Brooks Ghost 15 Review: A Carbon-Neutral Road Shoe That Sets the Pace

The Ghost aptly lives up to its name, disappearing underfoot — just leaving the runner and the road. It's durable, refined for road running, and updated with new foam and carbon-neutral components.

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what are brooks ghost shoes good for

For years, the Brooks Ghost was my running shoe of choice. A good friend, who first indoctrinated me into the cult of distance running, suggested a local shop that swayed me from my Asics preference (the long-hanging result of a failed middle school cross-country career — apparently, I was the only runner to get slower during the season).

That original pair of Ghost 9s has long been thrashed. After 600+ miles, they busted in an uintended use case: playing pickup basketball. Subsequent moves to Flagstaff made the jump to trail running and being seduced by the siren call of HOKA’s max cushioning.

So, a chance to review the new iteration of the Brooks Ghost 15s was a return to the familiar. But like visiting your childhood home after leaving for the first time, would this new version live up to the nostalgia of long runs of my past?

In short : The Ghost 15 ($140) is an agile, capable shoe. With a workhorse mentality, it has both marathon and speedwork bona fides. And while it lacks the bells and whistles of carbon plates and forward cants that decorate modern “supershoes,” it excels at being what it is: a shoe built by runners for runners.

Brooks Ghost 15 Running Shoe

Brooks Ghost 15 Review: A Carbon-Neutral Road Shoe That Sets the Pace

  • Weight 9.8 oz. (men) / 8.8 oz. (women)
  • Stack height 35mm / 23mm
  • Comfort paired with neutral cushioning
  • DNA Loft v2 results in soft, consistent ride
  • Carbon neutral (recycled content + offsets)
  • Great all-arounders for training and race day
  • Slightly heavier than competitors
  • May not be able to compete with race day “supershoes”
  • Running-specific construction, not cross-training capable

Brooks Ghost 15 Review

Brooks Ghost 15 Review

What’s New?

Brooks built the latest Ghost with its DNA LOFT v2 — the midsole cushioning is made up of EVA foam, rubber, and air (hence, the “loft” in the moniker). The result is a soft, consistent ride. Unlike a max cushioned shoe, you still feel the ground below you, but in a responsive way. It strikes an excellent balance between protection and engagement with the terrain. And it’s lighter than the v1 used on the Ghost 14 .

Brooks Ghost 15 - Cushion Neutral

The 15 also uses 9% more recycled content than the 14. This is the second carbon-neutral shoe from the running brand, which is committed to achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2040.

The upper is built from 3D printed air mesh, enhancing breathability and comfort compared to previous Ghosts. Overall, the 15 is lighter than the 14. Not by much (0.2 ounces for women’s and 0.1 ounces for men’s), but in a product you’ll take countless thousands of strides in — a little goes a long way.

Where the Rubber Meets the Road

Testing the Brooks Ghost 15

The softer and lighter DNA Loft v2 teams up with a segmented outsole that offers grip and a nice heel-to-toe transition. And of the road shoes on the current market, the Ghost has a nice balance of grip. They’re not sporting the lugs of hardier trail running shoes , but the outsole has enough bite to handle bad sidewalks and pockmarked roads.

Some testers have complained about the 12mm drop, which is higher than average for a neutral cushioned running shoe. It didn’t bother me. The shoe felt well-balanced between comfort and performance, letting me focus on the run and not on the shoe.

Who Is This Shoe For?

Brooks is a tried and true running brand. While others in the shoe game have ever so slightly pivoted to street style and athleisure, Brooks continues to produce products by runners for runners.

These shoes have a performance- and comfort-oriented design that leaves behind the excess to focus on the running experience. This is clear throughout the brand’s line — I’ve increasingly turned to my High Point 7” 2-in-1 Short for logging training miles. The Ghost 15 expands on a history of trustworthy, high-performing products.

Brooks Ghost 15 Running Shoe Design & Colours

And sure, the color selection is still very 2010. But I’d rather have designers dialed in on improving the running experience than landing on a trend report.

The Ghosts have become a go-to shoe for just lacing up and getting out there, especially on days when I feel like leaving the Garmin behind and just running for the sake of running. No distractions, just motion.

A note: Forward motion is what these shoes are best at. They’re not cross trainers, as the 3D knit upper doesn’t provide much support for lateral movement. So, while I use them for high-anguish dreadmill sessions, I leave them behind for general gym visits and any agility work.

Brooks Ghost 15 Shoes: Final Thoughts

Brooks Ghost 15 - Testing & Review

Running shoes are fickle beasts. It’s hard to design one shoe that fits everyone and is capable of a variety of performance applications. But, Brooks comes as close as a brand can to achieving it with the Ghost 15 .

I was worried that a rose-colored memory of long runs past would be eclipsed by the newest versions. But I came away reminded why the Ghost continues to be the backbone of Brooks’ road running line. Capable, comfortable, and approachable, the Ghost 15 balances that tricky ground of being a shoe for both fun runners and more serious distance freaks.

what are brooks ghost shoes good for

The Best Running Shoes of 2024

We tested the best running shoes of 2024 with options for every budget. Top picks include HOKA, Brooks, and more! Read more…

Matthew Medendorp

Matthew Medendorp is a writer, dad, and party-pace cyclist with an MFA from Northern Arizona University. He lives in Brooklyn, Michigan— a town that confuses people who don’t read through the end of a sentence. You can read more of his work at .

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what are brooks ghost shoes good for

Brooks Ghost 15 review

We put the latest version of brooks' best-selling running shoe to the test.

a photo of the Brooks Ghost 15 running shoes on a running track

Tom's Guide Verdict

Fans of the Brooks Ghost line can relax — despite the changes to the midsole and upper, this still feels very much the same as previous iterations of the shoe. It’s a durable, everyday running shoe, but it’s lacking in versatility, and there are more exciting shoes on the market for the price.

Padded tongue and heel collar

Available in a number of different colors

Comes in three different widths

Not the most exciting running shoe on the market

Lacks versatility

Why you can trust Tom's Guide Our writers and editors spend hours analyzing and reviewing products, services, and apps to help find what's best for you. Find out more about how we test, analyze, and rate.

 The Brooks Ghost is one of the brand’s best-selling running shoes and is now on its 15th iteration. It’s an excellent beginner running shoe, with a soft, safe feel underfoot, and a relatively firm ride. With the Brooks Ghost 15, the brand has added its new DNA Loft v2 midsole foam and tweaked the upper to make it more comfortable and supportive. “Smooth, balanced, and better than ever,” Brooks says.  

Price: $140/£130 Drop: 12mm Weight: 10.1 oz (M), 9.1 oz (W) Type: Neutral Widths: 3 — medium, wide, narrow 

But how does it compare to some of the best running shoes on the market, and who is this shoe best suited for? To find out more, I’ve been running in the Brooks Ghost 15 over a number of different running sessions — from long, easy runs, to faster tempo sessions. My verdict? Brooks Ghost fans won’t be disappointed, but faster runners might be. Read my full Brooks Ghost 15 review below to find out more. 

Brooks Ghost 15 review: Price and availability 

The Brooks Ghost 15 was released in November 2022, and is widely available online and in running stores. The shoe costs $140/£130 and comes in men’s and women’s versions. The men’s shoe runs in sizes U.S. 7 - U.S. 15 and is available in four different widths: medium (regular), narrow, wide, and extra wide. The men’s shoe comes in 13 different colorways to suit every style of runner, although some of these are special editions. 

The women’s Ghost 15 is available in sizes U.S. 5 - U.S. 13 and comes in three different widths: medium, wide, and narrow. The shoe comes in 15 different colorways, some of which are limited editions, but there’s a huge range to choose from. 

Brooks Ghost 15 review: Design and fit 

The Brooks Ghost 15 fits true to size, and like most other Brooks running shoes on the market. I tested a UK 5/U.S. 7, and wear a UK 4 in my everyday running shoes (confused? Check out our guide to buying running shoes here). I had enough room in the toe box and didn’t have any issues with the shoe rubbing or chafing. 

The shoe looks very similar in design to the Ghost 14, but Brooks has made a couple of changes. The midsole foam has been updated, and the mesh upper has been tweaked for enhanced support and comfort. 


Let’s start by digging into the upper, which is described by Brooks as an "air mesh upper." It’s been tweaked to offer a more secure fit around the foot, keeping it in place as you move. It does this well — I didn’t have any issues with my foot slipping at the heel, nor any hot spots when running in the shoe, but it didn’t feel all that different. This is very similar to the upper of the Ghost 14, and the Ghost 13 for that matter. It’s what we’ve come to expect from Brooks — a thick, cushioned upper, with a lot of padding around the tongue and the collar of the shoe for step-in comfort. 

It’s about as far from the newer bootie uppers on the market as you can get. Brooks wasn't worried about saving weight with this shoe.

The midsole of this shoe contains Brooks’ DNA Loft V2 midsole foam, which Brooks claims is lighter and softer than previous iterations. It feels very similar to the DNA Loft used in the Ghost 14 — it’s fairly firm underfoot, and you’re not getting the sink-in, soft feeling you get with shoes like the Asics Gel Nimbus 25 or the Nike Invincible 2 or Nike Invincible 3 .

While the firmer midsole does the job on slow, easier miles, it’s not overly responsive. It feels pretty clunky at anything that isn’t an easy pace — when trying to do tempo sessions in this shoe it felt a bit ‘meh’, and you had to work hard to get your legs moving in this shoe.


