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: 11.3ozWomen: 9.3oz
Heel to toe dropMen: 10mmWomen: 10mm
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: Narrow, Normal, WideWomen: Narrow, Normal, Wide
Release dateJun 2019
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90 / 100 based on 9 expert reviews
Mizuno Wave Sky WaveKnit 3 - A quality offering from MizunoMore photos
The Mizuno Sky Waveknit 3 is an interesting offering from the team at Mizuno. With an all-new tooling and knit upper, how does this road warrior perform?
Let’s take a look!
My first impression of the new model in the Sky line was definitely a positive one. The hybrid lacing system is a nice touch, and adds a cool detail to cleanly break things up a bit.
The upper is strikingly similar to the Waveknit R3, invoking speed with the knit support ribs that fade from dark blue in the back to royal blue from the mid foot forward.
The midsole of the Sky Waveknit 3 is one of my favorites aesthetically. The waves that taper from the back to front is a dynamic look from the company who first made Waves, many years back.
The multi-density foams used in the midsole also allow for unique color blocking and contrast, which has been utilized well. The new XPOP is a nice touch of visible technology that brings a hint of color on the outsole.
When I put the shoes on for the first time, I immediately noticed how well-cushioned the Sky Waveknit 3s are. A plush ride is usually expected from a shoe at this price-point, but the cushioning seemed more multi-dimensional than other shoes on this plane.
There’s an active transitional feeling from heel to toe, rather than just a cushy slab underfoot. The flat outsole that doesn’t have an arch under the midfoot is reminiscent of the Brooks Glycerin and has a similar ground-contact profile.
Regarding the upper feel, the Waveknit structure is a comfortable alternative to an open mesh. There’s a form-fitting aspect of the material that adapts to the overall shape of the foot, which can be beneficial to fit a wide range of runners.
The padded collar and tongue provide comfort where it’s needed, especially when laced up snug. One thing that I noticed was how wide and roomy the toe-box was. Along with the length, the Sky Waveknit 3 runs a touch bigger than other Mizuno knit shoes I’ve worn.
The ride of the Sky Waveknit 3 is plush, as I had mentioned. Being more of a mid-foot striker, there’s a bit of the cushioning that’s lost on me, but there’s still plenty of impact protection up front and under the arch area.
What’s nice is that it’s not super mushy, but fairly responsive. There’s a level of versatility in the midsole construction, in that the shoe performs well at slower paces, as well as shorter tempo runs.
In fact, it almost seems as if the shoe has a mind of its own and gets more excited, the faster my pace gets.
Regarding traction, I had no issues on a variety of surfaces, both wet and dry. There’s enough articulation in the rubber pods to make it through damp sidewalks, and would likely work well on gravel trails, as they did well in rocky construction zones.
As was mentioned earlier, the lacing system is a hybrid, using standard eyelets at the top and bottom, and gillie lacing in the mid foot. The gillie eyelets do offer more of an even lockdown fit, as well making for quicker fastening.
While there was an opportunity to tighten up the Waveknit Sky 3s, the overall fit of the shoe was a little bit larger than I expected. Though my heel didn’t slip, I very well could have gone a half size down.
That being said, ascensions weren’t an issue, as I was able to climb hills without discomfort. With a little over a thumb’s width of room at the toe, there was a little bit of uncomfortable rubbing at the end of my toes at the end of longer runs.
The Sky Waveknit is a quality offering from Mizuno. From an aesthetic and basic comfort standpoint, the shoe is aces.
It’s a little bit heavier than I had expected, but to be fair, it is a highly cushioned shoe. The only qualm I had probably had to do with the fit and could be remedied by going down a half size.
I would recommend trying them on in store to see how well they fit. Moving forward, I would definitely consider the Sky Waveknit 3 as a go-to shoe.
This expert has been verified by RunRepeat. Reviews are neutral, unbiased and based on extensive testing.
Mizuno Wave Sky Waveknit 3 - Catch the wave of a smooth, amply cushioned durable ride.More photos
To be honest, I have never worn Mizuno. I know the brand, but just never thought about giving them a go. So when I had the opportunity to try their newest version of the Wave Sky, I jumped on it, or rather, into it, with both feet!
Several years ago, when shoe companies started manufacturing their shoes with knit uppers, I was very skeptical at first. Not only was it foreign to me (as I was used to leather, plastic, nylon, etc.), but in my opinion, they were, well, not the most attractive designs.
They looked like my grandmother crocheted her own running shoes. Then, as more companies joined the bandwagon, the designs became more creative and more attractive.
Now, most of the competitive running shoes have some kind of mesh knitted upper, and not only are they extremely comfortable and form-fitting, but sleek and stylish.
The Mizuno Waveknit’s are no exception. It’s a clean and simple design with gradient zig-zagged lines fading into the color of the shoe’s upper.
The shoe is made very well, from the quality of the knit upper, the silky finish on the tongue and around the ankle, to the curvy waves of the sole. Every detail has been addressed.
