Adidas Adizero Takumi Sen 2 Review
The Adidas Takumi Sen 3 is a remarkably nice shoe, with great cushioning and grip. It uses Adidas' Boost foam in the forefoot, which actually gives it more cushioning in the front than the back, something that's pretty unique. The outsole and the boost foam should give a longer life to this lightweight shoe. The Takumi Sen is Japanese, so it can be a little tricky to get hold of. The name means "An Artisan of The Highest Order," and the shoe does seem to have an unusual design aesthetic. There is no single part of the shoe that is radically different from any other, but the overall impression is of a shoe from a different culture. (This is a little strange given that Adidas is German, not Japanese.) I rate the Takumi Sen as "Highly Recommended." (I use The Science of Running Shoes as the basis of how I test running shoes and what you should look for in a running shoe.)
- 1 Characteristics
- 2 Comparisons
- 3 Cushioning and Shoes
- 4 Visualizing the Attributes of the Adidas Takumi Sen
- 5 A Comparison with other Recommended Shoes
- . If you're okay with running in high heels, then this is an excellent shoe, combining good cushioning with light weight. Its grip on asphalt, even wet asphalt makes it a good choice for speedwork. longevity
- Running Economy, and while it's cushioning/weight ratio is not as good as the best, it's still a nice ride. The Boost foam in the forefoot has a nice spring to it, and it should last much longer than normal foam. . The Takumi Sen is cushioned with a combination of traditional EVA foam, with a section of Adidas' "Boost" foam under the forefoot. The result is a shoe with more cushioning in the forefoot than the heel, something unique in my experience. Unlike earlier versions, the cushioning is good enough to improve
- . The Takumi Sen midsole height is 17mm/21mm for a 4mm drop, which stays the same when the shoe is worn. This is a low enough drop that I don't feel like I'm running in high heels.
- . While the Takumi Sen has two different foams, these are not designed to interfere with your biomechanics, just focus the cushioning on the forefoot. Adidas' "torsion system" links the forefoot and heel, but I'm not sure this has any effect (good or bad.) There's no noticeable "arch support" to cause pressure on the plantar fascia.
- . The Takumi Sen is a little less flexible than you'd expect for a lightweight shoe, but this manifests itself as a little bit of toe off spring rather than just deadening your foot movement.
- . The outsole covers most the contact surface, and the forefoot has hard plastic "nubs" that provide wonderful grip on asphalt. These plastic nubs are awesome for speedwork, especially in damp conditions. The rubber on the extreme edge of the heel and toe is by Continental tires and is quite sticky. Overall this is one of the best outsoles I've come across.
- needs cutting open to prevent toe problems. (I recommend cutting open the toe box of virtually all running shoes, with the exception of a few shoes like some Altra shoes. When you have some worn out shoes, you should try cutting open the toe box. I've found that it's a big improvement, allowing my toes to move naturally and engage for toe off, as well as reducing the possibility of blisters.) . The shape of the Takumi Sen does not match the human foot, and the toe box
- . The upper is much more substantial than you'd expect in a lightweight shoe. The material seems rather thick, but the open weave is quite breathable. The upper is inflexible but reasonably comfortable, and I don't expect the few seams or reinforcement patches to cause any problems. There is no padding except a little around the soft ankle opening.
- . The tongue is not padded, but made of material that's a little thicker than many lightweight shoes. The tongue design is traditional, with no attachments to the upper along the sides, but it has a loop to attach it to the laces. I found the tongue stayed in place fine.
- . The Takumi Sen has traditional flat laces that stay tied.
- . The heel counter is far more solid than I'd like, but it doesn't come up all the way, so it shouldn't dig in. While heal counters are pretty useless, at least this one is relatively harmless.
This review was made possible by readers like you buying products via these links.
The Takumi Sen doesn't have any close competition from the other shoes I've tested. Its combination of light weight, stiffness, high grip and firm midsole make it a little unusual.
