Neutral / cushion / high arch
Shoes for runners who do not need any additional arch support (Around 50% of runners). Best for people with normal, high or medium high arches. See the best neutral shoes.
Stability / overpronation / normal arch
Shoes for runners who need mild to moderate arch support (Around 45% of runners). Best for runners with a low arch. See the best stability shoes.
Motion control / severe overpronation / flat feet
Shoes for runners who needs a lot of arch support. Best for runners with flat feet. See the best motion control shoes.
Good to know
Cushioned shoes for your daily easy running. Great comfort. See best shoes for daily running.
Lightweight shoes good for races, interval training, tempo runs and fartlek. Here are the best competition running shoes.
Good to know
If you want just one pair of shoes, buy a shoe for daily running.
WeightMen: 10.3ozWomen: 8.7oz
Heel to toe dropMen: 12mmWomen: 12mm
The height difference from the heel to the forefoot, also known as heel drop, toe spring, heel to toe spring or simply drop.
There are many opinions about what a good heel drop is. We do not recommend any in particular. Lean more in this video.
WidthMen: normalWomen: normal
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91 / 100 based on 4 expert reviews
Mizuno Wave Inspire 15: Smooth, simple, and stellar
I was beyond excited to receive another pair of Mizuno shoes because this brand has traditionally been my go to road trainer. All of my previous Mizuno shoes have been spectacular and I expected this shoe to be no different.
In my opinion, Mizuno Wave technology sets the standard of what all shoe companies should strive for. This is one of the main shoes I use in my rotation when I run on asphalt, the track, or the dreaded treadmill.
Specifications & fit
- Weight - 10.3oz or 294 grams
- Heel to toe Drop - 12mm
- Heel Height - 30mm
- Forefoot height - 18mm
- Overall Cushioning - Moderate
- Designed for - Moderate Over Pronators
The Wave Inspire is the 15th edition of Wave line and my first shoe experience from this line. The shoe has kept its minimal design, excellent traction, and supreme comfort. The latest version is offering a new upper with a softer fit and a more wearable look.
I prefer minimal shoes when running short distances and this shoe offers simplicity and responsiveness I need, while still offering enough cushion for optimum comfort.
I have only used this shoe for training runs so far but it has held up well in all areas.
In true Mizuno style, they offer their shoes in many complex colors as well as the traditional all black or “Black Dark Shadow”. The other colors offered are quarry-stormy-weather, ocean-depths-cloud, and blue wing teal.
Almost all Mizuno shoes have the same style and look to them with the logo largely on display and thick midsole that shows the wave technology used in every shoe.
In some instances, it does look a little old school in turns of its engineering design. However, I kind of like it because when you’ve got the overlays and stitching involved, there’s a little more care and love that’s gone into making this shoe.
In my opinion, this shoe looks a little old school in turns of its basic engineering design. However, I am a fan of the reinforced double stitching, which should help its durability.
The Wave Inspire 15 runs true to size and offers a very secure fit. I have had no issues with my foot-sliding forward when running. It’s always a relief when the shoe runs true to size.
Like most road shoes compared to trail shoes a break in period is not required which is a nice change. The Wave Inspire 15 are very comfortable and offer an excellent cushion for longer runs.
In my experience, road running shoes usually require less of a break in period (if any) than typical trail running shoes. The Wave Inspire 15 are comfortable from the start to end.
The only problem I encountered with this shoe as I had a bout with my plantar fasciitis for a couple of months and I was unable to wear this shoe without pain occurring during the bottom. However, this isn’t a big concern since this shoe is not meant for that purpose.
One feature I have grown to appreciate with all Mizuno shoes is the jacquard mesh technology that they use on it for its durability, flexibility, and breathability.
Mizuno has developed a shoe technology called Dynamotion fit, which aims to simulate the natural fluid motion of the foot throughout the shoe. This keeps the shoe neutral and uses this technology to help mimic the foot natural movement while running and secure the foot as it flexes and extends.
Due to this jacquard mesh region of the shoe I have not had a problem rubbing, pinching, or blistering.
The tongue of the shoe is a jacquard mesh, which is great, providing plenty of ventilation and comfort. The tongue of the shoe stays in place during use, which helps keep out debris.
I have come to appreciate Mizuno heel cup and have no began to expect every shoe I wear to have an excellent heel cup.