The outsole of this shoe is designed to be durable, and it does that well. There’s a lot of rubber, a great amount of grip on wet concrete and light trails, and what Brooks calls it’s ‘crash-pad’, for smoother transitions. I didn’t have any issues with the grip of this shoe, and after around 50 miles, there’s no sign of wear. 

Brooks Ghost 15 review: Running performance

The Brooks Ghost 15 is a decent, everyday running shoe that’ll no doubt be popular with fans of the line and beginners alike. That said, it’s not very versatile, or very exciting. It’s very similar to what they’ve done before, and while this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, there are far more exciting shoes on the market for the same price. 

I found that the shoe just wasn’t that responsive or snappy on the run. Plus, compared to a lot of the other ‘everyday’ shoes on the market, it feels a little like the Brooks Ghost line is being left behind. I’ve been reviewing running shoes for the past six years, and this feels like stepping back into the same shoe — some runners will find this extremely reassuring, but there are a lot of other shoe brands doing a lot more with their foam. 

This is also one of the few shoes on the market that has a 12mm drop — the drop is the difference between the distance of the heel and forefoot from the ground. 12mm is one of the higher drops, but as there isn’t much of a rocker in the shoe, you don’t notice this all that much. 

Brooks Ghost 15 review: Verdict 

The Brooks Ghost 15 isn’t anything new, and for a lot of runners, that’s ok. It’s a decent everyday running shoe for beginners, and if you’re a fan of the Ghost line, you’ll love this shoe. That said, it’s not the most comfortable cushioned shoe on the market, nor the most versatile. 

If you’re looking for sink-in comfort, and bouncy foam underfoot, I’d take a look at the Brooks Glycerin 20 , the New Balance 1080v12 , or the Asics Gel Nimbus 25 . All of these shoes have a bit more versatility — they’ll allow you to pick up the pace either during tempo or speed sessions. For a super-plush shoe, check out the Nike Invincible 3 . 

If you’re on a budget, save your money and buy the Brooks Ghost 14, which is bound to be on sale now the newer shoe has been released. 

Jane McGuire

Jane McGuire is Tom's Guide's Fitness editor, which means she looks after everything fitness related - from running gear to yoga mats. An avid runner, Jane has tested and reviewed fitness products for the past five years, so knows what to look for when finding a good running watch or a pair of shorts with pockets big enough for your smartphone. When she's not pounding the pavements, you'll find Jane striding round the Surrey Hills, taking far too many photos of her puppy. 

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what are brooks ghost shoes good for

Run the Shoes

Buying guides and reviews to help you find the best running shoes.

brooks ghost review running shoes

Brooks Ghost Review (2022): A Dependable, Neutral Running Shoe

Buy these shoes if….

  • You have neutral pronation and are looking for a daily trainer that can handle easy long runs and high-volume mileage
  • You want an everyday running shoe that emphasizes comfort but isn’t as plush and bulky as the Hoka Clifton
  • You have tight calves or are prone to Achilles tendonitis and would benefit from a shoe with a steep heel drop

When you buy something through our links, we earn a commission. All products are independently selected by the author.

$130 at Zappos

$130 at Amazon

Keep reading for the Run the Shoes Brooks Ghost review.

Offset:  12mm

Weight: 9 oz (Women) // 9.9 oz (Men)

Price:  $130

brooks ghost 14 in black

Notable features

The goal of this review isn’t to tell you whether or not the Brooks Ghost is a great shoe—it is, and many running sites seem to agree. What I hope to do instead is help you determine if the Brooks Ghost is the right shoe for your running needs. First, let’s cover a few defining characteristics of the Ghost.

DNA LOFT Midsole

Of the four midsole cushioning technologies Brooks has in rotation, DNA LOFT is the softest. It’s made of EVA foam, rubber, and air, a combination that yields a soft and not-too-plushy midsole that’s light and durable.

Neutral Arch Support

The Brooks Ghost is purely a neutral shoe, meaning it has no stability features to combat overpronation. (If you are looking for stability shoes, read our guide to the best shoes for overponation. )

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How I tested

I tested this shoe by keeping it in my daily rotation—I noticed how often I gravitated towards it as a choice for my daily runs, and then when I did choose it—which was quite often for easy runs—I noticed how it felt while running, paying close attention to transitions and how it handled different paces and changes in terrain (gravel, dry asphalt, wet asphalt, etc).

What to love about the Brooks Ghost

The first and most obvious thing to love about this running shoe is its comfort. This was apparent out of the box, and though it doesn’t have the ultra-plush feel that draws me to Hoka One One shoes , the Ghost’s soft cushioning is certainly up there. It has a wide toe box, a breathable engineered mesh upper, and a very sturdy heel collar that reminds me of an tempurpedic pillow. The outsole rubber has a good grip and feels durable, which bodes well for the shoe’s longevity. I found the Ghost to yield a smooth ride, have good traction on rainy days, and be quite flexible.

What not to love about the Brooks Ghost

There are two things that I didn’t love about the Ghost: it took me a few runs to wear the shoes in, and I didn’t love the steep heel-to-toe drop. I prefer shoes with a toe drop of around 5-7mm, and the Ghost’s 12mm offset took some getting used to. High heel drops are best for runners who have tight calves and/or are prone to Achilles tendonitis, so if you fall into this camp, the 12mm offset might be appealing to you. The last thing to note about the Ghost is that it is quite a heavy shoe and not great for speed workouts.

The bottom line

The Brooks Ghost 14 and its previous versions are tried-and-true everyday trainers that are great for beginners and seasoned marathon runners alike. It’s a shoe for neutral pronators who are looking for a piece of durable footwear that will get them through plenty of miles on a variety of terrain. I hate using the phrase “no frills” but that’s exactly what the Brooks Ghost is—a simple running shoe that can get you through many easy miles.

More from Run the Shoes

  • The Best Shoes for Overpronation
  • The Best Running Belts & Fanny Packs
  • The Best Nike Running Shoes

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I Ran in the New Brooks Ghost 15 Running Sneakers—And Now I Understand Why This Is the Most Popular Running Shoe

what are brooks ghost shoes good for

For years, I’ve surveyed the sneakers of each and every person who walks into the same Orangetheory class as me. In doing so, I’ve witnessed people wearing just about every brand under the sun, many of which I’ve tested firsthand. One brand I had seen repeatedly but had never tried was Brooks , a popular—if not the most renowned—running shoe brand.

Long story short, when searching for the best cross-training shoes for OTF in 2021, I tested the fan-favorite Brooks Adrenaline GTS 21 ($110) and I personally wasn’t a huge fan, both due to the stiff heel and blah color offering. It’s with these memories in mind that I couldn’t help but double-take when I caught sight of the new Brooks Ghost 15 Women’s Road Running Shoes ($140), which launched in November 2022.

  • 01 Key specs
  • 02 Heel-to-toe drop
  • 07 Who they're best for
  • Nam Tran, DPM , foot and ankle surgeon based in Dallas, Texas
  • Nelya Lobkova, DPM , board-certified podiatrist and founder of Step Up Footcare

What makes them special is that they’re designed with an innovative midsole that’s specifically designed to feel plush underfoot. Needless to say, I snagged a pair and put them to the test.

brooks ghost 15

Sizes available: 5-12, in half sizes and two widths

  • Padded tongue and heel collar for added comfort
  • Breathable, supportive mesh upper
  • Removable insoles
  • Cushiony, shock-absorbing midsole
  • Ultra-lightweight design
  • Sold in six colors
  • The reinforced toe is noticeable even in the correct size

My Brooks Ghost review

  • Heel-to-Toe Drop:  11mm
  • Upper:  Structured breathable mesh
  • Insole:  Removable
  • Midsole:  DNA LOFT v2 Cushioning
  • Outsole:  Segmented rubber to ensure flexibility and a smooth ride
  • Weight:  9.1 oz.
  • Fit:  True to Size
  • Sizes: 5-12, in half sizes and two widths

Heel-to-toe drop

The Ghost 15 is a neutral women’s running shoe, meaning it’s designed to let your foot move freely, as opposed to being manipulated to improve pronation and gait. Like most running shoes, it features a high drop zone, measuring 11 millimeters. For those who don’t know, a drop zone (or heel-to-toe drop) is the height difference between the heel and forefoot of a shoe. Running shoes typically have a drop zone of eight or more millimeters (most often in the 10 to 13 millimeter range , according to NYC-based podiatrist  Nelya Lobkova, DPM ). This is important because many runners strike the ground with their heels first and a higher drop offers more cushioning in the heel, which helps absorb shock and make for smoother transitions.


When testing out the Brooks Ghost 15, I found that the drop of the shoe felt comfortable and natural, so much so that it mitigated my existing heel pain. For the past couple months, my heels have ached to the point where I even took three weeks off from running to see if that was the issue or if I have persistently budding plantar fasciitis. While the verdict is still out, I’ve found that running and even just walking around in these high-drop road-running shoes has given my heels relief. What’s more, they’re one of the few pairs of sneakers I’ve worn that have helped cushion impact so effectively that my shin splints aren’t triggered. That in itself feels like a miracle.

brooks ghost

The insoles in the Ghost 15 Running Shoes are thin but molded and help provide slightly more support to the already stable silhouette. Best of all, they’re removable, so if you find that they begin to stink, you can air them out or even wash them before putting them back in place.