2.1 Takumi Sen 3 and Takumi Sen 2
While they might appear similar, the version 2 and 3 are radically different to run in. The Takumi Sen 2 is really rather firm, to the point that I'd classify it as a minimalist shoe. The Takumi Sen 3 on the other hand is nicely cushioned, especially in the forefoot. Both have rather more substantial uppers than is the norm with a lightweight shoe.
2.2 Takumi Sen 3 and Asics Gel Hyper Speed
The Takumi Sen is a little heavier than the Asics Gel Hyper Speed which is a major strike against it. However, it offers better forefoot cushioning and better grip. I also expect it to last much longer unless you heel-strike heavily. The decision between the two shoes mainly depends on how much you want forefoot cushioning over heel cushioning; the Takumi Sen has more in the forefoot, the Hyper Speed more in the heel. In terms of outright performance, the Hyper Speed has a slight edge due to its lower weight, but the extra grip of the Takumi Sen might compensate.
2.3 Takumi Sen 3 and Hoka Clifton
The Takumi Sen and the Clifton are not really competitors; the Clifton is about 40% heavier and provides massively more cushioning. If you're after cushioning then the Clifton is the best choice, and nothing comes close, not even the Takumi Sen.
2.4 Takumi Sen 3 and New Balance RC5000v2
While the Takumi Sen is lighter than many shoes, it's actually 65% heavier than the New Balance RC5000v2. The Takumi Sen offers more forefoot cushioning, but the ultralight RC5000v2 actually offers more cushioning in the heel. While the Takumi Sen is a great shoe, it can't really compete with the outrageously good RC5000v2.
2.5 Takumi Sen 3 and Asics GT 2000
I tend to compare shoes against my benchmark "normal running shoe", the Asics GT 2000. The GT 2000 weights 70% more than the svelte Takumi Sen, but the cushioning is nearly the same. The GT 2000 has a more padded upper, but the comfort is not as different as you might think. What the GT 2000 does give you that the Takumi Sen lacks is lots of over engineered attempts to manipulate your stride, attempts that The Science of Running Shoes indicates are all in vain.
3 Cushioning and Shoes
It's intuitively obvious that the cushioning in a shoe will reduce the impact on your body when running. However, The Science of Running Shoes indicates that the reality is rather more complex. While slight cushioning may reduce the effort needed to run by improving your Running Economy, most scientific research indicates that more cushioning does further improve Running Economy. In addition, cushioning does not generally reduce impact and may actually increase it. This is counterintuitive, but is likely to be due to the way a runners mind and body adapts to softer cushioning. Unfortunately, the scientific evidence is far from complete and it's hard to give clear recommendations. I believe that some runners will prefer more cushioning, while others prefer less, and typically those running further have a fondness for greater cushioning. I also believe that a shoe should be as light as possible, and a shoe should justify its weight with the cushioning it provides. My advice is to decide what level of cushioning you're looking for, and then find the lightest shoes that also fit well and are comfortable.
4 Visualizing the Attributes of the Adidas Takumi Sen
5 A Comparison with other Recommended Shoes
For a more detailed comparison of these shoes see the Recommendations for Best Running Shoes. This table lists the key attributes of What to Look for in Running Shoes. For more detailed information, on the shoes see detailed shoe comparison.
