We got a chance to take a look at two of the recently updated models from the Altra road lineup with the Instinct 3.5 and Provision 2.5. The Instinct is the classic neutral runner while the Provision is designed for those with a little needed stability. Both have seen cosmetic updates as well as some retooling today and really enjoying the somewhat sleeker new look and design. In this article we take a first look at both side by side.
The Altra Instinct 3.5 has gone through a slight redesign both from a visual perspective as well as functional. The first thing you notice are the design changes which give it a slightly faster look. All the colorways are really solid visually and I for one quite like the design changes. The Instinct 3.5 is a staple in the lineup given its hits all the Altra high points. As always, it features Altra’s ZeroDrop technology and their FootShape toe box. It’s considered a moderate cushion shoe which brings you closer in contact with the ground and helps enforce a proper stride. A lot like the impulse, the Instinct is super light (8.1 oz) and makes for a great high intensity training tool.
My first several runs in the Instinct were quick to say the least and I find that I actually like these a bit more than the Impulse. I find these to be a touch more durable, but I also just kind of like the new design changes. I will definitely keep it handy for treadmill workouts and shorter distance runs, but this is really the staple in the altar lineup as far as I’m concerned.
You might remember our look at the Provision 2.0 which gave a bit of a hard time to Altra for their lack of flexibility and we weren’t alone in this department, but the good news is Altra heard everybody. The Provision 2.5 drastically increases the amount of flexibility, but it also seems to have been lightened up quite a bit (now 9.8 oz), but thankfully without the loss of the stability elements. That being said this shoe is still great for those looking for added stability; pronators, supinators, or those with high arches. The trademark Stabilipods still work exactly as designed providing you a little extra control where you might otherwise crash. The new Varus Stability Wedge also provides a ton of extra support as well. The colorways here have also been redone and while I loved the Provision 2.0, these are much more in line with the rest of the Altra lineup.
Running in the Provision 2.5 now feels a lot like running in something like the Instinct and in all honesty if you compare them side-by-side you’ll probably only notice a little bit more cushioning and a slight bit more control from the Provision. If you don’t require this, then I would definitely stick with the neutral lineup, but if you even need just a little bit, then the improvements will be a welcome addition. The Provision 2.5 definitely closes the gap between their their neutral and stability lines and blurs it quite a bit.
The Instinct 3.5 and Provision 2.5 really usher in what looks to be a great 2016 for Altra. While we are looking forward to new versions of all the shoes in the lineup and especially the new connected AltraIQ shoe, this year looks to be a solid one. Altra seems to have great things in store for us and is clearly unifying their aesthetic styling across the line and we can’t see wait to see what else they have in store for us.