The midsole is the key when it comes to the Ghost 15 Running Shoes. It’s made of DNA LOFT v2 cushioning, which balances rubber, air, and foam for a plush-yet-lightweight feel. With every step, it feels like walking on clouds. They’re that comfortable. It also doesn’t hurt that the shoes are made with a padded heel collar and tongue, which only adds to the overall cloud-like comfort of the shoe.

The Ghost 15 Running Shoes feature segmented rubber outsoles that are designed to flex with your stride. I think it’s because of this that the shoes don’t feel rigid while walking or running. They bend comfortably with your foot while still feeling fully stable.

Brooks Running Ghost 15 sizing

These shoes run true to size. That said, my one complaint about the shoes is that the toe is reinforced, which of course has a purpose—to shield against stubbing your toes if you stop short. However, because the toe is harder than the rest of the mesh upper (which supports the foot and keeps it comfortably but firmly in place—even when lunging), I was highly aware of it at first (it’s grown on me a bit now). Still, it was noticeable enough that I originally wondered if the shoes were too small, but when I stood neutrally and pressed on the toe, I found that there was the recommended finger-width wiggle room to spare. (Just something to keep in mind if you think that might irritate you.)

Who they’re best for

The Ghost 15 Women’s Road Running Shoes are best for neutral runners without high deviation, like inward rolling. They’re also great for anyone looking for a plus feel without the wobbly side effects so many highly-padded sneakers have. While these running sneakers are technically neutral in support, they feel very stable while walking, running, and working through HIIT and circuit training classes. Suffice to say, I officially understand why Brooks’ Ghost silhouette is one that persistently earns endless accolades for being the ultimate everyday running shoe—it really is that good.

Are the Brooks Ghost 15 sneakers worth it?

Nam Tran, DPM , foot and ankle surgeon based in Dallas, Texas, says that the Ghost line has been a fan favorite among his patients who run. Every person is different, but the Brooks Ghost 15s are worth it for runners, walkers, and those looking for an everyday, comfortable shoe. More best Brooks shoes can be found here.

Is Brooks Ghost 15 a good walking shoe?

The short answer: Yes. While “it does not have the “springiness” that other shoes on the market might have, this would be a great walking shoe for someone looking for a more “natural” feeling shoe,” says Dr. Tran. They’re lightweight, breathable, and have moderate cushioning to absorb shock. You can also check out more best walking shoes .

Is the Ghost 15 better than the Ghost 14?

According to Dr. Tran, the difference between Brooks Ghost 14 and 15 is the change to a lighter cushion. “This can be a great upgrade for walkers and runners looking to decrease the weight of their daily sneakers,” he says.

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Shoe Review: Brooks Ghost 15

The Brooks Ghost 15 sits on a platform, giving a side profile view of the shoe.

What do the Brooks Ghost and a real ghost have in common? You won’t even know they’re there.

Thanks to lightweight cushioning, an accommodating fit and a breathable upper, the Brooks Ghost 15 molds to your foot for an effortlessly comfortable feel. The best running shoes are the ones you don’t have to think about, allowing you to focus on the miles ahead rather than on your feet.

The best-selling Brooks Ghost has been updated with DNA Loft v2 midsole foam, a softer and lighter midsole foam than what’s used in previous versions. An engineered air mesh upper holds you in while ensuring breathability and comfort for miles on end.

Fleet Feet reviewers tested the Ghost 15 to get a feel for how it fits and performs. Here’s everything you need to know.

what are brooks ghost shoes good for

Women's Brooks Ghost 15 Running Shoes

$105 - $140.

what are brooks ghost shoes good for

Men's Brooks Ghost 15 Running Shoes

Dna loft v2 foam delivers smooth, easy ride.

The Brooks Ghost 15 sits on its side on a platform, giving a full view of the sole reading DNA LOFT.

The biggest update to the Brooks Ghost 15 is the use of DNA Loft v2 midsole foam, a lighter version of the DNA Loft foam used in the previous version. DNA Loft is a mixture of EVA foam, rubber, air and nitrogen. The foam, air and nitrogen combine to create a soft, lightweight feel while the rubber adds durability.

What’s a midsole? Learn about the parts that make up a running shoe here .

While the Brooks Ghost 15 is soft and cushy, it’s firm enough to feel supportive and responsive enough to feel energetic. This makes it a versatile choice for all types of runs, but where it really shines is racking up easy miles on the roads.

“The Brooks Ghost has always struck me as a Goldilocks-type shoe,” Caroline says. “It’s not too soft, or too firm. It’s not too cushy, or too flat. Not too heavy, not too light. It’s just right.”

Also contributing to the shoe’s easy ride is Brooks’ Segmented Crash Pad, a shock-absorbing material placed throughout the shoe’s flexible forefoot to create smooth heel-to-toe transitions. A durable, blown rubber outsole provides grip and traction on the pavement, no matter the weather.

“Brooks has been fine-tuning their cushioning in this year’s models, and you can really feel it come into play in the Ghost,” Nate says. “The shoe feels wonderfully responsive in the forefoot while retaining an extra softness in the heel, making it very adaptable to different running styles and different types of workouts.”

Brooks Ghost 15 Provides Plush, Padded Upper

A pair of the women's Ghost 15 sits on blue-painted concrete.

The Ghost 15 instantly wraps your foot like a welcoming hug, providing smooth, soft support. An engineered air mesh material provides breathability, keeping your feet dry and cool. Plus, the upper is made with 62 percent recycled materials.

“These shoes gently yet lovingly enveloped my feet like the strong and passionate arms of a spectral Patrick Swayze that just can’t move on from the love of his life (my feet),” Alex says.

And like Swayze’s spirit in the 1990 film, “Ghost,” these shoes are not here to haunt you, but to give you the support you crave before they move on from this world. They might even possess you to go the extra mile on your next run.

Brooks uses its 3D Fit Print technology in the Ghost 15, an innovative screen-printing process that applies engineered structure to the upper material. The print process maintains the shoe’s integrity while allowing for a flexible, lightweight feel.

“The Brooks Ghost always manages to have a luxurious, premium step-in feeling,” Caroline says. “The heel collar and tongue are soft and plush, creating a welcoming environment for my feet. The mesh upper offers extra ventilation around the toe box and midfoot, ensuring adequate breathability. The long, slightly textured laces are sturdy and reliable, giving me peace of mind that they’ll stay put.”

Brooks Ghost 15 vs Brooks Ghost 14

The Brooks Ghost 15 remains true to form as a lightweight, moderately cushioned neutral trainer that runners have come to know and love. The biggest update to the Ghost 15 is the DNA Loft v2 foam underfoot, a lighter version of the midsole foam used in the Ghost 14.

As a result, the Ghost 15 is ever-so-slightly lighter than the previous version (.2 ounces in the women’s shoe and .1 ounce in the men’s) while maintaining the same 12 millimeter heel-to-toe drop. Reviewers appreciated the minor tweaks that improved the fit and feel of the Ghost 15 without changing the features that make it so popular.

“When I opened up the Ghost 15, I effortlessly slipped my foot into the shoe, and it was as smooth as a baby’s bottom,” Adina says. “My heels and ankles felt supported, giving me a pep in my step and a groove as I moved around.”

A pair of men's Brooks Ghost 15 sits propped up against a wall.

What is the Brooks Ghost 15 Best For?

If you’re looking for a steady workhorse that can power you through the bulk of your mileage, the Brooks Ghost 15 is the perfect match.

“I can see why these shoes have been so popular for so long,” Alex says. “They’re well-cushioned, fairly lightweight and they have enough tread for a variety of surfaces. It was super easy to just drop into a running rhythm and not worry about what was on my feet. If you want a single pair of running shoes for almost all occasions, the Ghost seems like an excellent option—they can do so much!”

Keep Reading

The women's Brooks Glycerin 20.

Shoe Review: Brooks Glycerin 20

A man wearing a Brooks jacket posing for a photo

Preparing for Big Race Moments with Brooks' Isaiah Harris

A side view of the men's Brooks Adrenaline GTS 22

Shoe Review: Brooks Adrenaline GTS 22

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The 12 Best Brooks Running Shoes of 2024, Tested and Reviewed

After thorough research and one month of testing, we recommend these shoes for fit, comfort, value, and more

what are brooks ghost shoes good for

Michele Stanten is a walking coach, certified group fitness instructor, and running coach. She is the author of Walk Off Weight and The Walking Solution.

what are brooks ghost shoes good for

Rich Scherr is a seasoned journalist who has covered technology, finance, sports, and lifestyle.

what are brooks ghost shoes good for

Verywell Fit / Marcus Millan

A long-time favorite brand for runners, Brooks shoes are known for their plush comfort, reliable support, and quality materials. With an extensive line-up of products, Brooks has options for all types of foot arches and running gaits, with the right amount of support and cushioning for those needs. Their shoes also come in different widths, which is crucial for getting a precise fit and helping runners avoid issues like foot blisters , bunions, and hammer toes.

We chose the best Brooks running shoes by researching dozens of pairs from the brand and speaking with foot experts for their advice on what to look for when selecting running shoes. Additionally, we tested some of the top pairs for walking and running in the Verywell Testing Lab using expert guidance from our on-site expert Dr. Diana Levin Valencia, DPM.

In our real-world tests, we asked testers to run in these running shoes three to five times every week over the course of one month. We continue to test each shoe for fit, cushioning, stability, comfort, responsiveness, and overall value. We will keep updaiting this roundup as we gather more insights from our experience with each shoe. Whether you prefer road racing, treadmill running , or hitting the trails, Brooks has a pair for you. 

