Under Armor Bandit 2 ReviewAugust 22, 2016
- Most affordable shoe
- Comfortable sock-like upper
- Excess foot movement during run
- Lacked responsive feel
- Firm outsole
Under Armour takes a step in the right direction by completely redesigning this year’s Charged Bandit 2. At first, the Under Armour Bandit 2 is one of the more comfortable and stylish shoes, however, after a few miles of hard pounding the Bandit 2 takes on a different personality. The dual layered midsole is extremely firm, which contributes to a speedy feeling shoe, but causes a rather stiff and rough ride. Overall, the new Bandit 2 is a much better running shoe than the original Bandit, however Under Armour still has far to go if it wants to compete with the likes of Brooks, Asics or Saucony.
The Under Armor Charged Bandit 2 gets a complete makeover for its second go around. Offering mild support for overpronators, the Bandit 2 uses two-piece Charged Cushioning midsole with a molded Micro Foodbed for that dialed in and cushioned feeling. A supportive TCU shank is situated in the midfoot to provide support for mild overpronators. The heathered mesh upper and Micro G sockliner offer a soft flexible fit for unmatched comfort.
The Under Armour Bandit 2 demonstrates a Dr. Jeykl and Mr. Hyde personality when it comes to comfort. At first, the ArmourVent™ upper, which feels similar to Nike’s Flyknit upper, is amazing. The molded Micro G™ footbed feels much like custom orthotics and the hardened plastic heel cup provides excellent support. But after a few miles the soft upper offers very little support, creating an unsecure feeling, while the charged midsole is extremely firm, offering very little cushioning.
As one tester put it, the Bandit 2 fits more like a racing flat, verses a traditional everyday trainer. The sizing is so snug that any type of cushioned socks will tip your normal size to be too small. With the exception of the firm molded plastic heel cup, there is very little structure, which allows for way too much foot movement during the run.
The Bandit 2 lacks responsiveness compared to other comfort shoes tested. The super flexible and formless upper make controlling the Bandit 2s a difficult task. The midsole is firm but provides very little in the way of energy return.
Testers felt this was the most appealing part of the Bandit 2. The lightweight and flexible construction helps make the Bandit 2 feel decently fast. Flexibility towards the forefoot makes it easy to get up on your toes to push off.
A rough ride made running long distances in the Bandit 2s challenging. Each footstrike is hard with what seemed like no absorption from the midsole. The outsole material is super hard, which reduces the midsole’s ability to provide cushioning.