Brooks Asteria Review | Lightweight Running Shoes

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    Price: $110
    Type: Road
    Weight: 8.7 oz (M), 7.1 oz (W)
    The right shoe for: Feeling locked in so you can focus on nabbing that next fast PR
    Buy Men’s Buy Women’s More Images

    Racing flats can be great when you want to run fast, but not every workout calls for such a lightweight shoe. However, that doesn’t mean a more protective training shoe can’t make you feel fast every day.

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    Enter the new Brooks Asteria, a shoe that does an impressive job at combining both support and speed into one solid shoe. The Asteria replaces the Brooks ST racer, another shoe designed to let you pick up the pace while also providing a little stability. According to our data in the Runner’s World Shoe Lab and feedback from our testers, the Asteria is an update worth checking out if you’re looking for a new pair of shoes to crush a shorter race in.

    The light feel mixed with the touch of support were the main points our testers raved about when putting miles in with the Asteria. “I love how lightweight this shoe is, especially compared to many other Brooks shoes,” said one tester. “It provides just enough support and cushion to prevent discomfort, but without weighing you down.”

    A guide rail provides stability for pronators (women’s shown).

    Trevor Raab

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    Speed Mixed with Support

    Often when you think of a shoe built for speed, you may expect the support to be diminished. But with the Asteria, not only are these shoes a light daily trainer, but also you are provided stability if you need it with a heel guide rail system—if you’re an overpronator, you’ll notice how the system gently guides your foot into its natural path. If you don’t need your motion mechanics corrected, the guide rails are subtle enough that you won’t notice a real impact on your run.

    The midsole is made of Brooks’ BioMogo cushioning, which gives just enough cushioning to keep your feet happy if you’re doing anything long. Our testers agreed that the Asteria was surprising on runs considering it looks more like a racing flat. “These shoes provided more cushion and support than I expected while still producing a light, snappy and fast under foot feel,” said on wear tester.

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    A Comfortable Fit

    To keep things light, Brooks made the Asteria’s upper out of a very light 3D printed mesh. That construction also makes the shoe very breathable, even during some of the stickiest summer runs while testing. If you have a narrower foot and often feel like you’re slipping out of the back of your shoes—or you just have to tie your laces extra tight all the time—you’ll also appreciate the solid heel collar that helps keep your foot in place. “The heel collar was a perfect height and the lacing system locked my foot in well,” said one tester.

    Nearly all of our testers thought the shoe wrapped the foot well, with several giving a nod to the hug you get through the midfoot, while the toe box gave you enough room to wiggle around.

    Brooks Asteria

    Grooved architecture of outsole allows flexibility.

    Trevor Raab

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    A Build That Works for Speed

    The outsole of the Asteria is made from blown rubber, but by blocking the pods of rubber into larger rectangular and triangular shapes with rounded corners in different directions, you get an extra bit of grip on just about any surface or when making sharp turns. The grooved architecture of the outsole also allows it to be fairly flexible—especially notable for something that’s considered partly a stability or supportive shoe.

    The drop from the heel to forefoot—9.9 mm for men and 8.3 mm for women—may seem a little higher than normal for a speed shoe, but it’s barely noticeable when running. When everything is put together, our testers found that they could transition from heel to toe through their stride with ease.

    All the Stats You Need!

    Men’s

    • Weight: Light | 8.7 oz
    • Heel-To-Toe-Drop: Moderate | 9.9 mm
    • Heel Height: Very Low | 27.5 mm
    • Heel Cushioning: Very Firm
    • Forefoot Height: Very Low | 17.6 mm
    • Forefoot Cushioning: Very Firm
    • Flexibility: Moderate
    • Stability Features: Few
    • Energy Return: Moderate

      Women’s

      • Weight: Light | 7.1 oz
      • Heel-To-Toe-Drop: Low | 8.3 mm
      • Heel Height: Low | 26.5 mm
      • Heel Cushioning: Firm
      • Forefoot Height: Very Low | 18.2 mm
      • Forefoot Cushioning: Firm
      • Flexibility: Moderate
      • Stability Features: Few
      • Energy Return: Moderate

        We put each shoe through real-world usage and a battery of mechanical tests in our lab to provide you with objective—and exclusive—data. In addition to a shoe’s weight, we measure sole thickness (everything that sits between your foot and the road), how well the foam cushions your stride, and the flexibility of the forefoot. All this is taken into account in our reviews of each shoe.



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