|Full Review||Name||Rating|| Recommended
|Asics 33-DFA Review||33-DFA||Worth considering||$90||5.7||10.6||16.5||27||27||0||6.1||6|
|Saucony Type A6 Review||A6||Highly Recommended||$100||8.2||6.1||9.5||17||21||4||5.0||8|
|Adidas Adios Boost 2 Review||Adios||Worth considering||$140||4.7||8.6||13.4||17||27||11||4.0||7|
|Skechers GO Bionic 2 Review||Bionic||Highly Recommended||$95||6.4||7.0||10.9||15||18||2||4.5||9|
|Hoka Bondi Review||Bondi||Highly Recommended||$150||8.0||10.9||17.0||41||45||5||8.8||0|
|Hoka Clayton Review||Clayton||Best of the Best||$150||8.8||8.3||12.9||26||30||3||7.3||5|
|Hoka Clifton 3 Review||Clifton3||Best of the Best||$130||9.1||9.8||15.3||34||38||3||8.9||6|
|On Cloudracer Review||Cloudracer||Worth considering||$130||5.7||8.2||12.8||19||27||5||4.7||8|
|Hoka Conquest Review||Conquest||Worth considering||$170||5.0||11.9||18.5||28||34||5||6.0||3|
|Saucony Cortana 4 Review||Cortana||Worth considering||$150||4.4||9.9||18.7||22||28||5||4.3||5|
|Mizuno Wave Cruise Review||Cruise||Worth considering||$120||6.6||5.9||12.5||17||20||7||3.9||7|
|Newton Distance IV Review||Distance||Worth considering||$155||7.5||9.1||14.2||26||31||3||6.8||6|
|Asics Gel DS Racer 10 Review||DS Racer||Worth considering||$110||8.2||7.0||10.9||21||26||6||5.8||6|
|Mizuno Wave Ekiden 8 Review||Ekiden||Worth considering||$115||5.7||5.7||14.6||13||18||6||3.2||8|
|Saucony Endorphin Review||Endorphin||Highly Recommended||$125||11.1||4.1||6.4||14||13||-1||4.5||9|
|Adidas Energy Boost Review||Energy||Worth considering||$160||7.2||10.0||15.6||20||30||7||7.2||6|
|Puma Faas 100 R Review||Faas 100||Highly Recommended||$90||8.4||6.1||9.4||15||20||1||5.1||9|
|Saucony Fastwitch Review||Fastwitch||Highly Recommended||$90||9.5||7.1||11.1||20||22||4||6.8||8|
|Topo Fli-Lyte Review||Fli-Lyte||Highly Recommended||$100||6.0||9.4||14.6||23||24||4||5.6||6|
|Nike Free 4.0 Review||Free||Recommended||$120||5.3||8.2||13.6||24||30||6||4.4||6|
|Saucony Freedom Review||Freedom||Recommended||$160||5.4||10.7||16.6||11||11||3||5.8||7|
|Asics Gel Lyte 33 3 Review||Gel Lyte||Not recommended||$90||8.0||7.3||11.4||17||24||4||5.8||9|
|Skechers GOmeb Speed 3 Review||GOmeb 3||Worth considering||$120||6.9||8.1||12.6||20||24||4||5.5||8|
|Skechers GORun 4 Review||GORun||Not recommended||$100||6.1||7.5||11.7||15||23||3||4.5||7|
|Skechers GOrun Ultra 2 Review||GRU||Worth considering||$90||7.5||10.0||15.6||28||34||8||7.5||5|
|Skechers GOrun Ultra Road Review||GRU-R||Worth considering||$105||6.5||11.3||17.6||30||40||6||7.4||7|
|Asics GT 2000 Review||GT 2000||Not recommended||$120||4.8||11.2||17.4||28||35||5||5.4||4|
|Asics Gel Hyper Speed 7 Review||Hyper Speed||Highly Recommended||$75||10.9||6.3||9.8||22||26||5||6.8||7|
|Altra Instinct 3.5 Review||Instinct 3.5||Recommended||$115||4.9||9.3||15.2||24||23||0||4.5||6|
|Asics Tarther Kainos 3 Review||Kainos||Worth considering||$130||10.0||6.9||10.7||17||27||9||6.8||7|
|Saucony Kinvara 7 Review||Kinvara||Best of the Best||$110||7.4||8.2||12.8||23||27||3||6.1||6|
|Nike LunaRacer 4 Review||LunaRacer||Recommended||$90||9.9||7.0||10.9||22||30||7||6.9||6|
