Kayano is a household name for runners. It is synonymous with stability shoe and the 23rd edition does not disappoint.
It remains true to its core, yet brings something new to the table, thanks to Flytefoam in the sole unit. This gives probably the lightest ride that this reviewer has had in Kayanos before.
While ASICS boasts more flexibility in the mid-foot, it is still a very stiff shoe. Despite improvements in weight, it did not feel flexible which sacrificed speed. This is par to the course however and does not come as a surprise.
Asics Gel-Kayano 23 General Info
This is the 23rd edition of the Kayano. When it comes to stability, it is ASICS’ pride and joy. Without a doubt, it is the flagship shoe for them.
First impressions were positive upon unboxing. The colorway is classic but has crisp colors giving the shoe a pop.
The shoe felt heavy when I picked it up. Upon lacing them up and taking them out for the first time, the ride was very smooth and light despite how they felt in my hands.
Asics Gel-Kayano 23 Sole Unit
The sole unit remains mostly the same as in previous versions. The signature gel is abundant in the outter part of the heel unit to combat against pronation.
The Dynamix Duomax cushioning system along with the guidance line gave a nice ride and kept my form in check.
There is a high amount of tread in this shoe giving superior traction even in inclement weather. It was so tread heavy, I was able to sneak these on the trail. I never felt out of control in these.
New to the 23 is Flytefoam giving continuous cushioning throughout. This is brand new tech is to be implemented in both this shoe and the new Dynaflyte shoe that ASICS put out. As time goes by, it will likely trickle down the rest of ASICS’ line of shoes.
It is the lightest midsole material ASICS has ever offered, boasting up to 55% lighter than standard foam. It is more responsive and returns back to its original state much faster.
During runs, it allowed for much better transitions and easier impact than prior versions I have ran in. It seems to be a direct response to Saucony’s Everrun system as they both promote continuous cushioning.
Asics Gel-Kayano 23 Upper Info
Seamless Fluidfit that was introduced in the Gel Kayano 22 returns in the 23 and is lighter than ever. Thanks to this, the material forms to the foot like a glove.
The tongue of the shoe goes completely over the lacing system so the edges do not cut into the top of your foot. As someone who ties their shoes incredibly tight, this is a relief as the tongue can sometimes be lacking.
The lacing system focuses on the midfoot giving a very snug feel. The heel unit has an updated heel clutch system keeping the athlete locked into the heel at all times.
Asics Gel-Kayano 23 Conclusions
ASICS brings new things to the table yet keeps the foundation intact with the Gel Kayano 23. The Flytefoam system really makes the shoe shine and gets me excited for it to be introduced in the other lines of ASICS that I like to run in.
While par for the course, this is still a heavy shoe. My longer, slower runs were great in these, but when I wanted to try and push myself to go faster I couldn’t because the shoe is built like a tank.
The seamless upper material is great, but it seemed to sacrifice room in the toe box because of this. It also ran somewhat on the narrow side fit wise.
While it did not bother me, I would definitely buy half a size up if you have issues with things like this. For what it’s worth, the material stretched out toward the end of my testing in these.
I am still disappointed with how much the price tag is on these shoes. Especially considering how much cheaper something like Brooks’ Adrenline GTS is.
While the loyal runners will likely still buy this, it really turns off potential new customers. Alas, this may not ever change and it is what it is.
We thank the nice people at Asics for sending us a pair of Gel-Kayano 23 to test. This did not influence the outcome of the review, written after running more than 50 miles in them.