It is not always easy reviewing shoes that have rhyming names.
You constantly have to double-check and make sure that you (or autocorrect!) didn’t inadvertently put the right specs with the wrong product.
Fortunately, when it comes to the Saucony Ride and Guide, the two shoes have a lot more in common than just a rhyming name, potentially saving me the embarrassment of a typographical blunder.
The two shoes are nearly interchangeable along a number of key points.
They both weigh 7.8/8.8oz., have a 8mm drop, and cost $140 per pair. They are both described as “highly versatile” and “solid all-around.”
As you can probably guess, the Guide is a stability shoe. However, even that doesn’t completely distinguish it from the Ride, as most runners feel that the Guide is one of the most subtle stability shoes on the market.
Even though finding differences between these two leading Saucony shoes was a challenge, I managed to find a few, so keep reading for a more detailed breakdown of the Saucony Ride vs Guide!
Saucony Running Shoes At A Glance
Saucony has been a leading manufacturer of running shoes since 1898. The company is based in the United States and has a long history as a favorite name among runners. Saucony shoes are known for their comfort and durability without necessarily being loaded down with all of the tech-heavy features seen in some of the more cutting-edge shoes on the market.
Saucony running shoes are designed with a focus on doing their best without doing too much. The company uses a variety of features, such as EVERUN and PWRRUN midsole foam, to absorb impact and protect runners’ feet from injury. Some Saucony shoes also feature innovative stability features, such as the Hollow Tech system, to help runners maintain proper alignment and prevent overpronation.
In addition to their focus on comfort and performance, Saucony running shoes are also known for their stylish designs. The company offers a wide variety of colors and styles to choose from, so runners can find a pair of shoes that fits their individual needs and preferences.
All in all, Saucony is a brand that is dedicated to providing runners with shoes that help them be the best version of themselves. By not constantly marketing the “next best thing” in the running industry, Saucony captures a special, nostalgic place in runners’ hearts who want a more classic running experience.
Saucony Ride: What Are You Getting?
The Saucony Ride is a neutral running shoe celebrated in the running world for delivering a smooth, comfortable ride. A highly versatile daily trainer, the Ride offers a blend of moderate cushioning, responsiveness, and comfort, making it suitable for runners of various levels and gaits. With a heel-to-toe drop of 8mm, it provides a balanced and efficient running experience.
At the core of the Ride is its exceptional cushioning system. PWRRUN, Saucony’s proprietary cushioning technology, effectively absorbs impact and provides a smooth, plush feel underfoot. The midsole’s construction and geometry are designed to enhance energy return, leading to a more responsive and energetic ride.
Versatility is a hallmark of the Saucony Ride. Whether you’re tackling long runs, tempo workouts, or recovery sessions, the Ride’s well-rounded performance capabilities shine through. Its moderate level of cushioning offers sufficient impact protection for longer distances, while its responsive ride allows you to pick up the pace when needed.
The Saucony Ride envelops your feet in a comfortable and secure fit. FORMFIT, Saucony’s design philosophy, ensures a snug fit that adapts to the unique contours of your feet. The engineered mesh upper promotes breathability, maintaining a cool and dry in-shoe environment.
In summary, the Saucony Ride is a versatile neutral running shoe. Its blend of responsive cushioning, dependable support, and secure fit makes it an excellent choice for runners seeking a high-quality daily trainer. Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned runner, the Ride is a reliable companion for your training journeys.
Saucony Guide: What Are You Getting?
The Saucony Guide is a stability shoe designed to provide additional support over a standard daily trainer. However, it’s essential to note that the Guide is not super firm and does not provide massive support compared to other stability shoes. Instead, it offers a subtle and balanced approach to stability.
The Guide’s stability features begin with the Hollow Tech midsole plate. This plate is less obtrusive than a standard medial post and provides a more natural and adaptable form of support. The Hollow Tech plate works in conjunction with the shoe’s structured cushion to deliver light stability without sacrificing comfort or flexibility. This makes the Guide an excellent option for runners who need some added support without the bulkiness and stiffness of a traditional stability shoe.
