Evaluation Avia made a welcome return to the UK running market this spring with two decent shoes – the ECS-Teem and ECS-Scape. Both shoes showcased their take on the ‘mechanical’ midsole – the Ecto-Cantilever System where polyurethane pods between the outsole and footbed provide support and cushioning. For its third new release, Avia has returned to a traditional midsole, and revised an old name.
The first Avia 2050 appeared more than 1O years ago, and offered good stability at a decent price. The new model offers much the same, and could develop a similar cult following. While free of bells and whistles, the 2050 does boast a simple and effective technology that Avia pioneered and many companies adopted – a cantilever design in the rearfoot. Essentially, the outsole is hollowed out to allow the heel to drop, which does an effective job of both cushioning and stabilising the rearfoot as your heel strikes the ground.
A three-quarter length medial post allied to a midfoot shank provides a high level of stability. Avia has also incorporated extra cushioning pads in both the rear- and forefoot, which were lacking from the shoe in its previous incarnation. This cushioning, along with the secure feeling provided by the cantilever design and a smooth heel strike, makes for a comfortable, stable and easy-to-wear shoe.
In short Runners are spoilt for choice in the stability shoe market, and even more so with the reborn 2050. It compares favourably with many of the top shoes in this sector, and is well worth a test run.
Try it on if you liked Avia 2079 (£70); Asics Gel GT-2080 (£75); Nike Air Structure Triax (£70)