We Also Tested

  • How We Selected and Tested
  • What to Look For

Why Trust Verywell Fit

Best women’s overall, brooks glycerin 20.

  • Comfort 5 /5
  • Stability 4.5 /5
  • Value 4.6 /5

Excellent cushioning

Breathable, lightweight design

Versatile for short or long distances

Limited color options in wide sizes

A long-time favorite in the Brooks line-up, the Glycerin 20 earns our top overall pick for women thanks to its exceptional comfort, performance, and versatility. As one of Brooks’ most cushioned running shoes, we agree after testing that it offers cloud-like comfort and a plush transition zone, so each stride feels soft and smooth. 

As we moved around in them, it was clear to us that these were the sumptuous, buttery,  most supportive running shoes we have ever worn, comparable to some of the most popular running brands on the market. The cushioning on these running shoes was so thick that we didn’t feel our feet hit the ground when we ran like we usually do in other shoes.

This latest version of the Glycerin features an innovative nitrogen infusion process, which helps optimize softness and energy return (or how springy the shoe feels) without sacrificing durability.  

With a thick, cushioned heel, it provides good shock absorption and protection for neutral runners who are pounding the pavement during long runs. They were perfect in our cardio classes where we found ourselves jumping around a lot. However, even with its generous cushioning, the shoe feels responsive and lightweight, so it’s springy and nimble enough for short-track workouts, too.  When they got wet in a downpour, they still didn’t feel any heavier. They didn’t weigh us down at all, or even squish when our feet made impact when drenched. 

The smooth, breathable engineered air mesh delivers a secure, comfortable fit, holding the foot in place and helping to prevent blisters. We felt they were snug and true to size with a lot of room in the toe box. We didn’t feel any irritation or pain at all when wearing these running shoes.

The Glycerin is one of the most expensive options on our list, but we think it’s well worth the investment. Versatile and durable, it works for runners and fitness walkers, as well as for exercisers looking for a comfy gym shoe or a supportive option for all-day wear. We tried these shoes on multiple terrains—concrete, sand, cement, gravel, cushioned gym floor—you name it. On all of these terrains, these running shoes maintained a high level of stability, especially in the ankle area.

This running shoe is an especially great option if you have flat or narrow feet, or prefer to run indoors on a treadmill versus outside on uneven surfaces. When selecting your size, keep in mind that this shoe is a bit more narrow in the back and wider in the front.

Verywell Fit / Tamara Staples

Materials: Engineered mesh upper | Cushioning: High | Weight: 9.1 ounces | Closure: Lace-up | Drop : 10 millimeters  

Best Men's Overall

Brooks ghost 15.

  • Cushioning/Knee Protection 5 /5
  • Comfort 4.5 /5
  • Stability 5 /5

Very versatile

Good arch support

Padding absorbs sweat

A bit heavier than previous version

We tested and loved this all-around fantastic shoe for both serious and casual runners. Brooks’ Ghost 15 delivers exceptional comfort, fit, and support, which is why we chose it as our best overall pick for men. 

The shoe’s ample cushioning provides a soft underfoot but with lots of energy return for a responsive ride. We noticed that the plush feel of the shoe also helped in not further aggravating any pre-existing knee injuries. Typical mild pain and discomfort were minimized and soothed and our knees felt completely supported.

Speaking of, it felt like we were running on a pair of clouds. We found ourselves exercising longer in these shoes on concrete and pavement because of how pleasant they felt. While other Brooks shoes may offer a little more stability, the extra padding here is what really sold us and made these running shoes stand out.

The Ghost 15 doesn’t disappoint when it comes to fit either. They feature a spacious toe box that accommodated our larger bunions perfectly and an engineered air mesh upper that hugs the foot. These running shoes are snug around our Achilles heel without being overly tight. 

The internal heel counter provides excellent heel lockdown, while a generously padded tab, collar, and tongue enhance the overall comfort around the ankle. Of course, all the padding tends to absorb sweat, so the shoe may not be the best option for hot-weather running .

We tested this running shoe for a few weeks to see how the construction would hold up as well, and after weeks of use, we didn’t see any fraying or stretching. There were some slight stains (granted, we chose white shoes), but that’s to be expected with lighter color running shoes. We didn’t smell any odors over time either.

Meanwhile, the outsole’s thick rubber layer provides plenty of protection from abrasion and a flawless grip. The mesh on the sides of the running shoes add extra breathability. We didn’t experience any blisters or irritation even with long wear.

The shoe comes in four different widths, so you can get a custom-like fit and feel. It’s a bit heavier than its predecessor, so long-time fans of the Ghost may notice a difference. However, neutral runners who want a versatile, durable shoe that can go the distance will undoubtedly be impressed. 

VeryWell Fit / Sara Michael

Materials: Engineered mesh upper, rubber sole | Cushioning: Medium | Weight: 10.1 ounces | Closure: Lace-up | Drop : 12 millimeters

Best Budget

Brooks revel 5 running shoes.

Excellent traction

Soft forefoot cushioning

A bit snug in the toe box

No wide sizes

With exceptional performance and durability, Brooks’ shoes often come with a big price tag. However, some options we found, like the Revel 5, are more budget-friendly, without sacrificing quality or comfort.

An all-around workhorse, we think the Revel is ideal for both pavement and treadmill runs of all distances. The lightweight cushioning, combined with the sustainable rubber outsole, delivers a springy, energized ride and smooth transitions. Plus, we like that the breathable knit upper provides a comfortable and secure fit, with a sleek, streamlined style that looks great even for everyday wear.

We did note that the Revel only comes in regular width and the toe box is a bit narrow, so it may not be a good choice for wide feet. But it’s a solid performer and versatile option that’s a great value for the money and one of the best budget running shoes on the market.

Materials: Knit upper, Rubber outsole | Cushioning: Medium |  Weight: 8 ounces | Closure: Lace-up | Drop : 8 millimeters

Best for Overpronation

Brooks adrenaline gts 22.

  • Cushioning 5 /5

Supportive and stable

Good cushioning and shock absorption

Breathable upper

Short laces

We tested Brooks’ Adrenaline GTS 22 in search of the best running shoe for overpronation. If you overpronate , or roll your feet inward when you run, Brooks’ Adrenaline GTS 22 offers the comfort and support you need when you hit the pavement or treadmill. 

These shoes felt sturdy enough that not only did they help with overpronation, but they also helped relieve everyday pain that we were experiencing when walking.

The Adrenaline GTS is built with Brooks’ GuideRails technology, a light and unobtrusive support system that doesn’t rely on a stiff medial post to keep excess movement in check. For those looking for running shoes for bad knees , these are a great pick because the GuideRails allow your hips, knees, and joints to follow their natural movement, while still limiting side-to-side motion.

Unlike some other stability shoes, the Adrenaline GTS is soft and flexible, meaning our feet bend comfortably inside of them when in motion. They offer a smooth ride and easy transitions. These running shoes felt so lightweight, that we actually felt as if our speed on our daily runs was increased in addition to knee pain being relieved. Our ankles and joints responded well when in motion in these running shoes. 

The shoe’s full-length DNA Loft cushioning feels plush, but not overly squishy, and provides good shock absorption to protect your joints. This feature actually aided us in following proper form during workouts like squats. We also felt steady when wearing these while doing cardio that required a lot of jumping. 

Something that really stood out to us about this shoe when testing is that when running uphill, our feet didn’t slip or slide inside the running shoe at all. If you’re a runner who finds themselves going up or down hills or even mountains, this running shoe is a solid option.

Additionally, the engineered air mesh upper provides a secure, comfortable fit and breathes well to prevent your feet from overheating. We had ample space in our tox box, while the rest of the shoe felt snug around our ankles. We didn’t experience any irritation around our soles or toes.

Some users find the laces to be a bit short, but we appreciate the design. They’re flat shoe laces, which we find easy to tie.  The shoe is also deep enough to accommodate inserts or custom orthotics and comes in several widths for an accurate fit. They’re also stylish and work well as a casual shoe.

Verywell Fit / Michael Navarro

Materials: Engineered mesh upper, Rubber outsole | Cushioning: Medium | Weight: 10.2 ounces | Closure: Lace-up | Drop : 12 millimeters

Best for Flat Feet

Brooks addiction gts 15 running shoe.

Good support and motion control

Very breathable

Limited color options

If you have flat feet and need a running shoe with excellent support, Brooks’ Addiction GTS 15 has got you covered. We found that this shoe strikes the perfect balance between support and cushioning, making it a comfortable option for short or long runs.

A tried-and-true favorite for stability running shoes , the Addiction features Brooks’ GuideRails technology, which helps to minimize excess movement. We like the brand’s DNA cushioning system that adapts to a runner’s stride, weight, and speed, providing shock absorption to reduce the impact on joints.

We love that the breathable upper adjusts to your foot’s unique shape, so you get an accurate, comfortable fit. Plus, the Addiction comes in a variety of width sizes, and it’s deep enough to fit inserts like insoles for flat feet or custom orthotics.

Those who like shoes that come in bright and fun colors may be disappointed with this pair’s lack of color options. We also noted that some runners might find the Addiction to be a bit heavier than other options due to its generous cushioning and support. However, it still offers the right structure and comfort for running or all-day wear.

