Wednesday, 24 May 2017

My Shoes of Choose - The Dunlop Volley is back, minus the Dunlop!

Despite spending far too much money on English leather over the years, when it comes to sportswear my taste in shoes is almost inconceivably simple. For fifteeen years the Dunlop Volley Classic has stood tall as my shoe of choice for everything from parkour to squash, fishing to running. I'd buy this very specific type of Volley in batches of several pairs from Payless Shoes, and replenish them annually.

Then one day, without warning, the supply dried up! Lesser Volley Internationals could be purchased from places like Kmart, but their soft sole would wear out in under a week, and the heavy, jelly feel was useless.

They also looked incredibly stupid with their smooth, bulgy toe cap.

But a short while ago the Volley brand popped back up as its own concern, having ditched Dunlop under new ownership. And aside from sole colour, the new Classic is remarkably faithful to the original!

Now for a rundown of why i believe that this specific Volley is still the best parkour shoe available in Australia:

  • It has a very roomy toe box, minimal padding, and very little heel rise. This makes it a phenomenal running shoe for developing strong feet, yet it's not so sensitive as to feel like running barefoot.
  • The chevron sole has fantastic grip in the wet and dry when new. Once the sole is worn down across the ball of the foot, the flexibility and touch sensitivity becomes amazing at the sacrifice of wet grip.
  • The shoe has enough structure to hold and protect your foot well. The laces stop your foot from moving around as they would in something like a Feiyue.
  • The foam-filled band around the top of the shoe, and the puffy tongue, do a decent job of protecting the ankle against things like railings.
  • Despite costing a lot more than the old Dunlops (they've gone from $30 to $55), they're still good value. You get a lot more durability than from a Feiyue, yet don't have to be precious with them as you would with a Nike or Merrell. It's a happy medium.
Other shoes are better at specific jobs, but i haven't found anything yet which does as much, so well, for so little money.

And the black option looks great with the red accents now!

You've just gotta be a bit more careful with leaving marks on walls over the old natural rubber soles.

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