The Asics Gel Nimbus 23 is a neutral daily trainer with an extremely soft landing. There are loads of Gel in this shoe and it drives like a Cadillac—smooth and reliable.
stable for a neutral shoe
overly padded tongue
bulky heel counter
on the heavy side
pricey daily trainer
Updates to the Nimbus 23
A bit more Gel in the heel
A bit more stability underfoot
More recycled materials
Just a quick note, men’s and women’s versions have slight differences because they have gender-specific designs.
Things to love about Asics Nimbus 23
The stretchy engineered mesh upper hugs the foot, while the tongue’s gussets ensure midfoot lockdown but give enough to keep the shoe flexible. Meanwhile, the padded tongue and collar give the foot a very plush feel.
There’s no lace pass through the tongue. I’m not saying it’s necessary but it’s noticeable.
Nothing really fancy here, but they’re very flexible and soft. They feel really nice in your hand.
The midsole is comprised of a really soft FlyteFoam Propel cushioning, ensuring a really smooth ride and soft landing. It feels lively though, and not mushy, which is a major plus. There’s also the famous Gel heel padding.
Although this shoe is designed as a max-cushioning shoe, it doesn’t have the crazy stack height which is what you normally see in this category.
Asics' acclaimed outsole
The Gel Nimbus 23 is made of Asics’ high-abrasion rubber (AHAR) outsole. It has lots of flex, allowing the shoe to bend with your foot.
Issues with the Gel Nimbus 23
Not for hot weather
There’s not a ton of venting holes in the upper, but it passes the light test. I tested it in cool weather, and just a warning: it could run hot in the summer.
It has a little overly padded top portion, which barely touches the ankle. I’m not sure if the added weight is necessary.
It’s not as robust as the Kayanos, but it’s close. It has medium stiffness with some welded overlays to firm up the edges of the heel.
Because it’s really soft, it may pack out prematurely.
The heel rubber is much stiffer than the rest of the shoe. It’s designed for heel strikers, so I’m not so sure if this will help midfoot and forefoot strikers.
Other things to consider about the Asics Gel Nimbus 23
It fits great; the mesh upper is soft and pliable, and it hugs the foot nicely. I didn’t experience any heel slip, as well. In terms of width, I had no issues with the D width and my wide foot.
The ride of the Asics Gel Nimbus 23 is reminiscent of the Clifton 7’s, which I loved. It’s really nice underfoot and with tons of impact absorption.
Although this is a neutral shoe, it very much feels like a Kayano. You can feel that arch support because of the plastic medial post, which I don’t particularly like.
It weighs 11.1 oz, which should be trimmed down by 2-3 oz, in my opinion.
10 mm drop
25 mm stack
Asics shoes don’t really have durability issues, so this should go the distance. My only hang-up is how soft the midsole is. Only time will tell, but I think this would hurt its longevity.
It has a typical Asics running shoe look. I like that the logo is a welded overlay and not a patch of plastic, but it doesn’t get me all that excited.
It retails for $150, which is a bit high for a neutral trainer that’s over 11 oz.
I think that there are better options out there in this category for less money and with lesser weight. With that said, it’s really soft underfoot, which made me think about the Clifton which was one of my favorite rides of the year.
Over the past 20 years, Paul has climbed, hiked, and ran all over the world. He has summited peaks throughout the Americas, trekked through Africa, and tested his endurance in 24-hour trail races as well as 6 marathons. On average, he runs 30-50 miles a week in the foothills of Northern Colorado. His research is regularly cited in The New York Times, Washington Post, National Geographic, etc. On top of this, Paul is leading the running shoe lab where he cuts shoes apart and analyses every detail of the shoes that you might buy.