Under Armour's HOVR Rise training shoe review

A training shoe best suited for gym workouts and HIIT classes
We test UA's HOVR Rise shoe

The HOVR Rise is another pair of do-it-all training shoes from Under Armour aimed at general gym-goers from the same stable as its HOVR Apex.

Like the Apex, the Rise packs in UA’s HOVR technology, which is designed to give you both joint protecting cushioning during your box jumps, but also energy return for your squats and sprints.

Bold claims for what could be a versatile training shoe, then. Well, we’ve put them through some intense workouts to see just how they stack up to all of the spiel.


Specs

Price: $100 | Weight: 301g/ 10.6oz | Type: Fitness training | Stability: Neutral | Heel to toe drop: 8mm | Alternatives: Nike Metcon 5 / Reebok Nano 9.0 / NOBULL / UA HOVR Apex

Buy now: Under Armour (UK) / Under Armour (US)


Design

Under Armour Shoe

Against the HOVR Apex, the Rise doesn’t quite lean so heavily on retro appeal. While the Apex’s design was caked in 90s nostalgia, the majority of the Rise’s six colorways are considerably more understated.

The closest to the Apex’s visual flair comes from the Halo Gray variant, which has some added splash of orange against the gray finish. It’s by far our favorite.

The blue Royal Blue option we were sent is nice enough, but some of the added detailing is lost from its blue on blue finish. If you don’t want to attract attention on the gym floor, the HOVR Rise do a good job of being more inconspicuous.

Like the Apex, the Rise is chunkier than most of the current crop of functional training shoes on the market, but in fairness, it doesn’t feel heavy for its size.

Road testing

Under Armour Shoe

So how does the Rise hold up to a varied workout? Much better than you might first think when slipping them on.

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You wouldn’t be amiss to think the HOVR Rise might be a bit cumbersome due to its bulk but we tested the Rise going from the squat rack over to sled pushes and found it to hold up surprisingly well between varied movements.

The slightly elevated heel makes squats feel more comfortable, putting you in a more advantageous position for depth but the Rise’s soles don’t provide the best stability and you get some forward tilt due to the raised front.

On the side towards the heel, you’ll find a rubberized triangular block that not only breaks up the design but will add some traction for exercises like rope climbs, and they provide plenty of grip - a similar concept to Nike’s Metcon range.

Under Armour Shoe

The soles also provide a considerable amount of grip. Something we found helpful for more obvious exercises like sled pushes, but also for movements like the bench press that benefit from added leg drive.

Like the Apex, the flat outsole isn’t great for running greater distances, but are fine for shorter HIIT sprints. The chunky design does make the Rise feel more cumbersome than sleeker and lighter training shoes like Nike’s Metcon range if you really are going for speed and intensity.

If you're planning on running anything over a few hundred meters read our guides to the best road running shoes to buy for men and the best road running shoes for women.

Summary

The UA HOVR Rise is a better value alternative to the ultimately similar HOVR Apex, making it our favorite of the two from a pure functionality standpoint. In the looks department, however, we prefer the Apex.

The Rise is a great shoe if you're looking for a comfortable Jack-of-all-trade option for the gym and HIIT training, but if you’re focusing on more specific training, such as CrossFit, you’ll want to look elsewhere.

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