The Brooks Pureflow 3 is well suited to runners looking for a good all-purpose road training shoe that is light enough for speed work, with enough comfort and cushioning to bang out high mileage on a regular basis. The fit is comfortable and secure, though a narrow toe box can limit foot-splay.
The Brooks Pureflow 3 is the third generation of Brooks’s popular road shoe featuring improvements to the upper for a more stable and comfortable fit.
Security The PureFlow 3 combines a classic lacing system on top of a burrito-wrap tongue attached at the medial side to effectively secure the foot inside the upper. An elastic Nav Band wraps around the top of the foot and is anchored to the midsole both medially and laterally. I found this securely held my foot against the midsole; this season’s model uses a wider band than previous editions for improved security.
Stability The outsole compound and tread pattern have been redesigned on the PureFlow3. Blown rubber pods are extensive in high impact areas and provide good traction in wet or dry road conditions. In the heel area, outsole and insole are both more prominent on the medial side than the lateral side, which is a blessing for many pronators.
Smoothness Brooks’ BioMoGo cushioning material is a viscous substance that firms up with higher pressure and stays softer for lighter impact. During testing, I found foot strike felt soft in the PureFlow 3 but the midsole remained responsive through the stance and push off phases. Forefoot flexibility of the 3 is improved from that of its predecessors, with the midfoot and rear foot areas remaining somewhat rigid.
Comfort Thin mesh in the forefoot breathes effectively and dries quickly, and traditional padding around the heel and ankle collar feel plush against bare skin or thin socks. The toe box is too narrow to allow full foot splay, so some users may run a risk of constrictions and/or hot spots on the medial and lateral borders.
Speed and agility The 8-oz weight range is ideal for fast training days but excessive for racing. Agility is solid on roads and track but compromised somewhat when venturing off-road.