The Guide also boasts a 35mm heel stack and a 27mm forefoot stack, providing plenty of cushioning and protection for long runs and daily training. The shoe’s midsole is constructed from PWRRUN, a lightweight and responsive foam that offers excellent energy return and shock absorption. This, combined with the Guide’s supportive features, makes it an ideal choice for runners seeking a stable and comfortable everyday trainer.
In addition, the Saucony Guide is known for its secure and comfortable fit. The upper is made from breathable mesh with targeted overlays for added support and structure. The shoe also features a traditional lace-up closure, allowing runners to customize the fit to their preference.
Overall, the Saucony Guide is a versatile and well-rounded stability shoe suitable for various runners. Whether you’re a beginner looking for a supportive shoe to help you get started or an experienced runner seeking a stable platform for your daily training, the Guide is an excellent option to consider.
Saucony Ride vs Guide Design Comparison
Now that you have a general overview of these two products, let’s dig deep into the engineering behind both shoes.
Both the Saucony Ride and Guide boast breathable mesh uppers that strike an exceptional balance between flexibility and lockdown. However, there are subtle nuances that differentiate their upper constructions.
The Ride’s upper leans towards enhanced breathability, with its slightly more open weave allowing for optimal airflow. In contrast, the Guide features a more tightly woven mesh, providing a more secure and supportive fit. This difference is intentional, as the Guide aims to deliver increased stability for runners who require it.
The Guide’s upper is reinforced with additional overlays, resulting in a slightly stronger construction compared to the Ride. These overlays contribute to the shoe’s overall stability, while the softer and more pliable upper of the Ride offers a more relaxed and adaptable fit.
The Ride prioritizes comfort with a soft, padded tongue and collar that gently cushions the foot. However, some runners have expressed dissatisfaction with the enhanced heel collar in the newer Ride models, finding that it falls short of its intended purpose of providing additional rearfoot lockdown.
The Ride offers a slightly softer and more forgiving fit around the toes, while the Guide’s upper is a touch more robust. This difference caters to the specific preferences of runners, with the Ride accommodating wider feet more comfortably and the Guide providing a more secure hold for those who need it.
Both the Saucony Ride and Guide feature Saucony’s PWRRUN foam in their midsoles, offering a comfortable and responsive cushioning experience. This EVA-based foam strikes a balance between softness and firmness, providing a plush landing and a snappy toe-off.
Despite sharing the same foam compound, there are key differences between the midsoles of these two shoes.
The Ride’s midsole is designed for pure comfort and a smooth ride. It boasts a uniform construction with a stack height of 35mm in the heel and 27mm in the forefoot, resulting in a balanced 8mm drop. The absence of any additional support elements allows for a natural and unrestricted running experience.
The Guide, on the other hand, incorporates a unique feature known as the Hollow Tech medial plate. This subtle plastic plate is integrated into the rear of the midsole, providing additional support on the medial side. Its purpose is to counteract overpronation by gently guiding the foot into a more neutral position during the stride.
It’s important to note that the Hollow Tech plate does not create the rigid feel of a traditional medial post. Instead, it provides a subtle nudge that enhances stability without compromising flexibility or comfort.
Runners seeking a comfortable and neutral ride will find the Saucony Ride to be an excellent choice. Its plush PWRRUN midsole and balanced geometry provide a smooth and enjoyable running experience.
For those who require additional stability, the Saucony Guide offers the perfect blend of support and comfort. The Hollow Tech medial plate provides a subtle yet effective correction for overpronation, ensuring a stable and more efficient stride.
The outsoles of the Saucony Ride and Guide are similar in many ways. Both outsoles feature exposed outsole foam with strategically placed carbon rubber. This design is intended to provide a balance of cushioning and durability. The exposed outsole foam helps to cushion the foot, while the carbon rubber provides traction and durability.
