9 Best Brooks Running Shoes For All Types of Runners (2021)

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Looking for the best Brooks running shoes you can buy today?

Brooks has been consistently providing high-quality shoes for decades now. No wonder why runners love them so much. However, there’s a lot of Brooks shoes available out there. How do you know which one is the best for you?

In this article, I highlighted 9 Brooks shoes that I consider to be the best for various tasks so you’ll know what shoes to buy.

Best For Daily Training

Brooks Ghost 13

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Variant: White/Grey/Deep Cobalt

Specifications

  • Support level: Neutral
  • Experience type: Cushioned
  • Stack height: 32mm / 20mm
  • Heel-toe drop: 12mm
  • Weight: 8.8oz / 249.5g
  • Running Surface: Road
  • Midsole technology: DNA Loft + Segmented Crash Pad Midsole

Pros

  • Roomy toe box
  • Extended DNA loft + BioMogo DNA midsoles make it soft yet responsive
  • The engineered upper mesh is breathable
  • Plush Fit

Cons

  • A bit heavy for tempo runs and other speedwork
  • 12mm drop is a little tall for some runners

This shoe is a favorite training shoe for both pro and amateur runners. It has a soft DNA loft midsole, breathable mesh upper with a fairly plush fit, and an excellent blown rubber outsole.

For pro athletes, this shoe is leaning towards the heavier side, making it an unlikely option for racing. However, if you’re a beginner or an amateur racer just looking to finish a half marathon, you’re probably not gonna notice the weight that much.

Who are these for?

This shoe is highly recommended for runners looking for a reliable training shoe that could handle mid to long distances.

For more details check our full review.

Best Stability Shoes For Daily Training

Brooks Adrenaline GTS 21

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Variant: Peacoat/Grey/Red

Specifications

  • Support level: Stability
  • Experience type: Cushioned
  • Stack height: 32mm/ 20mm
  • Heel-toe drop: 12mm
  • Weight: 10.4oz / 294.8g
  • Running Surface: Road
  • Midsole technology: DNA Loft + Guide Rails

Pros

  • Guide Rails technology offers good support for overpronation and supination
  • Comfortable to wear
  • Breathable Engineered Mesh Upper
  • Plush fit
  • Amazing laces (doesn’t get untied when running)

Cons

  • A little heavy
  • 12mm drop is a little too high for some runners

The Brooks Adrenaline GTS 21 is equipped with a soft yet durable DNA loft midsole. It’s engineered mesh upper provides a snug fit and increases breathability. It has good overall comfort and feels great during mid to long-distance running.

The Guide Rails support system works well for both supinators and overpronators yet it doesn’t interfere for neutral runners.

Who are these for?

This shoe is recommended for runners who are needing extra support when running. These runners either supinates or overpronates during their running gait cycle.

Runners with low arch may benefit from it as well.

For more details, check our full review.

Most Comfortable Running Shoe

Brooks Glycerin 19

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Variant: Black/Ebony

Specifications

  • Support level: Neutral
  • Experience type: Extra cushion
  • Stack height:  31mm / 21mm
  • Heel-toe drop: 10mm
  • Weight: 10.2oz / 289.2g
  • Running Surface: Road
  • Midsole technology: DNA Loft

Pros

  • Super soft cushioning
  • Very comfortable to run on
  • Plush fit and transition

Cons

  • Very little energy return (It’s not built for it)
  • More expensive than other Brooks training shoes
  • Heavy

If you’re looking for a shoe that you can wear day in day out and reduce the amount of wear and tear to your joints, the super-soft Glycerin 19 is your best bet. It has an extended DNA loft cushioning from heel to toe making it a softer ride mile after mile.

Who are these for?

These shoes are highly recommended for heavy runners looking to accumulate miles. The super-soft cushion reduces the impact on your joints significantly, therefore increasing your longevity in the sport and preserving your joints.

For more details, check out our full review.

Best for Marathon Race

Brooks Hyperion Elite 2

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Specifications

  • Support level: Neutral
  • Experience type: Speed
  • Stack height: 35mm/ 27mm
  • Heel-toe drop: 8mm
  • Weight: 7.6oz / 215.5g
  • Running Surface: Road
  • Midsole technology: DNA Flash + Carbon fiber plating

Pros

  • The carbon fiber plate is not as rigid as other carbon-plated running shoes (I’m not sure if this is a good thing or a bad thing but I think it works very well)
  • DNA Flash midsole offers a balance of lightness, energy return, and responsive cushioning
  • The rapid roll technology makes you less beat up even after long distances

Cons

  • Loose collar
  • Unisex sizing
  • Very expensive

When Brooks released the first version of the Hyperion Elite, it got a lot of hate. Brooks, however, redeemed themselves with their 2nd iteration, the Brooks Hyperion Elite 2.

