07 Jan Merrell Men’s Sprint Blast Trainer Review
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With a summer of rough terrains and long walks ahead, I wanted a robust pair of trainers that met my high standards and my budget.
Merrell Men’s Sprint Blast Trainer Features
A Great Fit
The first thing I noticed about the Spring Blast Trainer is that they felt awesome on my feet. You know how sometimes your feet feel like they found a new home? This was one of those times. They’re secure on all sides, offering a snug fit that keeps you sturdy without becoming uncomfortable.
One of the reasons these shoes feel so good is that they have an injection molded arch shank made of 6.6 nylon. When you slide your feet into these shoes, you can feel that there is plenty of support. You also get a comfortable hug around the back of your heal. A lot of shoes let your heal slip around. Not these. The only shoes I can think of that offered better heal comfort are some high-priced running shoes that you wouldn’t want to take on a hike.
The great fit contributes to a comfortable hike. I’ve traveled across some pretty rocky terrain in these shoes. Not once did my feet feel too tired. I didn’t even get any blisters, which has been a problem for me with some other shoes. The level of support that these shoes give you will keep you strolling along for hours.
I feel like Merrell did a good job balancing the shoe’s ventilation and warmth. Some shoes are just way too thick to wear during the summer months. After a few minutes of walking you feel like your slushing around in a swamp. I haven’t had that problem with these. The ventilation seems to work very well to keep my feet cool and dry. At the same time, they keep my feet comfortable on chilly nights. I don’t know how Merrell strikes this balance, but they have done it well.
Strong Materials and Build
I want to call special attention to the strong materials that Merrell used to make these shoes. The outside is made from pigskin leather that holds up well against daily use and hikes. I swear, you could rake a knife across this leather without causing much damage.
The sole also has a great build that’s flexible yet sturdy. I’ve used them in several weather conditions, including cold and hot days. The sole is always flexible. If you’ve done much hiking in trainers, you may have noticed that the soles feel stiff on cold days. I haven’t had that problem with the Sprint Blast Trainers.
These Merrell shoes have a 4.5mm Orthodite foot bed that have held up very well even with frequent use. You have probably noticed that your shoes start to lose stability over time. I assume that these will, too. All shoes eventually lose support. I have to say, though, that I am genuinely surprised by how long these have lasted. They are nearly as comfortable as they were the first time I put them on. A lot of that has to do with the cushion offered by this foot bed. It’s not too thick or too skimpy. Merrell got it just right.
Where it can be Improved
Overall, this is an awesome shoe that you can wear in a wider range of environments.Â Unfortunately, I don’t feel like they offer enough grip for me to walk on slippery surfaces confidently. I’ll be out walking in the woods with friends when suddenly we’ll come upon a stream with plenty of slick rocks. When that happens, I’m immediately aware that I don’t trust these shoes to keep me upright. That’s when I end up taking little steps just to avoid falling into the water or, worse yet, bashing my head against a rock.
This is by no means a deal breaker. These are still great shoes that you can wear practically anywhere. Just be really careful when you find yourself traversing a slick area.
Where it can be improved
On the contrary, Merrell Sprint Blast Trainer also has its fair share of points that can still be improved. I wish this pair has better grips. I often explore rough and damp terrains and its grip is not as helpful as how I wished. Also, if you’re planning to use this more on outdoor, wild trips rather than typical, walking trips, you might want to think twice. To ease the situation, I just rubbed the bottom with sandpaper to create better friction, even just for smooth yet wet areas.
Final say on Merrell Men’s Sprint Blast Trainer
Merrell makes a lot of great trainers that you can wear in various environments and weather conditions. I like a shoe that adapts to wear I go. That’s probably the biggest reason that I like these shoes. You can wear them on a hike to protect your feet from harsh conditions, but you can also wear them to a casual restaurant without feeling totally out of place.
If you are looking for a versatile shoe that offers plenty of comfort, I would recommend these. From my experience so far, I expect my Merrell Men’s Spring Blast Trainers to last several more months before I start to notice any real damage. That shows how much time Merrell put into designing a shoe that would go the long haul.
There are probably situations that call for a different type of shoe. If you’re into a specific sport, for instance, you will probably want to get trainers designed for that sport. For a versatile option, though, it’s hard to beat these.