K-Swiss Defier Misoul review with Photos.

drakulie

Talk Tennis Guru
K-Swiss Defier Misoul review

Tennis warehouse link:
http://www.tennis-warehouse.com/descpageMSKSWISS-MKMS.html

I want to first off thank TW, for providing me the opportunity to review these shoes. I hope they are as good as the first shoes I reviewed, the Wilson Trance All Courts. Review of those shoes could be found here:

http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=181754

Those shoes lasted me one year. YES, >>> ONE YEAR.

I hope these are half as good, and I could say this>> so far, they look promising. I decided to wear them today to a woman's tournament where I had the reponisbility of being the "official" photographer. From the get go, I had a lot of people asking me about the shoes, and where I purcahsed them. So, like me, people really liked the look of the shoe.










The Misoul's come with two different souls that are easily removed, and have a "peg" function that fits into a hole on the shoe, so the souls don't slide around. One soul is for "match day", are much lighter, and have a lower to the ground feel. The second pair of souls, are for long running/practices, are much more cushiony, and and a bit higher off the ground feeling. I could say without hesitation, each soul provides a very different and unique feel, that seems to deliver on what they promise to do. For the tournament today, I decided to wear the cushioned version, as I was going to be doing a lot of walking.

The look of the shoe, in my opinion is very classy looking. Nothing too over the top, and definitely not drab. They have a overall nice look that is well-balanced. The Misouls, as can be seen in the above photos are half white, half navy blue.

I found the shoe to fit true to size, with a lot of room in the toe-box area. They didn't necessarily require a break in period, but like most of you, I'm sure you like the way the shoe fits after a few weeks of play. Seems like the material always softens up a bit, and starts feeling like a glove on your foot. You'll definitely have to wait a week or so (depending how much you play), to get there.

I wore the shoes today from approximately 7:30 AM to 6:00 PM, which included about two hours of play (4:00 - 6:00 PM). 10 and a half hours, and I could say the cushioning of the shoe was a real relief. I'm recently coming back from a bad ankle sprain, bruised achilles, and the cushinong and support of the shoe really assisted me in dealing with so much walking. The shoes never felt uncomfortable, or heavy/cumbersome, although they are not the lightest shoe out in the market. As for play, the shoes were very stable, with lots of lateral support, and really grip the ground very well. They provide excellent support on the outside of the foot, and in the arch. Additionally, provide lots of needed cushioning in the heel area.

I don't want to go any further than this for my initail review, as I want to get a few weeks of play time in them to give a more in-depth review. However, as I stated>>> so far, they look very promising.

Stay tuned, as there is more to come.


UPDATED REVIEW 2/25/09

Wanted to provide a more in depth review of the shoe. being that I have now been wearing them exclusively for the past 3 weeks.

Please note: These shoes come with two different in-soles. A lighter/thinner version for match play,and a heavier/thicker version for longer workouts. Although I like the feel of a shoe that is "closer to the gournd", which is provided by the thinner version, I've only used the thicker version because of a recent ankle injury, which resulted in a swollen achilles tendon.

I have to say, the thicker version of the in-soles has been a very pleasant surprise, because without it, my court time would have been extremely limited. As you could guess, this version along with the extra cushioning the shoe comes with in the heel area has really assisted me in being able to stay on the court comfortably.

The Misouls have great traction on both hard and clay (har-tru) courts, and better than average stability. There is very little twisting when stopping and cutting back to change directions, because of the great response provided. The lateral support is well-above average. There is very little slippage inside the shoe, where one's foot seems to slide around when running hard and having to change directions quickly. The toe box area provides above average protection. As for breathability, the Misouls once again have very good ventilation.

I'm very pleased with the shoe, and would definitely recommend them. Because of the trust I have in the shoes ability to alleviate any discomfort I have with my achilles tendon, they have enabled me to be on the court, where without a comfortable shoe like this that provides excellent playability, >>>>I'd probably still be on the sidelines playing it safe.

I'll be switching very soon to the thinner in-soles, and will provide another review of how the shoe feels/performs with those.
 
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Aerial

New User
I'm curious what is your foot type?

