Wilson Rush Pro Shoe Review
- Nothing our team could agree on
The new shoe of choice for ATP World Touring pros Phillip Kohlschreiber and Feliciano Lopez, the Rush Pro is Wilson's top of the line offering. Designed to be fast and low to the ground, the Rush Pro places an emphasis on stability and durability. Though this is often the goal of many shoe manufacturers, Wilson certainly succeeded with this one. Right out of the box our playtesters noticed the comfort and cushioning all around their feet. The built-in inner sleeve really grabs the foot and keeps it feeling snug and secure. When we took it to the courts, the shoe felt low to the ground while still providing our team confidence to move and cut at top speeds. As for durability, the toe and outsole areas held up for the entire test. Wilson also offers a six-month outsole durability guarantee for players who are exceptionally hard on their shoes. The overall performance of this shoe was impressive and is absolutely worth a try!
Comfort - Score: 4.4
All of our playtesters found the new Rush Pro to be very comfortable out of the box, offering a snug, sock-like fit all around the foot. "As soon as you slip this new Rush Pro on you can feel the plush cushioning all around your foot," said Andy. "The inner sleeve in the shoe lends itself to a more snug fit, but it's pillowy and cushioned all over. The Ortholite insole also provides a soft, yet supportive, feel for the footbed. I had no issues with the fit of the shoe. It was comfortable as soon as I put it on and remained so for the duration of the test."
Chris also really enjoyed the comfort and cushioning, and his feet felt good for the entire time he wore the Rush Pros. He said, "I liked the comfortable ride of these shoes. They fit my feet well, and I didn't slide around inside them so I had no blister issues, etc. Also, the uppers were very comfortable, they flexed well, and I never had any pinching from the materials. I also liked the level of cushioning; my feet felt protected but not too elevated from the court. The sock-like fit of the upper held my feet well, and with no slipping or sliding inside the shoes my feet felt comfortable for the duration of the test."
The level of cushioning was instantly evident to Jason, who offered, "Based on cushioning and the plushness of the uppers alone, this was a very comfortable shoe. The uppers required absolutely no break-in time, and they flexed in all the right places. I really liked the cushioning in the forefoot and actually thought it was more padded than the heel area. In my past experience with Wilson shoes they've always been comfortable, and the Rush Pro continues this trend."
Spencer, like Jason, found the shoes to be comfortable, in typical Wilson fashion, but found the fit to be a bit snug. He explained, "Much like other recent Wilson shoes, the comfort was excellent. However, the Rush Pro offered a different type of comfort than previous Wilson shoes I've worn. There was plenty of cushioning, and I certainly felt it in the forefoot. The upper provided foot hugging support, offering a snug feel. This was a great feeling upon lace up but was a tad on the tight side once I started playing. After a half-hour of hitting, though, the shoes settled around my feet nicely and maintained the snug feel and supportive comfort."
Ventilation - Score: 3.8
Our team had mixed feelings when it came to ventilation, but for the most part it didn't affect the enjoyment of the playtest. Spencer felt that the breathability was better in some areas than others. He explained, "The ventilation through the midfoot was excellent. It was not as good in the forefoot and toe area, but there was enough to not have any heat or breathability issues."
Jason didn't have any problems with ventilation. He said, "Plenty of mesh is used throughout the upper, and it pays off. To further assist with the ventilation, the tongue uses minimal padding and material so air can travel more freely into the shoe."
Chris was a little more critical of the breathability, saying, "These were not the best shoes for breathability. My feet ran a tad hotter than average -- mostly up in the forefoot. I felt like my feet were getting slightly better ventilation in the heel area. Even in the forefoot, the heat was not enough to detract from my enjoyment of the shoes; I just made sure I changed out of them immediately after play."
The support cage in the forefoot affected the breathability for Andy, who explained, "There are large mesh windows on both sides of the shoe in the midfoot area that provide a nice amount of breathability. However, other than that the shoe didn't feel incredibly ventilated. The upper of the shoe, particularly in the forefoot, is beefed up for cushioning and support, but the downside of that is a lack of breathability. There's simply too much rubber in the forefoot cage to allow air flow."
Arch Support - Score: 3.4
Our team had mixed feelings about the arch support of the new Rush Pro. For Spencer, the shoe fit perfectly in the arch. He said, "The arch support was right on for me at a medium height. Again, the hugging support made my arches feel good, along with the other areas of my feet."
Echoing those sentiments was Andy, who said, "The arch support seemed to fit my foot well, and the Ortholite insole kept it feeling comfortable and supported throughout the entire test. No issues here."
Chris liked the fit of the arches initially but thought they got a little too supple over time. He explained, "The shoes quickly molded to the shape of my arches and provided a comfortable fit. However, I would have liked them to be a tad stiffer through the midfoot to support my arches better. I did not have any major issues here, but my feet did feel a little stressed at times and that's something I don't feel from a shoe with a stiffer chassis. I could feel the shoe twisting under my arches and would have liked it to stay more solid in that area."
Preferring other shoes that he has worn to this one was Jason, who found these shoes to have poor arch support for his wide, flatter feet. He said, "When I first slipped them on I thought the arch support was about medium. Once I was on the court I quickly noticed the narrow fit through the arch/midfoot area. I have a wide, flat foot, and once I started moving around in these shoes I could feel the sides of the shoe wall on my arches. At the end of my hits my arches would be a little sore."
Foot Support/Stability - Score: 4.1
For the most part, our testers really liked the stability of the Rush Pro and felt it was a noticeable improvement over some prior Wilson shoes. Andy liked the blend of the low-profile design and the stability that he felt when moving aggressively. He said, "The 3D-F.s cage in the forefoot combines with the inner sleeve to lock in the foot and keep it feeling secure and stable, especially with lateral movement. There's definitely no sliding around inside this shoe. Because the shoe is designed to be low-profile it does not ride very high on the ankle, but I still never had any issue with ankle support. The stability was impressive for how low to the ground you feel in this shoe."
Spencer also really enjoyed the snug and secure fit of these shoes. He explained, "The neoprene/elastic material along the sides of the tongue that wrap all the way around the midfoot provided excellent support for my feet. I really enjoyed the snug yet comfortable feel throughout the test. The stability was apparent as well. This was where I felt previous Wilson shoes missed the mark. The Rush Pro offers good stability, and I was able to plant and change direction laterally with full confidence."
Jason also liked the support from the shoes but felt there was still room for improvement. He offered, "My feet definitely felt locked into this shoe once I had my laces cinched up. When I was moving aggressively side to side or front to back my feet wouldn't slide around in the shoe, so the support was excellent. I thought the stability of the shoe was good, but it could've been better. The soft uppers were great for comfort, but I wish they were just a bit stiffer to help with stability."
Chris agreed, and added, "The overall support of the shoe was good. I liked the feel of the shoe when I was up on my toes. My feet felt locked in from the supportive fit, and I found the forefoot stability to be solid. Support in the midfoot and heel was decent, but again, I'd like the midfoot to be more stable. The fit around my heels was OK, but I found I had to tighten the laces of my shoes during play to keep my heels from slipping. Usually right at the end of the first set was when I noticed the fit starting to loosen. Once I tightened the laces I was good to go for the rest of my match."
Overall Sole Durability - Score: 4.3
The Rush Pro definitely held up to the rigors of our playtest and scored quite highly for a shoe in its class. Chris took notice of the care that Wilson took to make this shoe so durable. He said, "I was really impressed with the outsole durability. The Rush Pro is a light and fast shoe, and it really has no business being so durable, but it is. There's a lot of rubber on the outsoles right where tennis players need it -- under the big toes. Like most players, under my big toes is the part of the outsole that takes the most abuse, but these shoes are more than up to the task. I was very impressed with the durability."
Jason also couldn't put a dent in the outsole during the test. He said, "The extra rubber Wilson added in the high wear and tear areas really paid off. I thought the outsoles held up very well. The area where I usually wear out the outsoles first, the medial forefoot and heel, still had plenty of life left after 15+ hours of testing."
Andy got to put in a few more hours in these shoes than normal, and the outsole still held up just fine. He said, "I really enjoyed wearing this shoe, so I definitely put the durability to the test after hours and hours of play in them. Wilson used a zonal tread pattern to strengthen the areas of the outsole that take the most wear, and it makes a difference. After the playtest the shoe still shows little wear in the areas I usually destroy the most. If you are not convinced by the unusual tread pattern, you also get a six-month durability guarantee with this one."
Spencer was happy with the durability of the Rush Pro. He said, "I usually don't wear out the outsole on tennis shoes in general, and there was nothing alarming or out of the ordinary in the wear I did notice on the Rush Pro. If anything, they have held up just as well as, if not better than, any other durability guaranteed shoe on the market."
Toe Durability - Score: 4.6
Our lone toe dragger on this test felt the Rush Pro once again held up to the rigors of our hard court testing. Chris really liked how well the forefoot area held up against all kinds of wear and tear. He said, "Just like the outsoles, the toes of the Rush Pro are built to last. The added material at the toe helped keep the shoes intact and looking good. I was really impressed not only with the durability of the toe tip, but also with how the whole toe is protected. There are times when an odd part of the upper contacts the court during a wide lunge, but the Rush Pro is protected enough that it doesn't matter."
Traction - Score: 4.3
Our playtesters were a little unsure about how the unusual tread pattern of the Rush Pro would perform once we took to the courts, but they ended up being very impressed with the traction. "I admittedly was a little skeptical of the new pattern on the outsole, but my skepticism was set aside as soon as I hit with them," said Spencer. "The outsoles hold the court very well. I didn't experience any slips, slides or any instances where the shoe caught up on the hard court surface. I liked the traction and felt it to be a wonderful balance of tack and give."
Having a similar opinion was Andy. He said, "I was skeptical of how well the shoe would grab the court after I saw the unusual tread pattern, but I had no issues when I took them to the courts. It provided that perfect blend of grip and give that I like in a shoe, and I had the confidence to start, stop and slide when I needed to."
Chris gave these shoes a perfect score in this category. He offered, "The level of hard court traction was very impressive from the Rush Pro. I found I could move very aggressively without any fear of slipping. When coming to a fast stop I found a solid blend of grab and give -- enough grab to slow quickly yet enough give to prevent my feet from getting hung up on the court surface. The shoe offers quite a bit of flex, and I think the flex allowed the outsoles to stay in contact with the court very well. That flex left a nice contact patch of rubber on the court at all times and that combined very well with the grip from the rubber compound. I gave the Rush Pro top marks here as I thought the level of traction was superb."
Jason also really liked the way the Rush Pro gripped the court, though he did lose traction at times. He said, "I was a little skeptical of how well this shoe would grip the court because of the unique tread pattern, but I was impressed. I felt confident in my side to side movements, but I had a couple instances where the shoe did give slightly when I tried to stop when moving forward."
Weight - Score: 4.2
These shoes were built to be light, fast and low to the ground, and our team felt Wilson accomplished what it set out to do. Jason felt just as fleet-footed as he normally does scampering around the court. He said, "Not too heavy, not too light. The weight of the shoes seems to be distributed well, so they didn't feel as heavy as the static weight indicates. I had no problems moving around in these shoes, and I didn't feel like they were slowing me down in any way."
Chris also felt quick on his feet in the new Rush Pro. He said, "I liked the fit and feel of these shoes. They felt light and fast on court. I felt like I was able to move at full speed in them, but they also proved to be very durable -- a rare combo. I was impressed with the weight, finding them to feel much lighter and faster than shoes with comparable durability."
Andy felt the design of these shoes allowed him to move around the court with ease. He said, "This shoe is designed to feel light, fast and low to the ground, and it most certainly does. At 15 ounces it isn't the lightest shoe on the market, but the way the shoe is designed you never feel any excess heft on your foot. I felt quick on court at all times."
On the contrary, Spencer found these shoes to be a tad on the heavy side. He said, "I'm not sure if it's because of how the weight is distributed in this shoe, but it feels a little heavier than what is published. I would have guessed it was closer to 16 ounces. That said, I didn't have any problems moving or getting to balls. It just feels like a shoe that's oriented for durability."
Overall - Score: 4.3
Chris - "I liked the fit, comfort, outsole and toe durability, style, traction and cushioning."
Spencer - "The fit, feel and performance."
Jason - "Very durable, solid traction and foot support. Nice cushioning and soft, no break-in upper."
Andy - "Loved the cushioning, support, low to the ground court feel and durability. Really liked this shoe."
Chris - "Not much to dislike. I would like them to be a little stiffer through the midfoot, but I can probably cure that with a stiffer aftermarket insole with a TPU arch support."
Spencer - "Seems a bit bulky in the toe area (I'm not a toe dragger), and it's not my favorite shoe aesthetically when I look at them from the top down."
Jason - "The narrow fit through the midfoot didn't fit my foot shape well. The heel cushioning felt like it was lower than the forefoot cushioning."
Andy - "I would like a little more ventilation, especially in the forefoot, although I'm not sure I would sacrifice the support and stability the forefoot cage offers."
Comparing this shoe to other shoes they've worn, our testers said:
Chris - "I can't think of any current shoes to compare these to. They are certainly miles better than anything from Wilson in the last five to eight years. The fit and feel reminded me of the old Diadora Axelar, which also had an inner bootie like design to hold the foot. That shoe was also a tad too flexible through the arch like this one, but the Rush Pro beats it in both cushioning and durability."
Spencer - "I think Wilson has a shoe that can now compete, from a performance standpoint, with other top tier brands. The comfort, support and durability are top notch."
Jason - "The Rush Pro has the comfort of past Wilson shoes but now performs like a high performance tennis shoe should."
Andy - "When I first slipped the shoe on it reminded me of the Babolat SFX because of the really plush cushioning and footbed support. However, the Rush Pro is much more low-profile in design and feels lower to the ground on court. The low to the ground court feel and midsole cushioning is similar to the New Balance 996 that we are currently testing."
Playtester Foot Types:
Chris - Narrow width / Medium arch
Spencer - Medium width / Medium arch
Jason - Wide width / Low arch
Andy - Medium width / Low arch
Review date: March 2013. If you found this review interesting or have further questions or comments please contact us.
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