Brooks Ravenna 10 review
The Brooks Ravenna 10 is the least exciting shoe I have in my shoe rotation. However, the Ravenna 10 has proved to be a very durable trainer, from 3 miles to 20 mile runs across a variety of surfaces, including mud, rock, pavement, treadmill, and even grass.
I have several hundred miles on these shoes with no visible wear despite running on tough surfaces, namely extremely sloppy rural country roads. Even the inner soles are wear-free, including the heel padding with zero tears in the material.
Sometimes runners need to be excited about a run and looking forward to the shoe of choice helps. I was never excited to run in my Ravenna 10s.
In fact, at the last minute, I ran a half marathon in an old pair of Nike Free Runs instead of my Ravenna 10s because I couldn’t imagine running well in the Ravenna. Yet, I wear them frequently.
If a runner needs a versatile shoe that can last for several hundred miles, the Ravenna 10 works extremely well. With the Ravenna 11 being released in spring 2020, many runners can benefit from the now reduced price of the 10s.
Brooks lists the weight of the Ravenna 10 at 8.3oz./235.5g. I wear a size 8 women’s, so my shoes might be slightly lighter. I typically wear one-half size up in running shoes. With an 8, I have extra room in the toe box, maybe too much.
However, I like to wear two pairs of socks in the winter. Even with one pair, I don’t have an issue with the shoes being too big in the toe box length. The drop is 10mm, which is the maximum I like. I prefer 8mm or less.
In the Ravenna 10, the 10mm drop feels less, more like my running shoes that are 8mm. My Nike Turbo 2s, for example, is also 10mm drop, and the Ravenna 10s do not feel the same.
The outsole provides great traction
The outsole is great for a variety of surfaces, which is why I frequently run in these shoes. The lugs across the mid/forefoot area are horizontal, which allows for a minimal amount of mud to become trapped.
These are not trail shoes, so they don’t have the grip or lug length needed for mud. However, they will work for a slight amount of mud on a gravel/rock path.
The midfoot shape is designed to go from heel to toe quickly, and as a midfoot striker, this might be why I do not feel benefited from the midsole cushion.
Boring ride in the Ravenna 10
The midsole is advertised as springy and cushiony with a rebound using the Brooks BioMoGo DNA. I never felt rebound while running, which is why I think the shoe lacks excitement.
The Ravenna 10s don’t have the drop or lightweight for a short speedy workout, and they lack the max cushioning needed for slower long runs. They work for both long/slow runs and short/speed workouts, but they aren’t the perfect choice for either of those types of runs.
In addition, while running on rocks, the midsole does not shield the foot from feeling the occasion sharp poke.
The breathability is positive
The upper is a one-piece mesh. I found the upper to feel restricted in the top and midfoot area around the tongue/laces, but not the toe box area.
The upper also has accommodating space on both the medial and lateral sides (so great for runners who don’t like their toes to feel crammed). The upper doesn’t have the rigidness needed to propel the foot forward for speed, and for long runs, I’d prefer a more flexible upper.
That said, the shoe isn’t hot in the summer/hot weather, and with two pairs of socks, my feet remained warm in the cold weather (even in below 0°F).
True to size
I suggest true to size or one-half size up for fit. The upper isn’t as flexible as I would like, but with one-half size up, my toes had enough room. The feel does not slip, nor it is restricting. The tongue and heel offer a moderate amount of cushion.
The Guiderails on the Ravenna 10s are meant to reduce excess movement. I did not notice the Guiderails while running. I could not feel a benefit, but I also didn’t feel they restricted the natural movement of my feet/stride.
Although not indented, the Guiderails on the lateral and medial sides provide some protection from mud entering the shoe through the upper, and they make cleaning mud from the shoes easier (easier than cleaning the upper).
The Ravenna 10 look great
They have a casual look too so that runners can pair them with jeans on a non-running outing.
Tip: see the best running shoes.