Materials: Engineered mesh upper, Rubber sole | Cushioning: Medium | Weight:

11.1 ounces | Closure: Lace-up | Drop : 12 millimeters

Best for Plantar Fasciitis

Brooks women’s ariel '20 running shoes.

  • Value 4.5 /5

Max support

Roomy toe box

When testing Brooks’ Ariel ‘20 running shoe, we found that it provides consistent support and cushioning to help prevent plantar fasciitis and keep symptoms at bay. Designed for runners who need extra cushioning, the shoe has a thick sole and generous padding in the heel area, delivering protection right where it’s needed. 

The Ariel features Brooks’ GuideRails technology, which offers full-length support, helping to prevent excess side-to-side movement. It also comes equipped with an external heel counter and a grippy rubber outsole that add extra stability. We did notice that these running shoes felt heavier compared to other options we tested. While that may not be best for long-distance runners or sprinters, we feel that it would be great if you need extra support when walking or running on uneven surfaces, sidewalks, and park trails—a must-have feature in running shoes for plantar fasciitis .

The ample cushioning and support make it a bit heavier and pricier than other options, but fans of the shoe think it’s worth it for its reliable stability. We highly suggest wearing thicker socks with these shoes to help prevent irritation.

Verywell Fit / Nick Kova

Verywell Fit / Jennifer Juliao

Materials: Synthetic and mesh upper, Rubber sole | Cushioning: High | Weight: 10.7 ounces | Closure: Lace-up | Drop : 12 millimeters

Best Cushioned

Brooks levitate 6 running shoe.

Made with environmentally-friendly materials

Responsive cushioning

Shoe laces may feel uncomfortable to some

Brooks’ Levitate 6 is our pick for the best cushioned running shoe. We tested these running shoes and found they offer great support that helps soften impact and protect feet from irritation. These shoes keep our feet comfortable, even when we run multiple times a week for long distances. They’re super springy, stretchy, and a great option if you need a shoe that's ready to cradle your feet comfortably as you workout.

Much like other Brooks’ shoes, the Levitate 6’s cushion adapts to your individual stride and foot, offering a personalized experience. On top of the DNA AMP v2 foam, which tends to be lighter than other types of foam typically used for running sneakers, there’s an additional 2 millimeters of foam that enhances the bouncy stride and keeps your feet energized.

The shoes feel like actual pillows on our feet. Their plush feel was the first thing we noticed when we put them on. The cushioning absorbs a lot on impact, especially when running on pavement. They're highly responsive, helping propel us into the next stride.

Even with the substantial amount of cushion in the shoe, they at no point felt cumbersome or heavy. They actually feel lighter than we expected. The shoes also offer great temperature regulation and we found the cushion and fabric held up well after repeated use.

The support in these shoes was one of our favorite features. We do sometimes experience pain when running for a while, but we noticed these running shoes didn’t exacerbate the pain or irritate us in any way.

The engineered stretch upper knit gave this running shoe an incredibly snug fit. The toe box was very roomy, and our feet didn’t slip or slide around during wear. Our heels stayed securely in place with no blisters, hot spots, or tingling/numbness in the toes.

The running shoes are very true-to-size, but the shoe laces did irritate us a little. When they were laced up tightly, they felt like they were bruising the top of our feet, so we decided to wear them a little looser to stop that. If you decide to move forward with this option, it may help to purchase different shoe laces to have a more comfortable experience.

Materials: Recycled knit | Cushioning: High | Weight: 9.5 ounces | Closure: Lace-up | Drop : 8 millimeters

Best for Trail Running

Brooks cascadia 16.

Great traction

Stable and supportive

A bit too stiff for some

With exceptional grip and stability, we think the Brooks’ Cascadia 16 trail running shoes are a perfect choice for tackling uneven terrain and unpredictable weather conditions on the trails. The shoe’s lightweight, energizing cushioning adapts to your feet with every stride, ensuring a smooth, comfortable ride.

We really liked that there is a protective rock plate in the sole that helps shield you from rocks, roots, and debris underfoot, and the thick, sticky rubber outsole provides exceptional traction on a variety of surfaces. If you’re used to Brooks’ regular running shoes, the Cacadia 16 may feel a bit stiff at first, but the shoe’s innovative design is actually quite flexible without sacrificing support.

Additionally, the shoe’s engineered mesh and 3D fit print upper provide a secure fit and good breathability to keep your feet cool and dry. We think adventure lovers will undoubtedly find the Cascadia 16 to be a dependable asset for conquering the trails and one of the best trail running shoes on the market.

Materials: Mesh upper, Rubber outsole | Cushioning: Medium |  Weight: 10.5 | Closure: Lace-up | Drop : 8 millimeters

Best for Wide Feet

Brooks dyad 11.

Three width options

High-energizing cushioning

Reliable traction

Heavier than other options

With three different width options, we picked the Brooks’ Dyad 11 as an excellent option for those looking for a precise fit for their wide feet. The shoe’s exceptional comfort, support, and generous fit cater to a variety of foot shapes and make them perfect for both short and long-distance running on different surfaces.

We like that the Dyad’s high-energizing cushioning provides responsive bounce back and reliable shock absorption with each stride. A durable rubber outsole adds to the underfoot comfort and support while delivering reliable traction. For arch support, the shoe’s wide platform offers sure-footed stability for a neutral stride. The perforated mesh upper ensures breathability and helps with moisture management.

The Dyad is slightly heavier than many of Brooks’ other shoes, but it’s ideal for those looking for a roomier fit.

Materials: Mesh upper, Rubber outsole | Cushioning: High | Weight: 11.6 ounces | Closure: Lace-up | Drop :10 millimeters

Best Lightweight

Brooks hyperion max running shoes.

Durable; great for long distance runners

Great for fast transitions

Not very stable

When you’re running, the last thing you want is to feel weighed down by a heavy shoe. We tested Brooks’ Hyperion Max shoe, and were extremely pleased with how secure and lightweight it felt, which is why we selected it as Brooks' best lightweight running shoe .

The Brooks Hyperion Max running shoes were specifically created for racers, and racers need a lightweight shoe that helps them stride forward confidently without exerting extra energy. This shoe was constructed to allow for fast transitions and impact protection—two things you need when you’re trying to improve your speed. They have a nice “spring” that helped us accelerate and decelerate at different tempos. The curved heel and toe help propel you forward for easy running transitions. We recovered well and felt refreshed after working out in these shoes, and that carried into our next few workouts. 

The cushioning in this shoe added to the comfort immensely. It felt like we were wearing socks versus running shoes. They felt fine in low weather conditions (40 degrees). Our feet could breathe easily without feeling cold. 

You get what you give in this highly reactive running shoe, which we love. The midsole is composed of nitrogen-infused, lightweight DNA FLASH cushioning, which makes it incredibly reactive and bouncy. The energy you expend while running in this shoe is returned to you as the running shoe adapts to your individual stride. The green rubber outsole is durable and lightweight for long-lasting traction and after a few runs, we noticed that the shoe retained its bounce.

The stretch woven technology allows immense breathability and the shoes have a very snug fit that prevents slipping and sliding. Even during sessions where we ran up to 10 miles, we didn’t experience any blisters or irritation. We felt supported and secure, especially around the heel while having ample space in the toe box.

The midsole is designed to absorb impact when your feet strike the ground, which we noticed immediately. Living with different health conditions (such as plantar fasciitis), we’re used to pain when we’re running. While we can’t say the shoe alleviated any pre-existing pain, we can speak to the fact that we didn’t feel any more pain, nor was it exacerbated during or after physical activity when wearing these shoes.

That being said, these shoes are more responsive than they are stable, which is to be expected in this type of running shoe. If you’re looking for a more stable shoe, these may not be the best option for you.

Materials: Rubber sole | Cushioning: High | Weight: 6.7 ounces | Closure: Lace-up | Drop : 8 millimeters   

Best for Everyday Running

Brooks launch 9.

Lightweight, responsive cushioning


A bit narrow for some

Limited options for wide sizes

We know how frustrating it is to choose between a streamlined, fast racing shoe and a comfortable, supportive one for everyday running. We are happy to say that after testing, you can get all of that—and more—with Brooks’ Launch 9. 

The shoe offers responsive cushioning and neutral support, as well as the comfort and durability you want in a daily trainer, whether you're running outdoors or on a treadmill desk in the office. Yet the Launch’s lightweight feel, flexibility, and grippy outsole also make it ideal for racing and fast-paced workouts.

A redesigned, flexible midsole allows for easy transitions, helping your feet to move smoothly and quickly from heel to toe. The shoe’s outsole is constructed with sturdy Green Rubber, which is made of silica—a sustainable material—instead of petroleum. Again, we did feel the sole was a little stiff, which did impact the shock absorption negatively.

This latest version of the Launch features an engineered mesh upper that’s breathable and lightweight, making the shoe a nice choice for warm-weather running where you feel closer to the ground when running.

Some users find the regular fit to be a bit narrow, but the shoe does come in wide sizes (although color options are limited).

Materials: Mesh upper, Rubber outsole | Cushioning: Medium |  Weight: 7.1 ounces | Closure: Lace-up | Drop : 10 millimeters

Best for Speed

Brooks hyperion tempo.

  • Cushioning/Knee Protection 3.9 /5
  • Stability 4.1 /5
  • Value 4.3 /5

Very lightweight

Not protective enough for very cold weather

If you need a running shoe that’s lightweight and springy for speed workouts, we recommend Brooks’ Hyperion Tempo. The shoe’s foam midsole provides comfortable support and excellent energy return without feeling bulky or heavy.

