Salomon S-LAB XA Amphib Trail Running Shoe Review

Text by: Mark Smith

Running, Salomon. Salomon S-LAB XA Amphib Trail Running Shoe Review

Cross-country running can often be spent crossing streams or battling muddy sections (losing shoes in the mud is a specialty of mine) and a shoe that can thrive in these conditions can potentially get you on the podium. Hense, new to the line-up is the S-LAB XA Amphib shoe.

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Our review of this product

8.9 / 10

The pros are:

  • Evacuation of water
  • Lightweight
  • Grip in wet conditions

The cons are:

  • Tight getting on
The XA Amphib is a 4mm drop light running shoe with its eyes set on wet conditions. First, the upper is made from a rubber mesh that evacuates not only humidity but water, and lots of it. I was pessimistic at first that this shoe would feel ‘plasticky’ on my foot when dry, but after a few runs, I have not once been bothered by the fact the upper is a rubber mesh.
 
salomon amphib shoes
 
 The Amphib can also claim to be water crazy because of the aggressive sole that grips wet surfaces with fierceness. It uses the Salomon proprietary Contagrip with Premium Wet Traction rubber. Massive lugs help get a grip and shed mud when exiting the mud fields.
 
salomon shoes
 
 The fit is another area that the Amphid excelled. I love a snug shoe, but it can definitely be a double-edged sword. Salomon did a great job in this model. It is tight across and around the top of the foot and has a small toe box, but I never noticed any chafing or blisters forming in the tight quarters. The heel box is snug and fits my narrow heel perfectly – no movement was had in the slightest. The quick lace system worked well and I didn’t notice any slide out on the trails.
 
salomon amphib trial shoes
 
One small downside I did notice in relation to the tight fit was the entry into the shoe. I do sport a high arch, but getting these shoes onto my feet was an endeavor (maybe a heel loop would be beneficial on next year’s model). A firm grip is needed at the heel and on the tongue to get my foot in there. In my book, it is a small price to pay for a snug running shoe.
 
trail shoes
 
Overall I had a great experience with this shoe in wet and dry conditions. The deep lugs are great in the mud, but might not be the best choice on trail/compact trails. It is snug and with minimal cushioning underfoot offered a nice input with the terrain.

There is 2 thoughts on this article titled “Salomon S-LAB XA Amphib Trail Running Shoe Review”.

  1. I am considering this shoe to use primarily for obstacle course racing. I’m currently wearing the Saucony Peregrine and would like to find something that holds less water and gets better traction on wet rocks. I’ve tried my wife’s Salomon Speedcross 4’s and like the way they feel as well. Would you recommend the Salomon S-LAB XA Amphib for Spartan Races? It seems like a great choice for someone spending a fair amount of time running with wet feet. Any advice or suggestions will be greatly appreciated. Thanks, Jonathan.

    1. i am also considering these shoes for spartan races and in my opinion and after doing some searching i think these will be perfect for just that! good grip,a good ride and good performance in water is all i ask for as i have only ran spartan races in street shoes, have had problems with traction. time to get a little serious with the competition

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