Facts

  • Terrain

    Road

    Shoes best for road, track and light gravel. See the best road shoes.

    Trail

    Shoes best for trail, off road, mountains and other unstable surfaces. See the best trail shoes.

    Good to know

    As long as you stick to the road or path, and if you want just one running shoe, buy a road running shoe.

  • Arch support

    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

    - Rule of thumb: If in doubt, buy neutral shoes to avoid injuries.
    - More about arch support in this video.
    - Find your arch type by following steps from this video.

  • Use

    Daily running

    Cushioned shoes for your daily easy running. Great comfort. See best shoes for daily running.

    Competition

    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.

  • Price
    $120
  • Weight
    Men: 10oz
    Women: 8.5oz
  • Heel to toe drop
    Men: 12mm
    Women: 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.

  • Heel height
    Men: 32mm
    Women: 32mm
  • Forefoot height
    Men: 20mm
    Women: 20mm
  • Width
    Men: normal, wide
    Women: normal, wide
  • Release date
    Unknown
Show more facts

Summary

We spent 10.1 hours reading reviews from experts and users. In summary, this is what runners think:

5 reasons to buy

  • People were generally happy with the aesthetics of the Mizuno Wave Rider 22, stating that the colors and design were visually appealing.
  • The underfoot cushioning system was considered to be very comfortable, some consumers noted.
  • The width profiles of both the men and women’s versions accommodated medium-sized feet, based on a handful of reviews.
  • Several purchasers commented that the general durability of the components was dependable.
  • The grip capability of the outsole was sure and precise, according to a couple of runners.

2 reasons not to buy

  • Some people claimed that the Mizuno Wave Rider 22 either half-a-size or a full size smaller than the standard sizing expectations.
  • The overlays on the upper tended to press into the fabric and cause irritation to the foot, some testers reported.

Bottom line

The Mizuno Wave Rider 22 was well-received. This update to the long-running series of neutral shoes was deemed worthy of the Rider name, mainly when it came to its general quality and efficacy on the roads. People loved the visual design, the agreeable fit profile, and the sturdy build of this footwear. Inversely, the sizing scheme was panned for being too small while the overlay system was criticized for pressing into the façade.

Rankings

Expert Reviews

Experts are runners, who post reviews at youtube, directly at RunRepeat or at their own websites. Each expert is categorized from level 1 to level 5 based on expertise. See stats on expert reviews and how we calculate scores here.

Are you an expert? Apply to contribute here.

90 / 100 based on 2 expert reviews

  • 89 / 100 | Justin Helbing

    Mizuno Wave Rider 22: A second chance at a first impression

    This year marks the 22nd iteration of the flagship shoe for Mizuno’s running collection and it is one that I have both enjoyed and been vexed by at times over the years - the Mizuno Wave Rider.

    The last version that I laced up helped me log the miles and speed work required to notch my sole overall marathon championship five years ago.

     

    Mizuno Wave Rider 22 - One

     

    Conversely, I almost didn’t even try them on because previous models had been too heavy and rigid to provide the forgiving feel and comfort required for such an arduous task. With this in mind, I was very eager to give this latest version the benefit of another go around as I conclude my latest training cycle.

    Upper & Fit

    From the outset, it is easy to see that the main update to this recent iteration is the upper. It boasts of an engineered mesh that is both breathable and very comfortable.

    The shoe required almost no break-in period and felt very supple along the heel collar and through the lateral forefoot, two main places that can be troublesome for medium to large framed runners as well as those with wider feet, as this shoe does not generally come in multiple widths.

    Like most Mizunos in my personal experience, they seemed to run about a ½ size short. If I were to give it a good comparison, standing in the shoe initially reminds me of the feel of the old school Brooks Ghost 5, a shoe that is on my Mount Rushmore of trainers.

    The heel counter certainly has some structure to it but does not feel overly rigid or restrictive to natural ankle movement. After 55 miles of wear, it is maintaining its integrity well, with no wear spots nor pilling on the fabric. This is a tremendous feat for the miles I have logged in the extreme heat of late summer in southern Iowa.

     

     

    As a matter of fact, the plush upper and heel materials leave the foot feeling caressed rather than chafed. It is immediately apparent that some great attention was paid to ensuring that the upper wicks moisture well enough to compensate for the added weight to this shoe compared with previous models.

    On this note, the only downfall to the upper is just that - unnecessary weight.

    While the bird logo is ever present on the lateral border of the Mizuno brand, this year (and it appears for the past 3 models of this shoe) the designers elected to place a stitched on piece of TPU or similar material at the midfoot as the logo on both the lateral and medial sides of the shoe.

