By: Matt Setlack

Overall Rating:  85/100

Ratings (out of 10):

  • Comfort: 8.0
  • Fit: 8.5
  • Responsiveness: 9.0
  • Speed: 9.0
  • Ride Quality: 8.0
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The Good

  • A good lightweight shoe good for easy days and longer tempo runs
  • Good ground feel

The Bad

  • Not a lot of padding under the foot. Felt a bit too minimal for longer runs
  • A bit firm. The wave plate felt a bit bulky and inflexible. Quite a stiff ride.
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Price

MRSP: $110 USD

Specs

  • Heel Drop:  8mm
  • Weight: 7.9 oz (Matt Setlack’s Men’s US Size 10.5 were measured to be 552g per pair)
  • Heel Height: 25mm
  • Forefoot Height: 17mm
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THE VERDICT

This is a brand new shoe by Mizuno that replaces the Mizuno Wave Sayonara. It is a moderately cushioned shoe, faster and lighter and best used for the runner that prefers a shoe that is slightly bulkier than a racing flat. It provided firm support in both the forefoot and the heel of the shoe, it didn’t have a springy feel upon landing but it did provide very good ground feel. The tread gripped well and worked well for road, treadmill and lightly dusted surfaces (dirt, snow). Ideal for longer tempo runs and longer race distances.

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FULL REVIEW

Comfort

Fairly comfortable and fast ride. For me, it was slightly more comfortable than a racing flat but not nearly as comfortable as a heavier cushioned shoe like the Brooks Glycerin 14, Adidas Aerobounce ST and even the Brooks Launch 3 and 4.

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The tongue is quite thin and if I tightened the laces up too tight, I could feel them through the tongue while running.

In colder temperatures it felt like the plastic piece that Mizuno uses (Technology plate insert) froze pretty quickly and contributed to the rigid and inflexible feeling of the shoe. The wave plate insert was designed to add more support to the shoe. The Wave Shadow provided exceptionally good breathability and comfort in the toe box and I really liked how Mizuno used one piece of mesh to wrap around the forefoot of the shoe. It provided greater stretch fit.

Out of the box, they fit quite well with good lock down in the midfoot, heel and forefoot. The toe box was spacious and there were no issues with chafing or blistering.

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Fit

The width and snugness of the toe box feels similar to the toe box in the Brooks Launch 3 and 4. These shoes also share a very similar mesh-like material in the toe box.

The heel cup is relatively low compared to other shoes. The height of the heel cup in the Mizuno Wave Shadows felt to be a similar height as the heel cup in Nike running shoes such as the Nike Pegasus 32 and Nike Zoom Vomero 13. The laces provided a good lock down.

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Responsiveness

The Wave Shadow was a very responsive shoe. The sole felt quite stiff and seemed to spring back during toe off. The Wave Shadow provided a responsive and fast ride with minimal cushioning.

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Speed

The Wave Shadow is a very lightweight daily trainer and it was easy to run fast in these shoes. I would consider maybe doing a tempo or marathon paced session in these shoes.

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Weighing in at just 7.9 oz, this shoe is fast. The forefoot provided good flexibility but the mid-back portion of the shoe felt stiff and rigid. Good heel to toe off transition and the minimal feel of the shoe made it fast.

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Ride Quality

I really liked the zig-zagged groves in the forefoot, I think it enhanced the ride quality in the forefoot by providing greater flexibility.

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