Verdict from 2 experts and 100+ user reviews

8 reasons to buy

  • The comfort offered by New Balance 608 v5 was much lauded by a majority of consumers.
  • The trainer was marked true to size and width, as many users enjoyed its overall fit.
  • A myriad of wearers liked the style of the footwear because it looked similar to a dress shoe, especially the black variant.
  • Numerous testers were impressed with the product’s durability.
  • Many purchasers marveled at how supported their arches felt while wearing this model.
  • Multiple folks commended the traction on this merchandise.
  • Several shoppers appreciated that the footgear accommodated the use of custom orthotics.
  • The lightweight nature of the shoe resonated well with some individuals.

3 reasons not to buy

  • The insert was not as comfortable as several buyers had hoped, so they had to replace it or wait for it to break in.
  • The faux leather disappointed a few critics who thought the material made the shoe look cheap and not durable.
  • A handful of reviewers wished that the collar was higher to provide more ankle support.

Bottom line

The New Balance 608 v5 received high praises for combining style and comfort. Many commenters also raved about its fit and the availability of multiple width options. The shoe also seemed to excel in terms of durability and underfoot support. Overall, the trainer came highly recommended because it was a comfortable training and walking companion.

Tip: see the best workout training shoes.

Good to know

  • The 5th iteration of the New Balance 608 continues the brand’s popular workout series. This trainer comes in both men’s and women’s options to accommodate everyday athletic endeavors of both. It is a versatile workout shoe which can be sported for gym sessions, fitness classes, walking, and light jogging.
  • Stylewise, the shoe bears a strong resemblance to its predecessor. In fact, the upper has not undergone any changes, except that multiple perforations have been added throughout the unit for better breathability. Aside from that, the trainer still employs leather for a secure foothold and additional overlays for enhanced support in the key areas.
  • The shoe uses the same full-length foam midsole unit for responsive and consistent cushioning. However, in this version, its upper edges have been extended upwards to create additional support on both sides of the forefoot and around the heel.
  • The bottom of the platform has been made flat, eliminating the curve under the midfoot which was present in the previous iterations of the shoe. This construction is meant to deliver a more stable underfoot support.
  • The outsole design has been fully revamped. The new lug pattern is supposed to improve traction while the updated flex grooves serve to make the forefoot more flexible.

The New Balance 608 v5 is available in both male and female variations. Gentlemen can choose between US sizes 6.5 and 18 while the ladies’ option is offered in US sizes 5 to 12. Just like most New Balance training shoes, this model can be purchased in a variety of width profiles. Men’s width profiles include D - Medium, 2E - Wide, and 4E - Extra Wide, while women’s widths range from 2A - Narrow to B - Medium and D - Wide. The leather material is designed to hold the foot firmly, while the lace-up closure allows wearers to adjust the tightness of the fit. A pull-tab is added at the back to assist in putting the trainer on.

The underside of the New Balance 608 v5 is lined with rubber. This layer is made to be durable to protect the platform against abrasion. It also has a grippy nature and a geometrical tread pattern to deliver traction on gym floors and other training surfaces. The rubber is claimed to be non-marking which implies that it doesn’t leave undesirable scuff marks on floors.

The outsole slightly protrudes up on the lateral side to form a supportive outrigger. It contributes to the stability during side-to-side movements. The unit also extends up at the front to cover the toes and keep them protected against bumps.

A deepening can be seen at the bottom of the sole. This piece has been carved out intentionally to reduce the overall weight of the shoe.

A full-length foam unit is responsible for keeping the underfoot cushioned and supported. It is created to be durable to withstand the repeated impact of regular workouts. At the same time, it is lightweight and flexible to provide a comfortable in-shoe experience.

The cushioning in the heel section is amplified by the brand’s proprietary Abzorb technology. It is a blend of the lightweight and responsive foam and the hard-wearing Dupont Engage Isoprene rubber. This component is capable of resisting compression better and longer than the standard EVA foam used in most shoes. The Abzorb heel pad also protects the wearer’s feet and legs against the harmful effect of the impact.

Besides cushioning, the midsole also contributes to lateral support. Its edges protrude upwards around the heel and on both sides of the forefoot, creating supportive barriers. They do not let the foot slide around during multi-directional movements.

Just like its predecessors, the 5th edition of the New Balance 608 utilizes leather for its upper unit. While the material is not as flexible and stretchy as mesh, it can benefit the wearer with a firm and secure foothold. Additional leather overlays are placed around the heel and at the toes to reinforce structure and support. The tightness can be customized through the lace-up closure. 

Inside, the footwear is kept fresh and aerated with the help of perforations throughout the leather, the breathable mesh tongue, and the mesh lining. A pleasant in-shoe experience is also enhanced by the padded collar and tongue.

The style, materials, and technologies of the New Balance 608 v5 make it very similar to another popular workout shoe from the brand, the New Balance 624. Both shoes have gathered positive user reviews and are offered at the same price point.


How New Balance 608 v5 ranks compared to all other shoes
Top 6% workout training shoes
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The current trend of New Balance 608 v5.
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Nicholas Rizzo
Nicholas Rizzo

Nick combines 10+ years of experience in the health and fitness industry and a background in the sciences in his role as the Fitness Research Director. During his competitive powerlifting years his PRs have him sitting in the top 2% of bench presses (395 lbs), top 3% of squats (485 lbs) and top 6% of deadlifts (515 lbs) for his weight and age. His work has been featured on, LiveStrong, Healthline, WebMD, WashingtonPost, and many more. Along the way, collaborating with industry leaders like Michael Yessis, Mark Rippetoe, Carlo Buzzichelli, Dave Tate, Ray Williams, and Joel Seedman.