Let’s talk about looks: although a runner’s priority when choosing a trainer is performance first and foremost, nobody wants to wear an ugly shoe. On the other hand, although there are many stylish trainers out there on the market, more thought went into their looks than their function, leaving slick-looking shoes left gathering dust in the closet while runners went back to a pair that performed better on their daily exercise than the ones that looked great in the store but were below average on the run. Of course, the best solution would be finding a pair that delivered in both departments.
For the fashion-conscious runner looking for a new pair that both looks good and provides the runner with the comfort and responsiveness they’re looking for during a moderate run, there’s the Puma Voltage. The first thing anyone notices about this eye-catching trainer are the rubber pods that cover the outsole, which provide the Voltage with a futuristic aesthetic while also providing dynamic cushioning during impact. This is Puma’s Voltage technology, designed with the largest piston-like pods on the heel to cushion impact while the smallest pods are located at the forefoot to aid in grip. Besides this, the Puma Voltage’s EVA midsole works along with the Voltage tech on the outsole to lessen any “sinking” feeling the wearer may have from the pods on the outsole while also providing the cushioning for a comfortable, plush ride. The stylish three-layer mesh upper offers excellent breathability while the main support is comprised of the Puma Formstrip on its sides.
While looks aren’t everything, they are still a factor when choosing a trainer. Ideal for low-mileage runners looking for superior comfort for their evening jogs or around the neighborhood rides, the Puma Voltage combines great performance with unbelievable style.
The outsole is really the main selling point of the Puma Voltage: the Voltage technology represented in the piston-like pods that line the outsole were designed for maximum cushioning
and responsiveness during a ride. For runners who have found the outsoles of many trainers to be too hard on their soles or find the cushioning during heel impact lacking in previous pairs, the Puma Voltage’s rubber pods are the answer they’ve been looking for. In addition, flex grooves are outfitted along the outsole to provide good flexibility for the wearer. Bouncy without being springy, and designed for runners with a natural pronation, the Puma Voltage’s outsole is for runners who need that extra support while on a ride.
Since comfort is a priority in the Puma Voltage, the midsole is made from a considerably sized piece of EVA that gives the shoe a plush feel from first step-in. Designed to counter any potential “sinking” feeling the wearer may get from the large rubber pods that over the outsole, instead the EVA midsole will leave the runner feeling stable and comfortable throughout while wearing this trainer.
The three-layer mesh that comprises the upper of the Puma Voltage provides excellent ventilation while also adding to the sleek stylishness of its overall design. With minimal overlays, the seamless upper is instead supported by the Puma Formstrip, keeping it lightweight and allowing for maximum breathability. With a lace
-up enclosure that keeps the foot secure throughout a ride, the Voltage’s upper is also outfitted with extra padding at the ankle collar, along with a plush tongue to keep the foot comfy without losing ventilation.
Given the rather plush interior of the Puma Voltage and the large rubber pods that line the outsole, this is not a lightweight trainer
. Weighing in at 8.8 ounces/249 grams, although this is not exactly heavy, this is a shoe that’s made for both running performance and comfort in mind, but not competition. Although it’s not heavy enough to add any noticeable drag, the Voltage is ideal for workouts, exercise, and mid-range running--not for marathons.
Thanks to the three-layer mesh upper, and with minimal overlays, the Puma Voltage provides excellent breathability. Without losing any style, this is a trainer that’s retained its looks by smartly stripping down the upper to be comprised of just its mesh and the Puma Formstrip on both sides, allowing for maximum ventilation and providing the runner a cool, dry ride every time.
If comfort’s what you’re looking for in a running shoe, the Puma Voltage has got you covered. Its large EVA midsole provides an immediate step-in comfort while the piston-like rubber pods give a responsive cushion with every footfall. The upper has extra padding around the ankle collar while its plush tongue keeps the foot comfortably snug and in place after lace-up. So comfortable
is the Puma Voltage that many who work on their feet all day (or night) have chosen it as their go-to shoe for long, active shifts.
Although it may seem shallow, here’s where the Puma
Voltage really shines: having been described as the “Rolls Royce” of running shoes, this trainer is certainly stylish. The eye-catching rubber pods that line the outsole provide a futuristic, hi-tech aesthetic to the Voltage, which may turn heads and have people asking just what those shoes you’re wearing are. The upper is similarly slick, featuring Puma’s well-known logo and overall pleasing design. Available in a cool Quarry/White/Atomic, bright Safety Yellow/Black, or sleek Atomic Blue/White color combinations, the Puma Voltage asks that if you can have either style or performance, why not both?
Of course, what’s the point of having both style and performance if the shoe’s not going to last for that long. Thankfully, Puma’s reputation as one of the top brands on the market almost guarantees that the Voltage is going to a durable shoe
, and several reviewers have also noted its sturdiness. Its carbon rubber outsole and sturdy piston-like pods keep intact even after heavy use, while the synthetic three-layer mesh of the upper is similarly durable.
