Runners looking for the next step up from an entry-level shoe can consider the Brooks Transcend 6. Vastly superior to the likes of Anthem and Anthem 2, the shoes are come with a few new technologies, such as DNA Loft and added guide drails for arguably better support.
It’s clear that the engineered mesh and the extra cushioning around the ankle make the shoes supportive. They can be used for all types of runs around the block, on the track and even on the treadmill. There is a new OrhtoLite sockliner use as well. At the same time, the cushioning is improved as well, but it is surprisingly better than most runners expect.
The best upgrade over the 5th release comes with the simplicity of the shoes. While the outsole is similar, it also looks as if the upper now finally has its own identity. It doesn’t try to be a jack of all trades as the 5th Transcend. The guide rails are a subtle alternative to the heel counter from the previous version as well. As far as running goes, the shoes might be snug now, but they are also more performance-orientated.
The Brooks Transcend 6 are considerably more expensive than the Transcend 5. But at the same time, they outperform the previous version in nearly all categories, with the exception of extra room inside the shoe.
With a certain springiness to them, the Transcend 6 are unmatched on very hard surfaces such as cement. They are similar or better on hard surfaces as on the track compared to other Brooks releases. At the same time, they are less bulky. With no heavy feet feeling and with less space needed in the workout bag, they feel more versatile and highly adaptive in the increasingly busy lifestyle of modern runners.
The full rubber outsole is now a trend with new Brooks releases. This versatile groove-style outsole can offer traction even when most runners would not expect. So running off the track and through parks is possible. Even wet surfaces can be handled easily with the new outsole. Some attention has been placed in the forefoot of the outsole. But the rubber also covers the entire length of the foot. So regardless of the pronation type, they should come with plenty of traction to deal with multiple surfaces.
DNA Loft is Brooks’ premium alternative to regular DNA cushioning. It comes with extra air compared to the regular DNA foam. This makes supportive shoes a top choice from the manufacturer when cushioning is a priority. Of course, good cushioning is of interest in all shoes, but going the extra length when it comes to the midsole means Brooks sees the Transcend 6 as the springy alternative for more energy during runs.
At the same time, the material is as eco-friendly as most runners expect. Together with the advanced DNA, the midsole also features guide rails, similarly to other premium Brooks releases. Some runners might find the added lateral support as a great upgrade. Others might not even notice it at all.
What can be said about the new rails is that they limit the potential of accidents as they manage to keep the heel in place better. This type of approach is seen in other running brands as well. It may even come with an extra sink in the heel area. But the guide rails transition into the midfoot, which might be congruent with the Transcend name.
The engineered mesh upper feels like it has been made with care. The materials are thin yet durable with plenty of air circulation. This type of upper can work in scenarios. From indoor to outdoor running, there is a reason to believe it manages to attract a larger legion of fans as even DNA Loft can’t do much if feet get too hot.
Size And Fit
With a normal width, the shoes aim the vast majority of runners. Those in minority groups such as runners with wide feet will have to look elsewhere. Given that there is not too much room in the forefoot area as well, going half a size up can even be recommended for most runners.