Topo Athletic was founded in 2013 with the goal of combining the features of minimal, foot-shaped shoes with some of the elements of more traditional shoes. Nine years later, they have a wide range of road and trail shoes that are still built with this goal in mind.
You can expect Topo shoes to have a wide, rounded toe box similar to that found in Altra’s shoes. Unlike Altra, however, Topo makes shoes with a variety of heel-to-toe drops, ranging from 0–5 mm (though that’s still on the lower end compared to the market as a whole). Topo’s shoes also tend to have a slightly narrower fit through the midfoot and heel than Altra shoes. This makes them a good option for runners who love Altra’s wide toe boxes but want a tighter fit throughout the rest of the shoe, and/or don’t want a zero-drop platform. Some of Topo’s higher-cushion shoes might also be a good alternative for people who enjoy the cushioning of Hoka’s shoes but find Hoka’s fit too narrow and / or their heel-to-toe drops too high.
Topo offers shoes with a range of stack heights and heel-to-toe drops for both road and trail running. In this brand guide, we’ll go through the road and trail models separately, with each category ordered from highest to lowest stack height.