The Adidas Tempo 9 is a lightweight, neutral shoe that provides a modest amount of stability and support. It is part of the Adizero line of performance-oriented shoes which were built to go fast and far. The Adidas Adizero Tempo 9 does both exceptionally well.
What: Adidas Adizero Tempo 9
Type: neutral, stability
Weight: 266 g, 9.4 oz. (men’s 9); Women: 230 g, 8.1 oz. (women’s 8)
Heel-to-toe drop: 10mm drop (26mm heel; 16mm toe)
The Tempo 9 features a full-length Boost midsole that provides lightweight cushioning that is also durable. Unlike others in the Adizero product line, it actually possesses a dual-density Boost midsole which affords the additional support and stability features that is unique to the Tempo 9. This includes a higher density foam in the back two-thirds of the shoe as well as a ‘Torsion System’ plastic plate around the arch and on the medial side of the shoe that provides modest but entirely unnoticed pronation control. Adidas has coined this “energized stability.”
The outsole combines Continental rubber with Adidas’ own material which together provide an exceptional amount of traction–even in wet and snowy conditions–and durability. There is even additional ‘Adiwear’ rubber on the heel to prevent premature wear to that part of the shoe (where most runners strike).
(Photos by Adam Wojtkowiak)
One feature Adidas has done consistently well is the Airmesh upper which is extremely light and provides maximum breathability. The lacing and overlay system is basic but also simple and effective. The laces are practically guaranteed to stay tied (a highly underrated feature of a running shoe). The shoe contains a very solid and well-cushioned heel counter to keep the foot locked-in and the materials and construction of the toebox and rest of the upper also ensure the foot stays in place with no unwanted friction. The tongue of the shoe is relatively short and some online reviews complained of slippage; our users did not find this an issue.
One additional potential issue to be aware of is that some–presumably with wider feet–found the shoe to be narrow and others said it was possibly a half-size small. However, the two pairs CR tested fit exactly as stated. In any case, be sure to try the shoe on in advance of purchase if you can.
As for who and what the shoe is made for, the Tempo is a performance shoe. It feels light on the feet despite its modest stability features and additional midsole cushioning. It also feels and performs fast and is responsive to changing speeds. Intentional or not, the shoe is, in fact, ideal for tempo runs–longer, faster continuous runs or intervals–as well as long runs with any sort of speed in them. It could definitely be used for a longer race such as a half-marathon or marathon, especially by those who are not comfortable–which few are–in a lighter racing flat. Given its versatility, the Tempo could certainly be used as a daily trainer for all and every type of run, but doing so would “waste” some of its life on efforts that don’t really require such a specialized shoe. That said, the durability of this shoe is among the best in the business and for most runners, should last more than 1000K.