6 Best Mizuno Running Shoes in 2024

Jens Jakob Andersen
Jens Jakob Andersen on
6 Best Mizuno Running Shoes in 2024
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Mizuno has always been known for its durable, long-distance running shoes. But because we know that different runners need different shoes, we’ve selected some of the best choices from different categories and we based our decision on our scrutinization. We got each shoe in our feet and wore the hell out of them to the fullest extent.

Whether it’s for flat feet, premium cushioning, or just the best Mizuno shoe overall, we’ve got our top picks ready for you. 

How we test running shoes

Because we’re geeks over everything running shoes, we’ve tested tons of Mizuno shoes to pick the greatest. And to do so, we have done the following: 

  • We pay for the shoes with our own money for transparency. We know that once a brand sends a pair over, there is a chance that we might feel inclined only to say positive things about them. And this is something we completely avoid.
  • For each shoe, we run at least 30-50 miles in varying conditions. We take them to roads and trails and we assess how their comfort, durability, fit, and overall performance play a part during our runs.
  • We then cut them into pieces so that we can measure them with 30+ parameters like softness, breathability, durability, and more. 

Best Mizuno running shoes overall

What makes it the best?

The Wave Rider 26 is the best overall shoe Mizuno has to offer. This workhorse daily trainer keenly combines an enjoyably energetic ride with terrific cushioning and outstanding durability.

The Wave Rider 26 has a massive amount of cushioning for a daily trainer. With 6 mm more stack height in the heel and 3.2 mm more in the forefoot than the average running shoe, our feet were sufficiently protected during our daily miles. We also measured the midsole to be 20% softer than average, which makes the shoe a treat to take on slow easy runs.

Meanwhile, the repositioned wave plate gives the Wave Rider 26 just enough stiffness and responsiveness. It took us 28.2N of force to bend the shoe 90 degrees, which makes it 7.5% more flexible than average, but it still provides a smooth and propulsive ride on our test runs.  

Meanwhile, the Wave Rider 26's upper quality is top-notch. Not only is the lockdown very secure, but its breathability is also great. We pumped smoke inside the shoe, and it easily passed through the Jacquard mesh material to earn a score of 4 out of 5 on our breathability test, with 5 being the highest.

However, the Wave Rider 26 has a high heel to toe drop of 11.8 mm, which is not everyone's cup of tea. So runners who prefer a lower drop shoe should look elsewhere.

Pros

  • Comfortable and breathable upper
  • Cushioned ride, especially for heel strikers
  • Lightweight
  • Good lockdown
  • Great traction on most surfaces
  • Durable
  • Dependable daily trainer
  • Classy and conservative design
  • Eco-friendly

Cons

  • Tight around toes
  • Sky-high heel drop
  • Needs some breaking in
  • Not for fast paces
Full review of Mizuno Wave Rider 26

Best Muzino running shoes for daily training

What makes it the best?

We tested Mizuno running shoes in and out of the lab and found Wave Sky 7 the perfect companion to gobble up the miles without leg fatigue and unsteadiness. The lab shows the numbers, but our feet can confirm it’s Mizuno’s best daily trainer because of its ultra-soft, cloud-like cushion and robust outsole.

Our caliper reveals a sky-high 40.9/30.0 mm stack, 7.4/5.3 mm taller than average. It has generous cushioning for us to finish long runs comfortably, regardless of footstrike. It gives a good amount of energy return, which we truly enjoyed.

Despite the thick slab of foam, it feels more stable than other 40-mm shoes. After cutting it open, we discovered its strategic approach to boosting stability — incorporating a dual-density foam. Under the forefoot and heel lies an ultra-plush 3.0 HA foam, one of the softest our durometer has ever measured. Meanwhile, the main Enerzy foam is a balanced 22.0 HA to ensure we don’t bottom out.

Double-digit miles didn’t scratch the X10 Carbon outsole in our runs. It adds 1.4 mm of rubber vs. the average to prolong its life. Also, it shows less indentation than average in our brutal Dremel test.

As expected, all the extra cushion and rubber made the shoe heavy at 10.4 oz (296g). Many other cushioned options are lighter.

Pros

  • Great cushioning for long runs
  • Fantastic outsole quality
  • World-class durability
  • Comfortable for all-day use
  • Well-ventilated upper
  • Outstanding stability
  • Ideal for heel strikers
  • Stable despite high stack

Cons

  • Too heavy
  • Limited energy return
  • Clunky at fast paces
Full review of Mizuno Wave Sky 7

Best Muzino running shoes for speed training

What makes it the best?

The Mizuno Wave Rebellion is an extremely lightweight, ultra-responsive, and super cushioned shoe that’s ready for any and all runs. A speedy shoe with a unique geometry, the Mizuno Wave Rebellion is our pick for the best speed trainer in the Mizuno running shoe lineup.

Weighing in at 247g (8.71 oz), it is significantly lighter than the average of road running shoes at 268g (9.45 oz). Aside from being light on the scales, it also feels almost weightless on the feet.

Responsiveness abounds with the Wave Rebellion. Its midsole is moderately firm, just a hair below the average (0.8%) while an embedded fiberglass plate provides a lively pop that we enjoyed during our speed sessions.

Measuring 36.4 mm at the heel stack, it has more foam than the average of 33.2 mm. We actually felt this notable stack difference with every step, and it made our runs so much more comfortable. 

Unfortunately, on our outsole durability test with the Dremel, the Mizuno Wave Rebellion took much more damage than the average (3.9 mm vs 0.9 mm). We recommend runners to look at other options for daily runs and easy runs that do not require speed.

