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So Ill Holds - Runner Climbing Shoe

So Ill Holds Runner Climbing Shoe

60% Off
$51.58 Original price:$128.95
Changing the size selection, or changing the selected color after selecting a size, may change the associated price

Item #SIH001N




Tech Specs

Upper Material:
padded tongue
Dark Matter
moderate downturn
Asymmetrical Curvature:
Recommended Use:
Manufacturer Warranty:
3 years

Runner Climbing Shoe

Sprint up the hardest routes and boulders at the gym wearing So Ill's brilliantly blue Runner Climbing Shoe. This shoe sports a moderate downturn with thin midsole so your toes can feel the subtlest jibs on vertical to overhung climbs. Its Dark Matter rubber comes from So Ill's Unparallel Rubber family, which the Navy Seals use for reliable traction during covert missions, and its non-marking convenience ensures long-lasting durability. The synthetic upper features a padded tongue, and since it won't stretch much, So Ill recommends sizing this shoe like a regular street shoe.

  • Downturned climbing shoe for aggressive boulders and gym routes
  • Thin midsole with asymmetry for intermediate to advanced climbers
  • Dark Matter rubber from UnParallel Rubber family
  • Synthetic upper resists stretching
  • Padded tongue promotes comfort on longer routes

Poorly Made

    I bought these shoes from So ill, not backcountry. They were on a super sale and I got them for like $35, hoping I could use them as a beater gym shoe. I typically climb in Tenayas and those shoes are like WOW! I got these and they honestly just suck. There is so much material and close to no sensitivity. I downsized quite a bit so I could use them aggressively, but the rubber is not sticky and I look like a goof just sliding off edges because I can’t feel where my toes are placed. They’re big, clunky, and pretty poorly made in my opinion.

    Great customer service, bad rubber

    • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
    • Fit: True to size
    • Size Bought: 11.5

    I am a new climber (~1 year) and these were my first pair of more aggressive shoes. I bought these shoes on March 6 and by April 27, both shoes were blown out, and the toes entirely stripped of rubber. Being a weekend climber (full time graduate student), this is surely not normal. I took good care of them, and when I wasn't climbing, I wasn't wearing them around the crag, stubbing my toes or wearing them down through walking.

    I would not recommend buying these shoes if you climb more than one weekend out of the month. However, I want to start by listing the pros of this shoe, as the company is apparently new, and they didn't get everything wrong. Hopefully they improve the flaws in this shoe.

    PROS: The fit was spot on, and my climbing really, really improved because of the trust I had in these shoes sticking to the tiniest of holds. The rubber is also very sticky, compared to my cheaper beginner shoes. Finally, I called customer service when they fell apart, and they immediately shipped me a new pair. I won't buy another pair from them, but they obviously care. Oh, and I had to get used to the bright color, but all the compliments were great!

    CONS: Simply, they are not well made. Being a full time graduate student who only climbs outdoors during on free weekends, I found the rubber was gone off the toes in less than two months, and holes started appearing (I am told they cannot be re-soled when this happens). Unfortunately, I had no time to read reviews when I bought these, as I was on a trip and suddenly in need of a new pair of shoes. However, if you browse around, you will see many people experiencing similar problems. The rubber is sticky, but it is gone in a flash.

    Run extremely small

    • Familiarity: I've used it several times
    • Fit: Runs small

    I actually bought these through the Kickstarter, and wish I'd just waited and bought them on Backcountry. Soill has horrible customer service (unlike Backcountry, which is basically the best customer service ever.) I bought the same size as my Miuras - a 36.5, and couldn't get them on my feet. I'm now in a size 38.5 after sending them back twice. (And paying for to and from shipping from Soill each time.) The woman I spoke with also acted like I just didn't like my shoes aggressive enough and did the thing where better climbers put themselves on a pedestal over less experienced climbers - without even knowing my experience level. Eyeroll. I've been wearing Miuras for years. Now that I finally have the correct size, I like them for the gym. They're definitely a step down, so I don't think I'll switch from my Miuras for outdoor use, but I like having a more aggressive shoe for training as well, and they are definitely a step up from my old gym shoes.

    Shine Bright Like A Diamond

    • Familiarity: I've used it several times
    • Fit: Runs small

    Moving to the So iLL Runners from the more expensive Miuras, I expected a slight downgrade in performance. But after a fair amount of climbing, I have to say I’m really impressed with these shoes.

    I was worried about the quality of the rubber, which they say comes from Navy Seal technology, but I found them to grip really well. On par with the Miuras, no doubt. I was plenty confident with my purchase on tiny, sloping footholds.

    They’re comfortable and I like the balance these shoes find in their aggressiveness—not too intense, but you get enough of an edge to confidently climb through an overhanging problem.

