Wednesday, March 03, 2021

UA Flow Velociti Wind Review

Article by Sam Winebaum

UA Flow Velociti Wind ($160)

The UA Flow Velociti Wind launches March 3. It weighs 229g / 8.08 oz in my US9 sample and has a 26/18 stack,  8mm drop.

The Velociti Wind represents a completely new run platform for Under Armour. It is the fruit of 3 years of R&D and 11,000 miles of testing by their elites and also by regular runners. Its defining feature is a single slab and material midsole and outsole called UA Flow. It includes a built in Bluetooth sensor for recording metrics that connects to UA’s MapMyRun and can even record and save without the phone connected on the run.

The geometry of the midsole and its contact to the ground was mapped through extensive data analysis of runners’ strike patterns and loading. Note the circular shapes at the metatarsals and the rounded shape of the heel which is somewhat reminiscent of the HOVR Sonic (RTR Review) which was a 2 ounce heavier far firmer shoe with a full outsole. 

UA told us the geometry is designed to have no lever arms and no sharp angles for a smooth “flow” and as such there is no distinct flex point, 

This is exactly what I have felt on my first run. After a few hundred yards the first word that came to mind was a well cushioned, quiet, moccasin like but a moc with plenty of softer, cushion, rebound and stability.  

The midsole foam is a Dow Olefin based compound with a low compression set and with additives for durability. My first run was in temperatures of 25 F / -4C and the ride feel (and as there is no rubber often part of the cause of “brick” like cold temp rides) stayed sott, flexible, and totally silent on the road demonstrating the claimed temperature stable nature of the material, 

With a stack height of 26/18 one might think there is not enough cushion for daily training but my early sense is that there is plenty. 

Removal of the usual 3mm or so of outsole rubber and the UA Flow midsole foam’s characteristics deliver a cushion feel well above the stack height, with smooth distinct rebound and a nimble feel, but also not a highly responsive one with lots of pop from rubber or crazy bouncy as say the New Balance FuelCell Rebel v2 or Nike ZoomX Invincible deliver. 

The midsole feel is closer to the Hoka Mach 4 with its rubberized foam midsole as outsole or a FreshFoam Beacon or maybe, as memories are distant,  the Clifton 1.  Different and pleasing the Velociti Wind has a low to the ground, on the softer side, very well cushioned with nicely measured rebound and  stable ride and I will say it again.. a distinct smooth and very quiet “flow”.   

It is topped with a very airy UA Warp upper with an inner essentially transparent fishnet like mesh with the gray strips of reinforcement stitched in if you will by an outer matrix of thread like mesh. 

Stouter threads are also stitched in with the  rear blue ones helping provide heel lockdown while the pink ones provide foot lock down. The upper design is focused in like fashion to the midsole to provide a smooth continuous lockdown of foot to platform in motion. 

The tongue  is thin but well padded and has a stretch gusset

The fit is decently generous and should accommodate a wide variety of foot shapes as the Warp upper’s “seat belts” and  open mesh is very foot conforming yet supportive.  

This said I think they may run a half size short in length for higher volume forefoot folks or those with a long second toe due to the fairly firm and low very front of the toe bumper. I was sent a half size up from my normal and my wider left foot fit seemed shorter but almost correct with my narrower right feeling a bit long and SmartWool and then Stance socks. 


The Velociti Wind has a very unusual and pleasing ride. With a 26/18 stack one might imagine a firmer ride but not so. The combination of the softer and rebounding Flow midsole foam, no rubber outsole, and no sharp levers or edges geometry has it very well cushioned and more than adequately so and decently above  above its stack. Moccasin like and smooth is how I will describe the ride.

My first run was a recovery run at 9:30 miles in high winds and cold, 20F. The ride remained soft even in the cold and notably silent. I ambled along very comfortably with the transitions smooth and easy  at those slow paces and the cushioning and stability just fine. I particularly noted the stability of the landings on the circular rear geometry and a sensation of easily moving forward to toe off. The 8mm drop and rest of the geometry was notable in the mix as usually at slow paces as I am a heel striker  in low drop shoes with softer foam such as the Beacon the heel feels low and hard to get past but not so here.

My second 5 mile run in notably warmer conditions was equally as smooth and a somewhat faster average pace of 9:20 per mile with the last mile or so at 8:20. Was it apparent is the friendly smooth flowing softness. The rebound from the Flow midsole is clearly there and there was never a sense of bottoming out or instability. There is an unusual amount of road feel and sensation of the foot working in synch with the shoe while also without any harsh or jarring sensations.

This said it is an unusually soft ride.. Going to say it one more time a flow with each stride than any snappy response. For our multi tester review I and other testers will be taking them up to faster paces and I will update here as soon as I get a faster run in. Been sore the last week for some reason.

On my walks back from the end of each run I noted how comfortable and smooth they were for walking. So clearly it is a great travel shoe: run, walk, casual if the launch colors works for you. A bit more toned down my preference for those non run uses.

Midsole as Outsole

It is of course to early to determine the durability of the Velociti Wind with no outsole rubber in the mix but wear should be even adapting to each runner’s wear patterns. The pads at the forefoot and heel were smooth out of the box. The shoe went through 11K miles of wear testing and UA assured us durability was good..

