One of the most important thing to know when getting a trail running shoe is how it protects your foot, it it didn’t do any protection, why wear it anyway? One of the largest component of protection is found underfoot, it is also called the sole or rockplate. Rockplate is a hard metal or plastic, sometimes composite material place or rod that is designed to protect the bottom of the foot from sharp things like rocks or wood. Usually runs under from your heel to past your arch, as the sole still needs the flexibility to bend the forefoot.
Another component is the upper part of the shoe, this will determine the protection it gives from sticks, rocks or other materials that could land on your top feet. Manufacturers likely to skip the upper part to save weight and offer greater breathability, water drainage, while some still offer a strong upper for protection. Just remember which is the best for your runs, lightweight with little upper protection or a little heavy with sturdy upper?