Mizuno Wave Rider 22 vs. ASICS GEL-Nimbus 20 review

Mizuno Wave Rider 22 delivers a responsive ride and is good for heel-strikers. ASICS GEL-Nimbus 20 delivers a soft but responsive ride to neutral runners...

The Mizuno Wave Rider 22 and the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 20 are neutral running shoes for runners who do not need much stability and support, but who prefer to get a good amount of cushioning.

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The uppers of both the Mizuno Wave Rider 22 and the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 20 The preceding link takes you to Amazon.com come with mesh that has a structure to provide lightweight support.

The ASICS GEL-Nimbus 20 also comes with no-sew overlays that look like stitches and that are meant to close the mesh more in certain areas to provide additional support.

The Mizuno Wave Rider 22 The preceding link takes you to Amazon.com, on the other hand, remains quite open and only has overlays at the front, the back, and the Mizuno logo that provides some support around the midfoot.

One of the biggest differences between the upper of the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 20 and that of the Mizuno Wave Rider 22 is that the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 20 comes with an external heel counter at the back that provides lots of support around the heel and locks it in.

While you can expect to get lots of comfort from the upper of either running shoe, the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 20 is the one that might deliver an overall somewhat tighter fit than the Mizuno Wave Rider 22 does through its upper.

The Mizuno Wave Rider 22 and the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 20 probably differ the most in how their midsoles are set up.

The ASICS GEL-Nimbus 20 comes with two layers of foam of which the top one is a bit softer than the bottom one, which is meant to be a bit firmer and more responsive.

In addition, there is GEL cushioning in the forefoot and in the heel of the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 20 to soften your ride even more.

The Mizuno Wave Rider 22 is different in that it has one main layer of foam that is split in two under the heel to accommodate a Wave plate that runs from the midfoot towards the back of the running shoe.

The bottom layer of foam under the heel of the Mizuno Wave Rider 22 is softer than the top layer so increases the amount of cushioning you get under the heel.

The Wave plate is meant to absorb shock but also has a stabilizing effect and more or less serves as a midfoot shank.

Both the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 20 and the Mizuno Wave Rider 22 can deliver an overall soft ride to men and women, but whereas only women get lots of heel cushioning from the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 20, both men and women get lots of heel cushioning from the Mizuno Wave Rider 22.

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Therefore, the Mizuno Wave Rider 22 might be better for male heel-strikers than the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 20, although the latter does deliver a good amount of heel cushioning to men.

The ASICS GEL-Nimbus 20 has a midfoot shank that consists of two separate parts under the midfoot.

Together with the external heel counter in the upper, this adds support to your ride without making any corrections, so the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 20 is seen as a stable neutral running shoe.

However, the Mizuno Wave Rider 22 is also seen as a stable neutral running shoe due to the fact that its Wave plate in the midsole has a stabilizing effect and also guides your foot through the gait cycle.

The outsoles of both the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 20 and the Mizuno Wave Rider 22 display enough separation for shock absorption and dissipation, and both have a minimum amount of flex grooves in the forefoot.

Because they tend to deliver a good amount of forefoot cushioning, they generally wind up to be stiff running shoes.

The biggest difference between the outsoles of the Mizuno Wave Rider 22 and the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 20 is that the Mizuno Wave Rider 22 does not have a vertical flex groove that runs from back to front like the one in the outsole of the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 20.

This vertical flex groove is meant to help you achieve a more efficient gait.

The Mizuno Wave Rider 22 does have a split at the back between its rubber compartments under the heel to help isolate shock at heel-strike and its Wave plate then takes over to help you through the transition to toe-off.

The Mizuno Wave Rider 22 is lighter than the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 20 for both men and women.

If you are a neutral runner who is looking for an overall soft ride from a running shoe, you could turn to either the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 20 or the Mizuno Wave Rider 22.

The Mizuno Wave Rider 22 has been kept light and responsive to help neutral runners run faster.

The ASICS GEL-Nimbus 20, while it does have a responsive layer in its midsole, it might turn out to feel a bit less responsive than the Mizuno Wave Rider 22.

The ASICS GEL-Nimbus 20 is good for runners who are looking for a comfortable and luxurious ride.

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.


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