Not designed for rugged terrain or even particularly harsh conditions, the Puma Voltage is ideal for dry surfaces and fair weather; the mesh upper will provide nominal protection against rain and the occasional puddle
, but overall these are designed for ideal conditions. That said, its carbon rubber outsole and pods will protect the foot well against the jostles and jolts that come from walking and running.
While the large piston-like pods on its outsole may deter some runners from even looking at the Puma Voltage, their fears should be put to rest by knowing these do not take away from the shoe’s responsiveness. Quite the opposite: the rubber pods compress upon impact, with the larger pods on the heel taking the force of the landing, providing excellent cushioning and translating to excellent responsiveness to varying speeds and strides. Also, the EVA midsole was designed to lessen the potential “sinking” feeling a runner may have from the rubber pods, which balances the feel of the shoe so the runner never feels disconnected from the road during a ride.
With a neutral arch support
, the Puma Voltage provides nominal support to the foot. The rubber pods on the outsole also provide a great amount of comfort when walking or running, while the EVA midsole is similarly plush. Although the Voltage aims to provide great comfort to the mid-range runner, it is not a support shoe, instead designed with the runner with natural pronation
The Puma Voltage is a comfortable trainer, and a responsive one, but it is not a particularly versatile trainer. Designed with roads and regular running surfaces (asphalt, pavement, tracks) in mind, the Voltage is made for solid performance and to provide excellent comfort to the runner that jogs around their neighborhood or trains down the sidewalk--which is just as a running shoe should. But taking it out on the trail
or for a hike may not result in the desired experience a runner is looking for. As mentioned, this shoe has also found an audience with workers who are on their feet all day; in addition, some have reported enjoying it as an everyday shoe for around the house.
Here’s’ where the Puma Voltage may lose some people: its price
tag. While not an extremely expensive shoe, it is pricey enough that runners who are looking to invest in a trainer that will go the distance and make the long haul with them will not find what they’re looking for in this shoe. Alternately, some runners for whom this shoe is designed for--mainly those who run medium distances, for exercise, or to keep in training between heavier competitions--may also find some sticker shock waiting for them at pricing. However, the Voltage technology that comprises the dynamic outsole and the high level of comfort and style that come with this trainer makes it an appealing pick for those that don’t mind paying a little extra for these amenities. It hasn’t been referred to as the “Rolls Royce” of running shoes for nothing, after all.
Although the rubber pods on the outsole provide excellent responsiveness and great comfort, there have been some complaints that the Puma Voltage’s traction isn’t where it should be. However, this shoe is for easy runs at mid-ranges and weren’t necessarily designed with speed in mind, but rather comfort. It’s not looking to break records but to make sure the ride is as plush as possible for its wearer.
For such a thick outsole, one would expect the Puma Voltage to be a stiff, if not cumbersome, trainer. However, thanks to the flex grooves that line the outsole, it remains as flexible running shoe as any for its weight, while the triple-layer mesh of the upper allows for the Voltage to fit the foot firmly after lace-up.
A neutral running shoe
, the Voltage is meant for the neutral runner. As such, it is not specifically a stability shoe. However, the large rubber pods on the bottom may make some prospective runners nervous about feeling balanced while wearing them. But the pods are there for cushioning and support, not to keep the runner off-balance, while the EVA midsole is designed to counter any potential “sinking” that may be experienced when wearing a pair.
The Voltage has a 12mm heel-to-toe drop, which is just slightly higher than the standard running shoe. For the heel-first runner--for which the Voltage has excellent cushioning--they may enjoy this slightly higher drop. Although the fad for zero drop trainers has left many companies scrambling to shave off millimeters to appeal to this trend, the Voltage’s 12mm drop keeps with its philosophy that more is more, and more is better.
- Responsive but comfortable Voltage technology rubber pods on the outsole
- Thick EVA midsole that works with the pods to provide a counterbalance and maximum comfort
- Incredibly stylish trainer whose design is eye-catching while functional
- Piston-like pods on the outsole cushion footfall at the heel while provide grip at the forefoot
- Seamless triple-layer mesh upper provides breathability while also firmly keeping the foot in place after lace-up
For the mid-range runner looking for a comfortable ride as they get their daily run in, the Puma Voltage is an attractive trainer. With its Voltage technology of piston-like rubber pods that cover the outsole providing a springy, comfortable ride with every footfall, this shoe is made to provide maximum comfort for its wearer. While its price may be more than some runners are willing to pay, particularly for a shoe designed more for comfort and mid-range runs rather than competition, the “bells and whistles” attached to it accounts for its relatively higher price tag. But for a very stylish trainer that provides a great amount of comfort and maintain its integrity even after considerable wear and tear, the Puma Voltage will put a spring in your step and keep you running without complaint.