Brooks Cascadia 8: Trail Shoe Review

IMG_5197 The Brooks Cascadia 8: One Grippy Trail Shoe

Brooks Women’s Cascadia 8 Trail Running Shoes, Color: Aquarius/Hibscs/BearingSea/Blk, Size: 8.0

Last week I shared my review of the fabulous Silver Falls Half Marathon:

I purchased the Brooks Cascadia 8 specifically for this race as the race director had recommended trail shoes. Up until that point, I had gotten by doing trail running on fairly well groomed trails in my Brooks Women’s PureConnect 3 Lightweight Running Shoes, Color: White/Poppy/Midnight, Size: 7.5. But the thought of slipping on wet leaves or injuring myself on roots and rocks was enough to motivate me to buy trail shoes.

Going from the lightweight semi-minimal Brooks PureConnect to the 10 oz moderately high profile Brooks Cascadia 8 felt awkward during my first few training runs. While trying to break the shoes in, I immediately noticed the increased weight of the shoe. My running mechanics changed slightly and I could feel my hamstrings working harder with these changes. This was over-shadowed by the benefits of the shoe the minute I started running fast down a rocky trail. The tread on this shoe is extremely grippy, and forms a stable platform to run on while negotiating uneven trail terrain.

The true test came during the race when the shoes were put through the gauntlet on short spurts of road, steep up and downhill trail, wet rock, mud, roots, rocks of all sizes, and switchback trail. The shoe handled very well. I felt well balanced, and most importantly did not fall.

Research has shown that heavier shoes increase the energy output of the runner. You can learn more about this in my previous post on the benefits of minimalist running and minimalist running shoes:

At the end of the day, we sacrifice some running economy in the way of a heavier shoe in order to get stability on the trail. The Cascadia is an excellent choice for men and women looking to navigate intense terrain.


Make your day great,



About runningyourbody

I am a Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT), Certified Pilates instructor, and runner with celiac disease. I am passionate about educating people on running, pilates, and women’s health topics. I am trained in the treatment of pelvic floor dysfunction, as well as pre and post partum impairments. In my free time I can be found anywhere outside. I enjoy training for races with friends, cooking gluten free meals, and traveling with my husband. My goal is to share information with you in a lighthearted and enjoyable forum. I am always contributing fun and interesting posts on my blog. Feel free to check it out @
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