It’s been a few years since I’ve gotten a chance to run in an Altra Running shoe. I’ve tried on several over the past few years and the fit for my feet haven’t been quite right. The Altra Torin 6 fit my feet nicely, but is it the right running shoe for me? Read more for a full review.
by Dave Martinez
The Altra Torin has been around for several years and just a few years ago they had two different versions, the regular Torin, and the Torin Plush. Now there’s only one version and while they dropped the “plush” from the name, the Torin 6 certainly feels plush. While I’ve tried several different Altra models in the past, the fit varies from model to model, at least that’s been my personal experience (more on the various “fit” options below). If you’re unfamiliar with Altra, let me first explain the ideology behind the designs and why I personally like what they’re doing.
The Altra Story
The founders of Altra came with a running background but also worked in a running store. It was through their experience that they started customizing shoes. Using a toaster oven to remove the midsole and transform it into a more “balanced” cushioning. “Balanced Cushioning” is the term they use for zero drop which means that the shoe has the same stack height from heel to toe. Many people interpreted zero drop as a minimal or low-cushioned shoe so they no longer use that term to describe their shoes. While models within the Altra lineup vary in stack height, many provide plenty of cushion for the everyday runner. Altra also uses a Footshape™ design which means the toe box is wider/roomier allowing the toes to spread out throughout the gait cycle without being restricted.
Altra Torin 6 Specs
The Altra Torin 6 uses the “standard” Footshape™ fit which is right in the middle of their other fits, the “Original” (wide) and “Slim”(narrow). The “Standard” Footshape™ fit should accommodate most people. As I mentioned previously, I’ve had some fit issues in the past and I think it’s because I’ve tried on models that have the “Original”, more wider fit. The midsole is made up of what Altra calls EGO™ MAX, a light material with a little extra bounce and added durability. The stack height is 28mm in the heel and forefoot creating a level or “balanced” platform for your feet. For comparison, most shoes have a forefoot stack height around 28 mm.
Because the Altra Torin 6 uses the “Standard” Footshape™ I feel like it will fit a greater number of individuals including myself. I had a good amount of room around the toe box without it feeling excessive or even loose as I’ve experienced in the past with the “Original” fit. The tongue is padded and made of a nice material to provide a premium feel when you slide the shoe on. There’s also a nice amount of padding around the heel collar to help secure the heel. The shoe comes laced up except for the uppermost eyelets. I don’t know if this is for those that need to use the Runner’s Loop or not. I did feel like the heel slipped a little bit and lacing up all the way up helped to secure my heel a bit better.
The cushioning is noticeably soft. Along with the material used, the Altra Torin 6 has a premium feel. In the previous version, there were some reports of an issue with the top of the tongue feeling sharp and rubbing the base of the ankle. Altra did remedy this by keeping the same design as the previous version but changing the material on the underside of the tongue to help eliminate any issues. I think this could be an issue depending on the sock length used. A no show sock will leave that part of the ankle exposed and more prone to rubbing from the tongue. I usually wear a sock with at least a one inch rise or up to 7 inches, so I didn’t experience any rubbing/chafing but it could also be that the update fixed any previous issues. It’s important when trying on shoes that you use the same socks you plan on running in to make sure you don’t experience any problems.
Upon first putting on the Torin 6 I noticed a plush feeling midsole. I knew the ride would feel soft and I was not disappointed. For anyone looking for a cushioned daily trainer without going to a maximal design shoe, this is a great option. It does not have a responsive feel. If you want something that feels quick and snappy, the Altra Torin 6 might not be to your liking. Whether it’s due to the non-responsive feel or the design of the midsole, I personally did not fully enjoy the ride. Don’t get me wrong, I like the way it feels and it didn’t give me any issues, however, I’m used to running in shoes that have a cushioned and responsive feel. I’ve also run in shoes that either use a rocker-type of midsole design like Hoka, or the Speedroll technology found in the Saucony Endorphin line. It comes down to personal preference in what you like. I will say that the Altra Torin 6 is my everyday walking shoe. Whether I’m working from home, going to the grocery store, or going out to a local brewery, the Altra Torin 6 is my go to shoe. It looks good and feels great.
Conclusion: Altra Torin 6
Overall, I like the Altra Torin 6. It checks off all the boxes as it pertains to fit and comfort. Due to personal preferences, it’s not a shoe I would choose to run in. I could run in it without any problems. Unfortunately, because I have access to a wide selection of shoes, it would not be my go to shoe for running. I’ve been a bit spoiled having run in more expensive super shoes and that makes me a little biased in these reviews. That being said, it’s still a great shoe if it meets your criteria for a great shoe. We always say the perfect shoe is the right one for you. What’s great for one individual doesn’t mean it will be great for everyone else. Always visit one of our locations and try shoes on for yourself. For anyone needing an everyday shoe for walking around or if you have a job that requires you to be on your feet all day, the Altra Torin 6 would be one of the first shoes I’d recommend.
The Altra Torin 6 is available at select Big Peach Running Co. locations but it is available online.