The midsole and outsole are the same as the Kinvara 7, the only difference between the 2 is the upper material.
The upper is made of Saucony’s Flex Shell fabric: A water resistant material coated in hydrophobic chemicals. The upper is reinforced with Flexfilm overlays.
The Flex Shell upper is less breathable than the standard Kinvara 7 upper, however, my feet did not get too hot while wearing this shoe. My feet were completely comfortable running in this shoe while it was raining outside.
The Kinvara 7 Runshield has a low profile heel cup that travels half way up the back of the shoe. It does a good job at improving the fit.
Since the heel cup does not come all the way up, I can put on the shoe without tying the laces. The heel collar is lined with Saucony’s run dry material, a synthetic moisture wicking fabric. The heel collar is adequately padded.
Tongue & Laces
The laces are wide and flat. They do not have any elastic properties. The tongue has enough padding to prevent any pressure points on the top of my feet even when the laces are tied very tightly.
The Kinvara 7 Runshield does not have the best fit. The heel area has a fine lock down but the toe box and the midfoot are slightly uncomfortable.
The Prolock technology that locks in the midfoot is uncomfortable and restricting. The toe box is uncomfortable because it is too short and narrow.
I wear a size 12 in the Kinvara 7 Runshield. This is my normal Saucony size. I wear a 12.5 in most other shoes.
There is a small piece of reflective material on the back of the heel cup.
The midsole is made of a lightweight mold of EVA. The midsole provides a fair amount of cushion for such a low profile shoe.
Runner's world even ranks it in the 87th percentile of all running shoes for forefoot cushioning. The Kinvara 7 Runshield’s midsole EVA is much firmer than the midsole of past Kinvaras.
The Kinvara 7 Runshield has a layer of Everun in the heel. Everrun is bouncy midsole material similar to Adidas Boost. I did not feel the Everrun heel insert since I am a forefoot striker.
The Kinvara 7 Runshield has a 4-millimeter drop. This makes the shoe best for forefoot strikers. Heel strikers will find that this shoe may not have enough heel cushion for daily training and that the heel to toe transitions are too slow.
The Kinvara 7 Runshield has a very stiff midsole. This gives the shoe a snappy ride. The fast ride makes the Kinvara 7 a good choice for Marathons because they are both fast and well cushioned.
The Runshield has an outsole made of thin patches of IBR+, and exposed EVA. IBR+ is a rubber material that is more durable than and provides just as much traction as standard carbon rubber. There are grooves cut in the outsole to improve flexibility.
The Kinvara 7 Runshield weighs 7.9 ounces: a very low weight, especially for a water resistant shoe.
The Kinvara is a semi-durable shoe. The limiting factor on the shoe’s durability is the outsole. Although IBR+ is durable, the Kinvara 7 Runshield has very thin patches of it. I estimate that the Kinvara 7 Runshield will last 400 miles when pushed.
The Kinvara 7 Runshield is a great low profile road running shoe if you live in a wet climate, or if you want a shoe specifically for rainy days. (Don’t be afraid to buy a separate shoe for rainy days because having many shoes does not change the rate that they wear down.)
The Kinvara 7 Runshield is also good for winter road running because it is colder and wetter outside. If you don’t need a water resistant shoe, buy the normal Kinvara 7. It is lighter, cheaper and more breathable.
Saucony Kinvara 7 Runshield VS Saucony Breakthru
The Breakthrough is the heel striker version of the Kinvara. The Breakthrough has the same amount of cushioning, but an 8-millimeter drop.
The upper, midsole and outsole are similar in both shoes; the only difference is the geometry. There is no water resistant version of the Breakthru.
Saucony Kinvara 7 Runshield VS Saucony Ride 10 GTX
The Ride GTX is a completely waterproof version of the Saucony Ride 10. The Ride 10 GTX will keep your feet dry in heavy rain, or while you stand in a puddle.
The Saucony Kinvara 7 Runshield will eventually soak through. The Ride is a more durable daily trainer. It has more cushion and has an 8-millimeter drop.
Overall, the Kinvara 7 Runshield is a decent water resistant shoe. I would like it if the shoe had a better fit. It would also be good if the shoe had softer cushioning, and everun in the forefoot.
The Kinvara 7 Runshield is a good water resistant shoe, however, there are other waterproof running shoes that I prefer to run in when the weather turns wet.