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Old 03-03-2013, 05:11 PM   #112
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Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Pacific North West
Posts: 899
Thumbs up Murray_fan1 Propulse 4 Review

Murray_fan1's Review of the Propulse 4

I will update durability and overall comments in the coming weeks

Tennis experience/background: My Dad introduced me to the game when I was 9 years old and haven't looked back since. I played competitive tennis (league, junior tournaments etc) at a fairly high level up until I was about 19 yrs old when the usual facts of life kicked in (School, Job, Family). I now play generally to keep fit, hitting with others players at my club around the 4.5-5.5 level. I plan to play league tennis this spring/summer and some select tournaments along the way when time permits.

Describe your playing style (i.e. serve & volley): I would describe myself as a base liner with aspirations of becoming an all court player. Although I don't consider myself old I do feel that I would be better off finishing points as quickly as possible (moving in) instead of slugging it out all day from the back with these young 20 somethings . Needless to say, I feel most comfortable at the baseline so if you were to catch me on the court no doubt that is where I will be.

Current shoe: Asics Gel Resolution 4's - The Resolution line since it's introduction has been my go to shoe and IMO this shoe is the Hallmark in terms of overall performance ( Speed, Stability, Traction, Fit and Comfort). It does lack the durability I have been longing but comes with a painless 6 month durability guarantee (shoes last me 2 months) through TW so I can't complain.

How many hours did you play with the shoe? Approx 9 hrs

Comments on shoe performance:9/10 This shoe has really surprised me. Going into the play test I had some preconceived ideas on how this shoe would perform. Based on the styling I had pegged this as a typical durability shoe which lacks the speed, comfort and traction I desire to play at my highest level. Well let me tell you the Propulse delivers on a high level in all the key categories for me with only the Resolutions slightly ahead in terms of overall performance.

Comfort-I found these shoes to have a very nice balance of comfort to performance. I like the fact that these shoes play low to the ground and have great feedback but don't punish you for that feel either. The resolutions may be a little better in this regard but it is very close. Heel cushioning is outstanding. The Compressor heel cup does a great job in absorbing shock without losing the feedback that you would get with an Airmax system.

-arch support: 10/10 I am lucky enough to have a fairly regular arch so nothing special is required here. I felt the Propulse was adequate in this regard for my foot type. No issues here.

-stability/support: 9/10 This is a very stable shoe that takes very well to side to side movement, lateral cuts and movement in general around the court. The cell shield upper is pliable but not overly constricting and the heel and foot belt straps keep my foot locked in place with no fear of foot slippage. Stability is on par with the best in this category ( Barricade, Court Ballistecs, Resolution 4's)

-ventilation: Although this time of year ventilation is not a concern for me (play indoors during the winter). The construction (Cell shield Cage) of the upper seems to be designed with this in mind. Ventilation seems more than adequate for even the hottest of summer days.

-sole durability: I will update this as the time goes but very little to report here. Sole seems near new at the 9 hrs mark with only the slightest signs that these have been worn on a hard court.

-toe durability: Beefed up in all the right places, I think this will bode well for this shoe over time. I tend to drag my toe on service returns and when serving so this will definitely get a true test with me. I also like the fact that they beefed up the section on the upper which is exactly where my would drag when sliding out wide. Asics please take note of this if you are reading this. Babolat got it right here.

-traction: Traction to me due to the spacing on the indoor courts I play the ability to start and stop abruptly when chasing balls out wide is paramount. The Propulse has the right mix of grab and give (slides) that allows for complete confidence around the court.

-weight:-The weight of this shoe is slightly more than what I am used to and yes I would love for these shoes to weigh less but I know with that comes some compromises i.e durability, support, cushioning stability. I would take the extra weight in this case as I don't feel the reduction in weight would be worth it.

General reaction/comments on overall performance: Well I would like to thank Babolat and Tennis Warehouse for allowing me to be apart of this play test. These shoes are a real contender to become my shoe of choice. I really like my current shoes but if these continue to perform this well I may be switching. The overall performance to date has been nothing less than outstanding and has been a pleasure to be apart of.
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