ASICS GEL-Nimbus 17 vs. Mizuno Wave Rider 18 review

ASICS GEL-Nimbus 17 provides a very cushy and protective ride for long runs. Mizuno Wave Rider 18 is a very light and high performance running shoe for neutral runners.

NEW! ASICS GEL-Nimbus 17 vs. Mizuno Wave Rider 19 and ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 vs. Mizuno Wave Rider 19

The ASICS GEL-Nimbus 17 and the Mizuno Wave Rider 18 are neutral cushioning running shoes that are suitable for runners who do not need extra stability and support.

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The ASICS GEL-Nimbus 17 and the Mizuno Wave Rider 18 both have a very clean and flashy looking upper that consists of a minimal amount of overlays to provide you with maximum comfort during your runs.

Both the Mizuno Wave Rider 18 and the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 17 have overlays that connect the saddle to the midsole, so should provide you with enough support around the midfoot.

The difference comes in at the back of the shoes, where the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 17 has a heel counter to really lock your heel down onto the platform.

In addition, the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 17 has FluidFit no-sew overlays running front to back to provide you with a good custom and glove-like fit.

So while you could get enough support from the upper of either running shoe, the overall fit and support you would get from the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 17 might be greater than that offered by the Mizuno Wave Rider 18.

The midsoles of the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 17 and the Mizuno Wave Rider 18 differ considerably in construction and materials used to provide protection.

The ASICS GEL-Nimbus 17 has two layers of foam in its midsole that provide heel-to-toe cushioning, and in addition to that, it has GEL cushioning in both the heel and the forefoot to provide a softer ride yet.

The Mizuno Wave Rider 18 on the other hand, provides heel-to-toe cushioning through its midsole foam, and then in the heel it has a Parallel Wave Plate that runs till the midfoot to provide you with shock absorption at heel strike as well as rearfoot stabilization.

However, when both running shoes are compared in the lab, tests show that the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 17 turns out to be much more cushy than the Mizuno Wave Rider 18 in both the heel and the forefoot, and for both men and women.

For women, the amount of heel cushioning offered by the Mizuno Wave Rider 18 almost matches that of the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 17, so the difference is not that big.

The softness of the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 17 may also be due to the fact that it has a thicker midsole than the Mizuno Wave Rider 18, so you also sit a bit higher off the ground.

This makes the Mizuno Wave Rider 18 a good running shoe for runners who want to be a bit closer to the ground in an effort to run faster; so for those who are looking for a performance running shoe.

The outsoles of the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 17 and the Mizuno Wave Rider 18 are pretty traditional with separate forefoot and rearfoot areas. They both also have good separation between their rubber lugs for shock dissipation and absorption.

The main difference lies in the amount of flex grooves and the fact that the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 17 has a vertical flex groove (Guidance Line) that runs nicely from back to front to help you achieve a better gait.

When tested in the running shoe lab, the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 17 turns out to be much more flexible than the Mizuno Wave Rider 18 for men.

However, for women it is the other way around, with the Mizuno Wave Rider 18 being more flexible than the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 17.

The women's version of the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 17 weighs approximately 10.0 oz (283 grams), while the Mizuno Wave Rider 18 for women weighs approximately 7.6 oz (215 grams). The men's version of the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 17 weighs about 11.3 oz (320 grams), and the Mizuno Wave Rider 18 for men weighs 9.3 oz (264 grams).

Making a choice between the Mizuno Wave Rider 18 and the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 17 is not that difficult. If you are looking for a high-performance lightweight running shoe that offers a good amount of cushioning but not too much of it, then the Mizuno Wave Rider 18 might be worth looking into.

And if on the other hand you are looking for lots of protection from the road and a very soft ride, then the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 17 might be the one for you.

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 | Mizuno

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