Traction: While Under Amour has been putting more effort into the traction department, the tread on the SpeedForm Fortis isn’t anything spectacular. Going with a targeted traction pattern that provides better durability in high impact zones with less weight, the blue solid rubber areas are extremely durable while the rest of the tread is quite pliable and will show signs of wear after a few high intensity workouts. The entire tread works well in all conditions, only the blue solid rubber portions stand the test of time, while the rest of the traction stays in the past just like the calories you burned during your workouts.
Cushion: Last year Under Armour introduced their new Charged Micro G foam setup that provided a more responsive ride when “activated” with movement. Flagship models such as the Curry 1 and SpeedForm Gemini carry the new cushion setup with success – the Curry 1 scored the WearTesters ’Starting Five’ badge in its performance review – Under Amour seemed to have found yet another piece of proven technology that can hold its own to other marquee cushion setups such as Boost, Zoom Air, and Jetlon. But Under Armour went the extra mile on the Speedform Fortis to redesign and redefine the Charged Micro G cushion setup by essentially reversing the way it is structured.
For example, the Curry 1 featured a standard Micro G carrier that had a Charged Foam layer encapsulated within that carrier. Again, this was perfectly fine as it scored high on nearly every performance review out there, but this time around the SpeedForm Fortis flipped the switch and uses a Charged foam in the midsole, while your foot sits on a Micro G layer and a 6mm 4D foam injected sockliner.
This reinvention on the construction of the cushion setup up made a world of difference and is the exact definition of taking something good and making it great. When idle, the Micro G layer and 4D foam insole provide an extremely plush feel that even molds to your unique foot shape with every wear, but when active, the cushion setup morphs into a responsive ride that provides ample energy return and impact protection. While some may find this cushion setup to be a tad bit too plush, my advice to them would be run harder.
Materials & Fit: The true soul of the Speedform technology is to provide a distraction free environment for your foot so the wearer can focus on the task at hand. Under Armour achieves this by using an ultrasonic welding technique that creates a seamless next-to-skin-like fit for optimum comfort. Subtle additions such as the big toe/middle toe crease allow the upper to really wrap around your foot to giver really give that next-to-skin-like effect. Whether you have experienced Under Amour’s SpeedForm technology or not, the upper really wraps around your foot and provides a great one-to-one fit that can accommodate a wide variety of foot shapes and sizes.
*It is also worth nothing that there are two variations of the SpeedForm Forts, one featuring a mesh like material called Amour Vent, and the one you see in the photos provided which is a synthetic material that feels like a neoprene bootie. Both work well and one isn’t better than the other, but the Armour Vent version does provide more breathability.
Support: Support has been the achilles heel of the previous SpeedFrom models, as there just wasn’t enough to recommend a wide array of movements. Unless you were running forward (or backwards), support has been rather lackluster if you were planing on doing intense training that involved lateral movements. In fact, the SpeedForm Apollo used a TPU curve on the medial heel as a warning to let you know your foot was teetering off the footbed. However, in the SpeedForm Fortis UA added two main features that help provide more stability and support; both the heel straps and upgraded external heel cup allow your foot to remain on the footbed where it belongs and keep your foot from sliding during your training. These subtle additions keep the integrity of a distraction free environment for your foot, while beefing up the overall support, allowing you to use the SpeedForm Fortis as more of a trainer that can cross a wide variety of activities.
Overall: The SpeedForm Fortis is packed with technology that has been fined tuned to bring us a complete package. The dynamic cushion setup provides plush comfort when idle but a responsive ride when pressure is applied. It pairs perfectly with the form fitting 4D foam injected sockliner for a true one-to-one fit. While the added support makes the SpeedForm Fortis a viable trainer for an array of activities, the seamless distraction free environment provided by the SpeedForm tech in the materials makes the Fortis a serious contender in your daily rotation as an everyday comfort shoe.
The Fortis is one of the most comfortable shoes I have ever worn and more than justifies its $110 price tag, but what is most amazing is that not only is the Fortis comfortable as an everyday shoe, but just as functional as any of the top trainers on the market today. Think of the SpeedForm Fortis as Under Amour’s version of the adidas Pure Boost — a version that you can actually do stuff in rather than just look pretty and be comfortable.