Saucony Omni 14 vs. ASICS GEL-Kayano 21 review

Saucony Omni 14 offers lots of stability and support in a lightweight package. ASICS GEL-Kayano 21 provides a very soft ride on a stable platform with a secure and custom fit.

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The Saucony Omni 14 and the ASICS GEL-Kayano 21 fall in the stability category of running shoes with the Saucony Omni 14 intended to be worn by runners who overpronate more than those wearing the ASICS GEL-Kayano 21.

Similarities between the Saucony Omni 14 and the ASICS GEL-Kayano 21 start in the upper where both have supportive stitched-on overlays wrapping the midfoot.

However, the overlays on the ASICS GEL-Kayano 21 are more centered over the midfoot, while those on the Saucony Omni 14 are pulled back, thereby opening up the forefoot.

In the forefoot area, the ASICS GEL-Kayano 21 has stitched-on overlays running over the toe box, and then in between those, there are no-sew FluidFit overlays to give you a glove-like fit.

The Saucony Omni 14 only has no-sew overlays running over its toe box and while they are broad, they aren't as plentiful as on the ASICS GEL-Kayano 21, so the Saucony Omni 14 should feel a bit looser and perhaps more comfortable in the forefoot area depending on what type of fit you prefer.

At the back of the shoes, both the ASICS GEL-Kayano 21 and the Saucony Omni 14 have a heel counter that locks your heel down on the platform and give you a good amount of support there.

All in all the Saucony Omni 14 and the ASICS GEL-Kayano 21 both deliver a very supportive upper with the main difference being that the fit of the ASICS GEL-Kayano 21 may be a bit more close-to-foot than that of the Saucony Omni 14.

Similarities continue in the midsole where both running shoes offer heel-to-toe cushioning, but in different ways.

The ASICS GEL-Kayano 21 consists of two layers of foam with GEL cushioning in between those layers in the heel and in the forefoot.

The Saucony Omni 14 has one main layer of foam with a crash pad under the heel that runs till the midfoot. The crash pad serves a similar purpose as the GEL cushioning in the heel of the ASICS GEL-Kayano 21, which is to soften your landings and start slowing down overpronation.

Running shoe lab tests have shown that both running shoes are equally cushy when it comes to the amount of forefoot cushioning. However, the ASICS GEL-Kayano 21 outcushions the Saucony Omni 14 by providing about twice as much heel cushioning.

So if you are a heel-striker (male or female), the ASICS GEL-Kayano 21 may suit you better than the Saucony Omni 14.

On the medial side of the midsole, there is a device in both running shoes to control overpronation.

This device is slightly longer and goes higher in the Saucony Omni 14 as an indication that you might get a stronger degree of pronation control from the Saucony Omni 14 than you would from the ASICS GEL-Kayano 21.

In addition, ASICS states that the ASICS GEL-Kayano 21 can be worn by mild to moderate overpronators, while Saucony states that the Saucony Omni 14 lies at the upper end of the stability category just below motion control.

So again, the running shoe manufacturers state that the Saucony Omni 14 provides more stability and support than the ASICS GEL-Kayano 21.

The Saucony Omni 14 also provides more ground contact than the ASICS GEL-Kayano 21 especially under the midfoot, so you have a more stable platform that also has the potential to give you a smoother ride.

The platform of the Saucony Omni 14 is also a bit wider than that of the ASICS GEL-Kayano 21, so if you have wide or flat feet, the Saucony Omni 14 would probably suit you better than the ASICS GEL-Kayano 21.

The rubber outsoles of the two running shoes look very different, but have a good amount of separation between their rubber compartments, which encourages good shock absorption and dissipation.

And while the flex grooves of the ASICS GEL-Kayano 21 run a little bit more favorably in terms of flexibility, the ASICS GEL-Kayano 21 still turns out to provide a similar amount of flexibility as the Saucony Omni 14 with both being on the stiff side.

The women's version of the Saucony Omni 14 weighs approximately 8.7 oz (247 grams) and the ASICS GEL-Kayano 21 for women weighs 9.5 oz (269 grams).

The men's versions of the shoes weigh 10.5 oz (298 grams) and 11.3 oz (320 grams), respectively, with the Saucony Omni 14 being the lighter one.

Making a choice between the ASICS GEL-Kayano 21 and the Saucony Omni 14 is not that difficult. If you are an overpronator who tends towards the severe side of overpronation, then the Saucony Omni 14 would be the one to go with.

Otherwise, the ASICS GEL-Kayano 21 may be a good choice if you are a heel-striker or someone looking for an overall very cushy ride with a moderate amount of stability.

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 where you can read more about the running shoes.

This review falls under: ASICS | Saucony

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