|Wilson Rush Pro 2.0 Scores|
|Overall Sole Durability||4.3|
Wilson burst onto the premium performance tennis shoe scene with the release of the original Rush Pros a couple of years ago. The Rush Pros were light and fast, and they offered impressive stability and durability, leaving this update, the Rush Pro 2.0, some big shoes to fill. So how did The Rush Pro 2.0s stack up? For starters, there were some noticeable (and somewhat necessary) improvements that jumped out at us. First of all, these new shoes look great. They look more modern, sleeker and faster than the originals. Secondly, mesh panels were inserted into the uppers, giving the shoes some much needed breathability. The fit was also widened up a bit. This suited our tester with wider feet, but it made the shoes a bit too roomy for our playtester with narrow feet. A lower-to-the-ground ride made the Rush Pro 2.0s feel more natural, but reduced the level of cushioning that the originals offered. Although the verdict is still out on whether this update is actually better than the original, the new fit and feel are sure to appeal to more players.
While our playtesters found the Rush Pro 2.0s to be comfortable overall, each tester had a particular issue or two. Compared with the original Rush Pros, the 2.0's wider last was a better fit for Jason, but he felt there was some cushioning missing from this iteration. He explained, "The very first thing I noticed when I stepped into these shoes was that they were a much better fit for my foot shape than the previous model. These are slightly wider through the midfoot and forefoot. The uppers are nice and soft, so I was able to play all out from the first day. The one negative for me was the lack of cushioning. I didn't feel like there was enough cushioning for the day to day pounding of playing on a hard court."
Chris thought Wilson took some steps forward and some steps back in the comfort department. He critiqued, "I liked the revised forefoot design of this update. The previous model was so overbuilt in the forefoot that my feet felt suffocated. The room in the toe box and forefoot has been improved here, and when combined with the lighter mesh in the vamp, give the shoes an airier feel. One issue I had, though, was that the redesigned forefoot pinched my feet near my little toes when the shoe flexed as I went up on my toes. While the pinching was more noticeable between points when I was walking rather than when I was running down a shot, it was there throughout the test. I also found the forefoot cushioning to be very, very minimal. I could really feel the court through the shoes, and there was barely enough cushioning to keep my feet protected."
While Andy preferred the fit of the previous version, he still found the 2.0s to be plenty comfortable for long hours on court. He said, "This was a strength of the previous version (that I loved), and it continues to be a strength in the 2.0s. While they may not be quite as cushioned as the first iteration, I still found them nice and comfortable right out of the box. They felt fast on court, and they never got in the way when I needed to accelerate and cut at top speeds. However, some of the forefoot cushioning seems to have been taken out to reduce the weight and provide a lower to the ground feel. They also didn't fit quite as snugly, so I didn't get that plush cushioned feel all around my feet like I did from the previous version."
Everyone noticed the vast improvement in the ventilation of the Rush Pro 2.0s compared to the original. Chris never had any issues here. He said, "I found this to be one of the most improved aspects of these shoes compared to the original Rush Pros. Whereas the Rush Pros ran hot, the Rush Pro 2.0s are pretty well vented. There's ample mesh utilized in the uppers, and that did a solid job of letting hot air out and cool air in. Even on some of the warmer and muggier days we had, my feet remained decently comfortable."
Andy also appreciated the upgrade. He raved, "Breathability was the most significant improvement for me in this update. It was one of the few things I didn't like in the first Rush Pro, but now there's more than enough ventilation for even the hottest days. The large mesh cutout in the forefoot allowed plenty of air to pass through and cool down my feet during play."
Agreeing with the others was Jason, who said, "A definite improvement over the original Rush Pro! The added mesh panels in the upper made a noticeable difference in how well the shoes breathed."
None of the testers complained about the arch support of the Rush Pro 2.0s. Andy likes having good arch support in his shoes and found what he needed in these. He said, "These shoes fit my feet very nicely, and I thought they provided plenty of arch support to keep my joints happy. I never had any issue with my feet fatiguing during play."
