Asics Gel Resolution 3 Shoe Review
- Ankle collar needs a break-in
The Asics Gel Resolution 3 received high marks from our team. As with the previous models, the cushioning and comfort were impressive. Thanks to the Flexion Fit system the uppers flexed even better, resulting in a more comfortable ride. Performance aspects such as support, stability and traction all scored high and seem to be improved from the previous two models. Our team did notice that this shoe felt wider than the previous version. Two of our testers had issues with the outsole durability, but the Gel Resolution 3 does come with a 6 month sole guarantee. Overall, the Gel Resolution 3 excelled in every significant category. This is a shoe that can meet the demands of even the most advanced player. There is no doubt in our minds that Asics has once again raised the bar.
With great success comes great expectations.
For Asics, that is exactly what it was dealing with when it launched the Gel Resolution 3. The bar had been set high by the two previous models, thanks to their excellent traction, cushioning and other performance features. With each iteration, the expectations on this already high performing franchise have grown. Players want faster, lighter, more supportive and better gripping footwear.
Asics is confident they can deliver those improvements with this latest model. They've added some new technical features without sacrificing any of the features from the first two models. A Flexion Fit upper provides form-fitting comfort without sacrificing support. Asics claims its Trusstic System, a supportive midfoot shank that connects to the heel support, reduces weight while adding torsional rigidity and enhanced medial stability. These technologies, combined with the tried and true Gel Cushioning System, Impact Guidance System (IGS), and Personal Heel Fit, will hopefully add up to a shoe that raises the bar even higher.
Our playtest team tried out the Gel Resolution 3 for 30 days to see if the shoe would live up to the growing expectations of the Gel Resolution line.
Comfort - Score: 4.6
The Gel Resolution 3 provided a very comfortable ride with no break-in. Ryan couldn't be happier. He said, "The Gel Resolutions have always been known for their comfort, and this upgrade is no exception. They feel great on every part of the foot without any rubbing or excess friction, and they have an excellent amount of cushioning."
Chris also praised the comfort of the shoes. He said, "I loved the comfort of these shoes. I thought this third version offered the softest flex in the uppers and there was no break-in required. The mesh in the vamp region flexed really well on toe-off, eliminating any chance of an uncomfortable fold from the uppers across the tops of my toes. The cushioning was excellent, as I've come to expect from Asics. I was able to find a secure enough fit (by adding a thicker insole and wearing two pairs of socks), so my feet weren't sliding around inside the shoes. As a result, I had no blister issues."
"The Gel Resolution 3 is a great fitting shoe," said Spencer. "It offered a softly wrapped, yet supportive, feel around my feet. I did experience a tad bit of discomfort during my first hit, as the toe box tends to narrow a bit toward the toe of the shoe. This caused a little soreness in both pinky toes. No blisters or bruising, just a brief discomfort. After that, though, it was smooth sailing."
Noticing the immediate comfort was Jason. He said, "As a long time fan of the Resolutions, I was once again impressed with the overall comfort. The uppers were soft enough that there was no break-in required. I thought the cushioning had a nice responsive feel to it. The only problem I had with the shoe was the heel collar rubbing against my ankle. I wore crew socks instead of my typical no-shows and it completely fixed the problem."
Ventilation - Score: 4.5
Our team enjoyed the ventilation that came with the generous use of mesh and perforations. Jason's feet stayed cool. He said, "The uppers had enough perforations that the shoe never got hot. I didn't experience any overheating with my feet. I thought the ventilation was improved over the previous model."
Chris said, "The mesh provided excellent ventilation in these shoes. My feet never got overly hot and my feet did not sweat more than usual. I thought this was the most breathable Gel Resolution yet."
Spencer appreciated the material used in the upper. He said, "There's plenty of breathability to be had in this shoe. Using light weight synthetics for support allows the upper to have a lot of mesh. The result is supreme breathability without sacrificing the support."