|Nike LunarSpider R5 Review||LunarSpider||Recommended||$125||6.9||6.7||10.4||17||21||3||4.6||7|
|Hoka Mafate Speed Review||Mafate||Best of the Best||$170||7.6||11.9||18.5||39||40||4||9.0||3|
|Pearl Izumi EM Road N0 v2 Review||N0||Highly Recommended||$100||7.9||6.5||10.1||14||20||4||5.2||8|
|New Balance 980 Review||NB 980||Worth considering||$110||4.6||10.1||15.7||21||30||5||4.6||5|
|Hoka Odyssey Review||Odyssey||Highly Recommended||$130||8.5||9.4||14.6||37||45||5||8.0||4|
|Altra Olympus Review||Olympus||Highly Recommended||$130||5.4||11.8||18.4||27||27||3||6.4||4|
|Altra One 2.5 Review||One||Highly Recommended||$100||8.5||7.1||11.1||22||25||2||6.0||8|
|Altra Paradigm Review||Paradigm||Highly Recommended||$130||6.4||9.9||15.4||25||25||1||6.4||4|
|Asics Piranha SP 5 Review||Piranha||Recommended||$100||10.1||4.2||6.5||11||15||3||4.2||9|
|Brooks PureFlow 5 Review||PureFlow||Worth considering||$110||6.0||9.7||15.1||26||29||5||5.8||8|
|Salming Race Review||Race||Worth considering||$130||6.9||6.5||10.1||16||19||4||4.5||7|
|New Balance RC1600 v2 Review||RC1600||Highly Recommended||$110||8.8||5.6||8.7||15||21||5||4.9||8|
|New Balance RC5000 Review||RC5000||Best of the Best||$125||12.2||3.4||5.3||13||17||3||4.2||8|
|New Balance RC5000v2 Review||RC5000v2||Best of the Best||$125||14.2||4.0||6.2||13||21||6||5.7||8|
|Skechers GoRun Ride 3 Review||Ride||Worth considering||$85||5.9||8.5||13.2||18||28||6||5.0||9|
|Inov-8 RoadXTreme 220 Review||RXT-220||Worth considering||$120||5.2||8.0||18.2||14||17||3||4.2||9|
|Hoka Stinson Lite Review||Stinson||Highly Recommended||$160||7.3||11.6||18.1||35||40||6||8.5||2|
|Nike Zoom Streak LT 3 Review||Streak LT||Best of the Best||$80||8.8||5.4||8.4||16||21||4||4.8||6|
|Adidas Takumi Sen 3 Review||Takumi Sen 3||Highly Recommended||$160||7.7||6.6||10.2||17||21||4||5.1||6|
|Altra Torin 2.0 Review||Torin||Worth considering||$125||5.8||9.6||14.9||28||25||-1||5.5||5|
|Hoka Tracer Review||Tracer||Recommended||$130||7.2||7.4||11.5||21||24||2||5.3||6|
|Merrell Trail Glove 3 Review||Trail Glove||Best of the Best||$100||2.9||6.9||24.7||11||11||0||2.0||9|
|Brooks Transcend 2 Review||Transcend||Recommended||$170||5.1||12.6||19.6||30||36||6||6.5||4|
|Topo Tribute Review||Tribute||Recommended||$100||5.9||7.3||11.4||20||18||-1||4.3||7|
|Mizuno Wave Universe 5 Review||Universe||Highly Recommended||$125||10.7||3.1||10.6||9||12||1||3.3||9|
|Merrell Vapor Glove 2 Review||Vapor Glove||Highly Recommended||$85||2.1||6.1||27.6||6||5||0||1.3||10|
|New Balance Vazee Pace Review||Vazee Pace||Worth considering||$110||6.0||8.6||13.4||18||24||6||5.2||6|
|Asics TartherZeal 3 Review||Zeal||Worth considering||$140||10.9||6.3||9.8||17||27||9||6.8||7|
It's not a running shoe, but I love the Hoka Tor Ultra hiking boot and I've tested the Altra Lone Peak Boot.
Older shoe reviews: Saucony Hattori Review, Mizuno Cursoris Review, Skechers GO Bionic 2 Review, Hoka Clifton Review, Saucony Virrata 2 Review, Brooks PureCadence 3 Review, Brooks PureConnect 3 Review, Brooks PureFlow 3 Review.
Reviews of shoes that are not worth including on the table: Hoka Huaka Review, Patagonia EVERlong Review.