Mine is flat and wide(2e)...so i wear 12d rather than 11d. I worn the ultrascendors in 11 1/2
 

drakulie

Talk Tennis Guru
Those shoes do look very nice. Can't wait for the rest of your review. Thanks in advance!
You're welcome.

I'm curious what is your foot type?

Mine is flat and wide(2e)...so i wear 12d rather than 11d. I worn the ultrascendors in 11 1/2
I typically wear a size 9.5, however, for these shoes I decided to go a size .5 bigger in case they ran a little tight, and because I also use very thick socks (thorlos).

BTW, I also have a relatively flat foot, but unlike you, my feet are wider in the toe area, and not the mid portion of my foot or heel.

Hey drakulie, what size do you wear?
9.5

hey drakulie the souls you mean did u mean the shoe soles

Sorry about the confusion. I meant the in-souls of the shoes. Here is a picture of the box. Asyou could see, the inner lid has a pair of the "light in-souls". The shoes came in the box with the cushionsy in-souls already in the shoe.

 

srvnvly

Hall of Fame
Drak-

Couple of questions: 1) I currently weart the KSwiss Defier, size 10.5, should I go up to an 11? I wear a normal pair of dri-fit socks, so I'm curious about your opinion; 2) Can you tell me the weight of the shoe with each insole type? on the TW product page, shoe weight is listed as "TBD".

Good info so far, thanks!
 

Topaz

Legend
in SOLES drak, in SOLES. :lol:
Well, in his defense, even TW calls the shoe the MiSoul. Not sure why...creates a lot of confusion between the inside of the shoe and the thing that you're not supposed to sell to the devil! Which...brings us back to Drak!

-Topaz...who is patiently waiting for the day TW wants her to review some shoes for WOMEN. :)
 

stician

Semi-Pro
will these be Andy Murray's shoe? by the way the Lotto Syn Raptor 2 also offers two insoles per pair of shoes. Their philosophy is opposite of K-Swiss. Their practice insoles are your typical thin foam and competition insoles have a denser/dynamic feel.
 
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Il Mostro

Banned
Best looking shoe KSwiss has made in years -- updated look, but still retains the KSwiss core style cues. I have seen no mention of the weight anywhere. At a glance, they look no heavier than, say, Barricade V's or similar shoes. Not for guys with wimpy legs, I guess. ;-)
 
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Aerial

New User
Best looking shoe KSwiss has made in years -- updated look, but still retains the KSwiss core style cues. I have seen no mention of the weight anywhere. At a glance, they look no heavier than, say, Barricade V's or similar shoes. Not for guys with wimpy legs, I guess. ;-)
Not everyone can make 13oz shoes like yonex and Asics. But the Barricades V are not lite weight. Neither are the Vapor V. Although specs and how they actually feel/perform on the courts...you'll only know when you try them. They are only <16oz so it should be adaquate, if they are comfortable on the courts
 

drakulie

Talk Tennis Guru
Drak-

Couple of questions: 1) I currently weart the KSwiss Defier, size 10.5, should I go up to an 11? I wear a normal pair of dri-fit socks, so I'm curious about your opinion; 2) Can you tell me the weight of the shoe with each insole type? on the TW product page, shoe weight is listed as "TBD".

Good info so far, thanks!

As I said, the shoes fit true to size, so if you are currently wearing shoes that you found to fit true to size, no reason to order larger. As for the weight>>>>> I'm not sure. Sorry. :( They don't feel any heavier/lighter than the wilson trance all courts, adidas barricades, etc. Hope that helps.

in SOLES drak, in SOLES. :lol:
hehehe. I suppose I got "locked in" to the actual name of the shoe Mi**soul*. However, you are correct, and as a true journalist, I should know better than to submit my work without proofing. :)

Best looking shoe KSwiss has made in years -- updated look, but still retains the KSwiss core style cues. I have seen no mention of the weight anywhere. At a glance, they look no heavier than, say, Barricade V's or similar shoes. Not for guys with wimpy legs, I guess. ;-)
I have to agree with your entire post. The shoes really do look very nice, and they are not any heavier than other popular shoes out there that are made for durablity.
 

siow_a

Rookie
Best looking shoe KSwiss has made in years -- updated look, but still retains the KSwiss core style cues. I have seen no mention of the weight anywhere. At a glance, they look no heavier than, say, Barricade V's or similar shoes. Not for guys with wimpy legs, I guess. ;-)
15.1 Ounces (size 8½)

on a competitors site.
 