    While minuscule on its own, this superfluous design cue, combined with other curious choices, has the cumulative effect of tipping the scale of the shoe overall to the double-digit mark on the scale (almost 10 oz. for men's size 9 compared with around 9 oz just a short 5 models ago).

    While previous models and competitors opting for a more modern welded or 3-D printed logo, it is interesting that this throwback has made a reappearance again on this model.

    Midsole and Insole Cushioning Systems

    One thing that stunned me with the Wave Rider 22 is that it has changed in terms of the overall proportion of cushioning and structure. The last model that I donned almost had the feel of a racing shoe on shorter speed sessions.

    As mentioned earlier, the shoe has put on some weight, gradually gaining nearly a full ounce per shoe in recent years. The tradeoff is noticeable: while the shoe does feel heavy on long distance runs, the extra foam and Cloudwave support plate technology in the heel of the shoe cradle the foot more smoothly and with a less stark perception of ground reaction force for those with a naturally heavy heel strike.

     

     

    For those with a more midfoot or forefoot strike (myself included) the 12mm heel to toe offset, coupled with the well-apportioned heel padding, can become overpowering when working through pure speed workouts on the track or for race pace days. I liken the shoe in this way to a midsize luxury sports sedan. It looks great and feels like a $50,000 machine, but you don't expect it to bury the needle or go 0-60 in any big hurry.

    In terms of overall feel, the insole maintains the tradition Mizuno holds for very ample, yet beefy insoles. The Dynamotion Fit insole has already started to mold to my foot and when heated up and moistened by the first mile or two, it feels like a Tempur-Pedic mattress immediately underfoot, a friendly mediator between the runner and Mizuno’s legendarily firm midsole and arch support.

     

    Mizuno Wave Rider 22 - sole

     

    Where there are shortcomings here again is the cumulative effect of added weight. While the upper wicks quite well and stays moderately dry, the insole and strobel are noticeably less permeable and weigh one down after a good lather has been built in the workout.

    With the presence of the Wave plate, it would be great to see some sort of moisture relief ports built into the strobel and midsole to allow a sort of additional drainage to address the shortcoming à la Asics’ Gel Noosa.

    Outsole & Durability

    The outsole of the shoe also holds true to recent form with Mizuno’s premium line of running shoes, with SmoothRide blown rubber compound in the forefoot and X10 carbon rubber compound in the heel for greater durability.

     

    Mizuno Wave Rider 22 - heels

     

    Thus far, I have noticed no appreciable wear and tear to the shoe. In fact, despite being used for track, treadmill and one 10 miles out on gravel and pavement, the sole unit looks almost as it did right out of the box.

    The presence of flex grooves in the forefoot and a de-coupled heel unit give the shoe some flexibility but feels much more structured than the Riders of old. Much as previous models have, the shoe almost gives off the air of being a go-between of neutral and stability trainer.

    Where this shoe really showed great comfort and feel was in the workplace. As a worker in the field of Physical Therapy, I primarily stand on either tile or hard concrete masked with a very thin carpet. Having worn these shoes for over two weeks in, they are truly a shoe that has helped fight the daily fatigue of standing long hours with the wave plate lending a helping hand to firmly grip and support the arch when the day gets longer than expected.

    In the same vein, as a walking shoe, the Ride 22 felt superb underfoot when using a more heel to toe gait pattern as opposed to my habitual forefoot land and release that tends to fall more in line with my running stride.

    In terms of overall appearance, the shoe is also holding up structurally quite well in the toe box and toe cap, which has been a recent problem for me as a father of three pushing a jogging stroller with a rather stiff foot controlled parking brake.

     

    Mizuno Wave Rider 22 - Front

     

    Like a broken record, the only thing that could make the shoe better would be a less is more approach with the carbon rubber in the heel (which is quite large and usually only placed in the heel rather than the full length of the outsole for weight savings).

    Style

    In terms of versatility, the overall design of the shoe is impressively chameleon-like.

    With a style reminiscent of the MetaRun from Asics, this shoe exudes an aura of class and panache with understated colorways and contrasting accent colors (there is also a black with gold trim version for the Steelers or Hawkeye fan in you) that look as sharp on the roads as they do at the bar after 5, in the halls at work or at school.

     

     

    They also seem to hold their color quite well in the upper due to the muted tones. In contrast to previous years, those seeking a bright and flashy number may need to look elsewhere for this year's model has strayed away from multiple colorway options (Although the Rider 21 boasted a vibrant Team USA-like edition and the Rider 20 featured a lime and gray number that looked pretty sharp and stands out in the crowd).  

    For those of us with a relaxed enough dress code for athletic footwear, but who need a modest color scheme, this shoe is up to the task of providing long lasting support in a professional looking package.

