Verdict from 5 experts and 57 user reviews

6 reasons to buy

  • Droves of users adore the super-sticky outsole of the So iLL Runner climbing shoe.
  • According to numerous sources, this offering turns heads with its extraordinary aesthetics.
  • The Runner is a pleaser when it comes to comfort, based on several reviews.
  • This rock climbing shoe from So iLL handles edges well, about a handful of wearers claim.
  • It heel hooks quite admirably, say a couple of those who have bought the shoe.
  • An owner is impressed with the Runner’s lightness.

3 reasons not to buy

  • The So iLL Runner’s outsole delaminates at the forefoot quite quickly, according to a small number of patrons.
  • Less than a handful of buyers are unhappy with the shoe’s finish—excess glue at the seams.
  • Someone who has climbed in the Runner many times says that it does not toe hook very well.

Bottom line

To gear up with the super-comfy So iLL Runner translates to ascents where mounting on almost every kind of surface is slip-free. Donning one also means being in a head-turning rock shoe whose edging prowess rivals offerings from other known brands.

However, the questionable durability of its outsole might be enough to scare away some folks. Nonetheless, the Runner is a compelling product, thanks to its attractive design and send-worthy pros.

Tip: see the best climbing shoes.

Good to know

-So iLL Runner is a high-performance rock shoe that pays homage to the running shoes of the yesteryears. It has a slip-lasted construction, which results in enhanced sensitivity overall.

-So iLL designers gave it medium stiffness to grant senders adequate precision on steep terrain. What provides footing security in this rock shoe, on the other hand, is a brand-exclusive outsole, called Dark Matter.

Downturn. The Runner is part of So iLL’s lineup of moderately downturned rock climbing shoes. It is ideal for technical multi-pitch ascents. Its middle-of-the-road downward camber allows for a wide breadth of maneuvers and climbing disciplines.

Applications. This moderate So iLL rock shoe is specifically built for intermediate and advanced climbers alike. It is intended for sport routes and bouldering, whether indoors or outdoors. Its build quality and set of hard-wearing components make it a competent tool for scaling overhangs.

The So iLL Runner is a low-top unisex climbing shoe. Female senders who take on V5 climbs or higher are advised to go down a full size. On the other hand, men who take on the same climbing grades are advised to order a pair a half size bigger than their street shoe size. The shoe promises minimal stretch with regular use. As it is built around an asymmetric last, its interior is curved inwardly. Users may adjust its fit to their preference by way of the Runner’s Velcro strapping system.

Midsole. The Runner comes with a long-wearing fishhook midsole, which delivers sufficient support underfoot, particularly on edge-type projections. Its engineers made it extra thin to make the shoe as lightweight as possible.

Outsole. So iLL engineers equipped the Runner with the Dark Matter rubber outsole in teal. 3.5 mm is its overall thickness. It covers part of the shoe’s heel for additional heel-hooking grip.

The So iLL Runner’s low-top upper is made mainly of breathable mesh fabric. It comes with a padded tongue and a pair of synthetic pull loops, which facilitate on and off. Its high-contact areas (also known as the parts around its lower perimeter) are amply randed to make the shoe as grippy as possible around tricky wall or rock features.

Three sturdy straps make up the Runner’s closure system. These straps come built with heavy-duty hook-and-loop fasteners, rendering them highly adjustable as a result.


How So iLL Runner ranks compared to all other shoes
Bottom 10% aggressive climbing shoes
All aggressive climbing shoes
Bottom 14% So iLL climbing shoes
All So iLL climbing shoes
Bottom 18% indoor climbing shoes
All indoor climbing shoes


The current trend of So iLL Runner.
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