Customer Reviews: Altra Men's The Torin Running Shoe
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on July 1, 2013
I've been running in no-drop shoes for a number of years now, and I have steadily "progressed" from running in FiveFingers to now the Torins. Even after months of running in each less-cushioned shoe model (FiveFingers, Merrell Bare Access, Skechers GoBionic) I guess my feet never really got used to the more minimal cushioning. The best I could do was 10 miles without feeling bottom-of-foot pain. My very first run in the Torins was 15 miles, and I have been virtually pain-free ever since. I realize these shoes are heavier than most other no-drop models, but they have allowed me to do higher-mileage training without the pain and foot injuries.

As a side note...I'm 6'1", about 175 lbs, and size 12 shoes. I average between 30 and 50 miles running a week in preparing for marathons once to twice a year. I realize that different people with body types and different mechanics all have different needs. The Torins have been the best no-drop running shoe for me.
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on June 19, 2013
It should be noted that I own five different pairs of Altra running shoes. I've been a fan of the brand since their launch, and it was the Altra brand that first introduced me to the zero-drop platform. That being said, here's my thoughts on the Altra Torrin.

Altra Footwear has designed a line-up of running shoes that mimic the natural shape and heel-to-toe ratio of the foot thereby allowing the body to run more naturally, more efficiently. By building a shoe that maps the design of your foot the Altra Torrin allows your feet and toes to lay in a natural and relaxed position. Due to the gender-specific design the foot maintains its proper anatomical position allowing for maximum shock absorption and a more powerful toe off.

The Torrin is no exception to the Altra design rules. It provides all the benefits of Altra's natural fit and feel with the added bonus of an increased stack height (28mm) for those who want a little more cushion in their running life. The Two-Layer EVA/AltraBound(tm) offers more cushioning but don't expect a Hoka One One-esque run which has slightly more give than the Torrin.

The shoe comes with two insoles, a 5mm Contour insole for light underfoot cushioning and a 3mm Strengthen insole which allows your feet to build strength and support. I LOVED the 5mm Contour insole, and found it to be an incredibly comfortable insole. However, in the case of the Torrin, I had to use the 3mm insole because of a higher volume foot.

My only other critique centers on the thin rubber toe rand (seemingly added for aesthetic value) which took me an extended period of time to break in. In speaking with a number of Altra runners, I'm a bit of a stand-alone on this particular issue, but it was a significant factor for me in breaking in the Torrin and took about 60+ miles before that feature seemed to break in.

I would note, that despite my critiques, I know runners who have taken the Torrin straight from the box to 20+ mile runs and never experienced a single fit issue.

If this is your first shoe built on a zero-drop platform, expect a significant adjustment period for your body. Remember, most running shoes are built on a 2-to-1 heel-to-toe ratio (twice as thick in the heel as the forefoot). Zero Drop footwear by ALTRA however is built on a 1-to-1 ratio meaning that the heel and forefoot are the same heights off the ground (think about standing barefoot on the ground). If you are a newbie, make sure you follow the tips and advice from Altra Footwear on natural running and you'll be good to go!
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on March 5, 2014
Awesome cushioning in this shoe. It does not have cushioning like a Hoka shoe, though its pretty comfortable. Love that they come with extra shoe soles for a lighter feel. Recommend you order a size bigger with Altra's. I wear 10.5 and must wear 11.5 in Altra's so that my feet ride comfortable.
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on March 5, 2014
This is a great shoe! I've been a forefoot/minimalist runner for four or five years, but I've always had some minor aches and pains in my soles after runs longer than 10 miles. I run on pavement 95% of the time, and while minimalist shoes have taught me proper form, they just don't provide enough protection for long runs on the road in my opinion.

I really do believe that the human body is designed to run, and I feel that traditional stability type shoes with a heel that is much higher than the forefoot encourage bad form and do not allow the muscles of the foot and leg to work the way God/Nature designed them. With that in mind, I also don't think that we were designed to run on pavement, which has really only been common for around a hundred years or so. I live in a city that has many miles of wonderfully paved mutii-use paths, but only a few miles of muddy, rutty, sloppy trails. So pavement makes up almost all of my miles.