El Guapo

Semi-Pro
If that is very heavy, then 90% or more of the tennis shoe manufacturer need to trim the fat. I can think of only a handful or shoes that are sub 15oz. Yonex, Asics, Maybe some Adidas and Prince.
You are wrong again. Reading is fundamental.

The weight quotes is for size 8.5!!!! That's the standard women's size. Check TW's weights for women's shoes and then get back to us.
 

siow_a

Rookie
You are wrong again. Reading is fundamental.

The weight quotes is for size 8.5!!!! That's the standard women's size. Check TW's weights for women's shoes and then get back to us.



Hey, I was looking in the Men's section for the shoes at the competitor's site. I checked the TW website and there is no spec weight at the moment. But it may be the spec weight for a women's shoe(I give you that). If you can find the true spec weight then please post it, instead of implying that I'm an idiot. So you get back with us on the true weight. I'm just trying to be informative here.

Not all great shoes(Yonex), fits all people. Or all heavy shoes are bad shoes for all.
 

drakulie

Talk Tennis Guru
Yes. VERY heavy.
Seriously, you need to change your name to "El Sissy". These shoes are approximately the same weight as adidas barricades, nike breathes, nike vapors, etc. If they are one ounce more, that is the equivalent of a match book.
 

siow_a

Rookie
16.3 oz. (Size 10.5) Mens
That's not heavy...it is right there with the competitors. I'll be getting a pair of size 12 on Friday and hopefully hit the courts with them that evening. I'll let you know how they play.

I played in the 304(3 month old) over the weekend and my knees are really feeling the pain. I was in the Asics Resolutions a week back and the pain was minimal at worst. Hope these Kswiss will provide better stability than the Asics(which are not as stable as the Vapor 5). The Kswiss's Herribone pattern looks to improve sure-footing over the Asics on the clay. The Yonex 304 are great on clay and hard. I'll be providing full details over the weekend.
 
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siow_a

Rookie
siow a, let us know your thoughts on the shoes when you are able to wear them. Thanks.

Preliminary views:

With Comfort insole:
- 18.2 - size 12--- remember smaller sizes will weigh less. The Barricades V felt heavier to me(I didn't weigh them though)
- Very attractive shoe.
- Well made shoe.
- The insole is curved from the outer edges toward the center. Very comfortable EVA. Asics is better.
- Not as much side heel padding as the Yonex 304/305/306, Asics 1/2 or Vapor 5.
- The tongue appears to be partially mesh. Not as plush as the others. Close to the Vapor 5.
- High off the ground but very cushioned. Feels like Barricade V, but a little bit taller.
- My foot twist in the mid-sole section with the shoe. If you want to call it glove like in that way then "yes" up to the mid foot(Like the Vapor V).
- It feels like a stable shoe.
- Very comfortable to walk around in.
- Toe box is inbetween the Yonex 304/305. Closer to the Barricades V. toe box is taller than the Vapor V. Very comfortable for me with the Thorlos Level 3 on.
- Very Soft Leather around toe box.
- It does get warm inside, but cooler than Yonex 306, not as cool as the Asics 2...on Par with the Vapor 5, ASICS 1
- Nice herribone tread -- meant for all court surfaces---wish all manufactures went this way.



With Game day insoles:
- 17.1 - size 12
- much more lower to the ground feel--- Low to the ground feeling
- Feels more stable then the comfort insole--- no surprise here since you are lower to the ground.
- Like the feel of these insoles better for playing. Makes me feel connected to the court.


