The process of updating a specific running shoe model is no easy task, but New Balance has successfully upgraded the 870 stability trainer one more time. Designed for mild to moderate overpronators, the shoe features a fairly traditional undercarriage design with a semi-firm medial post serving as the main tool to offset inward rolling of the foot after impact. But several modern design elements—including an asymmetrical heel counter (lower on the lateral side than the medial side)—make this shoe special. First, new materials (a new upper with welded TPU overlays and a lighter foam package) make this shoe lighter than the first three incarnations, but it’s also more flexible and offers a more snugged-down fit too. Those will all come as huge highlights for runners who run in stability shoes because, while this shoe definitely has a feeling of rearfoot and midfoot stability, it also feels fast, flexible, light and athletic. With the configuration of lighter, springier foams in the front of the foot and the addition of more toe spring (the upward-arcing forefoot design), this shoe has enough pep for tempo runs and fartleks while also serving as an everyday trainer that is comfortable and reliable on longer slower runs. Certainly modern stability shoes have become lighter and faster across the board, but based on our tests—and knowing how this shoe improved—we’ve deemed this one among the very best of this year’s crop. And to that point, it could be a game-changer for someone looking to set a new half marathon PR this summer.
This is the shoe for your if: … You’re looking for a lightweight, well-cushioned and very stable shoe for consistent training for races from 10K to the marathon.
Weights: 9.3 oz. (men’s), 7.9 oz. (women’s)
Offset: 8mm; 27mm (heel), 19mm (forefoot)