I don’t know how to break it to you, but: you’re not Kilian Jornet. I know, I know. Life’s tough. Salomon produced such a limited quantity of the original Salomon Sense — the shoe designed for Kilian, which he won the 2011 Western States 100 wearing — because few of us are Kilian replicas, and that’s just fine.
There are plenty of us who are looking for similar qualities in a shoe, right?
Enter the Sense Mantra, answering that call with durability for every-day running …and a much friendlier price tag.
Salomon bills the Sense Mantra as “a light weight shoe for midfoot strikers who want natural motion, protection and neutral cushioning for high mileage training.” Compared to the Sense, the Sense Mantra sports a 6mm heel-toe drop and, for lack of a better term, it just has more shoe to it than its predecessor.
While the Sense Mantra is at the minimal end of the Salomon Running footwear spectrum, this isn’t what we’d call a “barefoot shoe” and features good protection underfoot along with a bit of neutral support.
So it’s an everyman’s version of Kilian’s shoe, a lightweight and low-drop trail runner you can use to train for long trail races AND run them. Quoting from an excerpt of this shoe’s description on rockcreek.com:
Salomon opines that the Sense Mantra is friendlier for everyday trail running than the original Sense, with more cushioning and rock protection than the original. Indeed, with a bit more underfoot, the Sense Mantra is right at home as a high-mileage training shoe. Make no mistake, however: at a mere 9.2 ounces, this is still a legit race-day shoe for fast, efficient trail runners.
Compared to Kilian’s original S-LAB Sense, the Sense Mantra features a stack height of 10mm in the forefoot and 16mm in the heel, instead of 9mm/13mm, for a heel drop of 6mm. The shift from 4mm to 6mm provides slightly more support for ultramarathon distances, while continuing to firmly embrace its minimal nature.
Couldn’t say it better myself (note: actually I did say that myself).
The Sense Mantra arrived at Rock/Creek this week, and we’re excited to be one of the first with this landmark shoe. Of course, we expect we’ll be seeing many of them at the 2013 Salomon Rock/Creek Trail Series!