--- More to come
 
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siow_a

Rookie
Preliminary views:

With Comfort insole:
- 18.2 - size 12--- remember smaller sizes will weigh less. The Barricades V felt heavier to me(I didn't weigh them though)
- Very attractive shoe.
- Well made shoe.
- The insole is curved from the outer edges toward the center. Very comfortable EVA. Asics is better.
- Not as much side heel padding as the Yonex 304/305/306, Asics 1/2 or Vapor 5.
- The tongue appears to be partially mesh. Not as plush as the others. Close to the Vapor 5.
- High off the ground but very cushioned. Feels like Barricade V, but a little bit taller.
- My foot twist in the mid-sole section with the shoe. If you want to call it glove like in that way then "yes" up to the mid foot(Like the Vapor V).
- It feels like a stable shoe.
- Very comfortable to walk around in.
- Toe box is inbetween the Yonex 304/305. Closer to the Barricades V. toe box is taller than the Vapor V. Very comfortable for me with the Thorlos Level 3 on.
- Very Soft Leather around toe box.
- It does get warm inside, but cooler than Yonex 306, not as cool as the Asics 2...on Par with the Vapor 5, ASICS 1
- Nice herribone tread -- meant for all court surfaces---wish all manufactures went this way.



With Game day insoles:
- 17.1 - size 12
- much more lower to the ground feel--- Low to the ground feeling
- Feels more stable then the comfort insole--- no surprise here since you are lower to the ground.
- Like the feel of these insoles better for playing. Makes me feel connected to the court.


--- More to come

Okay. I hit the courts with this shoe and let's just say it is a very comfortable shoe(very comparable to the ASICS). It did not slow me down at all on the courts. I may decide to go down 1/2 a size instead of 12 next time around. The shoe was very stable and grip the court quite well. I never thought I would ever slip on the court(Hard courts). I felt the toe box was larger then I expected once on the move. I was using the Comfort insoles and my knees were perfectly healthy afterwards. Much the same feeling as my Yonex 304. It is worth another outting onto the tennis courts. I think the soles felt rigid enough(little more than the ASICS 1/2) without being hard or too soft(Prince T-20). Soles shows no wear. But I wish the herrribone groves were deeper or chanels space slightly more apart(for clay-- not played on yet). The lacing is nice just like the ones found on the ultrascendor. My ultrascendors broke down after a month of playing. Hopefully these will last longer. Remember I'm close to 200lbs so your mileage may be better.
 

drakulie

Talk Tennis Guru
^^^your findings are very similar to mine.

I'll be providing a more in-depth review than my first one at the end of this week.

Haven't used the light in-soles yet. However, will use them for two weeks starting Monday, and then give a review of those.

Thanks for your thoughts. Much appreciated.
 

siow_a

Rookie
^^^your findings are very similar to mine.

I'll be providing a more in-depth review than my first one at the end of this week.

Haven't used the light in-soles yet. However, will use them for two weeks starting Monday, and then give a review of those.

Thanks for your thoughts. Much appreciated.

My only concern is how long do these shoes hold up in cushioning. Asics is the king for me(4-5+ months). Yonex is a little further behind(3 months). Ultrascendor only lasted me about 6 weeks.

In a weird way, I do like the Kswiss a little better in that the sole is not a squishy(which helps in cushioning). Inspite of the very slightly "stiffer" sole the Kswiss does not feel jarring and is very cushion-like. I always felt stable. The lighter insole which I have not used(on the court) did make me feel more lower to the ground and interesting enough more stable(tried at home). The cushion insole was by no means unstable. The cushioned insoles cups the lateral sides on my foot within the shoes. I felt lock-in. If there was any movement it was my foot moving Slightly forward and back within the shoe. Like I said 11 1/2 might be a better fit for me. I normally wear size 11 2E dress shoes.
 
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Craig Sheppard

Hall of Fame
Wow, I tried these on this weekend in a shop, they had to be the most comfortable shoes I've ever tried. They felt like they'd require zero break-in, and the cushioning was very plush. Couldn't buy a pair right then, but they really surprised me for K-Swiss. I've worn the Defiers and tried a few others, these are definitely an upgrade to those previous models.
 

siow_a

Rookie
Wow, I tried these on this weekend in a shop, they had to be the most comfortable shoes I've ever tried. They felt like they'd require zero break-in, and the cushioning was very plush. Couldn't buy a pair right then, but they really surprised me for K-Swiss. I've worn the Defiers and tried a few others, these are definitely an upgrade to those previous models.
And an upgrade in price consistant with other manufacturer. I worn them over the weekend in a doubles match. Two hours of constant moving and they are nicely cushioned. Right up there with the ASICS.
 

