|Full Name: Asics Gel Kayano 17|
|Weight: 12.6 oz. (357 gr.)|
|Suggested Price: 140 $|
|Recommended For: Over-Pronators, Runners with mid to low arches|
Asics Gel Kayano 17 General Info:
ASICS premium stability plus shoe – the Gel-Kayano 17 gets an update for 2011 that results in a slightly lighter shoe and improved cushioning due to a new sock-liner and better response due to ASICS Guidance Line technology being full length now. New colors are also introduced with the big news being an all black option. Most of the features that made the Gel-Kayano 16’s so popular are back as well.
Asics Gel Kayano 17 Sole Unit:
Continuing on to the Gel-Kayano 17 from previous Gel-Kayano’s is ASICS Impact Guidance System that is intended to enhance the foot’s natural gait. However ASICS improves the Gel-Kayano 17 by extending the Guidance Line the full length of the shoe resulting in improved responsiveness and gait efficiency. What this all means for the runner is a shoe that feels very connected to the foot and the rest of the body and allows for a efficient and easy running gait. Additionally the Gel-Kayaono’s Discrete Heel Unit adds additional cushioning and stability from previous Kayono’s resulting in some of the best cushioning available in a Stability shoe on the market. Unlike some shoes that use gels and/or other cushioning methods there seems to be very little break-down in the cushioning over time, so while the shoe may appear to be expensive, in my experience it also lasts longer resulting in a lower cost per mile.
Gel-Kayano 17 Heel
Rounding out the Sole of the Gel-Kayano are ASICS midfoot stabilizer called a Space Trustic System and a DuoMax Support System for the midsole and a Dual Density Solyte Lasting in the heal and forefoot for improved fit and comfort. This midsole and forefoot cushioning in conjunction with the improved heel cushioning all contribute to a very cushioned and plush ride – perfect for those looking for such a shoe in a stability package.
Asics Gel Kayano 17 Upper:
Contributing to the ASICS Gel-Kayano 17’s improved cushioning is a new ComforDry Sockliner along with a revised upper that still incorporates ASICS Asymmetrical Lacing Design for an anatomically correct lacing system that is intended to follow the foots natural design for an improved fit. The Asymmetrical Lacing on the Gel-Kayano 17’s is indeed unique (although other ASICS shoes have added this feature recently) and is a big differentiator over other running shoes. If in the past the upper part of your foot felt compressed or pinched by the lacing system of your shoes you may find that with ASICS Asymmetrical Lacing, that this discomfort is a thing of the past as this is a very well fitting shoe with a decent toe-box as well.
Asics Gel Kayano 17 Opinion:
Having been around for quite some time, the Gel-Kayano’s have been one of ASICS’ most successful shoes. When it comes to Stability Plus shoes, the Gel-Kayano’s have been at the top of consideration for many runners. Having run in many Gel-Kayano’s from the 13’s through two pairs of 17’s, ASICS has done a very good job of constantly tweaking the shoe and improving on it little by little. While the cushioning of the Kayano’s has always been its strength. With the 16 and the introduction of the Asymmetrical Lacing system, fit and comfort became amongst the best out there.
I would think that there are primarily two types of runners considering the Gel-Kayano 17: 1) Those currently running in the 16’s wondering if this upgrade is worth it, and 2) Those looking for a Stability or Stability Plus training shoe.
For those currently running in the 16, the 17 is definitely an improvement and you’ll love the decreased weight slightly better cushioning and responsiveness. That said if there were close-out deals on the 16’s and you could save some money, I might stock up on some 16s. But if moneys not an issue and you want the latest that ASICS has to offer, you won’t be disappointed in the 17s.
For those considering the Gel-Kayano 17 as a Stability Plus shoe and are ok at parting with $140+/- for a pair, I don’t think you’ll be disappointed unless you are a very light weight runner where the weight of the shoes while improved from the 16s is still a bit on the hefty side and/or if you want a more responsive shoe – which usually means not as plush a ride as the 17s give you.
At 6’2 and 175 lbs running on average of 70 miles a week, I go through a pair of shoes about once every 6 weeks and have already had the pleasure of running in two pairs of 17s and must say they are my favorite especially for that long run or medium long run when you want the most comfortable and cushioned shoe. My 16s have been resigned to shorter runs or trail runs until they wear out
My ‘nits’ with the Kayano’s have been few – one is weight which has been addressed and hopefully ASICS will continue to address this and the other is the breathability of the upper which became a problem on long runs during last year’s hot humid summer. So far no problems with breathability as it is winter so we’ll have to leave the jury out on that one.
Bottom line – If you like the 16’s you’ll love the 17’s and if you are looking for a very well cushioned Stability Plus shoe and are ok with the price – try these on, you may be very very happy
Let us know what you think of this shoe in the comments!
Review by Roy Dubé
Asics Gel Kayano 17 Price Comparison: