La Sportiva Helios 2.0
La Sportiva Helios version #1 from 2014 was a blazing success, establishing La Sportiva as a reputable trail running shoe brand and not just a rock climbing and mountaineering boot company. Since then, Helios fans have patiently waited for version 2.0 and all would agree it was well worth the wait.
La Sportiva were super smart regarding what needed to be updated with Helios 2.0, and equally as clever regarding what should not be updated.
What has not changed? Most notably the midsole and outsole design is unchanged which is perfect considering that the flexibility, feel and tactile grip of the Helios V1 were it’s standout features. Although the midsole ‘design’ is unchanged the material used is new.
Previously Helios V1 was a standard injection moulded EVA foam. Helios 2.0 midsole materials made up of 80% EVA Foam blended with 20% Butadiene rubber. This is a very similar innovation to the Adidas Boost and Saucony Everun midsole concepts. EVA Foam is soft and good for cushioning and moulding to you foot shape. Blending it with rubber adds rebound and enhances the durability of the shoe. Helios V1 had a tendency for feel thin and bottomed-out during long runs.
The improved Helios 2.0 midsole provides a super plush feel under-foot for such a light shoe (230 grams) and surprisingly that plush feel doesn’t disappear anywhere near as quickly as it did in the previous version.
What has changed? Pretty much everything else about the Helios V1 has been updated and improved in one way or another. Not so important but worth a mention, Helios 2.0 in undeniably a much sweeter looking shoe. The upper design and the placement of new functional materials around specific areas of the foot is on point. The fore-foot build is more reinforced with additional stitching but uses soft suede like overlays to provide flexibility but maintain durability.
The mid-foot upper design is a heat-welded grid mesh that supports the foot better than Helios V1. The new grid mesh is also considerably more breathable and drains faster.
Apart from the new premium feel under-foot of Helios 2.0, the new heel cup design was the other standout feature we picked liked. The way the heel-counter grips the foot in the Helios 2.0 is as good as any shoe we have ever worn. Running in the Helios 2.0 feels fast and you have a sense of heightened foot control, purely because the shoe moves so naturally with your foot. Fast lacing is another updated that works really well, making for easy on and off functionality.
As you can probably tell we love everything about the new La Sportiva Helios 2.0. We are also very aware that Helios 2.0 will not suit every trail runner out there. Some runners may need a bit more stability than that of a Helios 2.0. Being a 4mm off-set also needs acknowledging and transitioning into for some runners.
Call into Footpro to test out for yourself, or call and speak to one of our footwear technicians and find out if the La Sportiva Helios 2.0 is the new trail running shoe for you.