Craig Sheppard

Hall of Fame
And an upgrade in price consistant with other manufacturer. I worn them over the weekend in a doubles match. Two hours of constant moving and they are nicely cushioned. Right up there with the ASICS.
I felt like the "performance" insole was a better fit than the "cushioning" insole--which did you use? The cushioning sole was definitely plush, but felt like it rode pretty high, the white performance one felt a little more aggressive, while still being comfortable. Need to get a pair of these on the court soon.
 

siow_a

Rookie
I felt like the "performance" insole was a better fit than the "cushioning" insole--which did you use? The cushioning sole was definitely plush, but felt like it rode pretty high, the white performance one felt a little more aggressive, while still being comfortable. Need to get a pair of these on the court soon.
I agree the performance insoles(which I have not played in). Did feel awfully low to the ground.
 

samster

Hall of Fame
Drakulie,

I wear size 12 for Vapor IV, Vapor V TD, and Asics Gel Resolution. Should I get the K-Swiss in 12? I would hate to get them and then having to go through the return process. Thank you!
 

drakulie

Talk Tennis Guru
^^Samster, I found them to fit true to size. from what other people have told me as well as other reviewers, that seems to be the consensus.

Good luck, and if you do get them, let us know your thoughts. So far, I love them. Great, great shoe.
 

Booyah

Semi-Pro
As one of the reviewers, i have to agree with drakulie, fits true to size and one of the most comfortable shoes right now.
 

Hankenstein

Hall of Fame
K-Swiss Defier Misoul review

bla bla bla review





bla bla bla review
Seems to be a very nice shoe, but on a totaly off topic subject i must say i really ENVY u guys in NA who get the chance to play on the Har-Tru all the time! It seems like a very nice surface to play on. Much faster then our red clay. We have some courts with green clay in Sweden but here it´s called "canada-tenn" and has a different compound. Only looks the same from what i have heard.
 

siow_a

Rookie
Seems to be a very nice shoe, but on a totaly off topic subject i must say i really ENVY u guys in NA who get the chance to play on the Har-Tru all the time! It seems like a very nice surface to play on. Much faster then our red clay. We have some courts with green clay in Sweden but here it´s called "canada-tenn" and has a different compound. Only looks the same from what i have heard.

These shoes are great on clay. I really love them. Also love the Gel resolution 2 on hard courts.
 

Craig Sheppard

Hall of Fame
These shoes are great on clay. I really love them. Also love the Gel resolution 2 on hard courts.
Great to hear, half my league matches are on clay. I just ordered up a pair, hopefully have them by the weekend and get a quickie review up to see if I can corroborate what everyone's saying.

This is the first shoe I've looked forward to slipping on in a while. In recent history I've worn the Yonex SHT-306s, 305s, and 304s. Those models seem to have gone steadily downhill. 304 was the best, 305 was ok but not as good, 306s worse. None of those were great on clay though, in fact I injured myself in the 304s on clay due to a slip.

I'm most interested in seeing how quick & light these Misouls will feel around the court, that's the one thing I couldn't really get a hold of in my brief try-on period. I lived w/ the original Defiers for a season, so if these are similar then they should work well. Only knocks I had on the original Defiers was the weight and the ventilation. Oh, and come to think of it, they kept stretching out... I was tying those suckers down tight by the time they wore out.
 

siow_a

Rookie
Great to hear, half my league matches are on clay. I just ordered up a pair, hopefully have them by the weekend and get a quickie review up to see if I can corroborate what everyone's saying.

This is the first shoe I've looked forward to slipping on in a while. In recent history I've worn the Yonex SHT-306s, 305s, and 304s. Those models seem to have gone steadily downhill. 304 was the best, 305 was ok but not as good, 306s worse. None of those were great on clay though, in fact I injured myself in the 304s on clay due to a slip.

