The Wave Enigma 6 is advertised a highly cushioned, neutral trainer, designed for high mileage. This version carries over many of features from the previous version with just a few minor updates.
The shoe has been given only a few adjustments. Mizuno updated the upper with a new semi-stretch material that keeps runners locked in comfortably. A newly structured Strobel board helps improve the underfoot feel of the shoe.
When I received the shoe and placed it on I immediately liked the upper and its ability to lock my heel securely in place.
However, after wearing them for an initial run the shoe felt stiff underfoot and not as cushioned as I had anticipated.
Mizuno Wave Enigma 6 Sole Unit
The sole unit of the Enigma 6 features Mizuno’s U4icX foam which coupled with the wave plate is designed to provide increased softness and responsiveness.
Sadly, this was not my experience after numerous runs over varying single and double digit distances. The Enigma does offer a substantial amount of cushioning, but not the soft smooth underfoot feel that I was anticipating.
What it did offer was a firm and supportive ride with a slight degree of bounce and responsiveness. I didn’t mind the firm ride but runners that are seeking that soft smooth cushioning may not like the rigidity that the 6 offers.
The wave plate is designed to help disperse impact forces away from the foot which it seemed to do fairly well, but made the midfoot of the shoe rigid and the transition not as smooth as it could be.
I must say though that during some of my longer runs in the shoe this added stability was nice to have when my legs got tired and my stride would begin to fall apart.
Mizuno Wave Enigma 6 Upper Info
The upper of the Enigma 6 is amazingly comfortable. The combination of materials keeps the shoe feeling snug but not overly tight so that they won’t breathe.
The previous version had suffered some criticism for not allowing adequate room in the toebox and running about ½ size small.
It seems that those problems have been corrected as I found the shoe to fit perfectly with an adequate toe box that was flexible yet supportive, thanks to a simple webbing saddle carefully hidden on both sides.
The Strobel board for the Enigma 6 features U4icX materials that designed to improve step in and underfoot feel.
While this may be evident just walking around in the shoe I didn’t really notice it during my runs as the stiffness from the wave plate more than likely took away any benefits it offered.
The heel counter of the Enigma 6 seems to have taken on a bit more structure which provided great lock down in my heel. This support did give me the confidence to use the shoe on a few less technical trail runs.
Mizuno Wave Enigma 6 Conclusions
For a shoe that comes with a $150 price I think that I would want a shoe to deliver on what is expected. While the Enigma is not a bad shoe it is just not the shoe that runners are expecting which could potentially leave many disappointed.
The Enigma 6 has some good qualities that make it a durable and decent long distance daily trainer, but I feel that what it does offer does not warrant the premium price.
We thank the nice people at Mizuno for sending us a pair of Wave Enigma 6 to test. This did not influence the outcome of the review, written after running more than 50 miles in them.