With a soft, stretch-woven upper that conforms to the shape of the foot, we like that the Hyperion Tempo moves with your foot for maximum comfort. The lightweight and breathable material keeps your feet cool on hot days, although it may actually be too thin for extremely cold conditions.

The outsole has strategically-placed rubber to add to the shoe’s support and durability. While the shoe is designed for faster training runs and tempo runs , we think the Hyperion Tempo still offers the shock absorption and support you need for distance running.

Materials: Synthetic upper, Rubber sole | Cushioning: Medium | Weight: 7.3 ounces | Closure: Lace-up | Drop : 8 millimeters

When we tested Brooks' Revel 6 running shoe , we loved that it was comfortable and very responsive. Created for long distance runners, the Brooks Revel 6 is an environmentally-friendly shoe composed of 59.7% recycled material. They’re versatile—which makes it easy to switch up and transition between strides— lightweight, and springy. We decided not to include this running shoe on our list of final recommendations because they left us with blisters, which is a insurmountable con when it comes to running shoes.

How We Selected and Tested the Best Brooks Running Shoes

To choose the best Brooks running shoes, we first asked Angelo Sutera, DPM , a board-certified podiatric surgeon, podiatrists Diana Levin Valencia, DPM , and Pamela Mehta, MD , an orthopedic surgeon, about the benefits of wearing Brooks running shoes. Additionally, we sought their expert advice on what to look for when choosing a pair from Brooks’ line-up.

We researched dozens of Brooks shoes and evaluated them for fit, comfort, cushioning, support, features, breathability, price, and more. For the shoes we tested, we wanted to make sure they felt stable, sturdy, and comfortable. 

First we analyzed the running shoes to see how cushioned they were and how easy it was for them to bend at the toe and heel. We did this to judge the stiffness of the shoe.

Next we tried on the shoe making sure that we had proper space (about a thumb’s width) between the longest toe and the end of the shoe. We walked back and forth, making sure our feet weren't slipping and sliding in the shoe.

We made sure to test the shoes on different terrains, including a treadmill, to see how they responded. We ran for 5-7 minutes, before jogging for 20 studying how our feet felt the entire time. We made note of any irritation or blistering. We also paid close attention to our joints and body (knees, back, ankles) checking to see if we felt any pre-existing or worsening pain. 

Finally we recorded how our feet felt post-run, noting if our feet felt dry or slick with sweat, fatigued, or if our joints were experiencing any exacerbated pain.

We are continually testing Brooks’ running shoes and updating this list with new insights as we collect them.

What to Look For in Brooks Running Shoes

Runners need a shoe with enough cushioning to absorb shock and reduce impact with each stride, providing protection against injury and fatigue. A well-cushioned shoe, such as Brooks’ Dyad 11 , provides reliable support in addition to plush comfort.

If you overpronate or need some extra support in the ankle area, choose one of the Brooks’ shoes that’s designed to provide reliable stability, such as Brooks’ Adrenaline GTS 22 .

Many Brooks’ shoes also have a firm heel counter, a plastic insert used to reinforce the heel cup of a shoe and increase support. “A good firm heel counter helps lock the foot into the shoe and anchors it to the midsole,” Dr. Sutera says.

Getting the right fit is crucial to staying comfortable and injury-free on the run. “The right shoes are the pair that fits well,” Dr. Mehta says. “The toe box should be large enough to wiggle your toes.” Check to make sure there’s a thumb’s width of space between your longest toe and the end of the shoes.

Brooks shoes come in different widths to accommodate a variety of foot shapes and sizes. If you have wide or narrow feet, you can choose a model that offers those widths to get a more accurate fit.

The heel-to-toe drop refers to the height difference between the forefoot of the shoe and the rear. It's usually measured in millimeters, and it can help you determine how well a shoe will support your foot. A lower drop can reduce the impact on your joints while you run. But shoes with a lower drop may also have less arch support—so keep your feet in mind while you shop.

When choosing running shoes, you should think about how you’ll be using them. While all Brooks shoes are designed for running, some of them are lightweight and springy for fast workouts, while others are more supportive and shock-absorbing for long-distance running. Additionally, Brooks makes trail running-specific shoes, which are ideal for off-road running or hiking.

Frequently Asked Questions

There’s no agreement among runners, running coaches, or shoe experts about which company makes the best running shoes. However, Brooks is definitely a favorite go-to brand for runners, with dozens of high-quality, durable shoes that are comfortable, supportive, and specifically designed with runners’ needs in mind.

“Brooks shoes feature a stable yet flexible construction and Brooks' DNA LOFT cushioning,” Dr. Mehta says. “The shoes provide a smoother stride, and keep you comfortable on long runs.”

Podiatrists recommend Brooks, especially for running, because they’re a trusted brand whose high-quality, durable shoes are designed with runners’ specific needs in mind. “I prefer Brooks because they are well-cushioned and supportive, with a very strong heel counter,” Dr. Sutera says.

Podiatrists also like that Brooks shoes come in a variety of widths, so their patients can get a proper fit and use orthotics in them, if necessary.

Brooks running shoes come in a wide range of prices, so there’s something for most budgets. Generally, you can expect to pay about $80-$160 for a pair of Brooks shoes. Less expensive shoes may not have as many high-tech features or be as durable as pricier options. Keep in mind that older models of a shoe may have many of the same features as the latest version, but at a discounted price.

The cheapest option on our list, Brooks’ Revel 5, is often available for $100 or less, while our top picks, Brooks’ Glycerin 20 and Brooks Ghost 15, were $158 and $140 respectively when we published this list.

In general, running shoes can be used for walking, but there are some key differences between running and walking shoes that are important to understand. Running shoes are usually lightweight to allow for quick movement while walking shoes are heavier for more stability.

You’ll get more cushioning in the heel and forefoot with running shoes, for good shock absorption, which makes them less flexible than some walking shoes. Running shoes are also usually more breathable than walking shoes, so they’re an excellent option for fitness walking. “I recommend wearing running shoes to my patients who walk casually and are power walkers,” Dr. Sutera says.

As a running coach, certified personal trainer, marathon runner, and fitness writer, Christine Luff, ACE-CPT has spent years researching and recommending running and walking shoes. Her favorite Brooks shoes are the Glycerin, which she wears for road and treadmill running, as well as long walks with her dog.

American Podiatric Medical Association. Which running shoe is right for you?

American Podiatric Medical Association. Heel pain.

American Podiatric Medical Association. Choosing shoes for sports .

Malisoux L, Chambon N, Delattre N, Gueguen N, Urhausen A, Theisen D. Injury risk in runners using standard or motion control shoes: a randomised controlled trial with participant and assessor blinding . Br J Sports Med . 2016;50(8):481-7. doi:10.1136/bjsports-2015-095031

Cleveland Clinic. How to pick a running shoe .

The 10 Best Brooks Running Shoes to Take Your Training Up a Notch

There’s something for everyone, whether you’re a sprinter or a casual jogger.

three brooks running shoes

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“Brooks has a long history in the running world and a great reputation,” says Priya Parthasarathy, D.P.M. , a board-certified podiatrist and spokesperson for the American Podiatric Medical Association. “They combine cutting-edge technology in a lightweight shoe.”

Meet the experts: Alycia Stevenin , chief curriculum lead at Barry’s ; Emily Booth , a NASM-certified personal trainer, cycling instructor, and ultra-runner; and Priya Parthasarathy, D.P.M. , a board-certified podiatrist and spokesperson for the American Podiatric Medical Association.

The brand has something for just about every type of runner , from springy energizing sneakers for those working on their speed to highly cushioned options for long-distance runners . While it’s near impossible to determine what the best Brooks running shoe is, people familiar with the brand tend to have a preference.

“Because I run on a variety of surfaces—from the road to the treadmill to the trail—I look for different features depending on the modality,” says Emily Booth , a NASM-certified personal trainer, cycling instructor, and ultra-runner. “For example, for the road or the treadmill I prefer a much lighter shoe with a lower heel offset. However, universally, I like a neutral shoe that hugs my foot in all the right places (the heel and midfoot) while enabling my toes to have enough room for natural movement.”

Our top picks

Adrenaline GTS 22

Best Overall

Brooks adrenaline gts 22.

Ghost 15

Best for Running and Walking

Brooks ghost 15.

Glycerin 20

Best for Distance

Brooks glycerin 20.

Launch 10

Best for Treadmill Runs

Brooks launch 10.

Cascadia 16

Best for Trail Running

Brooks cascadia 16.

Hyperion Max

Best for Racing

Brooks hyperion max.

Levitate 6

Best for Cross-Training

Brooks levitate 6.

Dyad 11

Best for Wide Feet

Brooks dyad 11.

Ariel ’20

Most Supportive

Brooks ariel ’20.

Addiction Walker 2

Best for Walking

Brooks addiction walker 2.

Not sure which pair of Brooks is right for you? Check out some of the best below, according to trainers, editors, and a podiatrist.

This style of running shoe from Brooks has been around for more than 20 years. It’s ideal for walking and everyday runs thanks to its lightweight construction and mid-range cushioning that promotes smooth transitions with each step. It also has the brand’s signature GuideRails technology, which supports wearers as they move to help maintain their natural stride.

