It’s that time of the year again where we switch from tanks and shorts to long sleeves and tights for outdoor running in the Pacific Northwest. It’s also a good time to look for trail running jackets on rainy days.
Last spring Salomon had their S/LAB Motionfit 360 JKT M jacket on sale for $250, $125 under the retail price of $375. At a price this high, I was sure that Salomon’s claim that the GORE-TEX® Shakedry™ would breathe better than other jackets out on the market. The Salomon website gives it’s breathability a 5 out of 5. Unfortunately, this was not the case. I’m a heavy sweater, and it seemed like all of the other rain jackets on the market where I end up more wet on the inside of the jacket than the outside of it.
There are some other selling points that Salomon adds to the Motionfit. One is the ability to stow the jacket around the waist on the move in the stretch waistband. Salomon makes this look easy in the promotion video. However, I never seemed to figure it out. I end up either stuffing the coat in my pack or tying it around my waist like any other jacket.
The elastic waistband is made of a lighter mesh fabric than the jacket. Still, the construction is very poor as the stitching ripped after about six uses. Also, the four plastic buttons to close the waistband are not easy to snap when wearing gloves.
A feature that many runners of the Motionfit may like is the extra space in the back that gives the ability to wear a hydration vest underneath the jacket. I tried this while using hydration flasks in the front of my ADV Skin 5, so I still had to unzip the jacket to have access to water. It might work better with a hydration bladder, but a runner would still need access to the hose. Also, there are no pockets in the jacket. This is part of Salomon’s S/Lab minimalist marketing, but it would be nice to have quick access to a key or a gel without having to take the jacket off. The waistband must be lifted up over the pockets of the hydration pack to get to any nutrition in the pack.
Salomon calls it’s hood on the Motionfit a smart hood because there are no drawstrings. It has elastic bands that form around the head. For those that wear a hat like me, this makes the hood unusable.
Salomon calls this the Motionfit 36o jacket because it moves well with the body. I did like this feature. Some other jackets seem to stick on the elbows during a run.
Unless you feel that some of these features may benefit you, don’t waste money on this jacket. There are plenty of running jackets at half the price that are rainproof.
The features listed on the website are:
Every seam on the garment is sealed from the elements.
Minimalist construction hood that fits without draw cords or pullers.
On tops and bottoms, Active fit is close fitting and lets you move. Not too tight, not too loose.
Stow in waistband
Additional protection of a stretch layer on top of the waistband to add warmth, comfort and protection. Can be stowed away if not needed
Elastic hem helps prevent cold air or snow from getting inside the garment.
Full zip opening for convenient on/off and maximum ventilation.
Inserts with reflective properties for nighttime visibility.
Minimal cuff construction to fit close to the wrist.