Are you thinking of purchasing the Asics Novablast 2 running shoes? These daily running trainers were announced earlier this year as a follow-up to the original Novablast shoes, and since then, they have caused a bit of a stir amongst runners. However, how do they compare to not only the originals but rivals on the market?
The first thing that you will notice is that the upper of the Asics Novablast 2 is completely new. The jacquard-style mesh is very soft and is almost perfect for a daily trainer, providing a great fit and comfort on the top of the foot. I recently completed a run in warm conditions, and at no point did I find them uncomfortably hot.
The sole is made from a blend of EVA and Olefin, which offers good support, while the gusseted tongue ensures a great wrap around your foot. Although it is still relatively early, I’ve not had any discomfort or rubbing while wearing them, although the tongue is very thick, which some runners might not like. The heel is also sturdier than the first generation, although I did find the laces a little on the long side for my preference.
The midsole is also made from a blend of EVA and Olefin, which I found pleasantly surprising. It’s the same materials at the Salomon S-Lab, but the Asics uses a very different mix. I was expecting the Novoblast 2s to be too soft, but after several runs, I actually found that they had great damping and anti-vibration properties.
It is more of a wider shoe, in a similar ballpark to Hoka Mach 4 or Puma Deviate, so runners who prefer a narrower shoe might find these a little too wide. In terms of the drop, the heel is 30mm while the forefoot is 22mm, so around 8mm in total, which is quite a bit lower than the original Asics Novablasts.
My biggest concern with the Asics Novablast 2 daily runners is the durability. I’ve only completed around 25km so far, and the bottom of the sole is already beginning to show signs of wear. With the trainers costing $130/€140, I would expect a little better performance.
In terms of stability, I found that the new Asics Novablast 2’s to be significantly better than its predecessor. This is primarily thanks to the addition of the increased TPU overlay, and I actually found them to be more stable than the likes of the Invincible and Rebel V2. The midsole helps to absorb the vibrations while running, and the new lower 8mm drop also helps to increase stability even further.
As a daily running shoe, I cannot fault the Asics Novablast 2. My only concern would be the price and the overall durability. This might just be a bit of superficial wear, and I would be interested to see what they look like after 400km, as if they are still OK, then the price is great.
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