Altra Provision 2.0 Review Facts
Flat feet and the subsequent overpronation that occurs in a running gait can lead to shin splints, plantar fasciitis, and other common painful running injuries. Fortunately, there are a number of answers to this problem, from stability shoes to zero drop, and for the runner in desperate need of extra support, the Altra Provision 2 has put in the work and tech to create a zero drop stability shoe that’s perfect for walking, light trail running, road running and cross training.
With flexible stability in mind, the Provision 2’s proprietary StabiliPod technology provides boosted medial, lateral, and heel support in the foot, while its Innerflex technology allows for foot flexion via grid-like flex grooves in its midsole for more stability and speed. As is standard in every Altra shoe, Provision 2 is equipped with a FootShape toe box, which allows the toes to spread out to a more natural position inside the shoe for a more stable, comfortable run. Its zero-drop platform is fully cushioned to encourage low-impact footfall.
Besides these much-needed features, the Altra Provision 2 features a mesh upper that provides excellent ventilation, keeping the foot cool and dry while also diminishing the potential of moisture collection and subsequent odor. Besides this, the midsole provides both shock absorption and a great energy return with every step. The toe-off provided by this midsole is also incredibly powerful, which combined with the expanded toe box gives the runner a natural feel as they toe-off. In addition, the Provision 2’s outsole was created with the natural shape and subsequent movement of the foot in mind, following the pattern of the foot’s flexing and bending. This helps the runner feel free from the restrictions of the outsole and also provides additional stability. For stability, comfort, and a noticeable natural feel, the Altra Provision 2 is ideal for those that require additional support in their running shoe.
The Provision 2’s outsole reflects this trainer’s dedication to address the many problems that face runners with fallen arches
. Like many of its other elements, the outsole seeks to provide stability and support. Altra’s FootPod™ outsole provides three zones of support, acting as a tripod to stabilize the runner’s pronation. Created with the natural movement and shape of the runner’s foot in mind, the FootPod™ follows the form of the foot’s natural movement of its tendons and joints to provide a freedom of movement that a stiffer outsole wouldn’t allow for the runner to flex and bend their foot freely and naturally. In addition, the StabiliPod™ system in the outsole stabilizes pronation in three points--the first and fifth metatarsal and the lateral heel--which provides additional support and prevents the foot from collapsing while running.
Featuring proprietary technology in order to provide much-needed support during a running session, the Provision 2’s midsole is made of A-Bound™ technology that reduces ground impact and has an energy return that gives a spring to each step. The EVA compound it’s comprised of is also long-lasting and efficient, which runners with an overpronation will appreciate after many miles are put on this trainer. Besides this, the midsole features a stability wedge that runs from the medial to the lateral side, providing additional stance support and promoting a balanced gait during a running session. Its Innerflex technology also allows for superior foot flexion thanks to a number of grid-like flex grooves for more stability and speed. In addition, the contoured footbed also provides additional padding and support to the midsole’s curves.
Made of a highly breathable mesh, the upper of Provision 2 seeks to wick away moisture to prevent excessive dampness and potential added weight from water retention. Besides keeping the foot cool and dry throughout a run by allowing air to circulate in the shoe, its Quick-Dry Air Mesh
also keeps the upper’s materials dry to prevent the potential of foot odor. In addition, the FootShape™ toe
box allows the foot to adopt a natural splay throughout a run, which aids in a more powerful toe-off and comfortable landing.
Considering the amount of tech that has been put into the Altra Provision 2, it’s not going to be an ultra lightweight running shoe. However, at 9.8 oz/278 grams, it’s also not that heavy of a running shoe. Although it has received some criticism for its bulkiness, the Provision 2’s weight falls within the standard running shoe range.
With a mesh upper, the Provision 2 is a highly breathable running shoe. Providing excellent ventilation for a cool and dry ride, its Quick-Dry Air Mesh is also designed to keep the upper moisture-free. This prevents any additional weight from moisture collection, keeps the upper’s materials dry, and also helps prevent foot odor
Since the Provision 2 is designed as a stability shoe
to help those with fallen arches, it’s a very comfortable shoe with numerous features specifically engineered with the runner’s comfort in mind. Its EVA midsole employs proprietary A-Bound™ technology, which reduces impact from footfall while also providing excellent energy return, while a stability wedge runs from the medial to the lateral side of the foot for stance support and to promote a balanced gait while running. The midsole also features its Innerflex technology, which allows for foot flexion via grid-like flex grooves. Its outsole utilizes Altra’s FootPod™ tech, which promotes natural movement of the tendons and joints. In addition, the outsole also features the StabiliPod™ system to help stabilize pronation for additional support and prevention of foot collapse during a run.
