For the past few years, for my training activities (trail running) and for my hiking trips, I have been using the Bushido by La Sportiva. Overall I was very satisfied from those shoes, but due to the fact more than one pair of Bushidos I used, got damaged in the same areas (toe cap), I have decided to check out a different pair for the future. Upon some research and my previous experience with the products of Decathlon, I have decided to buy the Kalenji Kiprun XT7 trail running shoes.
The reason I decided to try a different pair of shoes, was mainly because I could not find the Bushido II in the size and colour scheme I wanted, but also, the retail price of 155 euro, in my opinion is not justifiable.
Living in Greece, I obviously tend towards trail running, and there are many different trails. Much of the year the ground can be pretty dry, but it’s also important to retain some grip on wet rock or muddy terrain when it rains.
Fit & Comfort
I have a normal shaped foot and I did not have any particular fitting issue with the Bushido. Though, by using the La Sportiva Bushido for various activities, I have noticed that sometimes I have a heel lift and therefore, when I know I will have a demanding training, I always need to lace the shoes in a secure way by using the “athletes loops“.
From the other side, with the Kalenji Kiprun XT7, I never experienced such an issue. Both the Kalenji Kiprun XT7 and La Sportiva Bushido are size 46 EU and I was positively surprised that with the Kalenji Kiprun XT7 since day one, I never experienced any heel lift.
From the other side, the Kalenji Kiprun XT7, in size 46 EU is few millimeters longer than I would expect. This has as a consequence, that the shoe is just a bit longer than it should be for a perfect fit. The length of my feet are 28,7 mm and should the Kalenji Kiprun XT7 be produced in 45 2/3, I would certainly go for it.
see other product reviews from Decathlon here:
- Simond Rock+ Climbing shoes
- Kalenji Trail running Vest/Bag 10L
- Simond 2-1 Mountaineering gloves
- Quechua Forclaz 900 hiking trouser
- Quechua Techfresh 500 T-Shirt
- Quechua Forclaz 20L Air Backpack
- Quechua Arpenaz 10L Backpack
Unfortunately, Decathlon is producing full sizes, and therefore I should choose between size 45 EU and size 46 EU.
Another point I should make regarding the Fit & Comfort, is the fact that in the shank area, between the insole and outsole, there is an injected plastic that provides a rigidness and stability to the shoe, but at the same time, on my feet feels a bit with “extra pressure”. Though, I only feel this if I walk, instead if I hike actively and/or run I do not feel this extra pressure, but I only feel extra support.
Decathlon, claims that “The reinforcements around the perimeter keep your feet fully supported“.
The Kalenji Kiprun XT7 is made of breathable material, thick foam at the heel and tongue and the materials used are 50% Polyurethane, 50% Polyester for the upper and of 85% Polyurethane, 15% Polyester for the lining and sock.
This footwear comes in two colours, the one you see in this review, the Petrol blue and in Black/gold combination.
The lacing system is standard with no whistles or bells aside from a neat little elasticated pocket to store the tied bow/s inside. I’ve found this to be incredibly effective at making sure that laces don’t come undone whilst running. So far I run on several occasions in them and found them to be well supported and comfortable.
The the front part, especially on the toe box, there is a protective layer around the front of the shoe meaning less chance of stubbing toes in scree and on tree roots, which means less pain if you do so. Also, I particularly like the reflective material that is applied on the shoes, so they stand out when illuminated in the dark.
Midsole & Cushioning Technology
The K-RING is exclusive heel cushioning technology in the form of a ring located in the heel: The hole in the middle disperses the shockwave. Kalensole is the EVA foam used in the midsole. Decathlon claims that It took them three years of research in order to create this exclusive composition that improves cushioning by 34%, propulsion by 25% and provides better temperature stability and durability!
The stated percentages, I sincerely can not verify them, but I can certainly verify that the Kalenji Kiprun XT7 is very comfortable and pleasant to wear shoes.
On the contrary, compared with the Bushido by La Sportiva, I miss the “rock plate”, that provides extra support against rock edges.
The Kalenji Kiprun XT7 with their widely-spaced 5 mm lugs to fluff out mud more effectively, the shoes literally bite into the ground and on muddy terrain you’ll see and feel great performance. Decathlon, claims that with the new rubber component provides 42% grip, though, I can not confirm this percentage.
Having used the Kalenji Kiprun XT7 for more than 3 months and 150+ km now, having done many different activities (trail running, hiking, backpacking, scrambling) and having reached many mountain peaks, I can certainly recommend this pair of shoes.
- Outer sole: of 56% Rubber Synthetic, 44% Ethylene Vinyl Acetate
- Upper: of 50% Polyester, 50% Polyurethane Lining and sock of 85% Polyurethane, 15% Polyester
Disclosure: Product(s) discussed in this article were purchased by Olympus Mountaineering from a retailer. I do not accept compensation or donated product in exchange for media placement or product review coverage.
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Below: This map marks all the mountaineering adventures that have been featured on Olympus Mountaineering so far, including several Sport climbing crags – Select full screen to expand, zoom in for more detail, or click on a marker for a link to the post.