Product Review: Mizuno Wave Rider 18
What is it?
The Mizuno Wave Rider 18 is the latest model of one of the world’s most popular neutral shoes. Not many of us get lighter as we age, but this shoe is the exception. The Wave Rider 15 tipped the scales at a moderate 317 grams, the Wave Rider 17 was a slimmed-down version 269 grams. With their latest version, though, the shoe whizzes at Mizuno have managed to carve another 9 grams off that to produce a shoe that weighs in at a positively lightweight (for a daily training shoe) 260gm. Not only has the shoe shed weight, though, it has also gravitated further towards minimalism with a reduced heel-to-toe drop of 12mm.
Pros of Product
The shoe fits true to size, and if you’re a regular wearer of the Wave Rider line, the latest model won’t disappoint or stray too far from what you know and love. Given that the first model hit the shelves in 1998, we know a lot of people love this show.
Firstly, on the positive front, the shoe looks pretty damn cool, with a nice white-fading-to-black design. The fit is narrower than other popular neutral shoes, such as the Asics Nimbus, and feels more like a racing shoe around your foot than a daily trainer, which is a good thing if that’s what you’re into.
The shoe, true to form, feels lightweight when running. The heel-to-toe transition is swift and, compared to bulkier, heavier daily training shoes, feels like it’s encouraging you to up the pace a notch with every step. It has enough support to allow for regular use on long training runs, but is lightweight and minimal enough that it can also be used for faster tempo runs or , if you don’t feel the desire to shell out for a pair of racing flats, makes a great alternative for interval training or road races.
Being a neutral shoe, it will attract a lot of runners who wear orthotics on a daily basis and the good news is that, once your additional sole is inserted, there’s certainly enough room left in the shoe for a very comfortable fit, which isn’t the case with many such shoes.
Cons of Product
The tagline which Mizuno released with this shoe description included ‘just enough support’, and that appears to be the case for the Wave Rider 18. There are few unnecessary extras on this shoe, which is great from a performance standpoint, but at some point, you compromise cushioning with such an approach. Don’t get me wrong: these shoes are still perfect for daily runs, but for heavier runners or runners logging an exceptional amount of miles, who feel they may need considerable support, they may find themselves with sore calf muscles if they make the Wave Riders their only daily training companion. That’s being picky, though, because this is indeed a top shoe, and one that will live to see its twenties.
Okay, how much?
The Mizuno Wave Rider is available to buy at Runways, 187 Parnell street, Dublin 1, at a specially reduced price of €102 until next Sunday, the 25th of January. Tell them JumpingTheGun sent you for some extra love.
To purchase this shoe, or to browse others online, click here