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KO Gen 3 Review

Grip

Fit

Durability

Build

Support

Protection

Style

THE GÜD

+ Great protection from toe stubs and other bumps and bruises.

+ Good support for long days coaching at the gym

+ These shoes rule in heavy rain (yes really), and just about any wall.

THE BAD

The durability of the uppers is decidedly lacking. The material used in the heel cup and toe box wore through quickly and I wore through the shoe completely in about 1 month.

While the shoes looked really fresh straight out of the box, it would be hard to pair these with anything other than a training outfit.

OVERALL

4.6

While this is an unpaid review (except for the candy), you can still support us and the athletes involved by purchasing the shoes and other products through this page.

After training in these shoes for over a month, Julius sat down with me to share his thoughts.

We covered topics ranging from style and training, to how it felt to just live in the shoes every day for a whole month.  When we first opened the box, I think Julius and I were both pretty surprised by the shoe.

Julius
Julius Porter

Fresh out the box these shoes looked pretty good, but I definitely wouldn’t wear them casually. The blue and gray color scheme plus the size and shape of the shoe make it hard to pair with any outfit other than training gear.

By the time we finished unboxing the shoes, it was 10:00 or 11:00 at night.  We were way too excited to stay indoors though and just had to go out and train.

Julius
Julius Porter

Off the bat, I was pretty hyped to get a new pair of training shoes.  It’s always best to break-in your footwear, but this time around I had no choice.  After training all night, we woke up at 5:00 AM to get to the gym before sunrise and start production on a 12-hour long shoot that day.  In the early morning, the shoes felt great but by the end of the day, they were starting to get pretty loose.  They even came off my foot while I was in the air at one point…possibly because I ordered my normal shoe size (11)…I feel like a half size smaller would have been uncomfortable in the beginning but would have broken in perfectly.

Despite being a tad too big the Gen 3’s were still pretty comfortable.  Even after full days of coaching and training, I can only remember one time that I wanted to take them off and that wasn’t until they were becoming completely trashed.

At the end of the 12 hour shooting day, there was only minimal wear on the shoe.  I ended up getting a month of really solid training out of them before the toe of the shoe had completely opened, up and the rubber was worn all the way through.

KO has been a fixture of the parkour community for a long time now, and just about everyone has either owned one of their previous models, – or the famed Kalenji Success – or trained with someone who has.  This means that, unlike the other new KO’s, the Gen 3 has a certain legacy to live up to.  It also means that it’s pretty difficult for KO to make a completely fresh first impression with this particular model.

Julius
Julius Porter

Going into this review I tried to be as neutral as possible, but I still didn’t expect good grip, or for the shoe to last very long.  I also expected there to be too much cushioning.  They did end up starting to show noticeable wear on the rubber and stitching within about 10 days, but the cushioning wasn’t nearly as over-the-top as I expected.  The fit and wear on these fall’s right in between Feiyues and Tigers.  They are less comfortable and more durable than the former, and more comfortable but less durable than the latter.  Unfortunately, they don’t look as fresh as either.

Grip wise, they exceeded my expectations on everything except for any type of rail where they were downright sketchy.  While training, my toes were very safe from clips and stubs, but not even the thick sole of the shoe could protect me from mid-foot landings and poor height drop tech.

If I had to ask KO to do something different it would be more color options, no stitching designs, way better shoelaces and a slimmer design.  I probably would not buy these shoes again due to the style, bulkiness, and way they wore in on my feet.

Francis and the crew over at KO were awesome enough to send MÜV Mag a pair of each of their new shoe models. We partnered up with 4 different athletes to put these shoes to the test. Our production team and each of the athletes involved was not paid in any way (except candy) for these reviews. We have done our utmost to remain neutral so that we can provide you with a fair and honest review.

If you find the contents of this review helpful, please consider purchasing the shoes through this page or by becoming a sustaining subscriber or making a one-time contribution to support us as we continue to make free content in the future.

Photos + Video © Sean Endres

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