The Brooks Adrenaline GTS 22 sneakers have “the perfect balance of stability and support,” according to Alycia Stevenin , the chief curriculum lead at Barry’s . “They’re lightweight, which makes them easy to maneuver when I’m doing squats, lunges, or any other type of weight training, and they’re cushioned, which makes them comfortable when I’m running on the treadmill.”

These are also a favorite of Parthasarathy. “They are a good choice for me because I am an over-pronator, and they provide the stability I need when running, combined with cushioning,” she says.

Brooks released its first Ghost sneaker in 2008. It has since become one of the most popular neutral shoes on the market known for its comfortable design that’s fit for daily training. It has soft cushioning (but not too much), a newly redesigned midsole for seamless transitions from landing to toe-off with each stride, and a 3D Fit Print upper that’s structured yet stretchy.

“My boyfriend is a marathon runner and swears by Brooks’ running shoes, so he talked me into getting a pair and I’m so glad I did,” says Emily Goldman, Prevention ’s senior editor. She has the Ghost 14 model, which hold up well for both exercising and just walking around the city.

The newer Ghost 15 is also a favorite of commerce editor Samantha Jones. She likes how natural and lightweight they feel for everyday training and walking. Check out her in-depth review of the running shoes if you think these might be a fit for you.

Ideal for road running, these sneakers have a classic fit and offer neutral support. They feature Brooks’ DNA Loft v3 cushioning for superior comfort, making them ideal for running longer distances rather than speed training. That’s one of the reasons Prevention’ s senior commerce editor is a fan of these shoes, which she wore for part of her marathon training last year.

“These are the most comfortable sneakers I’ve ever owned,” wrote an Amazon reviewer. “There’s tons of cushioning and it’s like walking on marshmallows!”

With a lower profile and light weight (under 7.5 ounces!), the Brooks Launch 10 is an ideal sneaker to wear for running on a treadmill. That’s when our senior commerce editor gets the most use out of her pair. The smaller level of cushioning means you’ll be ready for speed work and won’t fear tripping over your toes on a treadmill belt.

“Love the Launch for running,” said a shopper. “I prefer a less bulky shoe when I run, and these are just right.”

“The Cascadia is a durable, versatile trail shoe that is suitable for a variety of distances and trail conditions,” says Booth, who has relied on this model from Brooks for almost three years. “It has enough cushioning for comfort on longer runs (or hikes) while still maintaining the feel of the trail. Additionally, it has a flexible rock shield that provides protection from obstacles underfoot on technical terrain.”

The shoe has been around since 2005 and has been continuously updated with trail runners in mind. “Notably, the newest iterations feel lighter and faster while still providing the stability and traction necessary for trail running,” adds Booth.

For serious speed workouts and race day, the Brooks Hyperion Max is a great option. Weighing in a just 6.7 ounces, it’s easily one of the brands most lightweight shoes. Despite its barely-there feel, it has nitrogen-infused cushioning for energy return, Rapid Roll technology for fast transitions, a durable midsole with impact-absorbing foam and traction.

“They are perfect for racing,” says one reviewer. “They make me feel very light on my feet!”

In the scheme of Brooks’ longevity as a brand, the Levitate shoe is relatively new. It launched in 2017 as an energizing sneaker fit for breaking PRs and making logging miles feel just a little easier. As the style has evolved over the last few years, it has gotten 10% lighter, more breathable, more flexible, and sleeker. Lightweight cushioning absorbs the impact of feet striking on the ground and sends it back to fuel your next stride, and a knit upper feels breezy and flexible.

“This is a great cross training shoe!” according to one reviewer. “Stable enough to do agility work, fits into a rower foot plate, and handles super well on a treadmill. It’s also a great outdoor running shoe—springy and feels great on my feet!”

If you’re looking for one of the best shoes for wide feet , this should be on your list. The Dyad 11 isn’t the most lightweight shoe, but it offers adaptive cushioning for comfort, Dual Arch Pods and a wide platform for stability, and what Brooks calls a “generous fit” ideal for those with wide feet. It also comes in wide and extra wide sizes.

“This is the most comfortable, best fitting pair of sneakers I’ve ever owned,” says a reviewer. “The wide toe-box and the mid-foot support are exactly what I needed in a shoe. I wear these every day and I love them!”

These highly cushioned sneakers are known for their supportive feel. They’re suitable for road running and walking with GuideRails technology designed to prevent unnecessary movement, supporting arches, knees, hips, and feet overall. They also have a soft yet durable midsole and a breathable mesh upper for that walking-on-air feel.

“When I walk/run, my feet tend to roll inwards—these shoes provide the perfect level of support to prevent that from happening,” writes a happy customer. “Also, they were very comfortable right out of the box.”

This leather shoe combines style and comfort. It has a slip-resistant outsole, soft cushioning to protect joints, and a leather upper for a classic look. While it’s not the best choice for long-distance runners or sprinters, this style is appropriate for daily use and relaxed runs.

Parthasarathy notes that most people will want separate shoes for running and walking, recommending this pair. “Brooks has specific walking shoes that would be preferred for walking instead of their running shoes,” she says, adding that the Brooks Addiction Walker combines support and cushion.

How to choose the right Brooks running shoes

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No matter what brand you’re shopping for, there are some expert-backed guidelines to follow to pick the running shoes that are right for you.

✔️ Think about your running habits. Whether you’re running long distances or quick sprints may determine what type of shoe is best for you. You should also consider the terrain you typically run on, says Parthasarathy. What’s best for a trail runner might not be best for a treadmill sprinter.

✔️ Look for sturdy construction. You shouldn’t be able to fold a running shoe completely in half, Parthasarathy explains. “A well-constructed shoe that can hold up for a lot of miles is also a bonus,” says Booth.

✔️ Check out the insole. “Ideally, it should have a removable insole,” says Parthasarathy. That way, you can replace it with an insert depending on your needs. For example, you might want to add a plantar fasciitis insert .

✔️ Be mindful of how the heel feels. The best running shoes have a firm, supportive heel counter, according to Parthasarathy. However, the level of cushioning depends on the person and their running goals.

Why do podiatrists recommend Brooks shoes?

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“Brooks are definitely on my list of recommended shoe gear for my patients,” says Parthasarathy. “They have many different styles for different foot types: pronated, neutral, or supinated,” she adds, noting that the brand is an “industry leader” in research-based footwear.

Many Brooks shoes have earned the APMA Seal of Acceptance, which is given to shoes that are found to allow for normal foot function and promote foot health following a comprehensive review, explains Parthasarathy. A committee conducts a detailed evaluation of all submitted products, which includes “wear-tests” and ensuring that claims made about a product are supported by evidence. “If the majority of the committee approves of the product, a recommendation is sent to the APMA Board of Trustees to grant the seal to the product,” she says.

Are Brooks running shoes good for walking?

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“Ideally, because the gait pattern differs so much between running and walking, it would be best to have two separate pairs of shoes for each activity,” according to Parthasarathy. That said, those who participate in run/walk programs can typically get away with wearing the same pair for short distances since running and walking both require cushioning and shock absorption.

Full-time walkers may consider investing in one of Brooks’ walking shoes, such as the Addiction Walker , which combines support and cushion, adds Parthasarathy.

How we chose the best Brooks running shoes

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We interviewed Alycia Stevenin , chief curriculum lead at Barry’s , Emily Booth , a NASM-certified personal trainer cycling instructor, and ultra-runner, and Priya Parthasarathy, D.P.M., a board-certified podiatrist and spokesperson for the APMA. We also tapped Prevention editors for their favorite Brooks running shoes and sifted through thousands of reviews to pick the best Brooks running shoes out there right now.

Why trust us

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For more than 70 years, Prevention has been a leading provider of trustworthy health information, empowering readers with practical strategies to improve their physical, mental, and emotional well-being. Our editors interview medical experts to help guide our health-focused product selections. Prevention also examines hundreds of reviews—and often conducts personal testing done by our staff—to help you make informed decisions.

Headshot of Christie Calucchia

Christie is a writer, editor, and content strategist living in New York City. She is currently the senior commerce editor at Prevention.

Previously, she was the news editor at Shape, where she wrote and edited timely stories with a focus on celebrity, health, beauty, and wellness news. She interviewed celebrities, celebrity fitness trainers, and other experts to provide insider tips and information to readers about emerging wellness trends. Prior to that, she was a commerce editor at Meredith. She wrote and edited shopping content for Real Simple, Southern Living, Better Homes & Gardens, and Martha Stewart Living.    

Christie has also written features for InStyle and Glamour, and more of her previous work can be found on People, Travel Leisure, and MyDomaine. She graduated from Loyola Marymount University with a B.A. in humanities.

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Runner’s World

Saucony Vs. Brooks: The Differences in Sizing, Style, Price, and Popular Models

A s we noted in a recent head-to-head , maximalist cushioning is all the rage among running shoes. This cushiony tech lets shoes absorb tons of repeated impact without permanently flattening the cushion into a pancake. And industry mainstays Saucony and Brooks have embraced this trend, pumping plenty of plushness into their pillowy soles while still opting for a “less is more” design approach.

Both brands offer shoes that fall pretty close to the sweet spot between overbuilt and minimalist. In other words, they balance forward-thinking design without inflating the cost—or the outsole. But they diverge greatly in terms of how they strike that balance, so much so that many runners prefer one over the other.

Each brand has its popular mainstays that offer supreme cushioning, solid energy return, and a comfortable fit, but depending on your needs, one brand’s shoe may be a better fit than the other. Let’s explore the differences between Saucony and Brooks to determine which of the brand’s best is suited for you.