    I thought they looked awesome in the pictures, and in person they’re as bright as advertised. It’s definitely a way to stand out at the gym, for better or worse. Pretty much every time I climb someone will ask me about these shoes.

    Overall, So iLL is a cool little company and they’ve made a pretty nice mid-grade shoe in the Runners. If you want everyone to watch you at the bouldering wall, buy these. Then again, if you’re not the strongest climber, maybe that attention isn’t what you want.

    As far as sizing go, I ordered a half size up from my street shoe and the fit is perfect.

    A great beginner shoe.

    • Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
    • Fit: Runs small
    • Size Bought: I wear 9 1/2 and bought a 10

    I bought these shoes because of the great color way and the reputation of the companies climbing holds. Their shoes however need a little adjusting. Great color and comfortable was my first impressions but a closer look at the shoe showed poor craftsmanship. They climb okay, the rubber wasn't great despite the claims of "what the navy seals use" I am a good not great climber v5-v6, and mostly climb indoors. I would recommend these shoe to a new climber who doesn't want to make a big investment and likes a little style in his or hers shoes.

    side shot - 5 months in

      they've held up well for the gym and the mild climbs i've used them for outside.

      side shot - 5 months in

      after 5 months of heavy use

        toe is showing wear and rubber is getting gummy around the midsole, probably because it is so stretchy?

        after 5 months of heavy use

        Great Shoes not So Great Rubber

        • Familiarity: I've used it several times
        • Fit: True to size
        • Size Bought: 11.5

        So the upper and shoe in general are really well made and fit exactly as they said they would with a half size above my normal street shoe/scarpa size. However I had to return them because I could not get used to the soft rubber. My toe was constantly slipping off of holds and I almost decked because of it. I had to dial back my climbing style to make the shoes work safely. I would not suggest buying these if you don't have a backup pair as a safety net.

        On the other hand I did have an endless number of compliments on the shoes, but it's a bit embarassing when you have the flashiest shoes in the gym/crag and can't finish any routes because you keep slipping off.

        I'll be on the lookout for so ill to make some shoes with a normal rubber or maybe a cheap pair I can pickup and resole with vibram rubber.

        I agree Jake, they're a good training shoe if nothing else though.. at least I think my foot has gotten stronger due to the lack of support?

        I DO like them for bouldering and have hittup some hard boulders for me with them on, but definitely a backup pair is needed when you bring them to the crag, and I just don't trust them when I'm leading something so I avoid that use altogether.

        When I throw on any medium-stiffness standard pair of shoes my performance jumps up like a full number grade on sport or bouldering, but I know some people who'd love the softness of these for any routes or boulders. . they're just not any more than a gym shoe for me now.

        The so-ill streets are way better in terms of rubber and performance. I got a pair of runners cheap and I have no confidence in any of my footing. They seem to want to slip off all the time. Lucky I didn't pay much for them.

        Awesome Shoes!

        • Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
        • Fit: Runs small
        • Size Bought: 12

        These shoes fit very much under the stated size; as most climbing shoes do. I wear a size 10.5 athletic shoe on a day to day basis; I wear a size 11.5 scarpa climbing shoe. I originally ordered a size 11.5 in these runners and I had to return them, great return service at back country. I reordered a size 12 and they are perfect. I would recommend 1.5-2 sizes above street shoes and 0.5 above scarpa climbing shoes.

        They are very aggressive climbing shoes. Much more aggressive than climbing shoes I have owned before. Given I have not been climbing terribly long.

        The shoes are very well put together and I can find no faults in them.

        This is why I bought them! These are the coolest climbing shoes I have ever seen. I love color and these are so bright and vibrant.

        Bottom line, I've already recommended these to others.

        Softest Shoe. . .

        • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
        • Fit: True to size
        • Size Bought: 9.0

        The fit on the Runners is great for me and hugs everywhere! And the fit does remind me a LOT of the 5.10 Blackwings/Dragons, as far as shape and tension goes. I really like the construction of the upper as the gluing and stitching is solid and the mesh is crazy comfortable, as is the velvety black lining inside the shoe. That being said. . .

        Crazy Soft and Spongy and Grippy is really the only way to accurately describe the Dark Matter. It seeps into nuances of the rock or plastic and tends to stay nicely when the accurate pressure is applied to counteract the overall softness of the shoe and the sponginess that makes them stretch a bit at the same time.

