|Full Name: Asics Gel Kayano 16|
|Weight: 12.8oz. (360 gr.)|
|Suggested Price: 140$|
|Recommended For: Moderate to heavy over-pronators, heavier runners and runners with flat feet.|
Asics Gel Kayano 16 General Info:
The Gel Kayano 16 is Asics’ top of the line stability running shoe. At a hefty price-tag, this shoe is packed with many of Asics’ best features, all to provide a comfortable, stable run. We have a look at those feature in the review.
Asics Gel Kayano 16 Sole Unit:
The sole unit of the Kayano 16 is new, but is not too different from the sole of the 15.
Stability is mainly provided thanks to the insert of DuoMax in the midsole: DuoMax is a firmer foam injected in the medial (internal) side of the sole unit, right under the arch and proceeding half way backwards towards the heel. It is clearly visible as the darker grey insert in the internal side of the sole unit. The arch of an overpronator would tend to collapse inwards during the roll of the foot; the DuoMax insert stops this collapse and helps the runner keep a correct gait. In addition to the dual density foam insertion, the under-arch part of the shoe presents Asics’ trademark Space Trusstic System: a plug of plastic material that wraps the midsole, preventing it from deforming laterally or trasversally, again providing a stable transition from heel to toe. Almost every shoe company has plastic shanks around the arch, but in our opinion the Asics Space Trusstic is the best on the market.
The heel has many pods, designed to absorb the shock differently in different parts – depending on your footstrike. We are not completely sure about this detail, that Asics keeps accentuating year over year. A lighter runner might actually find it wobbly and less stable than ideal.
So far, no major changes between the Kayano 15 and the Kayano 16.
The area where Asics focused its efforts has been the gender differentiation (re: best running shoes for women). The women sole unit is softer thanks to the Solyte foam under the ball of the foot. It is more deeply carved in the forefoot, to be more flexible. The heel is 3mm higher than it is on the mens version to take pressure away from the achilles and help prevent achilles’ tendinitis.
On top of the stability aspects, there is Asics’ cushioning technology, Gel, both in the heel and forefoot.
All in all, the Kayano 16’s sole unit is a very stable, supportive shoe. The strong support and the added cushioning make it interesting also for heavier runners.
Asics Gel Kayano 16 Upper:
The Gel Kayano 16 features the asymmetrical lacing design that Asics introduced in 2009. The idea behind it is to follow more naturally the bony part of the top of the foot so to fit more snugly and avoid irritation. The asymmetrical lacing in the Asics Gel Kayano 16 has been tweaked based on the feedback received on the Kayano 15. One recurring negative feedback was that this lacing design ended unnaturally on the toebox; luckily the overlays around the toebox have been redesigned so to be more comfortable around the toes.
The upper includes all the features that we expect from a top of the line Asics running shoe: a comfort dry sockliner (removable to accommodate orthotics), great lining and memory foam for the collar and heel. The fit is for a medium or slightly narrow fit.
Asics Gel Kayano 16 Opinion:
The Gel Kayano 16 is Asics’ reference shoe for stability. It’s the premium, heavier and more stable version of the very successful Asics GT 2150. The Kayano is a shoe with great support, even though we would prefer a little less cushioning in the heel for a stability shoe. It is not a lightweight shoe but the overall feeling is quite comfortable, both thanks to the great stability offered and the high quality upper.
Gender differentiation is now a key element for sports companies while designing their running shoes and we can see this year Asics really took it a step further.
We feel to suggest the Asics Gel Kayano 16 to runners who over-pronate and in particular to heavier runners, both male and female.
Asics Gel Kayano 16 Price Comparison:
Let us know what you think of this shoe in the comments!