When Robert Greenberg founded Skechers in the early nineties, he sought out to create something new. In an era when Adidas and Nike ruled the market, Skechers dared to be different. What you might ask? Well, the rivaling companies provided great merchandise, but Greenberg saw a big hole in the market for one particular shoe.
A sneaker that would bend the rules and fit in the middle of performance and lifestyle. A type of sneaker that would have the benefits of a great performance sneaker, but the style and design of a great lifestyle sneaker. He knew that most of the footwear companies made a clear distinction between those styles, and what he wanted to create was a sneaker that have all of that and more.
Today, 27 years since the inception of the Skechers, they’re one of the leading footwear manufactures in the world. However, let’s focus on the Skech-Air Atlas sneaker. One of the best examples of that unity.
The rubber outsole is prevalent in most of the Skechers sneakers, and that’s also the case here in the Air-Atlas model. The rubber
outsole is very thin but highly durable and flexible. Just look at those ridges and molded indentations. Oh, and let’s not forget that they offer plenty of traction properties. Since this is a nice blend style and performance, you’d best believe that even the outsole is highly stylish and highly practical. The rubber outsole offers satisfactory levels of traction, flexibility, and endurance each and every time. It may seem basic and simple, but simplicity is much underrated these days.
If you thought that the outsole was practical, wait until you hear the amazing features that the midsole contains. First and foremost, the most visible and beautiful part of the midsole are the pods that sit right above the outsole. The midsole pods are translucent, and with Skech-Air design. This model is one of the many crown jewels in the company’s vault, and over here in this particular model, they’re present in order to give you energy return, boost and high doses of energy. The airbags are exclusive to the Company, and although many other companies have supportive air-bag designs, these are visibly different. How? Well, for one they differ in size and shape.
Secondly, unlike most of the other airbags on the market, these start virtually from the toes and end up in the heel area of the midsole. Yes, most of the other airbags are located on specific areas of the midsole. But the ones in the Air Atlas model, are visibly present all along the surface of the midsole.
But a great thing about the midsole in this particular model is the presence of the cushioned insole, and the presence of an EVA filled top layer on top of that. What does that mean? The insole is basically two layers of cushioned goodness, all wrapped nicely with a soft fabric lining. The EVA cushioned layer on top, and the cushioned insole allows the center of the sneaker to offer so much comfort, that it starts to compete with some of the best brands out there. Think about it. It’s not only the presence of that top layer and cushioned insole that counts. No. The aforementioned Skech-Air design in the cushioned midsole allows the comfort to begin nicely, and the two additional cushioned layers in the midsole finish the job.
Oh, and let’s not forget that it’s precisely here in the midsole that the heel is built in. That’s right. Instead of the heel going directly to the confines of the outsole, the one, and a ¼ inch high heel is inserted in the midsole of the sneaker. But the thing is, the story about the heel insertion doesn’t end here. There’s a nice panel overlay for the heel. It’s reinforced with top pull on the tap of the sneaker, and it looks amazing.
Say hello to the fantastic woven Knit Mesh upper. The great thing about this upper is that it works as almost one piece of fabric. There’s very little stitching done in the upper, and there the stitching is present it’s done discretely and in an un-invasive way. You can barely see the stitching that’s done in the upper because it’s done in a way that it blends with the background. You might think that it’s all part of the upper knit
design but it isn’t. It’s great stitching, done with amazing thread. But aside from being all covered with textile, the upper has nice textured panels. They’re mesh based and allow an extra amount of breathability to toe already mesh filled textile upper. You’d better believe that this is one of the most aerated sneakers in existence, but more on the airflow in the other segment of this review. The lacing is done in the recognizable sporty design, and with highly stylized embroidered eyelets that sit on the upper’s surface. And yes the actual color of the laces matching the color that’s on the upper.
Oh, and the recognizable letter S of the Sketchers logo can be found on the side of the upper. Both the collar and the tongue of the sneaker are padded, offering better security, fit and comfort to the shoe. You’d think that the padding is solely done in the midsole? Yes, there’s plenty of padding in the midsole, but the padding doesn’t end there. By having the padding in the collar and the tongue of the sneaker, Sketchers offers a whole another level of comfort. A level that you won’t be able to forget and what you’ll be craving more and more of.
With so much padding in the Air Atlas model by Sketchers
, the comfort shouldn’t be too concerning. In fact, shouldn’t be concerning at all. And you can thank the wonderful midsole for that. Think about it. In padding, cushioning and elevation on several key areas, the comfort is a no-brainer in this particular sneaker. But when it comes to comfort, one shouldn’t always rely on the comfort provided by the midsole. Yes, having a midsole like this is fantastic, but when looking for comfort, look for other areas as well. Like the wonderful knit mesh upper. Designed basically as one piece, and with additional mesh panels, the mesh in the panicle of comfort and overall pleasant feel. You’ll be able to feel that comfort all around the shoe but watch for the midsole and the upper. They’ll surprise you in a good way as well.
Again, much like toe comfort, the support is not a one-man show. It’s actually a team effort that comes primarily from that midsole. The most visible and prominent part of the midsole if you think about it. It’s all thanks to the cushions that are designed to look like little air-bags on the bottom of the midsole. They’re in fact air-filled pods that allow the support to be constant, and to basically never go away.
The pods are actually responsible for the support, and if you take a good look at them, you’ll notice that they’re all around the insole. In most of the cases, the pods are located on key areas of the midsole (for instance at the arches or in the back of the sneaker where the heel is located). But not here. The pods are present on the midsole’s surface from the top of the sneaker near the toes
, all the way to the back to the midsole near the heel. By having the equal distribution, the support is ensured to be present in every inch of the midsole. Awesome right?
If you take a good look at the sneaker’s official page on the brand's website you’ll notice something interesting. Besides praise left on the comment section, some of the satisfied customers mentioned the durability of the sneakers as one of the pros points. Yes, the durability, and comfort are among the 4 mentioned positive things about this sneaker, with the other two being the stylish and attractive nature of the shoe. But the durability isn’t solely about the durability of the amazing outsole. Yes, it’s great, but the durability is applied to the other parts of the shoe. The amazing insole, and the fantastic mesh in the woven upper
that not only looks great, it feels great too.
It’s too bad that the flexibility isn’t named in the pros section of the sneakers because it deserves to be there too. Yes, the sneakers have a lot of padding
to them, but over here in this particular model, the padding isn’t a setback. When you have an upper that’s basically all woven fabric construction, you just know that the flexibility is on point. The upper is soft, pliable, can bend easily to the motion of the foot and the flexibility is off the charts. So, don’t worry about flexibility. It’s present and at high levels that allow you to feel the comfort that you need to feel.
The very same can be said about the aeration, and because of the very same reason. The wonderful upper. Yes, the woven fabric upper is responsible for almost all of the aeration to the shoe, but don’t forget the additional textured panels. They’re also made from mesh
fabric, and they have the desired cooling effect. They’re strategically placed on key locations on the upper in order to ensure that the foot is aerated, cooled and ventilated. So, your feet can remain odor and moisture free at all times.
Think of the stability as something that you won’t notice that it’s there, but it will be present every single second that you have the sneakers on you. And that’s one of the great things about this sneaker. Sketchers make sure that the stability is present and that it comes mostly from the bottom part of the sneaker. The pods mentioned earlier are distributed all over the midsole’s surface in order to allow you the stability that starts from the toes and ends with the heel. Add to that the sturdy, durable rubber outsole and you have stability where it’s most needed. But with the fabric upper, the stability is unfortunately not that impressive in the top part of the sneaker. Mesh and fabric can’t handle the pressure that easily as for instance the rubber or leather materials can. So, the stability isn’t that great in the upper portion of the sneaker.
For a sneaker wonderful as this, it’s unfortunate that it’s available in only 2 color option. Black/Charcoal and Navy color option. Both of the color versions are darker tone options, and when the customers are in need of a lighter tone, they’re sadly unavailable for purchasing.
Ranging from 33 dollars and going all the way up to 89 dollars per pair, the Air Atlas model is affordable for anyone that wishes to purchase it. It sadly comes in two color options, but hat you’ll be getting in return is a great sporty sneaker with great features that offer comfort, flexibility and the feeling of lightweight effortless style.
Made out of fabric, textile, and rubber, the Air Atlas model is a sneaker that you won’t be able to take off your feet. The midsole is filled with Skech-Air cushioned pods, but the cushioning doesn’t end there. There’ plenty more padding in the midsole, which amps up the comfort, while the woven upper filled with mesh panels allows the aeration to occur throughout the entire shoe. You’ll love the comfort, and flexibility that this sneaker has to offer, and with a great affordable price it will become a must-have I in your shoe closet instantly. You’ll be pleasantly surprised by all the benefits that this particular model from Sketchers has to offer.