This shoe allows one to run with a natural forefoot motion, but mimics the cushion of the natural surfaces such as dirt and grass on which we have been running for millions of years. Turns the hard unforgiving road into a nice soft grassy meadow. Best shoe I've ever used for long runs..... by far.
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on January 22, 2014
I've been a runner for over 35 years and have mostly run in conventional running shoes with a "drop" - the footbed of the heel is higher than the forefoot. A few years ago I experimented with "minimalist" shoes which are very lightweight and flexible but even these had a drop from heel to forefoot. My son had tried a pair of Altra Provisions and liked them so I bought a pair of the same model. The Provision is probably a true minimalist shoe with a zero drop - the heel and forefoot are at the same level. But in my advanced age, the reduced cushioning of this shoe didn't work for me - my nemesis, IT band syndrome, raised its ugly head so I returned them. Then my son told me about the Torins and I bought a pair of these. These were much more suitable with more cushioning than the Provisions. The zero drop feature means I tend to strike less on my heel and make more of a mid-foot strike which is the correct way to run. Speaking of correct ways to run, the Tornins come with an instruction manual. In it are some very good tips on the proper way to run and a link to their YouTube channel that demonstrate them. If anyone is familiar with the Chi Running technique taught by Danny Dreyer, you will be familiar with Altra's training techniques. Even if you don't buy Altra shoes, I think their method is worth studying. A mid-foot strike with some flex in the knee of the forward leg along with a high cadence (they recommend 90 steps per leg per minute) is key to improved running efficiency and reduced injuries. This is my second pair of Torins - I've been very happy with them and suggest anyone who's been fighting running injuries like my IT band problems to give them a try. Also, buy them at least a half size up from your street shoe. I wear size 12 street shoes and bought size 13 Torins and they fit perfectly.
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on August 10, 2014
Without a doubt this is the best running shoe I've ever had. Since 2002ish I've been running with Mizuno. Typically I would go with the latest generation of the Wave Rider. On average I run around 15-20 miles a week. I prefer half-marathons but have run fulls. I bought the Altra Torin after hearing one of my friends rave about them. At the time they were also something like $55 so it was a great deal.

I logged about 500 miles before I wore through the heel. While the shoes felt a little unusual at first after the first few weeks I began to love them. I did run 13.1 in them and they were great, I used them for all of my training as well and never had any issues. There is plenty of support and ample cushion. Start off running shorter distances to adapt to the Zero Drop then titrate your way up.
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on November 1, 2014
Not sure I understand some of the 1s and 2s and the reasoning behind them. I am on my 3rd pair of torins and have transitioned from heel to midfoot running. The only issue is indeed the rubber reinforcement over the big toe. This is definitely worse on the Instinct, but not a problem for me as long as I keep my big toenail trimmed...always. The cushioning and overall performance of the shoe is so exceptional I don't mind this but would hope this is addressed in the 1.5.
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on August 28, 2014
The best running shoes I've ever put my feet in. Highly comfortable, very light weight. It's feels like socks on my feet. But these are "running" shoes. Not to go out in. Are not dressy. These were exactly as advertised. DO NOT BUY NIKE FREE RUN NOR ADIDAS ZIGS. They cost double the amount and are inferior running shoes. These are the real deal. I'm not a paid advertiser. Just a regular customer. There is one downside. The shoes are slightly off in sizing. Therefore, it's a must to get a half size bigger.
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on March 6, 2014
My favorite Altra shoe over the last few years has been the Instinct 1.0 model. This shoe was perfect for me in every way with lots of room in the toebox, both vertical and lateral and I purchased lots of pairs. I then tried the Instinct 1.5 model and found them to be a little restrictive in the toebox.... Bummer! Many other users disagreed with me but my feet have the final say. So I wasn't crazy about the 1.5 model. Now that they are starting to wear I just recently purchased two pairs of the Torin first generation model..... AND I LOVE EM! Nice and roomy and the quality seems to be above average. Size wise they seem to run the same as the Instinct 1.0 models.... Maybe a tad longer by just a hair. I know I am behind the curve on the Torins because the newer model Torin 1.5 is now out with some great looking colors. So if you are a fan of the original Instincts give the original Torins a try.......... They seem to have a little more padding than the Instincts do but just enough to make your feet happy.
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on November 11, 2014
I have been a runner since 13 years of age am now late 40's. Since transitioning to these shoes last year I have noticed a BIG difference in my running.
The hip pain I was experiencing has gone. The fizzuring in my heels and heel pain that seemed to plague me had resolved. My neuroma which would flare up has ceased.
In addition the shoes have forced me to run more correctly and work well with the "Romanoff Technique" of running. I run exclusively using these shoes and will not go back to traditional running shoes.
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