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Doctors of Running: Hoka Rincon 3 Review - The Perfect Balance of Comfort and Performance

CEO Tinh Phung
Hoka Rincon 3 in hand. Orange upper and aqua, large stack midsole visible. HOKA written over the rear midfoot Introduction Are you in search of the perfect running shoe that offers both comfort and performance?...

Medial view of the Hoka Rincon 3. Large aqua midsole. Winged logo on heel Hoka Rincon 3 in hand. Orange upper and aqua, large stack midsole visible. HOKA written over the rear midfoot

Introduction

Are you in search of the perfect running shoe that offers both comfort and performance? Look no further! In this review, we dive into the Hoka Rincon 3, the latest addition to the Hoka family. Priced at $115, this shoe stands out for its durability and thoughtful design. Join us as we explore the features that make the Rincon 3 an excellent choice for runners of all levels.

Running Shoe Summary

The Hoka Rincon 3 strikes a balance between maximalist design and ground feel. With its breathable upper, improved outsole coverage, and reduced weight, this shoe is a lightweight trainer that adapts effortlessly to various running conditions. It offers a firm yet comfortable ride, making it an ideal choice for both casual and professional runners.

Outsole of the Rincon. Strategic rubber on forefoot and very rear heel. Crash pad seen in the heel. Outsole of the Rincon. Strategic rubber on the forefoot and very rear heel. Crash pad visible in the heel.

Fit

If you're familiar with Hoka shoes, you'll notice that the Rincon 3 maintains the brand's traditional fit. It features a moderately wide heel and a snugger mid and forefoot, providing a secure yet comfortable feel. The upper is breathable and locks the foot down effectively. However, the non-gusseted tongue could use some improvement, as it tends to slide down slightly. In terms of sizing, the Rincon 3 fits true to size in length and slightly narrow in width.

Mildly padded heel of the Hoka One One Rincon 3. Soft & Light Meets Fast written on the insole. Mildly padded heel of the Hoka One One Rincon 3. "Soft & Light Meets Fast" written on the insole.

Performance

The Rincon 3's midsole offers an excellent combination of lightness and snappiness. It allows for quick turnovers without feeling cumbersome. While it may not provide a plush, cushioned feel or significant bounce, it offers a muted yet pleasant ride. What sets it apart is the ground feel it provides despite having a 33mm heel. The outsole modifications, including increased rubber coverage and a wider cutout in the crash pad, enhance durability and improve grip during acceleration. The Rincon 3's versatility shines through, making it suitable for daily training, performance runs, and even long-distance races.

Stability

Thanks to the new cutout in the heel, the Rincon 3 offers exceptional stability. The wider cutout creates a cradle-like effect, allowing the heel bone to sink in upon landing. Combined with the firm foam, wide full-contact outsole, and side walls, this shoe ensures a stable neutral running experience. However, for individuals with a narrow heel, the heel counter could benefit from some additional tightening to prevent any sloppiness.

Thoughts as a DPT / Footwear Science

One of the most significant design changes in the Rincon 3 is the cutout in the crash pad. This feature creates a cradle effect, which can be beneficial for runners with stability needs. Whether you tend to pronate or supinate, the centered nature of the cutout can guide your foot into a more centered position during the gait cycle. However, it's important to note that pronation and supination are often normal and healthy movements during running. Only individuals with a history of running injuries relating to excessive pronation or supination may find the Rincon 3 particularly beneficial.

Rear of the Rincon 3. Some minor sole flaring seen out of the heel foam. Rear of the Rincon 3. Some minor sole flaring seen out of the heel foam.

Recommendations

While the Rincon 3 is an impressive shoe, there are two areas of potential refinement. Firstly, the tongue could be slightly longer or better secured to the top of the foot. Secondly, narrowing the heel slightly would enhance overall upper security, especially considering that this shoe is already on the lighter side and borders on being a performance trainer.

Who This Shoe Is For

The Rincon 3 caters to runners seeking a lightweight and versatile trainer that combines foam protection with a touch of ground feel. If you prefer a firmer lightweight trainer, this shoe is an excellent option. Its updates, including improved upper security, breathability, and enhanced stability due to the centered cutout, make it stand out. Additionally, the wider cutout may provide more compression in the heel area, lending a lower drop feel. In select cases, the Rincon 3 may even suit runners with a history of running injuries related to excessive supination or pronation.

Grading

  • Fit: B (Breathable and secure with minor issues in tongue and heel width)
  • Performance: A- (Consistent balance of cushioning and ground feel, suitable for various distances and paces)
  • Stability: A- (Stable neutral trainer with added heel stability)
  • DPT/Footwear Science: A (Effective in addressing stability needs)
  • Personal: B+ (A valuable addition to my running arsenal, with a minor preference for a slightly higher drop)
  • Overall: A- (An all-around shoe with remarkable stability and solid design elements)

Up close on the upper of the Rincon 3. Up close on the upper of the Rincon 3.

Further Reading

If you're eager to explore more running shoe options or want to dive deeper into the world of running gear, here are some articles and reviews you may find interesting:

Thank you for joining us in this comprehensive review of the Hoka Rincon 3. Stay tuned for more exciting articles and reviews from Doctors of Running!

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