Saucony Versus Brooks Running Shoes

  • Daily Trainers: Saucony Ride 16 vs. Brooks Ghost 15
  • Budget Shoes: Saucony Cohesion 16 vs. Brooks Trace 2
  • Race Day Shoes: Saucony Endorphin Pro 3 vs. Brooks Hyperion Max
  • Max Cushioned Shoes: Saucony Triumph 21 vs. Brooks Glycerin 20
  • Trail Shoes: Saucony Peregrine 13 vs. Brooks Catamount 2

Key Differences Between Saucony and Brooks Running Shoes

Saucony and Brooks are similar technical shoes, but they differ significantly in terms of fit. The former tends to have a narrower, snugger fit, while the latter is roomier, particularly in the toe box. If you prefer shoes with very little play for your foot to move around, you might like the snug stability of Saucony. Some runners find them too tight, though, so if you like your foot to have room to breathe, lean toward Brooks.

This difference also extends to the drop. Saucony shaves a few millimeters off, resulting in a slightly more natural feel, whereas the Brooks may have a more noticeable differential between toe and heel.

→ Cushioning

Each brand has its own proprietary foam tech for maximalist cushioning.

Brooks’ DNA LOFT emphasizes marshmallow softness above all else. It’s achieved by pumping common EVA foam with air and nitrogen, resulting in extra cushioning without extra weight.

The company’s BioMoGo DNA is more adaptive, shifting the balance toward springiness. While it’s still soft due to a toned-down version of its proprietary foam, it may feel more natural to some runners than DNA LOFT foot pillows.

Saucony’s somewhat new Pwrrun tech, on the other hand, is lighter and delivers more energy return. The latest version is Pwrrun HG , which uses compressed PEBA (polyether block amide) foam beads to create a bouncy, moderately cushioned structure. It’s known for its outstanding energy return and lightweight.

How We Compared

I’ve spent a lifetime running in various conditions and know all too well what to look for in a great running shoe. I used this experience while testing models from each brand, from Brooks’ much-anticipated Ghost 15 to the latest version of Saucony’s race-favorite Endorphin line , ultimately choosing five that suit the most essential shoe categories: daily trainers, budget, race day, max cushioning, and trail running. Then, I compared them based on whether their fit was snug or roomy, and their cushioning, geometry, and energy return.

There are a few of the brands’ shoes, like the Brooks Revel and Launch or the overpriced Saucony Axon, that I didn’t include because, while acceptable, they don’t offer an exceptional running experience.

I also looked through our archives of previous guides about Brooks and Saucony to see how the latest editions of different lines stacked up against previous releases. This helped determine which lines have proven staying power in the long run so that you can know that you’re buying shoes you’ll enjoy for many miles.

Saucony’s Ride 16 is a highly versatile daily trainer solid for most road running and easy technical trails. It feels excellent on longer runs, thanks to its well-cushioned midsole and light weight. While it’s a bit too tight to slip on if you prefer to leave your trainers tied, that snugness translates into pretty decent stability. Super durable, this is the kind of workhorse shoe you’ll enjoy for several hundred miles.

The updated Ghost 15 from Brooks is a bit heavier than previous editions, but its outstanding cushioning and cozy upper result in an incredibly smooth, comfortable run. That weight makes them too much for speedwork, but they feel fantastic for long, lazy rides or even moderate-distance races. All that cushioning also makes them great for runners with joint pain.

The Saucony Cohesion 16 is geared toward value-forward beginners. It has decent cushioning for new runners, making it great for anyone training to get their distance up to five miles or so. It also grips the road well and is very durable. While it doesn’t offer the energy return or ample cushioning needed for distance running or speed training, the Cohesion gets the job done on a few quick weekly runs. It’s an especially attractive shoe for anyone looking to keep costs minimal.

While the Brooks Trace 2 costs a few dollars more than the Cohesion, it benefits from a slight boost in versatility. Again, the modest cushioning and energy return is likely not enough for advanced runners looking for longer, faster training, but the stable fit and platform allows the Trace 2 to double as decent gym shoes. The hard outsoles and limited forward cushioning make it unwieldy for runs over five or six miles, but it’s a solid pick for budget cross trainers.

The Saucony Endorphin Pro 3 is built to run comfortably until your legs give out. Its feather-light weight and pillowy cushioning feels fantastic during long runs, and the S-shaped carbon plate delivers plenty of propulsion. The company’s SpeedRoll tech, essentially a rocker that smooths the motion of your footfalls, results in fast transitions. It locks down firmly and is super breathable, and while runners with wider feet might find the toe box tight, I appreciate the stable snugness.

Similarly geared toward long-distance comfort, the Brooks Hyperion Max is competitively lightweight and supremely cushioned thanks, to the abundant use of the brand’s DNA Flash foam. The Rapid Roll tech, which is very similar to Saucony’s SpeedRoll, delivers quick, smooth transitions. While the Hyperion Max could benefit from a bit more bounce to support speed, it still feels excellent on an especially long run. Its upper is also highly breathable and provides a secure fit without becoming too restrictive.

Both of these shoes deliver fantastic levels of cushioning, but I think the Saucony Triumph 21 squeaks into the lead in terms of plushness, all due to the incredibly soft PRWRUN+ midsole. That midsole is great for distance running, heavier runners, or runners dealing with injury recovery or joint pain issues. It also has a solid energy return, adding an extra spring to your step. Its stability is questionable, however. While it does have the company’s GuardRails along each side to create a fairly stable platform, from my experience it can get mushy at times, especially when cornering.

The Brooks Glycerin 20 is certainly no slouch for cushioning either. The company’s updated nitrogen-infused DNA foam is not only tremendously soft, it also helps deliver excellent energy return. The upper is sturdy, soft, and breathable, and it’s great for pretty much any run, including extra-long distances. Here again, however, it has a distinct lack of stabilizing features.

These are two very different trail shoes. The Saucony Peregrine 13 leans into technical trail capabilities, providing plenty of traction and sensitivity. This helps maneuver over uncertain surfaces fast and prevent slipping by making it easy to feel the trail. While it could use a bit more rock protection underfoot, the toe is decently protected. All in all the Peregrine 13 can tackle pretty much any trail you throw at it, though some runners might find Saucony’s typically narrow toe box too tight.

The Brooks Catamount 2 , on the other hand, doesn’t offer the traction necessary for more technical trails. They offer good stability, energy return, and cushioning, making them a good pick for flatter, less challenging terrain. Avid trail runners may find the durability somewhat lacking, though it’s still plenty comfortable. You probably wouldn’t want to run a race in a pair, but the Catamount 2 is a fine pick for casual, easy-to-moderate trail running.

This article may contain affiliate links that Microsoft and/or the publisher may receive a commission from if you buy a product or service through those links.

We dive into the differences in sizing, style, prices, and more to help you choose between these top running brands.

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The Ghost is one of our most-loved running shoes. With a soft feel, smooth ride, and trusted fit, the men's Ghost 15 delivers the comfort and performance runners want.

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  • This metric refers to the percentage of material by weight that has been recycled from post- or pre-consumer sources.

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We are using sound science to address climate change and align our efforts across every level of our business to reduce carbon emissions. This includes product designs, materialization, manufacturing, and our global supply chain.

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This product is a certified CarbonNeutral® product.

Best for…

  • Improved cushioning

Smooth transitions

Enhanced upper

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Experience guide

At Brooks, our shoes are divided into categories that offer different experiences for your run.

alt text for callout image

Soft and protective to cushion your every step.

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Fast and streamlined to propel you through your run.

alt text for callout image

Responsive and springy to add extra lift to your stride.

alt text for callout image

Traction and stability help you run outside the lines.

experience type cushion

A smooth and floaty-feeling run thanks to plush cushioning designed to help you enjoy and savor your run.

Cushion level

  • Standard Cushioning

Shoes with standard cushioning provide a just-right blend of softness and responsiveness that creates a comfortable platform for your run or walk.

  • More Cushioning

With more softness than our standard cushioning, shoes with more cushioning may be the right choice if you like your run or walk on the soft side.

  • Most Cushioning

If you’re looking for maximum softness and enjoy features such as a plush feel under your feet and protection from impact, try shoes with the most cushioning.

Support level

Support Guide

Brooks shoes that are designated “neutral” are designed to deliver comfort and durability for a neutral stride — one that doesn’t need additional support. 

alt text for callout image

Brooks shoes with the “GTS” designation feature our Go-To-Support, which helps keep runners in their natural stride, even when they tire. Think of bumpers in a bowling lane!

  • Maximum Support

To provide maximum support, we pair our go-to-support (GTS) with additional features such as an extra wide base to enhance stability.

Not sure if you need support?

Use the questions below or complete the self-assessment in our 5-minute Shoe Finder Quiz.

You may benefit from extra support if:

  • Your knees move inward or touch when you do a simple squat 
  • You frequently get the same injury
  • You pronate or supinate
  • Your toes point in or out when you walk

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Ghost 15



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Smooth, balanced and better than ever with lighter-weight cushioning.

Updated cushioning

New & improved

Updated cushioning

New midsole features soft and lighter-weight DNA LOFT v2 cushioning.

Smooth transitions

Find your flow

Our soft midsole and Segmented Crash Pad team up for easy flow from landing to toe-off.

Enhanced upper

All-around comfort

Engineered air mesh upper provides comfort and breathability with 3D Fit Print for added structure.

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