BROOKS LEVITATE 3 – SHOE REVIEW
by BRIAN METZLER | OCTOBER 2019
TABLE OF CONTENTS
- What New: Brooks Levitate 3?
- Who's it Best For?
- Pros and Cons
- Shop Brooks Levitate 3
- About the Author
The Brooks Levitate is a fine shoe in the 'energize' running category. The DNA AMP midsole technology Brooks launched in the Levitate aims to give the runner a power boost to each stride in a fun and lively shoe for runners looking to set their first big goals.
The third reiteration of the Brooks Levitate is an energetic shoe with a sock-like fit. It has a bouncy feel and a modern look. The Brooks Levitate was originally launched three years ago as a shoe aimed at younger runners with crossover lifestyle appeal.
Brooks has continued to refine the Levitate as an everyday running shoe and a model great for everyday wear. If you’re a new runner, occasional runner or athleisure-minded consumer, this is the shoe for you!
WHAT'S NEW: BROOKS LEVITATE 3
While midsole/outsole chassis in the Brooks Levitate remains unchanged—and that’s a good thing!
The new edition features a redesigned knit upper, a heel collar with better cushioning and a partially integrated tongue for a more secure, sock-like fit that moves dynamically with a runner’s foot.
The bottom line is that the changes have helped the Levitate 3 fit better, feel better and run better than its previous incarnations.
The improved cushiness to the interior of the Brooks Levitate 3 have rounded out the fit and feel of the Levitate, creating a comfortable, snug, wrap-around sensation you’d expect from a premium shoe. It has a luscious step-in feel and an easy-flexing demeanor the moment you start running.
Although there is a bit of softness in every footstep, the ride is really more about a lively, springy sensation that gives back a palpable amount of energy return in every stride. Once you harness that rhythm, the Levitate continues to give back for the duration of a run and through the life of the shoe. (Unlike most foam midsoles, the DNA AMP cushioning material doesn’t seem to break down after hundreds of miles.)
The new Brooks Levitate 3 also features a forward-focus arrow pattern of flex grooves on the outsole helps you move from heel to toe quickly without losing energy. The grooves facilitate and easy-flexing demeanor and works in conjunction with the energy boost provided from the midsole to provide a smooth but electrifying jolt in every footstep.
WHO'S IT BEST FOR?
The Brooks Levitate 3 is spot on for runners who seek a shoe with maximal energy return and a bouncy feeling in every stride will love this shoe. It excels as a moderate mileage shoe that feels good for a variety of activities.
The Brooks Levitate 3 style could be a race-day model for a new runner trying a 5K or 10K for the first time, but it’s not light enough for speed workouts or for long-distance racing.
PROS AND CONS: BROOKS LEVITATE 3
Pros: Brooks Levitate 3
The Levitate 3 features Brooks’ innovative DNA AMP cushioning system, which is comprised of a softer foam encased in a stringent skin that prohibits horizontal expansion. Because the softer foam cannot expand horizontally, it reacts with a vertical expansion that products a springy sensation in every step. In other words, the energy captured from the force of each footstep is directed back up as a way to promote forward propulsion.
You probably don’t feel comfortable wearing all of your running shoes with casual clothes, but with this one you can. Our wear-testers loved the look of this shoe as much as we loved the performance. The new smooth knit upper has crossover lifestyle appeal in each of the three colorways for men and three for women.
Cons: Brooks Levitate 3
The Brooks Levitate is a bit heavier than some everyday training models on the market. The energetic midsole helps minimize the weight and keep it from feeling bulky, but it’s doesn’t feel like a lightweight cruiser, either.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: BRIAN METZLER
Brian Metzler has run races at every distance from 50 meters to 100 miles, wear-tested more than 1,500 pairs of shoes, is a three-time Ironman finisher and occasionally participates in the quirky sport of pack burro racing in Colorado.
He's the founding editor of Trail Runner magazine, is a former senior editor at Running Times and editor in chief at Competitor Magazine. He's the author of “Running Colorado's Front Range” and the co-author of “Natural Running: The Simple Path to Stronger Healthier Running” and “Run Like a Champion: An Olympian's Approach for Every Runner.”