The breathability was just right for Ryan. He said, "The Gel Resolution 3 has an ideal amount of ventilation. There's enough for the foot to breathe properly, but not so much that I could feel the slightest breeze through the fabric."
Arch Support - Score: 4.1
The arch support of the Gel Resolution 3 felt slightly lower than normal to our testers. Spencer didn't mind. He said, "I rarely have arch issues with shoes, and this was no exception. My medium height arches fit well with the Gel Resolution 3s."
Ryan offered, "Arch support felt a little bit lower in this model, but there wasn't any discomfort. Only players with extreme arches or extremely flat feet might have an issue here, but the vast majority of players should find the support just right."
"There aren't too many high performing shoes that feature a lower arch support," said Jason, who felt the arch was perfect for his foot type. "But fortunately for me, this one did. I experienced no soreness throughout the playtest."
Conversely, the arch was too low for Chris. He said, "With the stock insole the arch support was just a tad lacking for me. I put in an aftermarket insole with a high arch support and was good to go. The well-built midfoot shank did an excellent job of pushing the shoe's flex point forward to protect my arches when sprinting, and also offered great torsional support."
Foot Support/Stability - Score: 4.6
The Gel Resolution 3 scored top marks with our team in this all important category. Jason found zero flaws. He said, "I would put this shoe's stability and support in the upper echelon of shoes. It's just that good! I felt very well supported in all my movements. With my laces locked in tight I felt like I could stop on a dime and my foot wouldn't slide at all."
Chris agreed. He said, "The sturdy chassis lead to a supportive and stable ride in these shoes. They flexed in all the right places and were stiff and stable where needed. The fit was just a tad generous for me, but was perfect once I installed my insoles and wore two pairs of socks. From then on I really couldn't ask for more when it came to this area of performance."
The shoe performed well for Spencer. He said, "The snug fit and support of the upper, along with good court feel, enhanced the performance of these shoes when it came to lateral movement. I was impressed with the light feel combined with the amount of stability. This shoe excels in what I feel are the most important categories, with stability being right there at the top."
Ryan could move aggressively with no fear. He said, "I never slipped in these shoes or felt like they weren't gripping my feet tightly. The width was perfect for me. These shoes gave me the confidence to play without worrying about any potential issues with traction, court coverage, or extra roominess in any part of the shoe."
Sole Durability - Score: 4.1
The Asics High Abrasion Rubber seemed to hold up well during the month-long playtest. Asics also includes a 6-month durability guarantee with the Gel Resolution 3. "The sole durability was fantastic," said Ryan, who put this shoe to the test. "It took weeks of play before I started to see any minor signs of wear on the outsole, and I didn't come close to wearing down the outer layer during the playtest duration. Highly recommended in this category."
The durability also impressed Jason. He said, "The durability was not quite "Barricade" like for me, but close. I played in them for about 10 hours before finally noticing some wear and tear on the medial forefoot side."
Spencer noticed some improvement in the durability, saying, "I tested the original Gel Resolution and found the durability to be somewhat sub par. The durability has improved in this third iteration, though there is still a little room for improvement. That said, now that Asics offers a 6-month guarantee, I wouldn't want to take the chance of sacrificing the excellent tack for a more durable shoe."
The rubber wore down the quickest for Chris. He said, "The outsoles seemed to be built more for traction than outright durability. The area under my big toes was wearing down extensively towards the end of the test. These shoes will not last me six months."
Toe Durability - Score: 4.8
Our two toe-dragging playtesters felt the material on the Gel Resolution 3 held up exceptionally well. Ryan said, "I felt that the toe box was extremely durable, and the material surrounding the toe area didn't show any signs of degradation."
"The toe areas held up well on both shoes," said Chris, who was impressed. "The outsole material wraps up nicely around the tip of the shoes and protects them well. Beyond that, there was enough drag protection to prevent me from dragging the mesh. At the end of the test the toes of my shoes still have plenty of life left in them."