        THESE ARE SOFT SHOES!! The mid-sole isn't too soft, but the fish-hook shape of it only covers about 1cm from the edge of your forefoot. The hollow center of the midsole allows for some serious grip in seriously overhanging terrain on larger holds and lends a lot of flexibility for excellent smearing. The edging isn’t spectacular for vertical dimes or precise overhanging edges, but it is manageable and grippy when smedging (smear-edging). The Dark Matter is, however, super grippy for smears and bumps on any terrain (when the correct amount of pressure is applied to counter the spongy stretch of the rubber).
        So iLL's Dark matter rubber is softer and spongier than 5.10's Stealth c4 rubber, Vibram's xs grip rubber, and definitely softer than Evolv's Trax rubber. Any feeling of mild tightness when you first put them on will almost immediately change to 'comfort' as the softness of the shoe rubber molds it hastily to your foot shape and bumps of your toe knuckles within minutes of your first routes. The heel also packs out considerably to help tension the last of the shoe to promote the fit in the toebox and keep the downturn strong. The heel doesn’t get sloppy, but it is incredibly thin and soft so it tends to ‘stretch’ a bit when applied to tiny edges or powerful hooks. Toe Hooks are pretty bomber though.

        After only 3 months of climbing plastic (and a bit of rock) in them I can without a doubt say that the rubber is easily the softest rubber on the market. Hands Down, even being a normal 4mm rubber thickness! You can crumple this shoe into a wad of rubber and mesh in your hands. They’ve stretched about a ¼ size and are fully lined. I climb about 15+ hours a week and have used these almost exclusively and the wear is barely starting to show in them. I still don’t prefer them for outdoors, but that’s my personal preference for a stiffer outdoor shoe coming into play, so I can’t speak to their overall outdoor durability though.

        My feet are ~9.5 inches long (9.75 on my big foot) and I ordered the 9.0s and they are 'comfortable' w/o being too sloppy to edge or smear reliably. That being said, I have a very average/narrow width fore foot with a high arch and fairly rounded heel so they fit the nuances my foot very well. I also do not have Morton’s toe and tend to like my shoes a bit tighter so they feel ‘fitted’, but still allow me some toe flexibility.
        The size of 9.0 So ill Runner is similar to:
        5.10 Teams (black) – 10.5
        5.10 Blackwings (red) – 9.5

        Hope this helps someone out as I was pretty curious before I got my Kickstarter. . If I were to do it over again I probably would have ordered an 8.5 in the Runners to make them into what they’re meant to be, an aggressive super soft and grippy shoe for performance overhang bouldering on porous rock, but I'm content with the 9s for comfort. I think they’ve made my feet stronger and actually improved my footwork as I typically rely on shoes with a stiffer midsole. These shoes grip well, but the Runner definitely makes your toes do more than their fair share of the work.

        When I have a chance I'll add some photos of them all dirty and worn in.

        P.S. People WILL ask you where you got your colorful shoes.

        So Ill

        Climbing Footwear
        Find your sneaker size, then use the sizing guide below based on each model.
        Sneaker SizeUS MEN 2.5 3 3.5 4 4.5 5 5.5 6 6.5 7 7.5 8 8.5 9 9.5 10 10.5 11 11.5 12 12.5 13
        US WOMEN/LV 4 4.5 5 5.5 6 6.5 7 7.5 8 8.5 9 9.5 10 10.5 11 11.5 12 12.5 13 13.5 14 14.5
        UK 1.5 2 2.5 3 3.5 4 4.5 5 5.5 6 6.5 7 7.5 8 8.5 9 9.5 10 10.5 11 11.5 12
        EU 34 34.5 35 35.5 36 37 37.5 38 39 39.5 40 41 41.5 42 42.5 43 44 44.5 45 46 46.5 47
        CM 20.5 21 21.5 22 22.5 23 23.5 24 24.5 25 25.5 26 26.5 27 27.5 28 28.5 29 29.5 30 30.5 31
        Shoe ModelSuggested Sizing
        2020 Gold
        Free Range
        The New Zero
        The One
        x TOMS Street
        Beginner / Intermediate Climber - V4/5.12a and below
        Order 1 1/2 sizes up from street shoe size for performance fit
        Women: Order street shoe size for performance fit
        Advanced Climber - V5/5.12b and above
        Order 1/2 size up from street shoe size for performance fit
        Women: Order 1 size down from street shoe size for performance fit
        Free Range LV
        Runner LV
        Street LV
        Tokyo Streets
        x TOMS Street
        Beginner / Intermediate Climber - V4/5.12a and below
        Order 3 sizes up from street shoe size for performance fit
        Women: Order 1 1/2 sizes up from street shoe size for performance fit
        Advanced Climber - V5/5.12b and above
        Order 2 sizes up from street shoe size for performance fit
        Women: Order 1/2 size up from street shoe size for performance fit
        Kick LV Men: Order 1 size up from street shoe size for comfort fit and 1/2 size up for performance fit
        Women: Order 1/2 size down from street shoe size for comfort fit and 1 size down for performance fit
        The Bowler Men: Order 1 size down from street shoe size for comfort fit
        Women: Order 2 1/2 sizes down from street shoe size for comfort fit