., Davis, I. S., & Johnson, A. W. (2019). Walking in Minimalist Shoes Is Effective for Strengthening Foot Muscles. 
Medicine and science in sports and exercise51(1), 104–113. 


Matt: The Newton Motion+ is a large step forward for the company's daily stability shoe. The softer ride will make it more accessible to a slightly larger group of runners. The upper is comfortable enough that it works on longer efforts and all-day wear. My suggestions for this center around the midfoot and the Hytrel Foam Strobel. I recognize that keeping the midfoot narrow is a way to save weight. However, making a stable shoe with a narrow midfoot is a conundrum. Newton has done a great job filling in the midfoot in models like the Kismet. I would highly suggest they do the same in future versions of the Motion + to add better guidance and not just a stiffer medial foam. The midfoot aspect of the upper would also benefit from some additional reinforcement or gusseting of the tongue. Either of these would improve lockdown in this area which may improve security with turning.

My last recommendation is to add far more Hytrel Foam. The use of this material in place of the strobel board is great but left me wanting more of this material. I would highly suggest having this be the entire core of the shoe, with the NRG foam surrounding/encasing/protecting it. I am excited this material is being integrated across the line and hope Newton Running has success with it so they can expand its use.

I think as stability shoe, the Motion+ is an extremely fun, compelling option in a field with few good ones. I had a hard time with my arch reacting poorly to both this and the Fate 8 model though, something which I had no experienced with past Newton shoes. Like Matt, I think a widened midfoot through heel would be helpful in both cleaning stability and reducing some of this discomfort I've found. I think the medial posting could also be further softened to control weight and keep the ride nimble as a widened base would give some inherent stability.


Matt: The Newton Motion+ is a mild to moderate forefoot stability performance trainer for those who want a comfortable upper with a lugged, uptempo midsole. The new Hytrel Foam Strobel provides a slightly softer feel than traditional Newton shoes while maintaining the solid ground feel. The ride is snappy and works well for those who want a lower stack shoe for daily trainer or those who want an uptempo/faster low drop shoe for workouts. A soft upper sits up top that works well for sockless running for those with normal to slightly wider feet. However, some additional lockdown in the midfoot may be needed from the laces due to a flexible and generally unstructured mesh. The Newton Motion + continues to progress forward with the introduction of more renewable and biodegradable components while still maintaining its status as a performance stability trainer. 

Bach: The Motion+ helps fill a much needed void in the stability field today, providing a low stack, medial posted performance trainer that can do a variety of workouts and training for runners. It has a fantastic fit and really enjoyable ride if you like a shoe with good ground feel. This is not a beginner-friendly shoes due to calf demands and technology. I urge folks to very slow transition into it if you are not used to both Newton's unique lug system and lower drop, which is unique for stability shoes in general.

We haven't spoken all too much about the sustainability aspects of the Motion+ in this review, but the fact that it is such an afterthought due to the performance of the shoe is what makes it an exciting model with lots of room for growth. 


Fit: A- (Extremely comfortable upper with slightly wider fit. Secure heel, but lacks some security in the midfoot)
Performance: B+/
A- (Snappy and responsive ride with excellent ground feel. More protective than prior versions, but still will work best for those wanting a lower ride. Handles workouts, uptempo work and some daily training well)
Stability: B+/A- [Mild/Moderate Stability] (Well-integrated posting in medial forefoot/midfoot. Midfoot does narrow a bit more than necessary, but forefoot is highly stable. )
DPT/Footwear Science: B+/A- (Excellent integration of medial posting without being intrusive. However, midfoot could be wider for better inherent guidance. Naturally stable outside of that thanks to plate design and posting)
Personal: B+ (Excellent comfortable stability shoe that isn't intrusive. However, the lower drop is too much for me for longer mileage at this time.)
Overall: B+/A- 

Fit: A (A really secure fit (don't lace lock) that is comfortable throughout and has some nice width in the forefoot)
Performance: B+
(A surprisingly responsive ride for anyone who loves ground feel. It features a lot of versatility in a mild stability package)
Stability: B+ (Unique in it's integration of the medial post all the way into the forefoot. The narrowed midfoot makes it more of a mild stability shoe that's particularly stable for workouts)
DPT/Footwear Science: A (Sustainable design is an afterthought in this well-built performance trainer for stability users and those who want mild support as the medial post is well-integrated)
Personal: B (The arch issues I had in the model were the only thing holding me back from truly enjoying the shoe. I feel most will be not be affected by this, but those with flat feet will want to be cautious with their miles. It is a very fun, well done shoe otherwise)
Overall: B+


Price: $190 at Newton Running

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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 Newton Running 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 25-50 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.

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