Trail running shoes are typically on the stiff, bulky, and restricting side due to the fact that they are designed to keep you safe and supported while running over rocks, trees, and streams of various ascending and descending trails. However, with the Hoka One One Torrent, things have been engineered a little differently. Hoka stripped away a lot of the more constricting and bulky features of the typical trail running shoe and replaced them with more lightweight and streamlined ones.
The Torrent will give you a low to the ground feeling on your run and transmits more of the terrain’s feel to the foot, giving you a responsive ride. The upper is made of engineered mesh to allow it to conform to almost any foot while not allowing too much stretch in order to keep you safe and supported as you trek through the woods.
The company is also known for manufacturing trail running sneakers with a huge cushiony midsole which they decided to tone down a little in the Torrent. The ProFly dual-density midsole is still very comfortable and supportive but is scaled down a little to give that low profile feel and design. Unlike the scaled-down upper and midsole, however, is the outsole which features prominent 4-5mm lugs that will grip any terrain easily.
Because this is still a trail running shoe, it is engineered with deep 4mm - 5mm lugs to provide grip while not being overbearing. The lugs on these shoes are just enough to deliver excellent traction and grip on both wet and dry ground while not being too bulky and stiff - all the while maintaining a sleek silhouette. The high traction rubber will provide responsiveness, protection, and grip that is needed on any kind of trail.
Unlike other trail running shoes, however, the Hoka One One features a less-constricting upper construction made of open-engineered mesh to enhance breathability and allow for quick-drying, all-day comfort. Many users have been surprised at this sneaker’s upper because it is designed more like a minimalist trail-runner as opposed to a more-commonly seen maximal trail shoe. The upper’s material does not provide a ton of stretch so your foot will still feel supported, but because it is engineered with the softer mesh, it will conform comfortably to your foot.
The Hoka One One Torrent also boasts a protective welded overlay that extends around the entire perimeter of the shoe, giving you added protection, durability, and support. The Torrent’s tongue is sewn into the inner mesh of the upper which helps to keep it from slipping - an excellent feature in a trail running shoe.
While Hoka is known for their maximum cushion and plush foam midsoles, the Torrent is made to be a combination of both cushioning and agility. They are a little lighter and slimmer than their Speedgoat cousins but are definitely built to keep you comfortable on the trail.
The heel-hugging collar keeps your ankle stable while the toe box is engineered to be a little more forgiving and allow for your foot to play. Some users have admitted to the upper expanding a little after long-term use meaning that you may have to stop to readjust the laces after you’ve had them for a while.
The cushiony ProFly EVA midsole of the Torrent will help dispel a lot of the force you put on your shoes and over time, they may wear down. They are supportive and will instill a great amount of confidence on the trail but after about 100+ miles, you may notice the midsole squishing down a little, which is to be expected. The protective welded overlay that extends around Hoka One One Torrent will also aid in durability.
- Low-profile design
- Lightweight ProFly Eva midsole provides ample cushioning
- Toe box allows for ample natural toe splaying
- Lightweight shoe that gives a faster and more responsive run on the trail
It has been praised by many users to be zippy and responsive on the trail and is surprisingly comfortable and breathable. The Hoka One One Torrent allows for more of the terrains’ feel to be transmitted to your foot so you will experience a more minimalistic run with exceptional protection. If you are looking for a trail running sneaker that fits more like a regular running shoe, without all of the constricting upper material found on many shoes, then this is a great option. At this sneaker’s price point, you won’t have to break the bank to try out a one-of-a-kind trail runner.