Terrain: Trail
Arch support: Neutral
Weight: Men: 7.6oz | Women: 5.9oz
Heel to toe drop: Men: 10mm | Women: 10mm
Pronation: Neutral Pronation
Arch type: High arch
Strike Pattern: Heel strike
Distance: Competition
Heel height: Men: 16mm | Women: 16mm
Forefoot height: Men: 8mm | Women: 8mm
Brand: New Balance
Width: Men: Normal | Women: Normal, Wide
Price: $90
Colorways: Grey
Small True to size Large
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Expert Reviews

Experts are runners, who post reviews at youtube, directly at RunRepeat or at their own websites. Each expert is categorized from level 1 to level 5 based on expertise. See stats on expert reviews and how we calculate scores here.

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88 / 100 based on 7 expert reviews

  • 80 / 100 | Running Warehouse | | Level 4 expert

    The shoe offered a firm ride that was nimble at faster paces, but testers did note [that] there was not a lot in the way of cushioning.

  • 90 / 100 | Running Competitor | | Level 5 expert

    This shoe is for you if … you’re looking for a lightweight, minimally constructed trail shoe with just enough cushion and protection to run a wide range of trail surfaces.

  • 90 / 100 | Runblogger | | Level 5 expert

     I’m hoping New Balance will keep the price point low as well – the MT101 was an affordable shoe and I’m hoping it’s successor will be equally accessible in that regard.

  • 87 / 100 | iRunFar | | Level 4 expert

    The New Balance MT101/WT101 (MT101 from here on) is light, low to the ground, and fits like a glove. 

  • 93 / 100 | Gear Institute | | Level 3 expert

    The original New Balance MT 101 was an all-out blast to run in on technical terrain, and the reissue is no different. The handling and agility of this shoe are nothing short of superb. Just watch where you step!

  • 87 / 100 | Trail Markers | | Level 1 expert

    The shoe sits close to the ground for great stability and contact with the terrain, while a thin plastic rock plate protects the foot from bruising and punctures without dulling the feedback minimalist runners demand.

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  • After a loud call from hundreds of trail-running fans, New Balance has finally decided to bring back the beloved 101. The lightweight running shoe and low to the ground model that was such a hit during the peak of the minimalist movement is reintroduced with several upgrades to guarantee more fun and better performance on the trail.
  • The upper gets most of the revamp in the NB 101. New Balance uses a new stretch-mesh upper for optimal breathability and superb wraparound feel. With decent stretch, the upper hugs the foot in comfort and support.
  • In the new NB 101, there are a couple more overlays for enhanced upper durability and better lock down feel in the midfoot. Some of the overlays are directed connected to the sole, which makes the hold and fit so much better.
  • Fans of the original model will notice that the collar has more padding. Obviously, this creates a cozier and more comfortable feel right from the get go. Another clear upgrade in the new model is the more flexible, but reinforced toe bumper. This will effectively protect the toes from getting bruised on the challenging trail.
  • Finally, the outsole gets a total makeover. New Balance uses a stickier rubber compound on top of the aggressive lugs. The lugs found on the shoe's outsole is comparable to that of New Balance's road running shoe, the Cypher Run 2, when it comes to how good the grip is. The 101 ensures a very confident run as runners are assured of a superior grip on uneven, technical, muddy, grassy, or rocky trail.

The snug fit of the heel and the midfoot gives it a racing shoe kind of feel, but with enough wiggle room for the toes to splay. With an athletic fit that induces the need for speed, most runners will find this a great option for their trail needs. Medium is the offered width of the NB 101. Sizing is average in this shoe. Runners can choose from 6 to 15 for the men’s and 4 to 11 for the women’s.

New Balance uses what it calls the AT Tread Outsole, which features very rugged and tough-looking lugs that can take on extremely rough terrains because of its proven durability and traction. A Composite Rubber of proprietary rubber compound enhances the grip on the trail. Sitting between the outsole and the midsole is flexible rock plate called the Rock Stop to prevent the foot from getting bruised. For a low-profile shoe with decent outsole, the rock plate is indispensable on the rugged and technical trail.

The minimalist leanings of the 101 make it an ideal spot for the ACTEVA. This New Balance-exclusive foam runs the full-length of the shoe and is 12% lighter than standard EVA. It has decent cushioning with above average responsiveness.

New Balance brings a new stretch mesh upper for enhanced breathability and a more adjustable fit. The stretch mesh in the upper works very well as it goes hand in hand with the sturdy overlays for a secure and personalized fit. In this version, a strip of EVA connects the sole to the upper for better security and midfoot hold. A substantially-reinforced toe bumper is puncture resistant, which should make runners more confident in the outdoors. To prevent the laces from coming undone, New Balance uses a Sure Lace or a lace with good texture. The new-moderately padded collar helps with the plush feel upon step-in.