ASICS GEL-Kayano 23 vs. ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 review

ASICS GEL-Kayano 23 provides softness, comfort, and a touch of stability to overpronators. ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 delivers a soft and comfortable ride to neutral runners.

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The ASICS GEL-Kayano 23 and the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 are both ASICS top-of-the-line running shoes in their categories. But while the ASICS GEL-Kayano 23 is categorized as a stability running shoe, according to ASICS, it can be worn by neutral runners too just like the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18.


Similarities start in the upper, where both the ASICS GEL-Kayano 23 The preceding link takes you to and the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 have a minimum amount of stitches.

Most of the stitches can be found at the back of the shoes and along the saddle, so the majority of the midfoot and forefoot has been kept stitch-free to increase the amount of comfort delivered by both running shoes.

The uppers differ in that the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 comes with more thin no-sew overlays than the ASICS GEL-Kayano 23 because the mesh in the ASICS GEL-Kayano 23 provides a lot of the structure and support in the upper.

Nonetheless, the ASICS GEL-Kayano 23 still uses the ASICS logo as a no-sew overlay to provide runners with a good amount of support around the midfoot just like the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 also does.

At the back of the ASICS GEL-Kayano 23 and the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18, there is an external heel counter to provide support behind the heel.

All in all, you should be able to get a similar amount of support from the uppers of the ASICS GEL-Kayano 23 and the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18.

Both the ASICS GEL-Kayano 23 and the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 are meant to provide runners in their respective categories with a lot of cushioning and plushness.

This is possible thanks to the two layers of foam that form the midsole and GEL cushioning in both the heel and the forefoot.

When you look on the lateral side, it seems like the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 exposes more GEL in its forefoot than the ASICS GEL-Kayano 23 does.

Therefore, one would expect the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 to be more cushy in the forefoot than the ASICS GEL-Kayano 23.

This turns out to be true for both genders, according to running shoe lab tests. However, the amount of heel cushioning comes very close to each other in the two running shoes.

For women, the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 is overall more cushy than the ASICS GEL-Kayano 23, but there are minimal differences between the two running shoes, especially in the heel. Both running shoes can be seen as being quite cushy for women.

Men get a little bit less heel cushioning than women and both the ASICS GEL-Kayano 23 and the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 display a similar amount of heel cushioning – slightly above average – in their cushioning profile.

However, the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 has a very cushy forefoot with a noticeable difference when compred to the ASICS GEL-Kayano 23.

While the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 is only concerned with providing runners with a soft ride, the ASICS GEL-Kayano 23 is concerned with providing a soft ride and a bit of stability.

Stability comes in the form of a midfoot shank that connects the two sides under the midfoot. The ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 also has a midfoot shank, but no connection between the lateral and medial sides, so the amount of stability provided is a bit less in the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18.

The ASICS GEL-Kayano 23 also comes with the Dynamic DuoMax support system on the medial side of the midsole, which helps control overpronation.

This support system is absent from the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18.

According to running shoe lab tests, the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 provides an average amount of stability and the ASICS GEL-Kayano 23 a slightly above average amount of stability; the difference is not huge, though.

The ASICS GEL-Kayano 23 and the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 look very similar when you look at their midsoles. Both have a good amount of separation between their rubber compartments and come with a vertical flex groove that helps improve your gait.

However, running shoe lab tests show that when it comes to flexibility, the ASICS GEL-Kayano 23 wins all the way.

The ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 turns out to be quite stiff for men and a bit more flexible for women, but when compared to the ASICS GEL-Kayano 23, the ASICS GEL-Kayano 23 is a very flexible running shoe for both men and women.

The women's version of the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 weighs about 9.8 oz (278 grams), and the ASICS GEL-Kayano 23 for women weighs 9.4 oz (266 grams).

The men's versions of the shoes weigh 12.1 oz (343 grams) and 11.5 oz (326 grams), respectively, with the ASICS GEL-Kayano 23 being the lighter one.

If you are a neutral runner who is looking for a soft and comfortable ride, you could go with either the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 or the ASICS GEL-Kayano 23, thereby keeping in mind that the ASICS GEL-Nimbus 18 might be more suitable for neutral runners and underpronators.

And if you are an overpronator, the ASICS GEL-Kayano 23 would be the more suitable choice because it was meant to serve overpronators. Just keep in mind that it provides a moderate amount of stability and support.

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

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