Comfort & durability
My first run in the Mizuno Waveknit’s was a 12 miler. Nowadays, with the way shoes are built, you really don’t need to break them in all that much, unlike shoes from years ago when they were not made of softer and more pliable materials.
I slipped these on, and I could feel the comfort and nice fit. A highly cushioned shoe, the midsole uses a combination of two different foams: XPOP PU (a polyurethane foam) and the Mizuno Foam Wave.
Whatever the case may be, as I am certainly not a shoe scientist, it provides a very comfortable ride and foot strike. That combined with a sturdy rubber outsole, the Mizuno Waveknit provides ample grip and traction.
The sole is also bulkier and wider than most shoes I own, providing a sturdy and solid running experience.
The upper is constructed of a mesh knit, which is conducive to more breathable feet and, in my opinion, more comfortable feel in general - less rubbing and less constrictive. They really conform to your foot, are pliable and have enough room for your toes to breath and not create any friction against the front toe box.
They felt great right out of the box. A bit heavier than some of the other shoes I have in my collection. I think these are great for recovery runs, mid-distant, and long runs if you don't have any race pace intervals mixed in.
These would not be my go-to shoes for speed work, but that is just my opinion. However, they are pretty flexible for a bulkier and more cushioned shoe and are quite responsive. Definitely my go-to shoes for recovery or easy runs when I want my feet to feel great and relaxed.
The Mizuno Wave Sky Waveknit 3’s are an extremely comfortable and sturdy shoe built for high mileage and the mid to long run. A tad on the heavier side of most of the shoes I own, I would wear this shoe on recovery days or on runs that I want just to enjoy.
Mizuno has really paid attention to detail from design to construction and has created a solid running shoe in their lineup. I look forward to trying out some more Mizuno models!
This expert has been verified by RunRepeat. Reviews are neutral, unbiased and based on extensive testing.
[The shoe] ...very comfortable through the collar... [and] that midsole, just nice and responsive but supportive as well.
The Mizuno Sky Waveknit 3 is a great topiont [sic] for runners who run moderate mileage and appreciate shoes with a soft, comfortable feel, trend-forward style and a floating sensation under foot.
- The new Sky Waveknit 3 from Mizuno presents a combination of reliable technologies that aim to deliver a “floating” experience. It offers both style and functionality, appealing to users who highly regard aesthetic, while also targeting long distances. This neutral running shoe provides a comfortable cushioning and promotes natural movement.
- This shoe uses Waveknit in the upper, which is known for its sock-like fit. This material provides a soft sensation and a dynamic stretch. The Waveknit is paired with AIRmesh for optimum airflow inside the shoe.
- Mizuno employs several features in the sole unit for the ultimate functionality and performance of the Sky Waveknit 3. The midsole’s construction is spearheaded by the new XPOP foam and a variety of the brand’s proprietary technologies, all of which guarantee high-level responsiveness and a consistent transition phase. Meanwhile, the outsole’s popular X10 rubber delivers durability and comfort simultaneously.
The moderate structure of the Mizuno Sky Waveknit 3 allows the shoe to accommodate runners with low to medium foot volumes. It is also offered in a wide range of sizes. The Sky Waveknit 3 is available in Medium width for both the men’s and women’s versions.
Mizuno’s X10 outsole is made from a trusty carbon rubber, thus ensuring durability, especially at the heel and forefoot areas. Additionally, the X10 rubber equips the shoe with the necessary traction to efficiently carry out the transition phase. It is also characterized by a flexible quality, as it allows an easy and natural movement.
The outsole has an integrated ventilation system called the Intercool. It effectively prevents heat and humidity from building up inside the shoe, thus keeping the runner cool and dry.
The Mizuno Sky Waveknit 3 introduces the all-new XPOP, a next-generation foam made from polyurethane (PU). This material brings to the shoe a responsive quality, as well as an ultra-soft feel without sacrificing performance.
The U4ic serves as the main midsole component of the Mizuno Sky Waveknit 3. This full-length foam gives the shoe the cushioning and shock absorption for a smooth running experience. The U4ic boasts of being 30% more lightweight compared to other midsole materials. A variant of the U4ic, known simply as the U4icX, could be found in the heel area. It provides an additional layer of underfoot cushioning, which results in softened impacts during footstrike.
The Mizuno Foam Wave is also another new introduction to the brand’s running shoe line. It ensures a smooth-sailing activity over pavements. It also contributes to a stable ride. Combined with the XPOP foam, these two features provide the shoe with the floating sensation it boasts of.
SmoothRide Engineering gives midsole a rocker-chair effect. It reduces the rates of acceleration and deceleration for a more consistent transition.
The AIRmesh is a soft and smooth upper material the equips the shoe with a comfortable, skin-friendly sensation. It is made from a lightweight fabric, which contributes to quick airflow through visible pores in its surface. Aside from breathability, the AIRmesh also offers flexibility as the soft material allows for unrestricted movement.
A new Waveknit upper construction delivers comfort and natural mobility. Although tight-knit, the material is known for its stretchable quality. It is designed to continually adapt to the shape and movement of the foot.