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.
Plenty of cushioning
Works well for mid to long distance runs
Design/Style could be better
Not very flexible
Priced on the higher side
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.
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.
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 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
- 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
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.