Its ultralight DNA flash midsole, carbon fiber plating, and rapid roll technology work very well in increasing making you run faster for longer. As a matter of fact, some professional runners claim that they feel less tired running with this shoe after a marathon.

This shoe, however, is best for racing. When training long distances, I recommend picking up something softer to kind of baby your legs.

Who are these for?

These shoes is best for professional marathon runners looking to beat their personal best or even with the marathon.

Beginners and pros may benefit from these as well, however, I’d suggest you spend your money on a training shoe rather than a race shoe.

For more details, read our full review of Brooks Hyperion Elite 2.

Best for Speed Training

Hyperion Tempo

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Variant: Black/Silver/White

Specifications

  • Support level: Neutral
  • Experience type: Speed
  • Stack height: 31mm / 23mm
  • Heel-toe drop: 8mm
  • Weight: 7.3oz / 207.0g
  • Running Surface: Road
  • Midsole technology: DNA Flash

Pros

  • Keeps you less beat-up in training
  • Good overall fit
  • DNA Flash midsole offers a balance of lightness, energy return, and responsive cushioning

If you’re looking for a running shoe that is both fast and energy efficient like the Hyperion Elite 2 without sacrificing cushion, this is the shoe.

It has the perfect balance of energy return and cushioning to help you run faster more often in speed training days.

Who are these shoes for?

This shoe is perfect for the pro athlete looking for a fast shoe that has cushioning. It is best used for speed training.

Best Budget Lightweight Shoes

Brooks Launch 8

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Variant: Urban/Black/Nightlife

Specifications

  • Support level: Neutral
  • Experience type:
  • Stack height: 34mm / 24mm
  • Heel-toe drop: 10mm
  • Weight: 8.6oz / 243.8g
  • Running Surface: Road
  • Midsole technology: BioMogo DNA

Pros

  • Light and springy
  • High energy return
  • Enhanced breathability
  • Available for stability version
  • Very affordable

Cons

  • Not very good cushioning
  • Not plush fit

The Brooks Launch 8 is a fast shoe on a budget. It is light, springy and offers a bit of energy return that will help you with your tempo days and other speed works.

It’s not as cushioned as the Hyperion Tempo, but is also costs only around $100 dollars (at the time of writing).

Who are these for?

This shoe is perfect for runners looking for a fast shoe they can use in training and competition on a tight budget. As a matter of fact, I recently recommended this shoe to a friend that fits in the description.

For more details about this shoe, check our full review.

Best in Energy Return

Brooks Levitate 4

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Variant: Blackened Pearl/Grey/Black

Specifications

  • Support level: Neutral
  • Experience type: Energized
  • Stack height: 27mm / 19mm
  • Heel-toe drop: 8mm
  • Weight: 10.3oz / 292.0g
  • Running Surface: Road Running
  • Midsole technology: DNA Amp

Pros

  • Its springy running feel makes you conserve more energy
  • Sleek fit
  • Breathable upper

Cons

  • Expensive
  • It’s heavy

If you’re looking for a shoe that provides that bouncy feel, then the Levitate 4 is the perfect shoe for you.

It’s equipped with Brooks’ DNA Amp midsole, their most energy efficient midsole yet giving you a bouncy ride mile after mile.

It has a sleek, sock-like fit and breathable upper that will keep you comfortable in your runs.

Who are these for?

These shoes are best for runners who prefer the bouncy feel rather than the soft feel for everyday training. A shoe with similar technology plus added stability is also available for overpronated runners.

Lightest Trail Running Shoes

Brooks Catamount

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Variant: White/Iced Aqua/Blue

Specifications

  • Support level: Neutral
  • Experience type: Speed
  • Stack height: 31mm / 25 mm
  • Heel-toe drop: 6mm
  • Weight: 9.3oz / 263.7g
  • Running Surface: Trail running
  • Midsole technology: DNA Flash

Pros

  • DNA Flash midsole is light and springy to help you go faster on the trail
  • The traction is superb even on slippery surfaces
  • Very comfortable to wear
  • Protective outsole
  • Priced just right

Cons

  • The colorways are not ideal for muddy trails

If you like running fast on trails, then you’re gonna love what the Catamount has to offer. It’s lightweight and has responsive cushioning plus a superb TrailTack sticky rubber outsole that provides good traction both on wet and dry surfaces allowing you to go fast on trails with confidence.

