Tuesday, September 27, 2011
Adidas Adi-Ease Gonz shoe review
Not to long ago I was lurking on our Ripped Laces FB, just dicking around not doing much. Occasionally I post, answer any shoe related questions you might have and chat with you about a shoe you're interested in. I may not know everything but I do pride myself in being able to help you guys out and field some questions. As I was just chilin on Facebook, I get a chat notification. It was from a dedicated reader and skater, Dave Van Housen.
Dave hit me up on Facebook chat and wanted to know if I had any suggestions on Vegan skate shoes. We went back and forth trying to figure out what canvas skate shoes could last the test of time and not rape your wallet in the process. I, myself, use to be Vegan for 5 years so I know this situation too well.
Since the mid 90's, vegan friendly shoes haven't been as easy to obtain without putting a tremendous hole in your wallet and shoes. Most vegan friendly shoes (when I say "most" I mean Ed Templeton and Geoff Rowley models) use to be indestructible and better than performance suede. They would always have a nice, thick rubber toe piece kinda like the Emerica Templeton 4. Since those days are over, I dug deeply into my skate nerdery of a brain and looked online to help Dave find a solution to his problem. In the end, I told him that a CONS CTS in canvas should do the trick. It has a solid rubber toe cap to manage his kickflip problems and has a strong layered toe box to handle some abuse. In helping Dave, I also came to a conclusion myself. I must review a canvas skate shoe.
Originally, this review started because Timothy Olson of Roger skateboards asked me if I'd like to do an Adidas review. I was all like "Fuck yeah, brah!" and he was all like "Oh-kay…..brah" and the rest is history. Weeks later, I received a package from Adidas to find the Ronan and the Adi-Ease. Obviously, I wanted to skate the Ronan and feature them in our reviews but after remembering my conversation with Dave, I knew that skating the Adi-Ease would make for an interesting and insightful article. It all lined up incredibly well so here is your Adidas Adi-Ease shoe review.
The review was done using our month long format and the shoe was skated for a total of 20 hours. Check below after each section to view the grading system. We base our ratings from 1-10. 10 being the best and 1 being the absolute worst. Enjoy.
Sizing, Style & Support:
The Adidas Adi-Ease have a traditional yet stylish look and delivers the goods. It's absolutely true to size and should fit whatever size shoe you normally wear. Adidas continually adjusts to todays popular colorways and has some very interesting ones for the Adi-Ease. Most of the colorways are themed and directed towards warmer colors that seem ideal for wearing during the summer/spring time. At first, I have to say that I wasn't pleased with the idea of skating in White canvas shoes. Sure, I live in NY so most of the time fashion is no holds bar but something felt uncertain about wearing white shoes. Maybe my sexuality? Maybe that felt uncertain? But seriously, after wearing them and even more so, skating them, the idea of kicking around in white shoes grew on me. They seemed to stick out but without distracting me and on the plus side, they always looked cool with whatever I wore. Towards the end of the review, I started to feel like Ed Templeton and NO, not in the sense of feeling gassy and bloated but in the sense of scooping impossibles and wearing white shoes. They just seem to go together so well.
As always, in fashion, support isn't even a thought. It's all about looking good on the outside and crying on the inside. That isn't necessarily the case when wearing the Adi-Ease. I just say this in regards to the support aspect of the shoe; their isn't really a whole lot to say about it. The insole is a non removable foam insert which features a sockliner to prevent unwanted odor and adds some protection. I haven't had any real aches from skating the shoe all day but I'm currently skating them with some King Foam insoles. They feel slightly tighter but overall get the job done.
Sizing: True to Size
Style: 10, Great summer shoe and looked good when I glanced down at the board.
Support: 5, Feature no arch support and are relatively flat.
Support with King Foam inserts: 8
Comfort & Cushioning:
Granted, the insole might not be the most convincing aspect behind buying this shoe but it's comfort is great. The shoes designed is suitable for anyone with wide or narrow feet. Although the silhouette of the shoe looks extremely narrow, it's actually accommodating and comfortable. This is all thanks to the thinly padded insole and relaxing canvas that surrounds the shoe. Because it is a summer themed shoe, you won't find any real cushioning anywhere. It's thinly padded around the collar but lacks in the tongue and overall shoe.
Boardfeel & Grip:
The shoes boardfeel and grip are phenomenal. The boardfeel goes without saying considering it's thin construction but I didn't really expect the grip to be as good as it was. The Adi-Ease has an unconventional gum rubber outsole. It's outsole is made up of a waffle upper and cut grooves throughout the bottom for flexibility. The circles around the upper provided exceptional boardfeel and didn't feel as strange as I thought they would. They actually served as a good pressure point on the ball of my foot. I've always heard great things about Adidas outsoles but didn't really believe it until I tried them out myself. The grip didn't even start to show signs of shedding until the fourth week.
You wouldn't think that 1 piece of strategically place foxing tape would make a difference but here's a great example. This is primarily why the Adi-Ease lasted so long. It's placement was in many ways necessary and overall one of the best aspects of the shoe. The type of rubber they used for the sole is soft, which in the end causes slow shedding during flip tricks and ollies. It's isn't the type of soft rubber that would stick onto your griptape or gouge easily. It's was consistently sliding right off the board which made all of my skating consistent in itself. Luckily, the design of the Adi-Ease is so low to the ground that most of the beatings take place on the sole and never really get a chance to touch the canvas. Only in cases of over extending your ankle will the canvas start to shed and show on your griptape.
Well, now you're here asking yourself whether you should get the Adi-Ease…… After all, I did my research and found that most of them are ranging anywhere between $49-$54.00 online. Who knows, they might even be cheaper at select skate shops. Granted, at $54 that's a suede skate shoe on sale but my fighting argument is that you've now seen the abuse the Adi-Ease can take. You've also witnessed the fact that the industry is now making durable and functional canvas skate shoes. This should be acknowledged and at the very least appreciated.
On a final note, if I could actually suggest these shoes to a type of skater, I'd recommend them to a skater who's consistent doing flip tricks and has steady control over his board. (look at coverage of Maloof DC and watch Pete Eldridge kill it in the Adi-Ease) The reason behind that being is because if you fuck up on a flip trick and the board comes back to hit your feet, you will cry like a little bitch. Other than that, I'm glad with the outcome of this review strictly because this review was completely unintentional.
Overall, I'm glad that you, the reader, contributed and made this idea a full on review. Thank you. You guys are always more than welcomed to message me or chat with me about what shoe you'd like to see reviewed next on Facebook or Twitter.
I hope you guys enjoyed the review and found it interesting. Hopefully, down the line, we'll find more companies with durable canvas shoes and put them to the test.
Special Thanks to George @ Adidas, Timothy @ Roger Skateboards and Dave Van Housen for asking about a good vegan shoe.