I'm most interested in seeing how quick & light these Misouls will feel around the court, that's the one thing I couldn't really get a hold of in my brief try-on period. I lived w/ the original Defiers for a season, so if these are similar then they should work well. Only knocks I had on the original Defiers was the weight and the ventilation. Oh, and come to think of it, they kept stretching out... I was tying those suckers down tight by the time they wore out.

You definately want to use the lighter insoles. They breath better than the Yonex 304/305/306. As the version number rises so does the interior of these Yonex shoes. Yes they have been going backwards, but still a very nice shoe. The 304 are my favorite since my foot is wide 2E. These are close to the original Diefiers, but better hence the price. The Asics resolution 1/2 are lighter but these are better on the clay. I love these shoes as much as the Asics. Hopefully the EVA hold up better than the Ultrascendors.
 

drakulie

Talk Tennis Guru
Updated review:

Wanted to provide a more in depth review of the shoe. being that I have now been wearing them exclusively for the past 3 weeks.

Please note: These shoes come with two different in-soles. A lighter/thinner version for match play,and a heavier/thicker version for longer workouts. Although I like the feel of a shoe that is "closer to the gournd", which is provided by the thinner version, I've only used the thicker version because of a recent ankle injury, which resulted in a swollen achilles tendon.

I have to say, the thicker version of the in-soles has been a very pleasant surprise, because without it, my court time would have been extremely limited. As you could guess, this version along with the extra cushioning the shoe comes with in the heel area has really assisted me in being able to stay on the court comfortably.

The Misouls have great traction on both hard and clay (har-tru) courts, and better than average stability. There is very little twisting when stopping and cutting back to change directions, because of the great response provided. The lateral support is well-above average. There is very little slippage inside the shoe, where one's foot seems to slide around when running hard and having to change directions quickly. The toe box area provides above average protection. As for breathability, the Misouls once again have very good ventilation.

I'm very pleased with the shoe, and would definitely recommend them. Because of the trust I have in the shoes ability to alleviate any discomfort I have with my achilles tendon, they have enabled me to be on the court, where without a comfortable shoe like this that provides excellent playability, >>>>I'd probably still be on the sidelines playing it safe.

I'll be switching very soon to the thinner in-soles, and will provide another review of how the shoe feels/performs with those.
 

Torres

Banned
Very good review and photos of some very good shoes.

Some clueless comments about weight from some of the other posters though. The Defier MiSouls weigh the same as the Nike Ballistecs 2.3s which is fairly light to average weight tennis shoe.
 

Carolina Racquet

Professional
I've worn the Defier MiSouls for 4-5 months, mostly on clay.

They are a quality shoe, but I had some fitting issues with the uppers to a point where I had to cut the edge of the shoe by the top outside eyelet to avoid getting blisters.

I too wish the tread was cut deeper for clay court tennis. Don't get the traction I'm used to when I play in the dirt.

Wear has been pretty good. Ventilation is adequate.
 

Torres

Banned
I seem to be following Drakulie's shoe options, having bought the Wilson Trance All Court (too narrow and too much arch support for me), and have now bought the MiSouls.

Brief summary of my experiences (slightly wide flat feet and have four pairs of Defier based K-Swiss shoes already, along with a pair of CB2.3s)

Good traction and stability. Shoes are a snug fit though, not as tight as the CB2.3s but snug. Nowhere near as roomy or as comfortable as say the Defiers. The comfort gel sole inserts still feel a bit hard. Good arch support, perhaps slightly too much for my flat fleet. Good cushioning in the heel but there seems to be only minimal cushioning in the forefoot. My toes also move forward and press up against the top of the toebox when playing, so the fit (for me) isn't quite ideal. I also found that the insoles from the Defier fit these shoes perfectly, so I've been interchanging with MiSoul inserts and Defier insoles with Sorborthane shoe inserts which are much more comfortbale (and better suited to flat feet). They feel better after they've had about 6-8 hours to bed in. The soul molds a bit more to me feet and the uppers loosen slightly. On the subject of uppers, they feel a bit plasticky and these shoes don't seem to breathe that well.

Overall, not bad, but for my slightly wider, flatter feet, its not the most comfortable K-Swiss shoe I've ever tried. Love the looks of it though, particularly in silver.
 
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