While it is still very minimal, the area around the heel has 30mm of cushion to prevent any discomfort while running. I am always looking for the perfect balance between minimal and comfortable, which this shoe succeeds in.
When you put on the Wave Inspire you feel your heel slide right in the shoe, it feels fantastic. You know it’s on, you know you’ve got that support in the back half and it will not become loose while in use.
The Wave Inspires midsole is comprised of U4ic and U4icX for the cushioning system and wave technology for the midsole of the shoe, which offers excellent protection.
The wave technology has been a staple in Mizuno shoes for many years and for good reason.
The Wave Inspire 15 features the Cloudwave fan-shaped Mizuno Wave Technology which is a black thermal piece of plastic that starts at the heel of the shoe and runs along to the forefront to help with cushioning in each step.
The wave technology splits the softer foam from the more firm foam, which is actually very comfortable.
The SmoothRide technology is still in use with the latest version of the Mizuno Wave Inspire. This midsole technology is designed to create a smooth ride by regulating the movement of the foot during rapid acceleration and deceleration. This technology is supposed to decrease impact, as well as offer excellent support, and helps improve motion.
A “U4ic” foam midsole, which is specific to all Mizuno running shoes, helps disperse energy from impact and improves the ride of the shoe.
The lightweight nature of the midsole does not take away from its durability or comfort. From heel to toe the U4ic midsole offers stellar shock absorption which helps keeps the foot moving forward at all times.
The Wave Inspire 15 outsole is comprised of blown-rubber called “Smooth Ride” for the forefoot and X-10 rubber for the heel.
Blown rubber is simply a hybrid rubber compound comprised of rubber and air, which gives you a lightweight outsole that has a decent cushion. X-10 rubber is the Mizuno brand name for their outsole, which is comprised of the most durable carbon rubber.
The heel of the shoe offers excellent comfort and grip with the blown rubber and the X-10 carbon rubber. The Forefront of the foot uses the Smooth Ride, which offers excellent support regardless if you’re a heel striker or a midfoot striker.
The upper of the shoe has been reinforced with a carbon rubber outsole, which has proven to be highly durable and maintains its comfort while on long runs.
I have over 60 miles in this shoe and it shows zero signs of damage, which is something that is the standard for Mizuno shoes. I did notice some loose thread from the stitching when I first got this shoe but I cut it off and it has yet reoccur as an issue.
- High drop
- Somewhat heavy
My first pair of wave inspire 15 shoes did not disappoint and I am delighted that I have found another Mizuno shoe that I can put into my rotation. I recommend this shoe to anyone looking for a comfortable training road shoe that offers durability and breathability.
This Mizuno shoe isn’t anything surprising or innovating because it's very similar to other Mizuno shoes, however, the only difference is the introduction to jacquard mesh on the upper of the shoe.
Thank you, Mizuno, for creating another excellent shoe.
This expert has been verified by RunRepeat. Reviews are neutral, unbiased and based on extensive testing.
Covering a multitude of running terrains: Mizuno Wave Inspire 15
Mizuno has shared with the world its latest response to the stability shoe market, this time as the Wave Inspire 15. I was excited immediately with the tropical color scheme; I felt like I was running back in sunny southern Florida.
But I live in Portland, and here it is wet and messy most months out of the year, so let’s put this shoe to the test!
The shoe is looking sharp with the initial glance over. I like the mesh upper, the laces, the intense midsole, and the solid tread.
One can notice that this is a bit of a Clydesdale when picking it up; the shoe is a bit clunky compared to others, and pretty stiff to the touch. I realize this shoe will be tough to destroy; I’m just hoping it doesn’t destroy my foot.
First 50 miles
You can tell the difference in this shoe as soon as you take your first steps. No joke, I couldn’t tell I was wearing shoes the first few steps of my very first run.
The shoe continued to demonstrate a strong personality and build throughout these first 50 miles as I was able to take them on the roads, sidewalks, gravel, stones, grass, dirt, mud, and just about everywhere in between. They handled the cold and wet days well, and they tolerated the surprising winter warmer days over these last few weeks.
I like the general look of this shoe. The tongue and laces are quality; not too thick, not too thin. They stay in place and are smooth to the touch.
The new mesh covering for the 15 is a nice addition. I like the look and feel of it, and it has provided good protection from the elements, while also allowing for sweat to dry pretty quickly during and after the runs.
