361 Sensation 3 Reviewed for Performance and Quality

No longer the new guy, the company 361 is now well on their way to improving their models, one of them being their latest offerings, the 361 Sensation 3.  One of the most significant improvements from the Sensation 2 is the amount of cushioning. However, because of that, the flexibility does take a bit of a hit. 361 calls the Sensation 3 a "mild stability workhorse" that combines guidance features and their QU!CKFOAM is cushioning for a trainer that works best for long distance running.

Complete with a carbon fiber plate and their Fitz-Rite midfoot webbing, this shoe is built to prevent any pronation issues that can occur for those who already pronate or those who pronate as the miles get long. I got a chance to take this shoe out for plenty of long road miles, and while I see why its previous iteration was an award-winning shoe, there were a couple of downsides that prevented me from choosing this shoe for every long road run. If you are looking for a shoe that can handle high mileage training, keep reading to see how well the Sensation 3 held up.

Keep reading our in-depth 361 Sensation 3 review to find out if it is worth the investment.

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Holabird Sports Link
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Pros & Cons

Plenty of cushioning

Good stability

Works well for mid to long distance runs


Runs small

Design/Style could be better

Not very flexible

Priced on the higher side

Key Features
Like many 361 shoes, the outsole is made with a lightweight blown rubber in the forefoot area. It has pretty deep grooves to help with flexibility. The rubber itself is pretty dense, durable and provides excellent traction on the road running surfaces, even when the surface is wet.

The heel features a permanent abrasion crash pad to disperse shock and provide additional traction. The only issue I ran into in terms of the outsole was that the shoe tended to pick up small pebbles. A bit annoying since I could feel the rocks and would need to stop and flick them out from time to time.

So with that said, I wouldn't recommend taking these shoes on gravel surfaces.
It is where 361 put the most attention and detail in the shoe. And being that it is a self-proclaimed "stability workhorse", one would hope so. Like the Sensation 2, the Sensation 3 has 361's Fitz-Rite soft internal webbing that helps lock the foot down. The midsole also has dual density medial posts located on each side of the arch to help stabilize the foot.

361's QU!CKFOAM midsole provides comfortable cushioning but also snappy responsiveness. Also found in the midsole is the QU!CK Spine which is a carbon fiber plate that keeps the new midsole stable for better contact with the surface and a more balanced toe-off.

While the midsole does provide some comfy cushioning, all that technology and design does make the midsole pretty stiff. And though this shoe is considered a mild stability trainer, it leaned more towards the heavy stability side than the soft side.
361 decided to take away some of the overlays in this latest version. The Sensation 3 does have some overlays located more in the midfoot section as well a hard plastic heel cup. The forefoot area features an open mesh material which makes for one breathable shoe.

It's so breathable that my feet were pretty cold when I took them out on some super cold Northeast winter runs. The tongue is their signature pressure free tongue, which I do not care for. It is supposed to reduce irritations, and while it did not irritate my foot, it did need to be adjusted and didn't have the amount of padding I like in the tongue of a running shoe.

The toe box is a decent size, as long as you have the right size. My toes were a little cramped. I normally wear a size 11 in a running shoe, but the 11's were a bit too small for me. Had I gone a size up, my toes would've probably been fine.
The Sensation 2 was a very heavy shoe. Luckily, 361 was able to make a few changes to knock about an ounce off the shoe. And while the Sensation 3 is not a light shoe by any means (stability and lightweight usually don't go together), it is lighter and more manageable than the previous version.

The men's version in size 9 weighs 9.8oz, and the women's version in size 7 weighs 8.4oz. While this makes for a heavier shoe, runners looking for stability may be willing to make that sacrifice.

Read also about running shoes for heavy men.
As mentioned before, the upper of the 361 Sensation 3 is made of a super breathable upper with overlays concentrated at the midfoot to heel section of the shoe. The larger mesh holes on the upper allow for a lot of airflows, which would make this shoe perfect for warm weather. While the Sensation 2 was a breathable shoe, the Sensation 3 has improved in this category.
If you are looking for a marshmallow, cushiony shoe, look for something else. However, this is a pretty comfortable shoe. The QU!CKFOAM midsole mixes their proprietary EVA and rubber blend for comfort without sacrificing responsiveness.

The Sensation 3 held up very well on long runs, and it did not feel "flattened out" at the end of the run. It was still comfortable and supportive after a couple of hours of running. As stated above, I'm not fond of the flat pressure-free tongue and wished it had a bit more padding. And being that this is a stability trainer, the shoe was stiff.

So if you are looking for comfort in terms of natural foot movement, this shoe isn't for you. If you are looking for cushioning that can stand up to some serious pavement pounding and a shoe that will still support you for long hauls on the road, then 361 Sensation 3 will provide the right type of comfort you need.
I'm going to have to knock a few points off for the style. The style/color combo I got to try out was the green/white/black combo. While I don't have any problems with the colors, the design itself was lacking.

In particular, the piping around the laces took away from the overall look and made the illusion of my feet looking super wide (which they aren't). Currently, the women's version comes in two choices: the green/white/black and a red/black with pops of blue.

