This entry level stability trainer would be ideal for a new runner who needs stability and wants to see if running is for them.
Running brands are always trying to come up with trainers to encourage people to take up running.
Many of them have developed 100 dollar stability trainers with many of the same aspects as their premium siblings.
ASICS version, The GT-1000 just came out with their 12th edition. Does it encourage people to take up running and perform well? Overall, I would say the answer is yes.
ASICS stability lineup consists of three trainers, the GT-1000, GT-2000, and the Kayano. These three trainers possess many of the same building blocks. The difference is the newest technologies are unveiled in the Kayano and funnel their way down to the 2000s and 1000s.
The 12th edition of the GT-1000 comes with a redesigned upper. The other aspects of the shoes remained the same from the previous edition. It retails for 100 dollars and competes with the Brooks Launch GTS.
Upon opening the box I was surprised by how lightweight they were. They seemed lighter than some of the other editions I have run in.
Upon slipping them on I immediately noticed the bounce they had to them, the GEL cushioning along with the midsole compound provided this from the first step. The other aspect was the tightness I experienced. This was due to the lacing system. I needed to adjust it multiple times to not experience this anymore.
The maiden voyage of the GT-1000 12 was a 4 mile summer run. After retying them 2 times to get an ideal fit I was off. They provided a bouncy, enjoyable ride. They struggled slightly in the energy return department but overall I was looking forward to more runs in these.
The major change for this edition of the GT-1000 was a redesigned engineered mesh upper. It was done to provide a more secure hold on your feet and increased breathability. They are breathable, allowing enough airflow through the shoes to keep your feet comfortable.
Achieving their goal of a more secure hold on your feet is debatable. This is due to the finicky lacing system. It seemed like every time I put them on I had to retie them to get a secure fit. The shoe’s tongue wasn’t connected; this didn’t help because of the movement in it.
The amount of cushioning is ideal throughout the upper. The heel portion hugged my heel providing more stability. The toe box is big enough for your toes to splay out and push off on your strides.
The GT-1000 fit is true to size. There are no overlays so there were no issues with points of irritation or blisters. Because of the lacing/tying issues the upper of the GT-1000 was a disappointment.
Let’s start from the ground up. Like all other ASICS offerings, the outsole of the GT-1000 is covered in AHAR (ASICS high abrasion rubber). This is a thick and durable outsole built for miles. This provides the traction needed on whatever surface you run on.
The midsole is composed of ASICS’ FLYTEFOAM compound. It is a lightweight and bouncy compound. There is a slight hint of firmness to this material. The firmness also comes from the LITETRUSS support system. It is a dual density medial post and it blends into the midsole so well l initially couldn’t tell it was there.
It was effective in providing the stability I needed while I ran. It did more guiding of my stride than correcting it. Think of it as a blend of a traditional medial post and guide rails. The GT-1000 provides a mid level of stability.
Like many other ASICS trainers you will find a pocket of GEL cushioning in the heel portion of the GT-1000. This adds to the bouncy ride. There was great absorption on impact of your stride in these, unfortunately it didn’t translate into maximum energy return. This resulted in feeling like you needed to put more effort into toe offs.
When I hear the term “bang for your buck” I think of the ASICS GT-1000. It is a budget friendly stability trainer that achieves many of the goals it sets for itself. This would be a trainer I would recommend for someone who wants to try running and needs stability.
The midsole is the star of the shoe. Its FLYTEFOAM material provides a light and bouncy ride with a hint of firmness underneath. The LITETRUSS support system is the ideal blend of traditional stability (medial post) and contemporary stability (GuideRails). The stability provided blends in well and engages when needed. One drawback to the midsole was the lack of energy return felt. This made it hard to push the pace in these.
The upper of the GT-1000 was a mixed bag for me. The amount of cushioning was ideal throughout the upper. The newly designed engineered mesh was breathable and durable. Where it struggled was the lacing system. It was hard to get the ideal secure fit which resulted in retying them multiple times. It was either too loose or too tight. This happened throughout reviewing them. Once I achieved the ideal fit the upper aided in the overall performance of the shoe.
Overall, the GT-1000 was a middle of the road trainer for me. There were some comfortable and effective aspects of the trainers, the stability and durability. But there were some other aspects which were disappointing, the fit and the amount of energy returned.
With that said I need to consider it in terms of a new runner. If I was judging the GT-1000 through the eyes of a new runner I would be impressed. They would provide me with what I needed for my first foray into running.
The GT-1000 is a stability trainer that doesn’t break the bank. It provides a comfort ride built for hundreds of miles. Unfortunately, there are a few aspects that hold this trainer back from being the best budget friendly stability trainer.