I particularly noted the grip of the outsole as I ran across thin layers of sand over pavement, gravel and bigger stuff on pavement and a section of hard packed road base. The softer than rubber foam and the patterning clearly has tenacious grip. Everywhere the grip was top notch and I would say the best of any shoe this winter on these surfaces . No stones were noticed getting lodged and if they did the flexibility of contact surface should easily eject them The “outsole” would be a great choice for hard pack gravel dirt roads but one would have to see how those surfaces affected durability.


At $160 the Velociti Wind is called a “pinnacle” shoe by UA. The pricing does give pause.  It clearly incorporates a state of the art modern midsole foam, an effective geometry to go with it, great grip, and an excellent upper. 

The Flow Velociti Wind is well named.  The smooth “Flow” is clearly there. The "Velociti" fast part is to be seen. I personally missed a bit of rubber outsole pop and response. At 8 oz with an agile platform, and I think appropriately for the softer rubber outsole less foam here, it has a 8mm drop, so is less likely to bottom out at heel at slow paces, and didn't for me. 

The “Wind” fast part remains to be “verified” but UA says it came from testers who said they felt the wind at their back when running them. I did too but not sure yet how much of that was from some 30mph tailwinds!

This unusual and distinct ride may not be for everyone but those seeking a very light weight and cushioned, soft and free flowing ride will be well served to consider them  

Watch the Flow Velocity Wind Initial Video Review (9:00)

Quick Comparisons

Salomon Sonic 3 Accelerate (RTR Review
Weighing just 0.3 oz more the Accelerate shares a Dow midsole foam with the Velociti Wind but adds an elastomer rear vibration reduction unit and has a rubber outsole. While somewhat difficult to separate the feel of midsole and outsole my sense is the Velociti foam is somewhat bouncier even with the outsole of the Accelerate taken out of the mix. The Accelerate is a more versatile shoe for me so far due to its snappier ride and superior vibration reduction at the heel but it is duller in overall feel. The Velociti upper is considerably easier on the foot and almost as equally secure.

New Balance FuelCell Rebel v2 (RTR Review)

The Rebel is 0.7 oz lighter and has a more energetic and softer yet foam and a super exciting ride. It is less stable and lower drop 6mm vs 8mm and  that is noticed in terms of a lower heel at slower pace. For many seeking a soft light energetic training ride it may not quite as solid or versatile a light daily trainer as the Velociti but my sense so far is Rebel v2 is a superior faster shorter run shoe.

Hoka Mach 4  (RTR Review)

The Mach 4 has a higher stack at 29/24 vs 26/18 here. Its midsole combines a softer EVA top midsole layer with a thick, firmer rubberized foam midsole as outsole lower layer. They weigh exactly the same and both are on the soft side These are similar riding shoes for me with the Mach 4 a bit more substantial and I expect more versatile.

Saucony Freedom 3 and 4 (RTR Review)

The Freedom 1,2,3 were Saucony’s entries into the more natural and wild ride. The Velociti Wind also focuses it seems on the fun and smooth and is more stable (in large part due to its superior foot well held upper) and is considerably softer, The Freedom 4 changes the formula to a more stable flavor with extensive rubber and a relatively dense midsole and as such is also firmer than the Velociti. 

Puma Liberate Nitro (RTR Initial Review)

1.5 oz lighter at a mere 6.5 oz with just about the same stack height (actually 2mm more at heel for the Nitro and is priced at $110 the Liberate has equivalent cushion with a more dynamic and responsive feel from the combination of its nitrogen infused midsole and full rubber outsole. As with Velociti, it can daily train It’s upper is shakier for sure. In the class of light light daily trainer so far it tops Velociti for me and a a more "flat" like shoe it can also race as well. 

Shop for UA Flow Velociti Wind at Under Armour HERE

Tested samples were provided at no charge for review purposes. No other compensation was received by RTR or the authors for this review from Under Armour. The opinions herein are entirely the authors'.
Comments and Questions Welcome Below!
Please let us know mileage, paces, race distances, and current preferred shoes

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Buck said...

Hi Sam, i know you were a fan of the Sonic 3 Accelerate, how do the Velociti Wind compare to those.
BTW, i see the Sonic 4 series is now available, with both the Balance and Accelerate seeming to be about an oz lighter!!

Sam Winebaum said...

Hi Buck,
A great comparison as both share a Dow foam midsole and weigh the same. I have added to comparisons but also here:
Weighing just 0.3 oz more the Accelerate shares a Dow midsole foam with the Velociti Wind but adds an elastomer rear vibration reduction unit and has a rubber outsole. While somewhat difficult to separate the feel of midsole and outsole my sense is the Velociti foam is somewhat bouncier even with the outsole of the Accelerate taken out of the mix. The Accelerate is a more versatile shoe for me so far due to its snappier ride and superior vibration reduction at the heel but it is duller in overall feel. The Velociti upper is considerably easier on the foot and almost as equally secure.

Jamie said...

What is this colorway called? I love it!

Sam Winebaum said...

Sorry not sure. It is neat! Sample came from under product manager’s desk! Will try to find out
Sam, Editor