Shoe Review: Somnio Pacemaker 2.0

Pacemaker 2.0


  • This is a neutral shoe for fast-paced running or for racing
  • With a slightly curved last, an excellent shoe for runners with medium to high arches and low to moderate pronation
  • The shoe comes with interchangeable plantar footbeds, cushioning inserts and varus wedges which allow the runner to customize the shoe to their own spececific biomechanical needs.
  • Weight: 10.5 oz

Innovation reigns supreme in running shoes, specially if it can address the biomechanical needs of a runner in terms of his foot alignment, arch, and cushioning needs and make specific adjustments to get the best shoe fit.

When K-Swiss came out with its “Run One” convertible running shoe that came with 2 insole options, the stable (extra support) insole for long runs and the cushioned insole for recovery days, many thought that this was going to be the next norm of running shoes until the SOMNIO line of shoes came out which was more specific in matching the runner’s biomechanics.


The fitting process comes in 5  steps and is conducted by a trained SOMNIO expert. In my case, my shoe fitting was supervised by no less than Mr. Danny Orr, SOMNIO’s Marketing and Biomechanics Consultant who saw to it that the shoes customization would match my running characteristics.

To summarize, the 5 steps entailed:

  1. Placing the foot on a Laser Alignment device to measure length, arch height, pronation tilt and analyze running patterns
  2. Adjustment of the varus to optimize the alignment of the laser tracking on the patella
  3. Determination of arch height using the Archometer in the alignment device
  4. Selection of the correct inserts using the Durometer gauge, depending on your general weight and varus setting
  5. Running trial is made after all the components (FEAT system) are inserted in the shoe. I was made to run on a threadmill.

I have neutral feet and on the heavy-set side. I informed Danny of my Plantar Fasciitis problem and he adjusted the inserts, accordingly, The customization of my Pacemekaer 2.0 read as follows:

Left Shoe:

  • Orange varus wedge which is the mid-type
  • Blue plantar arch insert to address my recurring Plantar fasciitis
  • Green IndX inserts for more cushioning

Right Shoe:

  • Blue varus wedge
  • Blue Plantaar arch insert
  • Green IndX inserts


The foot beds, varus wedges and the inserts

Plantar arch bed placed inside

SOMNIO shoe experts tweaking my shoe


I use a size 10 shoe and usually wear thick socks and i slipped into the Pacemaker easily. It felt light, which i find similar to the lightness of the Adidas Boston Ekiden (here) and the Adidas F5o Runner (here) .

The heel is snug, no slip ups, the mid-foot are close fitting while the forefoot is wide enough for me even if the shoe didn’t come in a 2E width which i usually prefer. Also, the shoe was flexible enough even with all the insers and arch beds inside.


The outsole


Now, this is where the shoe get its high marks and the evidence is in running outdoors. On first try on an easy 5km jaunt, the transition was responsive enough and the ride was smooth–no questions of why, could’ve, should’ve done this or done just performed remarkably well!

The comfort was evident although i would have preferred more cushioning in the forefoot as i felt the ground when i pushed-off on my toes. The shoe breathe well and there were no issues of over-heating inside even when the sun was way up that late morning.

Did a combination of tempo and interval runs the following day and The Pacemaker was more responsive on those burst of speed and the lightness would be ideal to race on them for 5k up to the half-marathon. There is no compromise on stability as the arch bed and the wedges seem to do its job well.


Mr. Danny Orr, Somnio Biomechanics Consultant

Ready to go!


The idea of “tweaking” a running shoe through the use of inserts is not a new one, but the concept as introduced by SOMNIO has been about the right customization to adapt to each runners’ bio-mechanical needs. And that says a lot!

The comfort and flexibility you feel running in these shoes are instant and given the right tweaking of the shoe, there’s no need to break them in, as i initially thought. However i would suggest to take it out on a few more runs to observe and determine if the cushioning, stability and over-all fit is what you actually want then adjust it yourself accordingly or bring it back to the SOMNIO expert for further tweaking.

The Pacemaker 2.0 and other SOMNIO running shoes doesn’t come cheap. It costs about the same as a NEWTON running shoe, even more. So at about P7,000.00 per pair, the questions are: Does it work, and do the various wedges and inserts do its job to fit the shoe as intended? Yes, it works but i haven’t wear-tested it enough on long runs to determine its long-lasting receptiveness.

SOMNIO maintains that it will continue to upgrade their line of shoes and i look forward to log many more miles in this shoe.

SOMNIO Running Shoes: Philippine Launch

128Dream Fountain Corporation took its road show to Manila Tuesday where they unveiled to the local running community the different models of the SOMNIO running shoes.

When Dynes Dignadice, Marketing Manager (Asia-Pacific) for Cole Haan and GBX Shoes e-mailed me last month that they were going to unveil their line of bio-mechanical customized running shoes in the country, i was thrilled that they were finally going to introduce these shoes here and wage their battle with the other high-end running shoes’ biggest players.

Some on the Somnio running shoe models on display

Founded in the principle that running shoes should adapt to the runner and not the other way around, SOMNIO has built on a platform of an adjustable component system that incorporates the correct plantar foot-beds, Ind-x inserts and the F.E.A.T. system (Functionally Engineered Adaptable Tricomponent which are either firm, medium to soft cushions and can be fine- tuned to suit the runner’s bio-mechanics.

During the launch held at Katzer’s restaurant in Ortigas Center, no less than Mr. Danny Orr, over-all Marketing Manager for SOMNIO-Europe was flown in to discuss the shoes’ infinite possibilities of customization and even conducted the SOMNIO FIT PROCESS on me when he customed-fitted SOMNIO’s “Pace-maker 2.0” model on my feet.

That’s Danny Orr of SOMNIO discussing the shoes’ mechanics. Jinoe Gavan of in foreground
Danny discussing the FEAT system

The SOMNIO Fit Process uses their exclusive Laser Alignment System, a measuring device that works in 5 steps. I’m going to explain this in detail in a later topic.

The Laser Alignment System
The Plantar footbeds, inserts and the other FEAT system
Determining a foot’s arch cushioning on the Alignment System

L-R: Dynes Dignadice, Ceasar and Danny

My shoe being customed fitted

L-R: Jinoe, Danny Orr, Ceasar, me

The shoes will be made available at all GBX Shoe stores in SM Fairview, SM Manila, Robinson’s Place, Manila; Robinson’s Galleria and at the G3 stores in SM Megamall and the Block.

I will be reviewing the SOMNIO Pacemaker 2.0 model, one of their top of the line neutral shoe in the coming days.