The ASICS GEL-Kayano 28 is a premium, stability-enhancing, everyday trainer. It offers superior cushioning, plush interior comfort and a gender-specific ride.
Oozing both soft cushioning and reliable support, it’s the pinnacle training shoe in the ASICS line. It has been smartly enhanced with a smoother, softer ride over the past year.
The new Kayano has been updated with:
- A new midsole foam package
- A new engineered mesh upper
- Slightly different men’s and women’s specific geometries
- Smaller structural components and more flex grooves in the outsole.
Despite those major changes, it still runs with the reliably stability of previous GEL Kayano models.
The GEL-Kayano 28 fits true to size with a medium interior volume that feels pretty spacious in the forefoot. The soft interior padding and new upper create a dynamic locked-down fit. This means it accommodates a wide range of foot shapes.
Reliable security comes from a more subtle internal heel counter. Add to that, there is a smaller plastic plate under the arch and a firm, lower-profile plastic external cradle and media-side support flange.
But what makes this new edition of the Kayano so special is the new FlyteFoam Blast midsole compound. This runs the length shoe directly under the foot.
That material helps give the multi-density midsole a soft, secure feeling in the heel and a fun, bouncy and energetic sensation as you roll forward to the toe-off phase.
Combined with additional flex grooves in the forefoot, the new Kayano serves up a much livelier ride than ever before without sacrificing stability that over-pronating runners need.
WHO IT’S BEST FOR
New runners, fitness runners and marathoners who appreciate a soft, lively but stable ride with reliable medial-side support will love the new GEL-Kayano 28.
It has plenty of forgiving comfort for long runs and recovery runs, but it also has enough energetic pop for some moderately faster types of running.
PROS AND CONS
The layer of new FlyteFoam Blast cushioning (aka FF Blast) is made from a light, soft and responsive environmentally friendly blend of EVA foam. This provides an energetic sensation in every stride without inhibiting the shoe’s stability-enhancing mechanisms.
As with the previous editions of this model, the midsole cushioning system of the Kayano 28 is enhanced with silicone-based GEL cushioning pods. These are located in the heel and forefoot and reduce impact for a softer landing. They also enhance the toe-off experience at the start of a new stride.
The structural components of the GEL-Kayano 28 are all slimmer and more subtle than those in the previous edition of the shoe. This helps it become lighter and more agile and providing a smoother, more stable heel-to-toe transition while still providing support to offset over-pronation.
The GEL-Kayano 28 continues to be gender-differentiated to address men’s and women’s specific bio-mechanical movement patterns. Each version features unique heel-toe offsets and slightly lower midsole foam densities. Plus, the women’s model has a more compliant flex pattern.
The outsole has been updated with more flex grooves in the forefoot, smaller segments of high-abrasion rubber and a longer open channel under the arch. This starts in the heel and extends to the forefoot.
Combined with the springiness of the FlyteFoam Blast foam in the midsole, these features help give the Kayano a much more flexible, agile and performance-oriented sensation.
The new, two-layer engineered mesh upper is more ventilated and breathable than the previous edition and it helps wrap the foot with a dynamic fit. It expands and contracts slightly as the foot moves through the gait cycle, providing both comfort and support.
If there’s any slight detraction to the Kayano 28 is that it’s not a speedy shoe.
Although it lost about a half ounce in weight and now has a springier foam in the midsole, it’s a shoe that’s all about comfort and stability. With that in mind, it is not as ideal for quick-cadence running.
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