It also has a Ballistic Rockshield protection in its outsole to help protect your foot from sharp rock edges or wood branches.

However, I do not recommend these for beginners. The surprisingly high stack height for a trail shoe may become unstable if you don’t know what you’re doing.

Who are these for?

These shoes are for pro trail runners looking for a shoe to race in. If you’re a beginner that is more likely to walk than to run on trails, there are better options for you.

Best Trail Running Shoes

Cascadia 15

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Variant: Black/Ebony/Red

Specifications

  • Support level: Neutral
  • Experience type: Cushion
  • Stack height: 24mm / 16mm
  • Heel-toe drop: 8mm
  • Weight: 11oz / 311.8g
  • Running Surface: Trail running
  • Midsole technology: 3D Fit Print, Ballistic Rock Shield, BioMoGo DNA

Pros

  • Built-in all-terrain stability technology (Pivot Post system)
  • The upper drain water well, plus it fits really well too
  • Tuck away laces allows you to worry less about your shoes and focus on the trail
  • Breathable upper and fast dry-time

Cons

  • The cushion is softer than the Catamount however, a DNA Loft would have been a better midsole for this shoe
  • It’s heavy

This shoe is not the most expensive Brooks trail shoe, however, I believe this is the best trail running shoe they have if you’re not running a race.

It has great foot protection, thanks to the built-in Ballistic Rock Shield and added protection around the shoes.

It also has good outsole traction, similar to the Catamount. And it has a built-in Pivot Post System that provides a stable platform that helps your foot adapt to any type of terrain.

The best thing thing? It costs less.

The Cascadia 15, being the 15th iteration of this trail shoe line, means there’s something incredibly good about this shoe.

Who are these for?

These shoes are for everyday trail runners looking for a reliable shoe to help them run on any type of terrain. These are also a great trail shoes for beginners.

Brooks Midsole Technology, Explained

DNA Loft

The problem with the old midsole technology was that it is hard to find a material that will provide a soft cushion with great durability.

Oftentimes, the material used for soft midsole cushion is also the least durable and heaviest of them all, resulting in a soft cushioning for the first few months of the shoe and then gradually losing its cushioning.

Then, Brooks created the DNA loft with the calibrated mix of EVA foam (the most common material used in the midsole), rubber, and air to create a super soft, durable, and relatively light midsole.

It’s the technology that provides Glycerin 19 its super-soft cushion.

DNA Amp

The DNA Amp is a springy and responsive foam that offers the highest energy return for runners.

To do this, Brooks had to move away from the tradition midsole material, the EVA, and switch to polyurethane which provided more energy return.

In other words, the energy you apply to your stride will be returned to you, providing in a more energy efficient running

Shoes with this technology are Levitate, Bedlam and Ricochet.

Guide Rails

The traditional way of stabilizing the foot was by providing a hard material where the foot arch is to prevent overpronation. However, it makes the shoe stiff and less versatile.

Brooks level upped their game by creating the revolutionary Guide Rails.

It works like bowling alley bumpers that guides your foot, knees and hips to the right place every stride.

The best thing about it is that it’s there when you need it, but you it won’t interfere when you don’t.

This technology gave the Brooks Adrenaline GTS 21 its stability.

DNA Flash

The DNA Flash is a nitrogen-infused midsole that makes it super light and provide high energy return. It is Brooks’ newest technology and you can see it in action with the Brooks Hyperion Elite 2 and Hyperion Tempo.

BioMogo DNA

The BioMogo DNA is a light midsole cushioning that adapts to your every stride.

It is the midsole behind the Brooks Launch 8

The Wrap Up

Brooks are dedicated entirely for creating the best technologies for runners. That is why their shoes will always have a place somewhere at the top of every list.

All these shoes from Brooks will give you the best running experience. But you need to choose the right shoes for certain activities.

There’s no one shoe that could do all things. But rest assured, if you choose it right, you’ll enjoy the benefits you’ll get from your Brooks running shoe.

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