Brooks Ghost 8 vs. ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 review

Brooks Ghost 8 provides a comfortable and smooth ride with a good amount of cushioning to neutral runners. ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 delivers a soft and comfortable ride for long runs...

NEW! Brooks Ghost 9 vs. ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18

The Brooks Ghost 8 and the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 are neutral cushioning running shoes that are not each other's counterparts. The Brooks counterpart of the Brooks Ghost is the ASICS GEL-Cumulus. Nonetheless, these two shoes have a lot in common.

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The first similarity between the Brooks Ghost 8 The preceding link takes you to Amazon.com and the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 is the fact that both have an almost completely no-sew upper with only a few stitches at the back and/or front.

The amount of overlays is also minimal on both running shoes. The Brooks Ghost 8 has broad overlays but very few of them, and the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 has narrow overlays but a lot of them.

Both the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 The preceding link takes you to Amazon.com and the Brooks Ghost 8 provide enough support around the midfoot to keep your foot on the running platform and both have a forefoot that is quite open and free.

However, the forefoot of the Brooks Ghost 8 is more open since it has light welded-on overlays on the toe box with most of the support being provided through the structure of the mesh.

The ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 has overlays running at the sides of the forefoot, which may tighten the area more compared to the Brooks Ghost 8, so the Brooks Ghost 8 might accommodate big bunions better or more comfortably.

While the Brooks Ghost 8 does not have an external heel counter like the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 at the back of the shoe, it provides enough support through sturdier stitched on overlays that encircle the heel at the back.

One could say that the Brooks Ghost 8 and the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 provide a similar amount of support through their uppers and that both should feel pretty comfortable, but that the fit provided by the Brooks Ghost 8 may be looser than that provided by the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18, especially in the front part of the shoe – the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 provides a more glove-like fit.

The midsoles of the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 and the Brooks Ghost 8 provide heel-to-toe cushioning but do so in different degrees.

The Brooks Ghost 8 is not a super cushy running shoe, whereas the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 is expected to be very plush.

Running shoe lab tests show that both the Brooks Ghost 8 and the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 provide a good amount of cushioning to women in both the heel and the forefoot.

However, the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 is the more cushy running shoe of the two. The Brooks Ghost 8 does not lag far behind, though.

For men, the Brooks Ghost 8 displays a balanced cushioning profile with above average forefoot cushioning and a heel that is more cushy than that of the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18.

The ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 has a more cushy forefoot than the Brooks Ghost 8, though.

So male heel strikers may appreciate the heel cushioning of the Brooks Ghost 8, while female heel strikers may like the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 for its heel cushioning and the extra 3 mm of height they get in the heel to take stress off their Achilles tendons.

While the Brooks Ghost 8 does not come with extra height in the heel, it does come with a full-length crash pad that runs on the lateral side from the back of the heel all the way to the front of the shoe.

This crash pad allows the Brooks Ghost 8 to not only provide you with soft landings but also a smoother transition from heel-strike to toe-off.

The ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 uses GEL cushioning to add extra softness and shock absorption to your rides, but the GEL in the heel does not connect to the GEL in the forefoot like the crash pad of the Brooks Ghost 8 does.

This is also partly due to the fact that the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 does not provide a good amount of ground contact under the midfoot like the Brooks Ghost 8 does.

The ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 has a midfoot shank that provides support under the midfoot but that does not correct your stride, since the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 is a neutral running shoe.

The Brooks Ghost 8 is also a neutral running shoe, but the good amount of ground contact it provides plus its crash pad increase the amount of stability it delivers to runners.

It also has a very well-segmented outsole for shock absorption and dissipation. So all in all, the Brooks Ghost 8 can be seen as the more stable running shoe of the two.

The ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 has large slabs of rubber under it, which should make it quite durable and a vertical flex groove to help with gait efficiency.

Running shoe lab tests show that both the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 and the Brooks Ghost 8 are quite stiff running shoes for men but that the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 is slightly more flexible than the Brooks Ghost 8 for women, whcih also turns out to be on the stiff side of the spectrum.

The women's version of the Brooks Ghost 8 weighs approximately 8.5 oz (241 grams), while the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 for women weighs 9.8 oz (278 grams).

The men's version of the Brooks Ghost 8 weighs about 10.9 oz (309 grams), while the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 for men weighs 12.1 oz (343 grams).

If you are a neutral runner who is looking for a soft ride, you could go with either the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 or the Brooks Ghost 8.

For less weight on your feet, you may want to consider the Brooks Ghost 8 more than the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18.

Women might feel particularly delighted with the cushioning and stress relief offered by the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18.

Note: The weight of a running shoe depends on the size of the running shoe, so any weights mentioned in this review may differ from the weight of the running shoe you choose to wear. Running shoes of the same size were compared for this review.

The two links above will take you to Amazon.com where you can read more about the running shoes.


This review falls under: ASICS | Brooks

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