The men's version also comes in two choices: white/black/red and green/black/blue. There will be one more option offered for both men and women that will be released in June.
Durability is another powerful feature of this shoe. After putting about 75 miles into 361 Sensation 3, it still looks (and feels) as good as new. The traction on the outsole is always reliable, and the rubber isn't worn down.

The breathable upper has stood up, no tears or excessive wear showing. The cushioning, responsiveness and stability feel just as good as it did the first 10 miles out of the box. I am pretty sure I'll be getting a good long life out of these shoes.
As a mild overpronator, my biggest worry is an injury. While I'm not looking for a motion control shoe, I do like shoes that will provide some stability which the 361 Sensation 3 does well, if not a little too well.

The amount of cushioning underfoot from both the QU!CKFOAM midsole and the blown rubber outsole make for a solid but comfortable base that absorbs shock, which is especially important during long road runs. The medial posts kept my foot from rolling excessively outward. The only thing the shoe did not protect me from was cold weather.

I'll be saving this shoe for mild to warmer runs. The upper of the shoe was a little too breathable for the chilly winter.
While I know a stability shoe is going to control your foot movement, I still want the right amount of responsiveness so that I can feel in control of the shoe and not the shoe controlling me. Thanks to the QU!CK Spine carbon fiber plate in the midsole I got a strong toe-off.

I didn't sink into the cushioning and instead felt supported and a bit springy, even after of miles of running. The 361 Sensation 3 moved pretty well with me. The drawback was the lack of flexibility which took away from the overall responsiveness.
361 covered every angle in terms of support. This shoe caters to runners with mild to moderate overpronation, although moderate to severe overpronators may find it a bit more comfortable.

The midsole is the key to the 361 Sensation 3's support, be it the QU!CK Spine carbon fiber plate, the Fitz-Rite internal midfoot webbing, the firm medial posts for extra stability and the cushy but responsive QUC!KFOAM. While the overlays have been reduced from the previous version, there is enough midfoot security to provide a supportive ride, especially for moderate overpronators.
361 Sensation 3 is going to do best on the roads, especially for long road runs. The amount of cushioning will help fend off foot fatigue during long runs. The traction works best on smooth surfaces, even when the surface is wet, but beware of small stones as they tend to get stuck in the grooves of the outsole.
With an MSRP $130, the 361 Sensation 3 is by no means the most expensive stability shoe on the market. There are other stability shoes that cost $20 or more. However, $130 is a little higher than some of their other shoes, but again not their most expensive. The price may be worth it to many runners seeking some guidance features in their shoe.
The 361 Sensation 3 provides excellent traction on the road running surfaces. The blown rubber forefoot provides a strong toe-off while the abrasion resistant heel does a good job of gripping the ground for solid ground contact. The shoe performed well on wet surfaces, but as mentioned, did pick up pebbles. In terms of traction, this shoe will shine on smooth surfaces.
By now, you probably know this isn't a flexible shoe. But it wasn't designed to be a flexible shoe. It was designed to provide a stable, supportive platform that can guide the runner's foot and prevent excessive rolling. While there are flex grooves on the outsole that give some flexibility, overall, this shoe is pretty stiff. But in general, if you are looking for a stability shoe, lack of flexibility is going to be pretty universal.
It is what the 361 Sensation 3 was designed to do. Moderate overpronators will find that 361 Sensation 3 provides a supportive, stable ride that will prevent excessive pronation. The dual density media posts to the Fitz-Rite internal webbing as well as the sturdy, supportive carbon fiber plate, this midsole will provide the type of stability overpronators need, especially for those training for long distance races.
The Sensation 3 has a 9mm drop. Most runners will be comfortable with this type of drop, as it helps guide the foot forward. A standard drop is between 10-12mm.
Key Features
- QU!CKFOAM midsole
- QU!CK Spine carbon fiber plate
- Lightweight blown rubber forefoot
- Fitz-Rite webbing in midfoot
- Dual-density medial posts for extra stability
- Very breathable mesh upper
Bottom Line
If you are looking for stability, it's worth checking out the Sensation 3. It's a comfortable, stable shoe that is especially good for those seeking comfort and support for long runs. Moderate overpronators will find this shoe the most convenient and will be happy with the amount of responsiveness it has.

While I don't see myself wearing this shoe in cold weather, it will make a great summer shoe thanks to the super breathable upper. One big downside to the shoe was its design. In general, I like the design and colors of most 361 shoes. And while the color options are excellent, the design of the 361 Sensation 3 doesn't work for me.

The price is pretty fair when it comes to a stability shoe, but what makes it an even better buy is how long it lasts. The 361 Sensation 3 looks barely used after plenty of use and is still just as comfortable as when I first put them on. My only suggestion would be to consider sizing up a half to full size to ensure your toes have enough room.
Where to Buy
Holabird Sports Link
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Road Runner Sports Link
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By Abbie Copeland
Last updated:
Where to buy
Best offer on: Jul. 24. 2021

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