As I mentioned earlier, the color schemes seem pretty fun. One thing I always wonder about with new shoes is if they can retire to become my daily sneakers for casual wear, and I wouldn’t be embarrassed to wear these around town. The heel is a bit loose for my liking, but it has not hindered my runs in any way yet.
The U4icX technology that makes up most of the midsole has been surprisingly stable and responsive. I was worried about the weight and the stiffness of the shoe, but overall I have not come across too many issues during the runs.
I’ll admit that I’m not a fan of ‘empty space’ in the midsole that some of the U4icX plastic allows for, but nothing has gotten stuck inside of it yet, so I don’t even think of it much. Again, THE PADDING!
I honestly feel very good with the padding, especially in the forefoot. While I generally run with pretty good form, I can tell that the shoes are compensating for muscle fatigue, especially later in the runs. Again, these are not the most responsive shoes in the world and have a tendency to feel a bit clunky at times, but man, they cover my butt on long runs time and time again.
The tread and grip on the outsole has treated me well in a multitude of winter running scenes. I have taken these shoes through puddles, over ice, rocks, and mud, and they have performed great. Otherwise, things are pretty standard underneath, with no complaints about a road shoe.
While I’m not terribly impressed with the weight or the bulky look of the shoe, they perform great for the stability model they are.
As a very average older runner who often feels the pain of soreness and tightness the next morning, these shoes have offered relief of pain not only during the runs, but even the next day. I look forward to using these as my training workhorse for the next 500 miles.
This expert has been verified by RunRepeat. Reviews are neutral, unbiased and based on extensive testing.
Nice internal stability. So you have plenty of depth and secured in the back of the heel. When you put the Mizuno on and you sort of feel your heel go plug into the shoe. It feels fantastic.
It gives you nice amount of responsiveness and at the same time high cushioning. It has a great midfoot transition area.
Updates to Mizuno Wave Inspire 15
- The Mizuno Wave Inspire 15 features several updates to satisfy runners who need moderate support and dynamic cushioning. The shoe has been modified from top to bottom. One significant update is the new jacquard mesh in the upper of the Inspire 15. The mesh offers a breathable foot coverage while delivering durability and support.
- The interior of the shoe also features several enhancements. The shoe has a U4icX heel wedge for a smoother landing and a new U4icX Strobel Board for an increased comfort.
- Lastly, the outsole has deeper flex grooves for enhanced flexibility. It encourages efficient toe-off.
Mizuno Wave Inspire 15 size and fit
The Wave Inspire 15 has a standard running shoe length. The upper mesh is stretchable enough to follow the natural shape of the foot. The width options for the women’s version are B – Medium, and D – Wide. For the men’s Inspire 15, the width choices are D – Medium and 2E – Wide.
The 15th version of the Wave Inspire is still using the durable X10 outsole material. It is a high-abrasion carbon rubber strategically placed in the outer sole for durability. It also offers a good amount of traction on varied road surfaces. This durable outsole material is also used in some popular Mizuno running shoes, like the Wave Rider 22.
The Wave Inspire 15 features much deeper flex grooves which are designed to enhanced flexibility without affecting underfoot protection. It allows the foot to move efficiently to multiple directions for an enhanced heel to toe transition.
In the midsole of the Wave Inspire 15 is the Cloudwave fan-shaped Mizuno Wave Technology. It aims to provide efficient impact protection and a more stable ride. The Wave plate is also designed to deliver a smoother heel-to-toe transition.
Working together with the Wave plate is the U4icX heel wedge. This midsole technology offers responsive cushioning while delivering a plush landing under the foot. The shoe also features the new U4icX Strobel board for an increased in-step comfort.
The SmoothRide technology is still present in the latest version of the Mizuno Wave Inspire. This midsole technology is designed to create a smooth ride by regulating the movement of the foot during a rapid acceleration and deceleration.
The Mizuno Wave Inspire 15 features a redesigned upper for a modern touch and enhanced fit. It uses a jacquard mesh upper that delivers unmatched breathability and comfort. This upper material is durable and flexible enough to accommodate the natural curve of the foot.
The Mizuno Dynamotion Fit aims to mirror the movement of the foot while running. As the foot bends, stretches and twists, the Dyanmotion Fit mimicks toot’s movement. It wraps the foot comfortably while delivering a more secure foot wrap.
The shoe uses a traditional lace-up closure. It secures the foot comfortably without giving too much pressure.
The padded tongue and collar further enhance the overall fit and comfort of the shoe.