Asics played off the popularity of the cost-effective-yet-highly-capable 1140 with this upgrade, which will satisfy the loyal followers of the series, while also enticing the yet-to-be-converted crowd to give them a shot. The gel unit in the 1150 is smaller than that of other models offered by Asics (such as the 2100 series), yet is one of the softer shoes in the category. Runners with normal arches who are in need of a good amount of cushioning and neutral-to-mild support, while not spending a fortune, would benefit from at least trying on this shoe.
After a multi-year hiatus from running, I reentered the sport in a pair of Nike Structure Triax; not that there was any particular reason I chose these shoes, I just opted for what I was familiar with. Not long after my return to running, I began developing pain in my shins and knees. This brought me to a local running-specific shop to get a gait analysis, which helped us determine that the Triax were too supportive, and that I simply did not need that much motion control.
This is not to say that the Triax are bad shoes; in fact, Nike has made some major improvements to become a forerunner once again in the world of running shoes, and the Triax is a great series for somebody who needs a good amount of support. A more neutral shoe, but one that still had good medial stability, was in order, so I took a look at what they had to offer in the category that was better suited towards me, and selected the Asics 1140, which have since been updated to the 1150. (NOTE: since writing this article, Asics has released the 1160, which is yet to be tested by runningshoesguru.com)
The category in question is called “stability”, and seems to cater to rather generic runners- those with normal arches and who want decent cushioning and support. The 1150 does a great job of providing just what I need, and at a very fair price to boot. At this point I am on my sixth pair of 1140’s or 1150’s, and I don’t plan on making any changes as long as the series stays true to form.
Although the shoe is not necessarily light (especially not in size 13), it isn’t a brick either; as a trainer, it’s right about what you would expect, especially as a stability shoe. For training runs and even some races (I run half and full marathons in the 1150’s), the shoe is the perfect weight; for anything shorter, like a 5k or 10k, I tend towards my racers, and I suggest you do the same.
With the right insoles (I have been told that the ones that come with the shoes cost less to make than the shoelaces, which tells you something about their quality), the shoes are very comfortable; so comfortable, in fact, that I often convert my old trainers into “daily drivers” with a spin in the washing machine and some fresh insoles. Of course, I tend to get less miles in my shoes than most people, so they still have some life to them when I retire them from running.
Speaking of which, I usually get about 300 miles out of a pair, after which I retire them not for lack of functionality, but at 6’2” and 185 lbs, I simply put too much stress on a pair of shoes to expect a lifespan much past this point. I think that this is a testament to the 1150’s, as they hold up to everything I give them and would be ready for more, if I weren’t so afraid of pushing them too far and finding myself injured. I play it safe in terms of my shoe rotation, but I would think that lighter runners would be able to wear these for another few hundred miles and see no problems at all.
My only beef with the shoe so far has been the occasional rubbing of the tongue against my ankle, but it is usually due to me tying my shoes wrong and getting the tongue all mangled up in the mess, so I don’t think anyone would find this to be an issue. On the rare occasions that I do notice it, after five minutes or so I don’t feel anything.
All in all, this is a great option for someone looking to get into a nice stability shoe that offers all of the accoutrements of the shoes with $100-plus price tags, at a fraction of the cost. These can usually be had for under $80, and there are occasionally some stellar deals out there that will land you in a pair of 1150’s for $60 or less. If you are wise and know what the recently-discontinued model number is (and this holds true for any shoe that receives annual updates), you may be able to get lucky and score some from the bargain basement of some online retailers for insanely low prices. As always, it is a good idea to get a professional fitting to make sure that this is the type of shoe your body-stride combination requires, but if you already wear a stability shoe and are looking for a nice alternative, the 1150 should be high on your list of shoes to try on.
Review by Dave Cummings