What You Need To Know
- Weighs 9.2 oz. (264 g) for a US M9.0
- Light stability for mild pronators (or even neutral runners)
- Features that sweet nitrogen-infused Hyper Burst midsole
- If Skechers were a girl, Dave would be that guy she ignores because he’s way too into her. Luckily it’s an inanimate object.
DAVE: I’m sure I’ll catch some shizz for this, but across the board, Skechers Performance is the best running brand in the world right now. From the biomechanically-sound rocket ship of the Speed Elite to the Caddy cruiser of the Max Road, Skechers is here to play. They’re not the new kid on the block anymore, and everything is coming with that sweet Hyper Burst midsole (which I’d put straight up against Nike’s Zoom X).
Full disclosure, Skechers used to sign my pay stub back in the day, but I try to remain unbiased when evaluating their current shoe offerings. That said, I know their back stories. I know the hard work and dedication this brand puts forth each and every day. I also remember the laughs the Skechers Performance team got at run expos and how it motivated them even more.
The Forza used to not exist. In fact, when I first started road warrioring for them, I didn’t even have a stability offering in my bag for a buy meeting or line presentation. It wasn’t until we signed Kara Goucher to the Skechers Elite team that we needed a more supportive shoe (the Forza was somewhat developed for her).
I always felt like the Forza has been a sleeper shoe that doesn’t get enough street cred. It got a little lost in the sauce to traditional players like Brooks Adrenaline or Saucony Guide. But as its loyal fans can tell you, it’s one hell of a shoe. And that fanbase is growing.
So here we are with the all-new Forza 4 Hyper. A light stability, or “lively guidance” (as I like to call it), workhorse trainer. The first three versions progressively got more dialed in on fit and pop– let’s see what happened to the fourth.
DAVE: Hyper Burst continues to be my favorite midsole in the game. Tried and true and delivers what I like, every time I lace up. And as most stability shoes do, they like to chunk up from the heel. Hyper Burst says “f*** that!” The nitrogen-infused foam allows the runner to still experience that lightweight and buttery pop from a Razor or a Ride, while still feeding your full range of motion from heel-strike to toe-off. It runs you through the entire gait cycle, making a stiffer yet performance-like trainer for pronators a hell of a lot more fun!
The medial support is an example of firmness done right. Forza 4 blends the Hyper Burst midsole with an Ultra Flight (a previously used compound by them) medial support system that is essentially blended into the heel and runs up through the midfoot. First feel upon step in is not your typical posting feel, and that is a good thing.
Note, I am a neutral runner in testing this shoe, but I can tell you the support is there if you are one of those runners that like to flop over. The firmness is dialed in so nicely that I can get to the mid-load position really quickly, gearing up for that classic Hyper Burst explosive toe-off.
Wait, you got that from a stability shoe? Ya man.
I can see this shoe being a great longer run option. It comes in at 9.2 oz (264 g) and when you’re 14 miles into a long run it won’t burn your feet off like some of the bricks and marshmallows out there today. It’s also fast enough when the gas pedal is pressed to be great for a longer Tempo or Fartlek.
The M Strike (Midfoot Strike) Technology moves the runner away from the heel to more mid load, for better alignment. It ends up helping the stability runner focus on a better point of contact, rolling lightly onto the heel and directly to midfoot.Shop Skechers Forza 4 Hyper
DAVE: The tongue sits a bit lower on my foot, but I wish it could wrap my ankle bones a bit better so the top lacing has somewhere more comfortable to sit. Thickness of the tongue is perfect though. Hope New Balance is listening.
Nothing else wrong to report, honestly.Shop Skechers Forza 4 Hyper
Skechers Forza 4 Conclusion
DAVE: Fun support. There’s so many ways you can describe the Skechers Forza 4 Hyper. I’ve seen the making of this shoe for some years now and I can tell you each and every version gets better. This is true for almost all of the Skechers line as of late, minus last year’s Go Run which was a bummer. But the story is, this thing gets the job done for runners needing a bit of help in the foot department. It allows the runner to taste a bit of what the neutral world offers, yet manages to stay on the lighter side and pack a ton of sauce underfoot!
Definitely recommended for runners on both sides of the shoe wall. For neutral runners, the shoe also works as a recovery day option that is smooth and on the light side of stable.
So there we have it. Another banger from those tasty waved and cool buzzed cats from Manhattan Beach, Calif. They keep this up and maybe people will actually start spelling Skechers without a T. We can only dream.
You can pick up the Skechers Forza 4 Hyper for $122 at Running Warehouse (featuring free 2-day shipping and 90-day returns) by using the shop link below.Shop Skechers Forza 4 Hyper
Dave Ames is the Owner and Founder of Ame For It Run Coaching, a worldwide run coaching service working with runners of all abilities one-on-one to help them achieve their goals and dreams. He currently coaches Believe in the Run founder, Thomas. Dave is originally from Central New York, worked and coached in the running mecca of Boston, Mass., and now lives with his beautiful wife, Gregoria in Long Beach, Calif.