In the Philippines, Puma is better known for their lifestyle-oriented products, but that is slowly changing as their performance line arrives. The latest of these is the Mobium Elite, and here’s my review.
With none other than the “fastest man on earth,” Usain Bolt, as Puma’s brand ambassador, we all know that Puma means business when it comes to performance. We may never become as fast as Usain Bolt, or have the exact same shoes, but we could have a piece of the performance line that Puma provides these world-class athletes, and the latest of which to reach the local market is the performance trainer Mobium Elite.
You’d definitely give this shoe as second look the first time you see it—it’s just unique. Somehow it kind of remind me of an animal’s paw, and upon closer inspection it looks like it goes more than mere looks. If you fooled around (or “pulled around”) the soles, you’d notice that not only is it flexible, it also expands in three directions, longitudinally, laterally and vertically. And when it comes to design, it actually looks like a lifestyle shoe more than a trainer!
The Test: 32K at Run United 2 (2013)
Puma Mobium Elite is one of those shoes that I felt I didn’t need to break in, and so I didn’t and just willingly tested it with no miles on a 32K race. Aside from the Puma logo the front of Mobium Elite is bare so there are no hard spots that needed to be “softened” by breaking in.
It felt a bit different when I first wore my Puma Mobium Elite as it was much higher than the minimalist shoes I was used to, and the middle portion was a bit elevated which in a way “hugged” the plantar (midfoot) area. But as I walked in it I can still feel the ground to some extent, and I noticed that it was much more “breathable” than it seems.
The 32K route for this test was composed of asphalt and concrete roads, from flat to flyovers so there was quite some variety. As I mentioned earlier, despite its apparent thickness, I can still feel the ground beneath me while providing excellent cushioning at the same time. But I didn’t immediately feel the sole expanding until I was running downhill a flyover—it was fantastic! The sole did expand in three directions as I landed as it absorbed much of the impact, to be returned while my foot was on its way up. This has just got to be one of the best shoe in terms of cushioning I’ve ever worn!
In terms of “breathability,” Puma Mobium Elite may not be as “cool” as other mesh designs, but it isn’t that warm. And surprisingly, it also doesn’t get too heavy when it gets wet (as I doused myself constantly with water to counter the humidity that morning) and dries quite fast too.
- One of the best cushioning
- Excellent design and fit
- No need to “break in”
- Doesn’t get too heavy when wet
- Dries relatively fast
- Not that “breathable”
Puma Mobium Elite is one of my favorite shoes as it really looks good and would go well with my other “non-sporty” apparel. And I really love walking in it as I feel taller, I have great cushioning, and if I suddenly feel like running I’m all set. With this shoe and its excellent cushioning (mostly due to the sole’s expansion and the Mobium Band, not due to thickness) I really enjoyed running downhill as I didn’t feel any pain on my knees. In terms of weight, it isn’t that light as a racer but as a trainer (as Mobium Elite is tagged), it’s just right.
Puma Mobium Elite is best for those who need a cushioning shoe as it’s one of the best I’ve tried in this department and those that want shoes that not only looks good but also performs well. On the other hand it may not be for those who need motion control as the sole expands, and could be a bit narrow for those with wide toes.
To summarize, Puma has done an excellent job with the Mobium Elite as they managed to fuse good looks with great fit and performance. It’s a pair that you would look good with your casuals and give you performance on your training or long runs.