Asics Glideride 2 review

According to Asics, the Glideride 2 is a shoe designed to save energy while running.  The technology built into the Glideride 2 is supposed to provide a rocker-like feel that reduces ankle flexion, reducing energy expenditure while improving running efficiency.  This in turn will allow you to run longer and ideally recover faster.  

The Glideride 2 retails for $150.  I was able to test out this shoe in the winter weather of Michigan and also in the warmth of Florida so I had a variety of climates to run in.  

This shoe is best for tempo and speed day runs of short to medium distance.  Unless you have stronger feet, I think the midsole is just too firm for longer runs and the design of the shoe makes it challenging to run slow in.  I have found that the Glideride 2 works great when my legs are tired and my running schedule requires me to push a pace my legs don’t want to give.  

Who should buy it

The Asics Glideride 2 is ideal for:

  • runners looking for stability in their trainer
  • runners wanting to improve efficiency in their running
  • runners looking to reduce injuries while running 
  • anyone looking for a shoe that is good for walking and running

Who should NOT buy it

Look away if: 

  • you want a lightweight trainer that is plush (the Meta Speed Sky is a good option)
  • you’re on a budget (the Asics Contend 7 is affordable and offers great value for money)
  • you want a breathable upper (the Nimbus 24 is praised for its breathability)

The Glideride 2 fits like a glove

The Asics Glideride 2 fits true to size for me and my size 12.5 US.  The engineered mesh upper wraps around my foot nicely and I experienced no hotspots while running.  That being said, it is a narrow shoe.  If you have a wider foot you may have issues and Asics doesn’t offer a wide size option.  The upper does have some malleability to adapt to wider feet but I’d be concerned about hotspots. 

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Locked and loaded

The non-gusseted tongue is nicely padded, as is the heel collar. This, in combination with a stout heel counter, helps keep your foot locked in place.  I did not experience any shifting or rubbing on my foot during runs and did not need to use the extra eyelet.  I actually had a hard time slipping the shoe off without untying it.  I do wish the heel counter was a bit less present to save on weight.  Asics uses a large piece of TPU to wrap the heel and it seems to be overkill to me.  

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Confusingly comfortable

As mentioned, the tongue and heel collar are well padded, but the Glideride 2 also has a substantial insert which is well padded too.  This makes the step-in feel of the shoe nice and plush.  To top it off, the laces are padded to provide additional comfort.  This would make you think of a maximalist shoe or a nice walking shoe until you get to the midsole which is firm and designed to propel you forward.  

It's almost like putting two different shoes together and I wonder what would the Glideride 2 be like if the midsole was softer.  It would probably be a really nice maximalist shoe.  Conversely, what would it be like if the upper was stripped down and the weight dropped significantly.  It would probably be a really nice speed day shoe.  

Rolling along with my Glideride’s on

My first run in the Glideride 2 was a bit over 11 miles on a cold and windy day. My legs were tired as I was in the last phase of my marathon training.  I’m primarily a midfoot striker and I was able to get a nice rhythm while running and run at a decent pace.  With the rocker technology and springy midsole, the Glideride 2 has the sensation of rolling you or propelling you forward while you run.  

I found the Glideride 2 to be a really enjoyable and stable ride and I was able to run at a steady pace or pick up the pace.  Despite its high stack height of 30mm in the heel and 25mm in the forefoot for women and 31mm in the heel and 26mm in the forefoot for men, turning tight corners was of no issue. 

asics-glideride-2-heel.jpg

I did find it a bit challenging to run at a slower pace as the shoe just seemed to keep propelling me forward. There is definitely something to the design of this shoe that reminds me of the Hoka Carbon X, albeit without a carbon fiber plate.  Also, like the Hoka Carbon X, the midsole could be a bit softer and you tend to feel it on longer runs.  

Heavy on the scale but not on foot

The Glideride 2 comes in at approximately 12.3oz (348g) in my size (US12.5).  That’s a wee bit heavy for a daily trainer in my opinion.  I do wish the Glideride 2 was lighter but you really don’t notice it while running.  The geometry of the shoe rocks and propels you forward so I think the technology baked into this shoe is the real deal and not just marketing.  Hopefully, in version 3 they can make some adjustments to reduce weight.  I think there are a lot of opportunities for weight reduction in the upper and heel collar.  

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The traction could be better in the Glideride 2

The outsole of the Glideride 2 uses AHAR Plus, which claims to be 50% more durable than their standard high abrasion rubber.  Based on the little amount of wear I see on the outsole after over 50 miles of running it would be hard to disagree.  

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The grip of the AHAR Plus is fine on dry surfaces but when running on the wet pavement I did experience some shifting when rounding tight corners and it was hard to run with confidence.  I also ran in some ice and snow and regretted it, almost falling on my butt while descending a steep hill.  Most running shoes struggle in these conditions but the Glideride 2 was more like skates.  

Your feet will be warm

Asics claims that the engineered mesh upper improves breathability.  If that is the case, I’d be curious to know how the original Glideride compared.  I ran in the Glideride 2 on some cold and windy days and my foot never felt cold.  

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The thickness of the upper seemed to prevent wind from penetrating my toes.  This is a good thing in cold weather but I’m not sure how it will be on hot summer days.  I did get to run in these shoes while in Florida during the winter with the weather in the mid 70 degrees and it was not too bad but definitely not super breathable. 

Stoutly built for frequent use

I’m very impressed with the build quality of the Glideride 2.  The materials used in this shoe are of high quality and I think you could get several hundred miles out of it.  I don’t foresee any holes forming on the upper based on the thickness and flexibility of the mesh material.  As mentioned, the AHAR Plus midsole is very durable and should not break down for a long time.  The FlyteFoam midsole is supposed to be more durable than other midsole foams but only time will tell how resilient it remains.  

Facts / Specs

Terrain: Road
Weight: Men 11.5oz / Women 8.9oz
Drop: 5mm
Arch support: Neutral
Update: Asics GlideRide 3
Forefoot height: Men 21mm / Women 20mm
Heel height: Men 26mm / Women 25mm

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Author
Matthew Anderson
Matthew Anderson

I love running, primarily road running, and have participated in 5K’s to Marathons over the past 7 years. I recently completed the Detroit International Half-Marathon, the Disney World Two Course Challenge, and the Disney World Full-Marathon. Living in Southeastern Michigan provides me the “opportunity” to experience a variety of weather conditions to run in and requires an array of gear to meet the occasion. I run approximately 30 miles a week and my favorite shoe is the New Balance Beacon v1.