I recently received a pair of Skora Fits, and wanted to give you an early look at them while I work on getting in enough mileage to write a full review. The Fit is the latest addition to the Skora line-up–it was introduced early this spring, and is priced at $94.95, making it the least expensive model Skora offers.
My initial impression of the Fit is that it is essentially the shoe you’d get if you removed the straps from the Base and converted it to a lace-up running shoe. Obviously, you’d need to make some minor adjustments to the materials and aesthetics, too, but you get the idea. This is actually wonderful for me, because while I loved the overall fit and feel of my Bases (review here), I could never get my foot strapped in the right way, so I dealt with rubbing and blisters on the edges/bottoms of my feet. With the Fit, I can get my foot laced in securely and comfortably, and I appreciate that it looks a little bit more “normal” than the Base as far as shoes go.
Aesthetics/Materials: The Fit is definitely an attractive shoe. It features Skora’s characteristic asymmetrical lacing (which, I note, has been adopted by several other minimalist shoe companies). The dotted pattern covering the upper is visually appealing, and it is offered in fun, bright colors (women: Pink/Blue, Yellow/Silver; men: Red/Black; Black/Silver/Blue). The shoe has a distinctly athletic appearance, but I can see myself wearing it casually a lot, in addition to running.
As with the other “budget” Skora models (the Phase and the Base), the Fit is made from noticeably simpler (re: less expensive) materials. That’s not to say that the shoe feels cheap by any means, but the upper is not quite as luxurious (or as versatile, for that matter) as the goat skin leather upper of the Core and the Form. The sole is identical to the one found on the Base and the Form, so I have high hopes for its durability.
Fit: The overall fit is similar to the Base model, featuring a narrower toe box relative to the Core (review here) and Phase (review here) models. It seems to run a bit on the small side (contrary to what the sizing tool on Skora’s website indicates), so I would recommend ordering a half size up.
Comfort: Based on my initial runs, I would say that the Skora Fit feels like a fairly cushy minimalist shoe. It doesn’t have a huge amount of under-the-foot cushioning, by any means, but the upper is particularly plush feeling and the shoe is “built on a version of the R01 platform [the sole found in the Base model], modified for increased cushioning and comfort.” Because of this, the sole definitely feels like it has some extra squish to it relative to the Base, although the difference is probably exaggerated in my case because my Bases have well over 100 miles on them and have likely compressed some at this point. I, for one, am hoping for the Fit also compress some, because I think it will give my feet a little bit more room in the shoe, and I feel that the extra cushioning makes running in them feel a bit too mushy (rather than springy or neutral, as I would prefer). That said, the plushness of the Fit, in terms of the upper and the sole, makes it a very comfortable shoe to go sockless in, and, despite being plush, it has great ventilation.
Initial Conclusions: If you’re interested in Skoras, but aren’t quite ready to shell out close to $200 for the Form (review here), I think the Fit is a great alternative. I would also recommend it over the similarly priced Base, because I had a lot of problems with getting a proper fit in the Base (and because the Fit is more casual-wear friendly).