By Kieran Alger
For a long time it looked like the Adidas Supernova had been forever consigned to the budget trainer bucket. But we’re witnessing a rebirth of Adidas’ once proud performance trainers. The new Supernova Rise is a neutral daily trainer that literally brings the Supernova bouncing back, with a new midsole foam and a lighter performance-oriented design to cater for faster training miles. So how does it measure up in a highly competitive daily trainer space? Read my Adidas Supernova Rise review to find out.
Stack Height, Drop, Weight and Price
The Adidas Supernova Rise has a relatively conservative stack by today’s standards. The stack height comes in at 36mm in the heel and 26mm in the forefoot for a 10mm drop. That’s very close to the Saucony Triumph 21 and the Endorphin Speed 3 and shade more midsole volume than you get on the Adidas Adizero SL.
The Adidas Supernova Rise weighs 9.7oz or 275gg in my US men’s size 9.5 test shoe. There are lighter daily trainers out there including the On Cloudsurfer 7, the Novablast 4 and the New Balance 1080v13 but coming in under 10oz keeps the Supernova Rise competitive on weight.
Pricewise, at launch the Adidas Supernova Rise was $140. That’s now towards the cheaper end of the daily trainer shelves on par with the Novablast 4 and the Saucony Ride 17. But it’s $20 pricier than the Adidas Adizero SL.
36mm heel /
9.7oz / 275g
Suggested Retail Price
True to size
The Adidas Supernova Rise is a completely new shoe. The midsole features a new Dreamstrike+ midsole foam that’s made from a small percentage of recycled materials. That Dreamstrike+ has some of the bounce of a performance foam but not the full energy of a superfoam.
There’s also a highly rockered forefoot and what Adidas calls a “Support Rods system” – a set of visible rods that follow the metatarsals and add some stiffness and spring.
Up top, the Supernova Rise has a dense sandwich mesh upper that’s quite thick. The heel collars are well padded, particularly at the back. There are quite stiff heel counters to enhance the support and heel hold and a notable lateral cutaway. You’ve also got well-padded traditional tongues – with no gusseting.
Flip them over and there’s a really generous covering of durable Adiwear rubber. And overall this is a shoe that screams long-mile durability.
In testing I ran in my regular running shoes size which is a US 9.5 and I found the fit ok true to size. I have wider feet with high insteps and Adidas shoes have a tendency to come up a bit narrow in the midfoot for me. That’s still true here to a certain extent but it meant the midfoot lockdown was reliable rather than problematic.
The Supernova Rise held my foot nicely in place with no heel slipping and just about enough toe box room. They’re not the most natural fitting shoe I’ve tested but I’d recommend going true to size unless you have very wide feet, in which case you might need to try half a size up.
In testing, I clocked around 30 miles in the Adidas Supernova Rise at a mix of paces from easy recovery up to 5km pace. I ran most on road with some light off-road paths thrown in to test the grip and stability.
Overall, the Supernova Rise are a bit of a mixed bag. There’s ok step-in comfort with quite plush padded heel collars and tongues that hold well. But the fit isn’t as instantly disappearing and natural as something like the Saucony Ride 17 which were a joy straight out of the box.
I’m not 100% sold on the thicker engineered sandwich mesh uppers that feel a bit heavy. So this isn’t the most natural shoe on the shelves right now but it’s also certainly not the worst.
When it comes to the ride, I’d put these towards the firmer, more responsive end of the daily trainer shelves – like a livelier, slightly softer and bouncier version of the Adidas Adizero SL.
They offer smooth transitions and good roll from the rockering. The 10mm drop and that curved midsole setup almost tips you from your heel/midfoot into toe off. The landings are cushioned enough to take the edge off the road but the PEBA-based Dreamstrike+ midsole foam and the Support Rods System stiffens quickly for a lot of immediacy here. There is some bounce here, too but it’s not as aggressive as you’ll find on superfoam daily trainers or carbon shoes.
Some fans of softer shoes like the Novablasts and Nimbus might find a little firm and there’s little of that pillowy sink here. But there is some springy energy when you’re moving with good form.
Basically you’re getting a compliant, responsive platform to run off without the squish found in bigger-stack, softer daily shoes like the Novablasts.
On my test runs, the Adidas Supernova Rise performed ok at both ends of my pacing, from easier miles up to marathon pace. But I found them much better suited to the faster pace efforts where you’re picking your feet fast and working at a higher turnover. In fact, they actively encourage you to tick along faster and there’s good energy here. Some people might even enjoy racing in them.
However, on one of my more tired, longer runs where I ended up moving at a slower more beleaguered pace, I wanted more protection than the Rise offered. So I’m putting the Rise in the pile of shoes that I can use to run long and easy but work best on longer runs where I’m running well.
Outside of its Adizero range, this is Adidas’ best training shoe for a long time and plugs a gap in Adi’s line-up. It’ll cater to a wide range of runners for a lot of different runs. It’s a welcome antidote to the really big stack daily trainers that we’ve seen become more prevalent and serves up some impressive response.
If you’re a fan of big hulking great monsters like the Nike Invincible 3 or the ASICS Gel Nimbus 25, this might be a little too stiff with too much coming up from the asphalt to suit your needs. Particularly on the longer miles with more than 90 minutes on feet.
But I really enjoyed all but my most tired test miles in them. I felt like I was getting plenty of benefit from the foam, rods and rocker combo. The shoe encouraged me to move faster and I found I was running at quicker clips with lower HR – so less effort.
Overall, the Supernova Rise strikes a happy balance. The cush is not too soft and heavy. It’s also not too thin and firm. Though this isn’t the lightest daily trainer on the shelves it felt light and nicely precise with a good stable, reliable platform to run off.
There’s good versatility here and for $140, at the lower end of the daily trainer price range, there’s pretty good value too.
I also like that Adidas is offering a no questions 30 day trial. So If you’re not happy with how the Supernova Rise performs after 30 days, you can send them back no matter how many miles you’ve done.
However, if I had £140 to spend on a versatile daily trainer, I’m not sure these would be my first choice. Right now, the Saucony Ride 17 offers more for the same dollars.