Mizuno Wave Rider 20 vs. 21 review

Mizuno Wave Rider 20 delivers a good amount of cushioning in a lightweight package. Mizuno Wave Rider 21 has an updated upper and delivers a softer ride to men...

The Mizuno Wave Rider 21 is the updated version of the Mizuno Wave Rider 20, which is a neutral cushioning running shoe for runners who do not need much stability and support but are rather looking for a soft ride.

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The uppers of the Mizuno Wave Rider 21 The preceding link takes you to Amazon.com and the Mizuno Wave Rider 20 look pretty similar.

Both come with engineered mesh in the forefoot to reduce the use of overlays, and both use the Mizuno logo as an overlay that wraps the midfoot and ads addional support.

The mesh has a slightly different structure in the Mizuno Wave Rider 20 The preceding link takes you to Amazon.com than it does in the Mizuno Wave Rider 21, but the intent is the same, that is, to provide comfort in the toe box.

The underlays around the midfoot and the heel have changed somewhat in the Mizuno Wave Rider 21 compared to the Mizuno Wave Rider 20, but both running shoes should provide a good amount of support in that area to keep you on the platform.

Both the Mizuno Wave Rider 21 and the Mizuno Wave Rider 20 come with a stitched-on toecap and have a stitched-on overlay at the back, but the overlay at the back of the Mizuno Wave Rider 21 is a bit larger and provides a bit more support.

There is also an overlay at the side of the heel on the lateral side that displays the name of the running shoe. This overlay now connects to the midsole of the Mizuno Wave Rider 21 and should also add a bit of support, because it partially cups the heel.

All in all, there have been a few subtle updates to the upper of the Mizuno Wave Rider 21 that should benefit the amount of support you get from the upper.

The midsoles of the Mizuno Wave Rider 21 and the Mizuno Wave Rider 20 look pretty much the same on both sides of the running shoe.

Both come with a Wave Plate that is meant to provide shock absorption and that also partially functions as a midfoot shank for midfoot support and integrity.

The Wave Plate also has a centering effect, so it also increases the stability of the running shoe.

While both the Mizuno Wave Rider 20 and the Mizuno Wave Rider 21 deliver an above average amount of cushioning, this amount has increased in the men's version of the Mizuno Wave Rider 21, according to running shoe lab test results.

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The Mizuno Wave Rider 21 for men delivers much more forefoot and heel cushioning than the Mizuno Wave Rider 20.

In fact, the Mizuno Wave Rider 21 delivers almost a maximum amount of heel cushioning to both men and women so is a good running shoe for heel-strikers.

The only thing that has gone down is the amount of forefoot cushioning women get. The Mizuno Wave Rider 20 delivers a bit more forefoot cushioning than the Mizuno Wave Rider 21, but both are above average.

In general, you can expect to get a soft ride from the Mizuno Wave Rider 21 and the forefoot is not super cushy to hold you back, so the ride should be fairly responsive.

Just like the midsole, the outsole of the Mizuno Wave Rider 21 has not changed much compared to that of the Mizuno Wave Rider 20.

Both come with two flex grooves in the forefoot and carry a large amount of rubber.

The Mizuno Wave Rider 20 delivers a slightly above average amount of flexibility to both men and women, according to running shoe lab tests, while the Mizuno Wave Rider 21 is considered to be somewhat stiff for both genders.

The women's version of the Mizuno Wave Rider 21 weighs approximately 8.2 oz (233 grams), and the Mizuno Wave Rider 20 for women weighs 8.3 oz (235 grams).

The men's versions of the shoes weigh 10.3 oz (292 grams), so there is no difference in weight.

If you are a neutral runner who is looking for a soft but responsive ride from a running shoe, you could choose either the Mizuno Wave Rider 20 or the Mizuno Wave Rider 21.

There aren't many differences to be noted between the two running shoes other than a few minor updates in the upper of the Mizuno Wave Rider 21 and the fact that men now get a much softer ride than before.

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: Mizuno

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