While some stability shoes may look a little too clinical or obvious to the observer that tips off other runners of their purpose, Provision 2 is a stylish, low-cut trainer. Coming in three color combinations (black/red, white/blue, and lime/blue), this shoe has a retro look that will appeal to the runner who enjoys a classic look to their trainer. In addition, its bright colors aid in visibility for night runners. With the Altra
logo emblazoned on the side of the upper and a nice contrasting color to the scheme that outlines the outsole, the Provision 2 is a subtle but stylish trainer that is reminiscent of the 1980s but with the tech of the 21st century on display.
With a breathable upper mesh made out of synthetic materials, a solid rubber outsole, and a durable EVA midsole, the Provision 2 will last for a long time after many runs, although there have been some complaints that the StabiliPod™ support units installed on the outsole start to erode quicker than they anticipated. Barring that, the rest of the sneaker retains its shape and performance for a long time.
Given that this is a running shoe, the standard protective areas--the rubber outsole, the shock-absorbing midsole, and the covered toe box--are all present. While this shoe is recommended for light trail running
, it is not specifically a trail runner due to its mesh upper that will provide little protection to the harsher elements. But for a run around the neighborhood, track, or even on more mild trails, the Provision 2 will provide adequate protection.
One major compliment about the Provision 2 is its excellent responsiveness. Thanks to its EVA A-Bound™ midsole, excellent energy return with every footfall is provided, giving the runner an extra spring in every step. Besides this, the Innerflex tech in the midsole also allows for great foot flexion and the runner more overall surface control. In the upper, the FootShape™ toe box allows the toes to assume a natural position during a run, aiding in a better toe-off.
Here is where the Provision 2 shines. As this is a stability shoe, its construction has those with fallen arches and who overpronate in mind. The midsole is designed to prevent an excessive rolling of the foot, while its Innerflex technology lets the runner move their foot freely and naturally throughout the run. The outsole’s FootPod™ tech is shaped to follow the natural shape and movement of the foot, also allowing for a more natural, comfortable run. This is also a zero drop shoe designed to give the runner with overpronation
a better, more natural ride.
Although it has been recommended for light trail running, the emphasis there is light. It is not a trail gaiter
, so do not go on a wild romp through the woods in this trainer. Instead, it is optimal for average running surfaces, such as pavement and asphalt.
Although initially a relatively expensive trainer, its price has dropped considerably since the Provision 2 was first released. Now a moderately priced trainer, it’s a great price for the runner looking to address their overpronation or feel the need for a little extra support and flexibility in their running shoe.
With numerous deep flex grooves on its outsole, the Provision 2 seeks to provide the runner with superior surface control and the ability to grip the road in a natural fashion. Although its traction points are not as tenacious as other trainers, runners who seek support and flexibility in their trainer may take the trade-off in this area for comfort and find a shoe that helps correct their overpronation.
One of the greatest strengths of the Provision 2 is its flexibility: from its midsole’s Innerflex technology that allows maximum foot flexion to its outsole’s FootPod™ technology that’s shaped to the foot’s shape and follow natural movement, even to its FootShape toe box that lets the runner’s toes assume a natural position during a run, this is a highly flexible shoe.
Considering that this is a stability shoe created for those with fallen arches or flat feet, the Provision 2 provides superior stability. With its outsole’s StabiliPod™ system that creates a tripod of support and stabilizes pronation and a stability wedge in the midsole running from the medial to the lateral side of the foot to provide additional stance support and promote a balanced gait, the Provision 2 is a stability shoe that won’t let you (or your arches) down.
This is a zero drop shoe, ideal for those with fallen arches. Runners used to the standard 10mm drop may find this shoe uncomfortable at first, along with those transitioning to a zero drop
trainer due to problems with pronation. It is recommended a transition period of 30 minutes a day in zero drop shoes until the runner feels a natural change in their gait.
- A stability shoe that provides excellent support and gait correction tech
- An incredibly flexible trainer that mimics natural foot flexion and movement
- Has a stylish retro appeal to its aesthetic that hides its nature as a stability shoe
- Outsole that’s designed to follow natural foot shape and movement
- Very comfortable, durable midsole that runners will appreciate
Stability shoes don’t have to present radical changes to the runner, and the Altra Provision 2 seeks to make the transition from a regular arch support running shoe to a zero drop stability shoe less of a change. Featuring excellent support in its midsole, which is loaded with tech to provide great flexibility and comfort to the runner and an outsole that’s designed to provide superior stability and support for runners that overpronate, the Provision 2 wants to correct and encourage runners with fallen arches and flat feet to continue their pursuit with as little disruption to their daily routine as possible. Although some complaints have been voiced that the StabiliPod™ units on the outsole wear too quickly and the shoe is perhaps bulkier than many runners are familiar with, it’s a surprisingly lightweight trainer for all the tech it’s loaded with and hides its nature as a stability shoe with a cool retro look. Since it has dropped considerably in price from its first release, those looking to transition to a zero drop stability shoe may find a bargain in the Altra Provision 2--and a solid trainer, as well.