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Altra Shoe Review: Torin 5

Altra is one of the more unique brands on our shoe wall.  Their most famous features are its zero-drop,  wide toe box design, and overall look no matter the specific model … these and more make Altra an intriguing brand to try on and test out.  The Altra Torin 5 was recently introduced and many of our Guest Advocates had the opportunity to test out and review the new update.

by Megan Gorgone

Altra builds all their models on a Balanced Cushioning™ platform, which positions the heel and forefoot with equal distance from the ground (meaning a zero drop). The goal in this structure is to provide proper body alignment, which leads itself to better form, and a lower-impact landing.

We received great feedback from our testers.   They represented a variety of staff: males, females, those new to the Altra model, those familiar with Altra, some long-distance runners, and others preferring the shorter distances.   We now have a great wealth of thought and experiences to pass along to our Big Peach Running Co. Community!

Overview: Plush and Comfortable

The highlight of the updated Torin 5 is its Altra EGO™ MAX foam.  The foam lends itself to plush comfort that lasts the miles! The heel collar has been redesigned to provide a locked-in, secure feel.  Plus an improved breathable mesh upper, a very desired feature especially in these hot days of Atlanta running!!

Our Guest Advocates give the shoe high praise across most points of the shoe’s build.  All agree it holds true to the formula of the Altra brand with its wide toe box and zero-drop.  But specific to the Torin 5 is the mention of the plush cushion feel.  Nick remarks that the shoe ‘hugs your foot where it needs to, around the midfoot and ankle collar’.    Jason furthers feedback on the shoe saying, ‘It’s a brilliant combination of balanced and lightweight cushioning provided by the EGO™ MAX foam cushioning, with a natural feel that feels fantastic on the road!’.

Jason also gives the look of the shoe a positive nod saying, “Also, I know we don’t concern ourselves with looks, but the colors on the Torin 5 are all brilliant combinations, and only make me want to reach for the shoe even more. If you haven’t tried Altra, the Torin 5 is a fine place to start!”.

The Ride:  Smooth and Soft


Drilling into the Torin’s ‘Ride’, Andy experienced a smooth and soft feel with each step from landing to toe-off.  With this in mind, Andre says he feels comfortable bringing the Altra out to Big Peach guests of all endurance goals.  He finds the Torin 5 to be terrific for “everyday walking, long-distance running and everything in between!”.

Alex was a fan of the Torin 4.5 Plush.  We’ve all been in that situation where the update takes away from what you loved about the current model.  We are glad to share that Alex found the update just as great as the 4.5 Plush. He says, “I was a fan of the Torin 4.5 because of its cushion and I’m an even bigger fan of the updated model.”  Alex does add in an additional helpful point of ” In terms of responsiveness, the Torin 5 is more responsive than the Torin 4.5 but I still wouldn’t race in it.”.

Sometimes the difference is in the small details.   Emily tested the shoe and found the laces and eyelets on the 5 are much better than the laces on the Torin 4.5 Plush. This update provides a better locked-down fit. And just like Jason mentioned from a men’s perspective, Emily and Carla agree that the colors are fantastic! The Dusty Pink color is a hit!

How does the Altra Torin 5 Fit?

Altra Torin 5

Most of our Guest Advocates found the Torin 5 fitting short compared to the previous Torin models and other Altra models.  It really doesn’t make that much of a difference once you land on that correct toe spacing with in-store fitting, but something to note if ordering using our online store.   You can find our Men’s and Women’s Altras using our online store here.

A mixed review came back on the shoe tongue.  Just to prove we are all different and our feet are as unique as our fingerprints!  Nick and Andy found the tongue hitting really high on their ankle and that resulted in irritated, rubbed skin.  Emily bluntly reported that it felt like a knife against her skin. Nick suggests that if the tongue was softer and more padded like the Rivera that irritation problem could be resolved.

On the other side of thought, Alex experienced Torin’s minimal tongue as comfortable and stayed in place throughout each run. He likes for the tongue of a shoe to be unnoticeable and the Torin 5 does a good job for him.

The Feel:  Cushion and Responsive

Altra Torin 5

The 5 has a responsive underfoot that the 4.5s lacked as they are firmer and yet still cushioned. Emily reports from her experience,  “While not as responsive as say, a firmer shoe like a Saucony or Mizuno, they strike at the balance between responsiveness and cushion right along where the Hoka Clifton seems to hit, but a little softer”.
Carla tested the shoe through a variety of workouts: running, strength training and HIIT. The Torin 5 performed well in all workouts. The cushion was a great feel mile after mile on the road. It also performed well for HIIT and strength training with its responsive energy return and feeling very stable underfoot.

Bottom Line

Our Guest Advocates greatly enjoyed the Torin 5 and will confidently bring it out to our store guests.   The updates work really well, just a tweak wanted by most in the shoe tongue’s construction. Of course, we recommend that you visit any of our 8 Big Peach Running Co. locations to get properly sized and fitted. If you’ve been in previous versions of the Torin, you can conveniently shop online and take advantage of our free shipping.