Hokaoneone finally get it right. As Hokas probably number 1 customer by by spend even thought they have no idea who I am I believe they have finally delivered a winner. To date I have run in various pairs of Stinson road, Stinson ATR and Cliftons. I previously thought about how they were onto something for us people who need cushioning but that they were still learning with questionable design elements and materials. The new Stinson 3 ATR has been revised and got it right. Better materials, design, build, soles the works. I bought these to prep for a 35km run and they are all I am running in now.
Comparison pics of the Stinson ATR v the Stinson ATR3, the 3 being the newer shoe with bright orange highlights.
You can see the thicker tongue in the next pic, making this shoe a lot more comfortable and sure footed below. Improvement in comfort from this is excellent.
The older shoe is not easy to fit on, especially in the early morning in semi darkness when forcing your foot into a shoe is not really what you feel like. Given the height of the shoe around the ankle which comes up later it makes it harder to get your foot in. You can see the torn tongue damage from normal fitment. This is not an old shoe, so por materials or poor desing or incompetent runner trying to put on the shoe, you decide?. New 3 is much easier to put-on in the morning and seems stronger. They had also dispensed with the fixed lacing system for conventional laces which I believe was the right move as I had modified mine anyway. Once they are cut off you can never put them back. It took me awhile to make the decision but it is the right thing to do.
You can see the ankle depth is around 4cm on the new Stinson 3 ATR while the old has a depth of around 5cm+. This might not seem like a big deal but in my last post I said it was the oddest thing that these shoes were fine to run in but uncomfortable to walk in as they hit my ankle bone. Also found that running over 15km in them results in severe blisters on my right ankle bone and some chafing on the left. Such a significant adjustment in height from old to new must have been from feedback (definitely not mine), so the new are a really low cut by shoe sizes, lower than by Mizunos and Cliftons but really comfortable and a big YES in the new design. No more blisters.
The front of the shoe has been redesigned. Can't notice a difference from a performance perspective, but there it is for you to see. Some reviewers had said there was a change in the size of the foot box, I didnt notice any significant change.
From a weight perspective you can see the comparative weights of 351g on the new and 354g on the old. Per the Hokaoneone website specs these are listed at 340g and the old at 325g and the older have had some wear. So both came in heavier on the kitchen scale than the spec. Understand the kitchen scale is not a scientific instrument but this is a difference if around 3% and 8% respectively. Should be a consistent error or I have been cooking those muffins all these years wrong. Might explain my poor cooking. Anyway, neither is a light shoe but the new not far off the old in my book per the scales and from wearing the shoe. The heel to toe drop remains the same at 6mm so no change there.
The sole wear if from 280km odd of running, mainly I do admit on sealed surfaces. I would expect to get around 500km plus from a shoe and with the ankle blister issue they had to go. I have griped about the soles on the Stinson road and ATR before and my response from Hokaoneone on this was I should take the road shoe and scrape it on a rough surface to make it I guess rougher so it doesnt slip, and then the squeaking noise I guess you just live with. So poor design in sole materials in my view on a $240 shoe and I should try modify them myself. My response around my feelings on roughing up the shoe went unanswered.
So while I am a bit pissed that I have forked out lots of hard earned dollars on shoes that were not designed and built 100% in the first place, the new Stinson 3 ATR was worth waiting for and I would suggest worth the $20 differential at the online store. I managed to negotiate the local running store to $230 but then I am there #1 Hoka customer.
Just to clarify a couple of things. This is not a paid review as you might have figured out. I run around 40-50km a week and the odd half marathon and have heel injuries (bursitis) which is why I need cushioned running shoes. The Hokas have allowed me to continue running with minimal injury or imact, so I thank them and salute them for that.
Steve writes articles and resource pages for Health4you.com.au. He lives on the Northern beaches and is an avid tester of new fitness gadgets, shoes and accessories as well as being a keen runner, cyclist and swimmer. Note we said keen, not necessarily good. Steve also has an ongoing interest in weight management, given he is also a beer enthusiast.