Vibram FiveFingers Spyridon MR Elite Review Facts
The Spyridon MR Elite takes barefoot trail running to the next level. This shoe is designed for the hardcore mud runner. Critics were so impressed by this shoe that Vibram was named the official sponsor of the 2015 Warrior Dash race. Vibram has designed this shoe for elite competitors and it’s not geared toward the average trail runner.
The rubber outsole of the Spyridon MR Elite is perfect for tough trail runs. The lugs offer proper traction to propel runners through the most slippery terrain. Vibram
has always excelled when it comes to creating outsoles and these shoes are no different. The Vibram Mega grip found in the outsole helps to dissipate impact on the heel and bottom of the foot. Rocks and roots should prove to be no problem for most experienced trail runners.
The Spyridon MR Elite offers up some advanced technology in the midsole. It comes equipped with a Cocoon 3D protection midsole that gives even more added support for varying terrains and rugged surfaces. This can even be seen visibly when looking at the bottom of the shoe. The midsole should provide ample support to get through the toughest trails while maintaining stability and keeping the foot grounded. This technology keeps it on par with some of the most successful trail shoes
The upper can be one of the most difficult parts of a trail shoe to design. On one hand, it should be tough enough to handle abrasion from dirt and rocks, but it should also be thin enough to allow the foot to breathe. The upper materials on the Spyridon MR Elite are treated with a water-resistant finish to quickly recover from quick jaunts through wet grass or even shallow streams. This makes it perfect for cross country runners
. Warm weather runners should rest assured that the material will still be breathable enough as well.
Like most Vibram shoes, the Spyridon MR Elite packs a lot into a featherweight package. Compared to the average trail running shoe, the Spyridon MR Elite is very svelte. But it actually is on the heavier end of the spectrum when it comes to barefoot shoes
. It weighs in at 7.54 oz for a men’s size 10. This shouldn’t be a problem for most runners and the added heft can come in handy on more rugged trails.
Breathability is typically high with Vibram shoes and this fall right in line with the other models
. The breathability is enhanced by the water repellent treatment found on the uppers. Even in wet conditions, these shoes are able to breathe and remain comfortable. The uppers are cut a little higher than other barefoot running shoes, so there is more material involved here. Despite this, they still breathe as much as any other shoe.
A good trail running shoe needs to be comfortable in all environments. The Spyridon MR Elite does not disappoint in that regard. The polyurethane brace of the shoe helps to keep the foot secure and comfortable. With no laces, the bungee clasp fit system is flexible enough to get the shoe comfortably on and off while still keeping the foot secure. Vibram shoes are all meant to feel as natural and comfortable as possible. The rear loop found on the heel makes these shoes even more comfortable to pull on and off.
Vibram shoes will always have hardcore devotees of the style, while others find the style atrocious. These shoes will certainly be noticed in a crowd of traditional running shoes. The two color combinations offered here provide the best of both worlds. The more conservative style runner would prefer the black/yellow combo, while the more adventurous could be seen in the forest camo colorway. Both options provide a unique style that even stands out
from other Vibram trail shoes.
Durability often comes into question when looking at minimal or barefoot shoes. Shoes like this that are specifically geared towards the trail will go through a lot on a typical run. Vibram counters this by providing an extremely rugged outsole to withstand most rocks and roots. The upper material should hold up to most minor abrasions. Perhaps the most fragile part of the shoe would be the toe pockets. Some have been prone to holes or tears, especially for those with sharp or long toenails.
Protection shouldn’t be a problem with these shoes. A lot of technology goes into creating a shoe that can be minimal but still protect the runner from the harsh elements of the trail. The main line of defense comes from the Cocoon 3D Protection midsole. This feature helps to minimize the impact felt from each stride. The secure injection polyurethane brace also supports the foot while giving an extra line of defense against rocks and pebbles.
These shoes offer a ton of responsiveness. There is a reason why they’re a top choice of obstacle race
athletes and trail runners alike. You’d be hard-pressed to find another trail running shoe that gives as much of a connection to the running surface. The Spyridon MR Elites give the foot full range of motion and a responsive ride across a variety of terrains.
Support is something that you typically sacrifice in a barefoot running shoe. But in this case, Vibram managed to keep these shoes light and responsive while still keeping the necessary support for long trail runs.
The instep brace found on the shoe helps to support the arch and midsole while keeping the added weight to a minimum. Shoes without laces can feel a bit flimsy and unsupported sometimes but Vibram has mitigated that with an elastic support system to keep things in place.
There shouldn’t be any terrain that these shoes can’t handle. The rugged outsole can propel through the mud with no issues. Feel free to take these onto sand, loose gravel, dirt, mud, you name it. Vibram has done a good job of making a shoe that should be able to handle most extreme things that you can throw at it. Ultra runners or obstacle course runners have more to worry about than whether their shoes can handle the terrain.
This wouldn’t be considered a cheap shoe. Vibram takes pride in their unique offerings and sometimes they also command a steep price for them. The Spyridon MR Elite will be a bit more expensive than most of Vibram’s other shoes. If you’re a serious trail runner you would find the price to be justified. For someone just getting into the world of obstacle racing or mud running, there are certainly less expensive options out there to get you started.
You’ll be getting plenty of traction with the Spyridon MR Elites. The rugged outsole should have no problem on wet grass or rocks. Some people experienced slippage on wet wood but that is to be expected. Your mileage may vary but these shoes are designed to go off-roading and you will be well-equipped for most slippery situations.
These have the typical flexibility found in Vibram shoes but with a few added twists. The polyurethane brace decreases the flexibility a bit. You won’t be able to fold these in half or roll them up like some of the more minimal Vibram offerings. But your foot will have no issues flexing over rocks and uneven terrain. Vibram has found a way to offer just the right amount of flexibility.
These shoes provide more stability than your typical barefoot shoe. The velcro hook-and-loop closure should keep the shoe firmly in place. Toes should be able to splay naturally as the foot covers its typical stride. Some complain that there is even too much stability in the ankle area making the shoes difficult to pull on and off.
These shoes offer a minimalist 0mm heel-to-toe drop
. This provides the ultimate connection with the running surface. Most bumps and terrain types will be felt through the shoe. For those who haven’t experienced a 0mm drop, it may make sense to ease into these shoes
or alternate with a different style until you can run comfortably.
Key Features of the Vibram FiveFingers Spyridon MR Elite
Key Features of the Vibram FiveFingers Spyridon MR Elite
- Lightweight design for minimal trail runners
- Rugged outsole to protect from rocks and roots
- Enough traction to get through slippery mud and grass
- Highly breathable upper that repels water for rainy runs
- Innovative velcro strap closure system
- Unique support brace to keep foot secure
- Flexible enough to encourage natural stride
You’ve got to love a lot of the things offered by the Spyridon MR Elite. While some might question the design choices or the durability of the shoe, there is no doubt that it provides an exceptional trail running experience. Runners should be able to hit the mud with confidence knowing that the Spyridon MR Elite will give them the support and flexibility they need while staying comfortable and breathable over the long-haul.