Traction - Score: 4.7
Simply put, our testers felt the traction of the Gel Resolution 3 was outstanding. Spencer felt a combination of features gelled to offer ample grip. He said, "The tread pattern, rubber compound, and pivot point all combine for excellent grip on court. I didn't experience any slips during the playtest."
Jason couldn't ask for more. He said, "This is about as good as it gets if you ask me. The rubber compound felt sticky and gripped the court very well. I loved being able to plant my foot to change directions knowing the shoe would not give out from under me. The multiple pivot points and modified herringbone tread pattern really allowed me to move aggressively on court."
Also moving well was Ryan. He said, "The shoe has great stick on any court, and I was able to pivot and change direction without extra effort or loss of momentum."
Chris echoed what the other testers said. He added, "The traction was great. The outsole material offers a soft and grippy feel. I liked the way the shoes flexed, and it felt like there was always plenty of rubber in contact with the court surface. I was able to start and stop aggressively and had no issues with excessive slipping or sliding."
Weight - Score: 4.4
At 15.5 ounces (size 10.5), the Gel Resolution 3 felt light and fast to our team of testers. Chris loved the weight. He said, "The shoes felt very fast on court. What weight there was seemed to be oriented toward the rear of the shoe, making them feel even lighter than they are. Considering the level of stability from the chassis and heel, I thought the weight was exceptional. Add the excellent traction in with the light weight and you have a very fast feeling shoe."
Jason agreed. He said, "I had no issues with the weight. Could they be lighter? Sure. But they didn't feel heavy at all. The weight seemed to be distributed well and the low-to-the-ground ride helped."
"Definitely a good weight," said Ryan, adding, "They are very solid feeling, but not heavy enough to feel clumsy or awkward when running back and forth or side stepping on the court. They felt very natural and fluid during play."
The weight was not an issue for Spencer, either. He said, "Although not as light as previous versions, the Gel Resolution 3 still feels very light on court. The distribution of weight helps keep movement at maximum efficiency. They felt very fast."
Overall - Score: 4.5
Jason - "Pretty much everything."
Chris - "I liked the cosmetics, general ride, comfort, traction and cushioning the most."
Spencer - "Comfort, performance, cosmetics."
Ryan - "All of the major selling points of a shoe were present in this model: excellent comfort, durability, traction, and overall support."
Jason - "The collar of the shoe rubbed against my ankle during play."
Chris - "They were a tad wide and felt just ever so slightly long. However, an aftermarket insole resolved those issues and also improved arch support."
Spencer - "I had the white/brick red cosmetics, and the mesh in the upper showed the dirt fairly easily."
Ryan - "The only negative thing I can say about this shoe is that the ankle collar could irritate my ankle slightly if I wore no-show style socks."
Compared to other performance shoes our testers have worn, they said:
Jason "This was a wider version of the Gel Resolution 2, which was great for me. It looked, felt and performed like a Resolution."
Chris "In stock form they did not fit me quite as well as the previous versions. The first Gel Resolution is still my favorite, purely because the fit was better for me and the support and stability was close in performance to this one. Right now these rank second for me among the three versions, but with the aftermarket insoles installed, they came close to taking first place."
Spencer "The Gel Resolution 3 offered me a similar fit and feel to the original Gel Resolution, though with more ventilation. Speed-wise, I think of the Nike Vapors. Though the Gel Resolution 3s aren't as light, they have a fast, performance feel."
Ryan "The shoe was an excellent fit for me, and I love it just as much as the Courtballistec 2.3s that were my go-to shoe for the last year or so. For me, there is not a shoe that can top this one in any major category."
Playtester Foot Types:
Jason - Wide width / Low arch
Chris - Narrow width / Medium arch
Spencer - Medium width / Medium arch
Ryan - Medium width / Medium arch
Review date: August 2011. If you found this review interesting or have further questions or comments please contact us.
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