Jason has flatter feet and doesn't like a lot of pressure on his arches, and the 2.0s worked for him just fine, too. He said, "With a wider fit through the midfoot/arch area, this 2.0 version was much better for me and my low arches. The arch support was still a little high for my taste, but with the added room my feet weren't squished with nowhere to go."
Chris' narrow feet with high arches also had more than enough support. He said, "I liked the way these shoes fit and I liked the way they supported my arches. There was a lot of stability from the midfoot shank, which did a great job of making the shoes flex correctly. It didn't take long for the insoles to mold to the shape of my feet and offer a comfortable ride. With both comfort and support dialed in, I was able to focus on my game and did not have to worry about any aches or pains from my feet."
The low-to-the-ground ride of the Rush Pro 2.0s offered plenty of support and stability for our playtesters. Although the upper material was a little softer than he would've liked, Jason was still fully confident moving around the court during this test. He explained, "For a lighter weight, speed-oriented shoe, I felt like the stability was pretty good. When I was changing direction on side to side movements I did notice the uppers flexing a little more than I would've liked, but they held my feet in place. There was very slight toe jamming, but I could say that for the majority of shoes."
Andy had no issues. He raved, "Support and stability are the strengths of these shoes. They feel very low to the ground and the 'cage-like' technology in the forefoot locked my feet in nicely. I had full confidence when moving and cutting at top speeds, knowing the shoes would support my movements and not buckle under the pressure. There's also a nice midfoot shank in the midsole that resists twisting. The Rush Pro 2.0s were stable in the same way that a Nike Vapor 9.5 or adidas Feather III is - low to the ground with no twisting on lateral movements."
Chris thought the shoes resisted twisting well, but he would have liked a snugger fit to prevent his narrow feet from sliding around inside the shoes. He explained, "The Rush Pro 2.0s flexed well for a fast feel. They also offered decent support, but I was most impressed with the stability. The midfoot shank did a solid job of beefing up the stability, and the shoes resisted twisting well. The uppers offered OK lateral support. I did feel my feet sliding slightly off the base of the shoe when coming to an abrupt lateral stop, but I never felt like I was getting close to rolling an ankle. My feet also slid forward in the shoes when coming to a quick stop. The forefoot fit was a tad too wide for me, allowing my feet to move around some inside the shoes. Fortunately, the shoes were soft enough at the toes to not be too much of a bother when it came to toe jam."
The outsole of the Rush Pro 2.0s held up very well throughout our playtest, even with a couple of testers who really put their shoes through the ringer. Chris found he had a lot more life left in his pair after the test was finished. He praised, "The outsoles held up much better than I expected. WIth the deep herringbone tread and a relatively light feel, I had my reservations about the durability of these shoes. However, at the end of a month-long test I still have lots of outsole material to wear through. Even the high wear area under the big toe of my right foot is holding up remarkably well."
Andy managed to log a lot of on court hours to truly test the durability. He said, "I got to wear these shoes quite a bit, and only at the end of the playtest did I begin to notice any sort of balding on the outsole. It was in the usual spot for me, right under my big toe. I'll also test the lateral forefoot's durability with the occasional aggressive slide, and that area held up well, too. The Rush Pro 2.0s provide very impressive durability for a speed-oriented shoe."
Jason was also blown away by the excellent durability. He raved, "I was impressed with the durability of the original Rush Pro shoes and I continue to be impressed with the 2.0 version. I don't expect great durability from these lighter weight shoes, but the Rush Pro 2.0s seem to buck that trend. After 15-plus hours I barely noticed any tread loss."
The resiliency of the toe area of the Rush Pro 2.0s was equally impressive. Chris can usually do some damage to that area through the course of a playtest, but he had no issues this time. He said, "I have excessive scuffing on the toes of my shoes, but the bumpers are holding up well. My left shoe in particular has taken a beating, but as Michelle would say, 'It just keeps on keeping on!' Both the rubber toe bumper and the fabric on the lateral side of it are holding up way better than I expected. Even after a month of hitting I still have lots of life left in these shoes."
Andy also appreciated the ample protection on the front of the shoe. He said, "I'm not a major toe dragger, but there is extra protection in the toe area of these shoes that I could barely put a dent in. After logging long hours I have full confidence that I won't be wearing down the toe area before the outsole."
