Under Armour Flow Velociti Wind review: New era for running shoes?

Quick verdict: Putting the Under Armour shoe technology gobbledegook to one side, the reality is that these are the most comfortable, best performing running shoes I’ve ever used.

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Finder score: 4.5-5.0
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Everyone's feet are different. My feet are particularly challenging to fit well into a shoe. I'm a size 12 (usually, but more on that in a tick), I'm flat-footed and heavy (a poor combo) and I have a broad ridge. Many running shoes I've tried in the past are simply too narrow or lose stability under my weight.

As such, it's always with a bit of apprehension that I pull on a new pair. Will this be the one?

Recently I've reviewed some similar shoes by Nike, adidas and Salomon, with the latter proving to be my favourite. However, I found these Under Armour Flow Velociti Wind running shoes trump them all on the two most important factors: comfort and performance. Even if they tend to make an awkward fashion statement.


Features

Features

  • UA Flow
  • UA Warp
  • Map My Run support
  • Lighter build
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The big claim to fame with the UA Flow Velociti Wind is the titular UA Flow technology. This is the name Under Armour has given to its new approach to soles. UA Flow is effectively a singular foam compound midsole so durable that it negates the need for a rubber outsole. This in turn reduces the weight by around 50 to 90 grams per shoe, making it easier to run.

If you believe Under Armour, it took them 3 years of experimentation to land on this solution, which included "17 rounds of raw material testing, 9 rounds of biomechanical testing, 15 rounds of shoe testing and over 11,000 miles of wear testing".

It joins the UA Warp technology the company uses to describe the upper part of the shoe. This breathable material has multiple tension points that tighten and loosen individually depending on your movements. The idea is to hold your foot into the shoe in a more organic, natural way.

The shoe also features a chip in it that syncs with Under Armour's Map My Run app. This allows your shoe to contribute data to the app, which then uses GPS to track distance, routes, splits and more, as well as let you take notes for future reference.


Design

Design

  • New sole is great
  • Sturdy construction
  • Upper material soft yet strong
  • Colour options are overly 'fabulous'
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The UA Flow Velociti Wind has a stunning look, although it's somewhat held back by some garish colour options. The shoe's shape accentuates the beautiful, unique sole. It's such a thing of beauty that it's almost a piece of art in its own right and it's a shame it spends most of its life pressed up against the tarmac.

The outsole and upper are joined by a thick strip of harder material with a glossy finish. This not only looks great, but provides a sense of sturdiness to the construction that in turn gives you confidence.

The upper, with its UA Warp technology, is light to the touch and malleable. I love the tongue design in particular, with the little nook aiding the way it sits over the bridge of your foot. The discrete heel counter also fits in well with the overall feel of the shoe. And the branding is classy across all the colour options too.

Speaking of colour, this is where your personal tastes may question Under Armour's design strategy. Both the men's and the women's UA Flow Velociti Wind running shoes come in black – so at least there's that. Both sexes also get a white option lined with a pink cross-stitching effect, which isn't so great. The women then get cyan, bright pink or a vomitus grey/orange/blue combo. The men get a fluro green and a fluro reddish-orange option.

The colour options are risqué, but as to whether they're good or bad for your fashion sensibilities is impossible for this writer to tell. I do wish there were a few more traditional – or at least straightforward - colour options, that's for sure.


Comfort

Comfort

  • Moulds seamlessly to our foot shape
  • Cushioning is sublime
  • Great range of sizes
  • Sizes are slightly smaller than other brands
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As mentioned at the top, my feet have never been an easy fit when it comes to shoes. However, the UA Flow Velociti Wind running shoes fit like a dream. These are incredibly comfortable shoes.

The UA Warp technology may sound like overdramatic marketing spiel, but the end result is hard to argue with. The fabric wraps around your foot like it has been painted on. And it moves with you in such a way that you'd barely know you were even wearing shoes. Maybe that's why they're such garish colours? To remind you they're actually on?

My left foot is about half a size smaller than my right which has created conflict in many shoe purchases previously. So what's impressed me most about the UA Warp upper is that the fabric seemed to instantly adapt to the size difference, creating no notable variance.

As for the UA Flow midsole technology, I will talk more about performance in the next section, but as for cushioning, it's a delight. The impact of each step is barely felt and my foot hits the ground like Thor's hammer. So, that's an impressive feat.

I will note that I went half a size up, to a 12.5, with the UA Flow Velociti Wind running shoes. I reviewed Under Armour's basketball shoes and noted the size 12 had been too tight, despite it being my go-to size. The US 12.5 sizing was perfect in the UA Flow Velociti Wind running shoes. So, I'd recommend going up at least half a size on what you would opt for with other brands.

On that, I do commend Under Armour on its range of sizing, with 0.5 intervals available for both men's and women's UA Flow Velociti Wind running shoes.


Performance

Performance

  • Moulds seamless to our foot shape
  • Cushioning is sublime
  • Great range of sizes
  • Sizes are slightly smaller than other brands
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First, I will quickly outlay the testing environment. As of this writing, I've been using the shoes about 4 to 5 times a week for close to 3 months. On those days I run between 5 and 8 kilometres, or weight routines.

Much like the shoe's comfort, I'm really impressed by the performance of the UA Flow Velociti Wind. The UA Flow technology would appear to behave as advertised, providing a stable and sturdy sole that's blessed with great cushioning and energetic bounce. I can feel the zest that comes with each step and while speed isn't what I'm personally looking to achieve in my workouts, I can definitely feel improvements in that area. I've never encountered any issues with traction either.

More importantly, my feet felt great afterwards, like they have spent the whole session relaxing on a beach rather than pounding the pavement.

As for the Map My Run app, well, most people who run likely already have a fitness tracker of some sort. Certainly, I do. If you fall outside that category, then it's another box ticked, but it's not a feature that should sway you either way.


Should you buy the UA Flow's Velociti Wind running shoes?

  • Buy them if you're willing to invest a bit of money in added comfort and performance in your running shoe.
  • Don't buy them if you're trying to make a fashion statement or just want a shoe for the odd jog or occasional exercise.
Finder score: 4.5

There's no doubt that a good pair of running shoes is an investment. You can pick up plenty of shoes around the $100 mark or less that will do the job for you. The UA Flow Velociti Wind running shoes aren't too much more, relative to what we've seen in the shoe industry. For substantial gains in comfort and performance, they're well priced.

From my experience running in these shoes, as well as playing sport and working out in general, I've been very impressed. You can feel the effort and quality that's gone into building the UA Flow Velociti Wind running shoes with every step you take.


Pricing and availability

The UA Flow Velociti Wind running shoes are available now for a recommended retail price of $220.

Price

RRP $220

Where to buy


Specifications

Weight
8.5 oz
DNA
CONNECTS TO UA MAPMYRUN | Warp | One-piece Flow midsole | Flow technology | Outsole material is super durable and increases ground traction


Images: Chris Stead

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