The outsoles of the Saucony Ride and Guide also differ in some ways. The outsole of the Saucony Ride is more flexible than the outsole of the Saucony Guide. This is because the outsole of the Saucony Ride features more grooves and flex points than the outsole of the Saucony Guide.
One important note is that some runners are not impressed with the traction of these outsoles on smooth or wet surfaces, noting that the exposed foam does not have sufficient tackiness for adequate traction.
Saucony Ride vs Guide Feature Comparison
Let’s take a look and see how the Ride and Guide perform along important purchase consideration points.
Both the Ride and Guide should be considered “standard” in terms of durability. They are far from the most rugged products on the market, but they actually perform rather well for shoes that utilize exposed outsole foam, with most runners reaching 400 miles before the outsole foam starts showing serious signs of wear.
If you had to choose between the two, the Guide is likely to provide a tad more durability–mainly due to the slightly more robust upper mesh. However, the difference is largely negligible.
Both the Ride and the Guide run true to size. They also come in wide versions for those who need extra room in the toe box.
Some runners feel like the midfoot in the Guide runs a bit snug. However, this is likely due to the foot sitting a bit lower thanks to slightly softer PWRRUN foam than that used in earlier versions, with runners largely not noticing midfoot tightness after wearing the Guide several times.
Similar to their durability rating, the cushioning for both the Ride and Guide is pretty standard. It gets the job done, but it is nothing earth-shattering. The midsole heel stack of 35mm is far from the highest in the industry, and PWWRUN is far from a gooey midsole foam.
For those runners wanting a more highly cushioned Saucony product, it’s definitely worth looking into the Triumph 20.
Stability & Support
As a stability shoe, the Guide will be the better option. Its Hollow Tech medial plate provides subtle support for runners with overpronation issues. It also has a bit more upper lockdown than the Ride.
However, at the risk of sounding like a broken record, there actually is not a lot separating these two shoes, even in terms of stability. Many runners feel like the Ride is a highly stable daily trainer while the Guide is a mostly neutral stability shoe.
Unsurprisingly for two similar shoes from the same company, there is not much separating these two shoes in terms of price tag. Expect to pay around $140 for either pair on most outlets.
FAQ – Saucony Ride vs Guide
A selection of the most commonly asked questions regarding the Ride and Guide.
Can I Use the Ride or Guide for Casual Wear?
The Ride and Guide are both suitable for daily wear.
In fact, many Ride users actually note that they have to remind themselves to change their shoes after workouts because the Ride is so at-home in a variety of settings.
In a similar vein, the Guide works surprisingly well as a casual wear product. The medial post in many stability shoes can become an annoyance at paces slower than a jog, but the Hollow Tech plate is not really noticeable when walking in the Guide.
What Is the Latest Version of Each Shoe?
The Ride 17 and the Guide 16 are the latest iterations of each shoe.
Is It Smart to Buy Both the Ride and Guide?
It is not uncommon to buy both a daily trainer and stability shoe from the same company. Some runners’ overpronation issues magnify when working at different paces, so it can be worthwhile to have a stability shoe on hand for when the tempo changes.
However, the Ride and Guide are so similar that it’s probably superfluous to invest in both. Unless you are attuned with your gait down to the most miniscule nuance, then it’s best just to choose one or the other.
Who Should Avoid These Shoes?
Both of these shoes are highly versatile and appeal to runners of all ability levels. However, the general consensus is that they aren’t the best for super long distances or pure recovery sessions since they aren’t the most highly cushioned shoes out there.
Final Thoughts: Saucony Ride vs Guide
Well, there it is: the complete rundown of the Saucony Ride vs Guide.
Nonetheless, these two shoes are more similar than they are different, with both effectively blurring the lines between the two subcategories.
As such, if you are looking for a versatile shoe to help you log your miles, explore the Saucony catalog and take a closer look at either of these leading lines!