Though the outsole tread pattern changed from the original, traction continued to be a strength of the Rush Pro 2.0s. Andy likes to make some aggressive slides, even on hard courts, and he had full confidence in this pair of shoes. He raved, "The outsole provided a nice blend of grip and give for instilling confidence on the hard courts. They were slick enough that I could take an aggressive slide and sticky enough to get me out of that slide quickly and moving back to the middle of the court. I don't like it when an outsole is too slick or too sticky, and this one is just right."
Chris thought the impressive grip allowed him to feel light and quick. He said, "The herringbone tread pattern did a good job of offering ample traction. I quickly found that I could trust them to grip and let me take that explosive first step for a sprint to the ball. I also liked the grip I got when making lateral cuts and quick stops. When combined with the lighter feel and low-to-the-ground cushioning, the grip gave the shoes a very fast feel on court."
Jason said, "The 2.0s went away from the unique triangular tread pattern of the original Rush Pro, but the results were the same: great traction! I could start, stop and change direction with few to no issues."
The sleek, low profile design of the Rush Pro 2.0s made them feel light and fast to our playtest team. Jason felt the shoes moved very naturally with his every step. He explained, "The 2.0s felt lighter and faster, and it wasn't just because of the drop in weight. The heel-to-toe transition felt smoother, and the shoes also felt lower to the ground, which affected the cushioning but not the speedy feel."
Also praising the design of the shoe was Andy, who said, "These shoes are light, fast and low to the ground. I felt like I could move at top speeds and not be slowed down by the shoes at all. They don't weigh in as the lightest shoes on the market, but the weight is hidden nicely and contributes to the durability and stability of the shoes."
Chris found the design of the shoes worked quite well for him. He offered, "I thought these were very well constructed shoes. They checked a lot of the right boxes when it came to stability, traction, durability and ventilation. Most impressively, they offered all of that performance and still felt light and fast on court. While they are not super light speed shoes I could tell I had a more substantial ride, yet I didn't really feel like I was giving up much speed. I was able to move very well in these shoes and enjoyed playing in them."
Chris- "I liked the improved ventilation. The traction, durability, arch support and overall airier feel of the shoes made for an impressive update."
Jason- "I thought the Rush Pro 2.0s were a good fit for my foot type, and they proved to not only be lighter weight, but durable and stable as well."
Andy- "Nice cushioning, much improved ventilation and a fast feel. Their low-to-the-ground design made me feel quick and secure. Impressive durability, too!"
Chris- "The shoes pinched my feet throughout the test on the lateral side near my little toes. I would have liked more forefoot cushioning. The fit was wide for me, so my feet were moving around some inside them. As a side note, the tongue would annoyingly get eaten by the shoe during play. I had to adjust it back into position about once a set."
Jason- "The biggest issue was the lack of cushioning. A minor issue I had was the tongue would constantly get pulled down into the shoe."
Andy- "A little less cushioning and a little wider fit than the previous version (although the wider fit may appeal to others). I also wasn't a fan of the thin tongue."
Chris- "I preferred the fit of the original Rush Pro, but I pretty much like everything else more in this version. The Rush Pro 2.0s feel lighter and faster on court, and that was a big plus for me. Other shoes I'd consider along for a similar ride would be the Asics Gel Solution Speed 2, New Balance 996 and the Head Sprint Pro."
Jason- "A stripped down, speedy version of the original Rush Pro. The Rush Pro 2.0s remind me of the ride and feel of the New Balance 996, but the 2.0s are more stable."
Andy- "The Rush Pro 2.0s are up there with the Nike Vapor 9.5 and adidas Feather III as some of the best speed-oriented performance shoes on the market. They actually feel pretty similar to the Feather IIIs because of the thin tongue, low-to-the-ground feel and excellent forefoot stability. The Asics Solution Speed 2s are just a notch above those three shoes for me, though, because they have a little more support and cushioning."
Playtester Foot Types:
Chris - Narrow width / Medium arch
Jason - Wide width / Low arch
Andy - Medium width / Low arch
Review date: January 2015. If you found this review interesting or have further questions or comments please contact us.
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