Pros

  • Unique geometry
  • Exceptionally lightweight
  • Responsive midsole
  • Versatile for both tempo pace and long runs
  • Superior heel lock
  • Remarkable stability
  • Spacious toebox

Cons

  • Potentially overpriced at $180
  • Lacks outsole durability
  • Thin oversized tongue
Full review of Mizuno Wave Rebellion

Best Mizuno running shoes for racing

What makes it the best?

Already in its name, Wave Rebellion Pro is a one-of-a-kind rebel racer. With its unconventional geometry, crazy stack height, and light build, it’s surprising in many aspects. Through our runs, we discovered it's insanely responsive and is the best Mizuno race shoe for a niche market — fast and technical midfoot strikers.

Upon the first look and slip-on, we knew this racer was different. It has a two-layer foam that runs thickest in the midfoot area, rising to a mindblowing 51.0 mm! To ensure it's within the 40-mm race-legal limit, less foam is in the heel at 38.2 mm. Because of this, it best represents a U-shaped rocker that settles in the midfoot area.

Wave Rebellion Pro includes a dual-density foam. Closer to the foot is the soft and responsive Enerzy Lite+. Our durometer measurement proves its velvet touch at 16.0 HA (vs. the 24.2 HA average). Meanwhile, the Mizuno Enerzy Lite foam is firmer at 30.4 HA for a more balanced ride. Sandwiched between the two is another extraordinary feature: the plate that is 70/30 nylon and carbon fiber.

Despite its monstrous size, this racer is astonishingly light at 7.5 oz (214g). It’s just at par with other speedsters.

Because of its build, this shoe is unstable and won't serve heel and forefoot strikers well.

Pros

  • Exceptionally extreme in every aspect
  • Incredibly enjoyable and fun ride
  • Ideal for midfoot strikers
  • Abundant race-day legal cushioning
  • Outsole provides excellent grip, even in wet conditions
  • Less stiff compared to other racing shoes
  • Cozy and decently wide upper

Cons

  • Might feel really weird at first
  • Definitely not suitable for heel strikers
  • Subpar durability
Full review of Mizuno Wave Rebellion Pro

Best comfortable Mizuno running shoes

What makes it the best?

With its thick and balanced midsole, flexible and breathable upper, and unobtrusive support, there is no other Mizuno shoe that offers a higher level of overall comfort than the Wave Horizon 6.

The Wave Horizon 6 delivers major underfoot comfort with its massive midsole, which has 3.9 mm more foam in the heel and 6.4 mm more in the forefoot, respectively. Moreover, that midsole is remarkable because it is made up of three layers, whose average softness came in at 22 HA. That is just a bit softer than the average of 24.5 HA, and we certainly felt it was well-balanced: not too soft and not too firm.

Meanwhile, the shoe’s simply constructed upper contributes to the overall comfort with its flexibility and breathability. The tongue is only minimally padded as we measured it at just 3.6 mm, 2.2 mm thinner than the average running shoe.

And while the Wave Horizon 6 is known more as a stability shoe, it offers a much less intrusive type of support compared to other stability shoes. The shoe achieves that level of stability through an exceptionally wide base, which is 6.7 mm and 7.3 mm wider in the forefoot and heel, respectively. 

However, the Wave Horizon 6 is a markedly hefty shoe. At 11.04 oz (313g), it's a good 1.48 oz (42g) heavier than the average road shoe, so those looking for a more lightweight trainer should look elsewhere.

Pros

  • Support that's not harsh
  • Impact-absorbing
  • Gives your stride a boost
  • Very comfy for recovery runs
  • Stable when cornering
  • Breathable
  • Keeps the foot in place
  • Grip that sticks

Cons

  • Long break-in period
  • Comes with a hefty tag
Full review of Mizuno Wave Horizon 6

Muzino running shoes with the best stability

What makes it the best?

We went on actual runs and took apart Mizuno running shoes in search of the best stability shoe — and we found the 19th Wave Inspire. With a vast and cushioned platform, it strikes the equilibrium between comfort and support. It has elements that subtly guide us, allowing us to stride naturally. Plus, its stellar X10 rubber outsole is a perfect mix of durability and traction.

The main stability feature is the vast platform. The extra width ensures safe landings without adding intrusive elements for a cozier ride. In instances we mildly pronated, the rigid heel kept us in place.

Unlike most stability shoes, Wave Inspire highlights comfort in our ride. Its loose build allows us to move freely. In our flex test, it takes 46.0% less force to bend its Wave plate vs. the average. Underfoot, it offers plushness without being mushy. Our durometer shows it’s 16.5% softer than average.

Completing this package is a robust outsole that barely showed signs of wear after our runs. We couldn’t resist testing it against our Dremel. It only dented by 0.6 mm! The icing on the cake is the excellent traction it displayed even on wet pavements.

We discovered a steep 12.4 mm heel drop more suited for heel-strikers. Runners seeking a more leveled platform should look elsewhere.

Pros

  • Embedded Wave Plate enhances stability and responsiveness
  • Enerzy Lite midsole delivers thick, protective cushioning
  • Strong grip even in wet conditions
  • Handles light trails with ease
  • X10 rubber is tough and long-lasting
  • Well-built upper
  • Perfect fit for runners with wide feet

Cons

  • Upper lacks breathability
  • Fit may be too loose for narrow feet
  • The 12.4-mm heel drop might not suit everyone
Full review of Mizuno Wave Inspire 19
Author
Jens Jakob Andersen
Jens Jakob Andersen
Jens Jakob is a fan of short distances with a 5K PR at 15:58 minutes. Based on 35 million race results, he's among the fastest 0.2% runners. Jens Jakob previously owned a running store, when he was also a competitive runner. His work is regularly featured in The New York Times, Washington Post, BBC and the likes as well as peer-reviewed journals. Finally, he has been a guest on +30 podcasts on running.