    Pros

    • Generous fit in the forefoot and toe box for a tapered lasted shoe
    • Superior heel cushioning, firm arch support, and overall feel to the foot
    • Versatile color schemes ideal for going between work and play
    • Above average breathable and quick-drying upper
    • At MSRP $119.95 it is a bargain for those wanting premium cushioning and stability for a neutral shoe

    Cons

    • Very stiff feel and limited flexibility, even for a traditional-style neutral trainer
    • At 12mm offset, the shoe has one of the highest offsets still offered in the industry
    • Decreased moisture management performance from insole to the midsole and beyond
    • Limited colorways and lack of vibrant colors may turn off those seeking to stand out from the pack

    Overall Take

    The MizunoWave Rider 22 has evolved from its roots as a sporty middleweight champ into a premium, high mileage trainer with above class features and durability ideal for those seeking maximum protection from the ground.

    Disclosure

    For the purpose of this review, I’d like to thank Mizuno for providing me with a pair of the Wave Rider 22.  No additional compensation was provided and the review process objective over the course of a normal life cycle of my daily training shoes.

    This expert has been verified by RunRepeat. Reviews are neutral, unbiased and based on extensive testing.

  • 90 / 100 | Shoeguide

    There are more technical Mizuno shoes – Mizuno Wave Sky 2, and cheaper Mizuno shoes – Mizuno Wave Ultima 9 but neither of these shoes combine the last shape and toe spring of the Wave Rider 22, that make it the best Mizuno shoe in the line. In fact it is really quite difficult to think of an alternative training shoe available on the market with a faster and smoother heel to toe transition at any pace.

  • First look / Unboxing | Running Warehouse

Show moreless reviews
Apply to become an expert

Updates to Mizuno Wave Rider 22

  • This shoe is crafted for those who want to tackle a variety of activities to the next level. The upper area of the Mizuno Wave Rider 22 has a full-length engineered mesh. This updated material is focused on delivering a breathable coverage. It also adapts to a variety of foot shapes which results in a comfortable ride.
  • Like the previous version, the shoe has the same features but with updates in the design of the midsole area. With the modification of this section, a smoother and softer ride is created for the user to enjoy throughout the run.
  • With the perfect combination of a soft material in the heel area and new flex grooves, the Mizuno Wave Rider 22 offers a softer ground impact. Because of this, an agreeable heel-to-toe transition is encouraged.

Mizuno Wave Rider 22 size and fit

The Mizuno Wave Rider 22 is a neutral shoe that is engineered for road running activities. The footwear has noticeable upgrades to improve comfort and fit, while still providing most of the benefits delivered by its predecessor. When it comes to size, the shoe follows the standard measurements. The available widths are D - Medium, and 2E - Wide for the men's version and B - Medium and D - Wide for the women's version.

Outsole

Featured in the outsole of the Mizuno Wave Rider 22 is the X10. This material can be found in the heel area of the shoe. It is made up of durable carbon rubber that aims to provide enhanced grip on different paved surfaces.

Flex Controllers are strategically-placed in the high flex areas of the outsole. The primary purpose of this technology to act as miniature wave plates. These wave plates are essential for increasing flexibility and reducing weight.

Lying in the forefoot area is the Blown rubber. This component of the shoe aims to increase responsiveness and cushioning.

Midsole

Utilized in the Mizuno Wave Rider 22 is the Cloudwave. This technology is composed of a redesigned plastic wave that is thermal and elastic. It runs from the heel area to the midfoot to create a bouncier and more cushioned ride.

The Premium Anatomical Sockliner is incorporated into the footwear. This material is vital in helping to provide a more natural and customized fit. As a result, a softer underfoot feel is experienced by the runner.

Minimizing the rapid deceleration and acceleration of the foot is the work of the Smooth Ride. This technology is described to be a gender-specific network of grooves that aims to create a smoother heel-to-toe transition.

A more cushioned and lighter version of the U4ic is used in making the footwear. This version is called the U4icX Heel Wedge. With the utilization of this technology, it delivers a softer and more pillowy underfoot feel. This is significant for the runner during the ground impact.

Optimal shock absorption is offered by the U4ic. This lightweight midsole material delivers a resilient ride and improved durability as well.

Upper

The Dynamotion Fit is integrated into the upper section of the Mizuno Wave Rider 22. This stretchable material lies in the forefoot area to create an optimized fit. It also has the collar construction that is responsible for preventing the heel collar from bending and twisting under load.

Lying in the forefoot area is the Dual Zone engineered mesh. This component of the shoe is updated to improve response to foot movements. This is significant in providing a distraction-free fit.

Mizuno added the U4icX Strobel Lasting board into the shoe. This feature's primary focus is to deliver a more cushioned and comfortable feel underneath the foot.