Salomon Sonic 3 Balance

(1 customer review)
9
Overall scoreRead review

The Salomon Sonic 3 Balance is a versatile road running shoe with moderate cushioning well suited for mid to long distances.

9Overall score
A good sleek, all-purpose road running shoe with stable and comfortable cushioning
The Salomon Sonic 3 Balance was only recently launched in spring, 2020, but has consistently received high praise from runners since that time. Designed with an extra "bounce" from the Optivibe midsole — which equates to high energy return — as well as a JPAD component, it aims to reduce vibrations and, thus, muscle fatigue for quicker recovery time. This makes it an ideal all-round shoe especially suitable for long runs. The upper mesh design provides optimal breathability and lends itself to a sleek, attractive appearance that simultaneously molds to the foot. The Balance is also designed with the runner's comfort in mind, with a lightly-padded heel and Ortholite insole that keeps the foot secure while running longer distances. As a bonus, it is also designed for a wider variety of foot shapes and sizes than other Salomon shoes, which tend to run narrow in the toe box. Speaking of long-distance training, runners who have tried the Balance rave about its restorative comfort and padding. After intense training sessions, many users of the shoe remarked that that didn't suffer from muscle aches, thanks to the protection and cushioned offered by the shoe. Such reviews can sometimes seem a bit anecdotal but in the case of the Balance, we do see a clear pattern that suggests that the shoe does provide great comfort. There were only a few downsides noted by runners, among them being a bit of rigidness in the design of the shoe (runners stated that they would prefer more flexibility) and heel heaviness. Also, some noted a lack of tongue padding, which causes tightly-laced shoes to dig into the ankle as opposed to cradling it comfortably. According to some runners, the weight of the shoe, although reasonable for a cruiser of this kind, contributed to less-smooth transitions, which weren't ideal for sprinting or faster paces. Overall, the Sonic 3 Balance makes a very good selection for runners seeking durability, foot security, a sleek design, and ample padding to absorb shock and vibration.
Comfort
8.5
Durability
9.5
Value for money
9
Design
9
PROS
  • Good overall comfort
  • Effective and responsive cushioning, ideal for mid to long distances
  • Great foot lockdown
  • Effective traction
CONS
  • Some users found the tongue a bit uncomfortable
  • A bit heavy and rigid for faster paces

Specification: Salomon Sonic 3 Balance

Terrain Road
Heel to toe drop 8 mm
Heel stack height 28 mm
Forefoot stack height 20 mm
Pronation Neutral
Weight (men) 275 g/9.7 oz
Weight (women) 255 g/9 oz
Release year 2020

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Technologies

Outsole

  • First of all, the outsole of the Salomon Sonic 3 Balance uses Contagrip. This consists of blown rubber, a type of light and soft material that improves the flexibility of the shoe to allow it to follow the movements of the foot during the run. This is important as the foot pushes the ground to propel the body forward. In addition, you can run smoothly on asphalt even when it rains thanks to the platform’s amazing grip.
  • Next, Geometric Decoupling also equips the outsole of this road shoe. It translates into a symmetrical design that should facilitate the transition from heel to toe. The expected result is a smoother ride.

Midsole

  • The midsole features the Optivibe cushioning technology. This is a type of padding material made with olefin from the Dow Infuse brand. This technology is known for its softness and natural bounce, making it perfect for running shoes. It ensures maximum shock dispersion during running for optimal comfort. This technology also ensures optimal energy return for a more springy ride.
  • Besides, the JPAD unit made of rubberized EVA foam at the heel is designed to better attenuate impacts and reduce vibrations during the run. In addition, it’s memory foam, meaning it adapts to the shape of the foot and stays in place for the next run.
  • Lastly, the comfortable OrthoLite insole padded the interior of the shoe and molds to the foot to complete the cushioning of the shoe. It also helps to avoid moisture.

Upper

  • The upper of the Salomon Sonic 3 Balance uses an engineered mesh. This configuration is designed to hold the foot securely during training for ideal comfort. In addition, perforations in the mesh allow your foot to breathe while exercising, especially when the pace increases.
  • In addition, Internal SensiFit contributes to better foot lockdown. It consists of printed overlays and fabric eyelets connected to the laces. This configuration is rather discreet so that you don’t notice it while running.
  • Finally, the OrthoLite Impressions technology is a thin foam tongue that follows the contour of the instep. It uses 50% bio-oil to reduce its ecological footprint.
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Frequently asked questions (FAQ)

Is the Salomon Sonic 3 Balance true to size?

This road shoe is based on a normal sizing system and runners confirm it runs true to size. Therefore, you can choose your regular size for running shoes. That said, if you have the opportunity, it is recommended that you try on the shoes in the shop to make sure it fits perfectly.

Is this model suitable for runners with overpronation?

Despite its name, which might suggest that it’s a stability model, this shoe is for neutral pronation. Thus, it is designed to be adapted to all athletes regardless of their pronation. It doesn’t feature any special correction to better stabilize the foot and avoid overpronation. In any case, please note that stability shoes for overpronation are no more effective than neutral shoes to avoid injury. We, therefore, recommend that you select your running shoes according to their comfort, which is the most important criterion. So you can choose this model independently from your pronation, as long as it is comfortable.

Is this road model suitable for heavy athletes (80 kg/176 lbs or more)?

As far as we know, only one scientific study so far has observed the link between weight, risk of injury, and sole thickness. According to the conclusions of this study, minimalist footwear can increase the risk of injury for athletes weighing more than 71 kg/157 oz. Apart from this, there are no recommendations for other categories of running shoes. The Sonic 3 Balance has a moderately thick sole (28 mm under the heel) and should, therefore, be adapted to your body regardless of your weight.

Can you run a marathon in these shoes?

This Salomon road shoe is perfectly adapted to different types of distances and training. You can use it for your daily training sessions, whether you work on distance or speed. As for the marathon, it depends above all on your preferences. If you find this shoe comfortable for your long outings, then it should be a good choice for your race.

Salomon Sonic 3 Balance road running shoe review
Salomon Sonic 3 Balance rubber outsole

1 review for Salomon Sonic 3 Balance

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  1. runninglife

    A good sleek, all-purpose road running shoe with stable and comfortable cushioning.

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