Adidas Swoop £59.99

Posted: 12 June 2000

One of Adidas’s very best off-road shoes, the three-year-old Equipment Davos (see below), gets a new name and a slightly more reinforced upper. At a swift 307g, it’s built a good reputation as a more comfortable – and only fractionally less grippy – alternative to classic bare-bones fell shoes such as Walshes and Felldancers. The new version has softer lugs for better traction on wet rock, but the lace loops don’t extend as far down the shoe as before, which makes the forefoot fit slightly less glove-like.

Weight 305g
Sizes 4-12, 13
Pros Flexible; durable; responsive ride
Cons None
Evaluation Adidas's most recent fell-running shoe shows that the company has no intention of imitating the mistakes made by its Beaverton-based rivals. Nike made a bombproof fell shoe last year, but one that was so stiff and heavy that it won few admirers. It seems that Adidas listened to more fell runners when the Davos was at the design stage. Admittedly, the shoe still tips the scales at a little more than the weight of a Walsh or a Felldancer, but its highly flexible construction makes it ideal for hard climbs, fast descents and picking narrow paths between rocks. It's built on a modified Feet You Wear last for stability and responsiveness, and the firm midsole features Adiprene cushioning in the forefoot.
As ever with an off-road shoe, it's grip that counts most, and Adidas has taken a gamble by adapting the successful Traxion technology from its football boots, instead of using traditional pyramid-shaped lugs. Purists may not be convinced, but all the signs are that the scoop-shaped grips (variously angled for forward and lateral traction) will work. The outsole rubber is designed to be more durable than that of traditional fell shoes, which is appropriate for a shoe which has such a tough upper. As durability increases, grip on wet rock diminishes, but Adidas is aware of this and reckons it's got the balance right.
So far, it seems that the Davos could face only one real hurdle on the fells. It looks too good.
Evolved from No precedent
In short The Davos could be the first viable alternative to traditional fell shoes.
Recommended for Fell runners who want a natural fit and added durability; cross-country runners who want an alternative to spikes

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Adidas Swoop

Discuss this article

I have recently bought a pair of the new shoes from the three stripe company adidas. Sadly i havent got round to using them on the fells yet as most of my recent running has been on the roads.
Has anyone else bought a pair of Adidas Swoop and has got round to using them on the fells?
Please let me know your comments on these new creations from Adidas.
Many Thanks.
Posted: 01/08/2002 at 21:47

I've had a pair for a few months and used them for training in the Scottish hills, and on the LAMM. I've found them very comfortable, (even on the day I forgot to put the footbeds back in after drying them!), and hard wearing. Lots of padding in the tongue, and no rubbing, even when worn soaking wet all day.

One doubt: the grip is excellent in the dry, but they seemed a little less grippy than my partner's Felldancers on the extremely wet LAMM descents.

All told, a very good shoe that looks a little different to the average fell shoe.
Posted: 02/08/2002 at 14:09

I had Nike Tupus for about 160k then the uppers split open on the instep, the retailer sorted it and I now have the Swoops, which in that part of the shoe look much tougher. I have worn them a few times and althogh not quite as comfortable on hard surfaces as the Tupus seem just as grippy. Less grip downhill would make sense perhaps because of the shape of the lugs?
Posted: 04/08/2002 at 11:49

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