Article by Sam Winebaum
Salomon Glide Max ($150)
The Glide Max is a a max cushioned road training shoe. It is the first road running shoe we have tested from Salomon’s completely revamped 2022 road and trail lines (RTR Preview Article).
As with all the new Salomon, and last year’s trail UltraGlide and Pulsar, it features a soft and energetic EVA/Olefin copolymer block Energy Surge foam midsole and Salomon’s R-Camber geometry. Salomon confirms the Energy Surge foam is of the same density as in the UltraGlide, Pulsar, and road racing Phantasm CF (RTR Review) so quite soft.
The midsole has no plate, rods, fingers, or Energy Blade as Salomon calls them, as most of their other 2022 road and trail shoes will have. Salomon’s approach to "plates" features different blade geometries and materials for every shoe with none carbon or carbon infused. In fact, their pinnacle long road racer, the Phantasm CF, features a differentially flexing fiberglass plate that I find more forgiving and natural running in feel than most rigid carbon plated shoes yet with plenty of impulse and a very smooth rocker from the R-Camber geometry that flows from heel to toe.
We are stacked big at 37.4mm at the heel and 27.4 mm at the forefoot putting the Max in a class of shoes such as the Fresh Foam More v3, Nike Invincible Run, Craft CTM Ultra, adidas Prime X, Saucony Endorphin Shift and Brooks Glycerin 20 all compared in brief at the end of the article.
The giant stack comes at a very reasonable price of $150 and competitive weight of 9.7 oz / 275g (US9 sample).
The upper is a very soft mesh with a very broad fit and high volume, not something usually associated with Salomon road or trail shoes.
Of course we also have a full coverage outsole of Contragrip rubber for durability and also I think to provide some stability.
Highly energetic softer ride
Max cushioned for sure with a 37.5mm heel / 27.5mm forefoot stack
Smooth flowing: stable heel, decoupling groove, rocker, front flex, and appropriate 10mm drop for the softer foam & heel strikers
Dynamic forefoot rebound at faster paces, stable heel bounce at slower paces
By far the roomiest, most comfortable and well enough held upper in a Salomon to date
Altra / Topo levels of toe box room.
Solid weight to cushion ratio (stack height, full outsole, upper)
Great walking shoe
Fairly and competitively priced
Low volume feet and strong pronators may find the midfoot a bit too roomy
More medial support or less upper volume might improve the slower paces ride
A bit denser and firmer Energy Surge foam might improve stability and response