Asics GT 1000 7 Review

I have had a love hate relationship with Asics.  I love the amazing array of Japanese racers they produce.  I love the durability of most of their shoes.  I love how their shoes look.  I like the biomechanical concepts they have tried to apply with their shoes.  II dislike the fact that they are slow to adapt, that they had kept archaic technologies, they fit on the narrow side and hadn't seemed to change much in the last 15 years.  My experiences with the GT 1000 7 and the DS Trainer 24 have blown most of my dislikes out of the water.  The separated outsole is now full length, the upper is far more flexible and adaptive, the ride is smooth and light and it costs $90.  Let's talk more about what makes the Asics GT 1000 7 such a great shoe.


Specifications (per Running Warehouse)
Weight: 10.2 oz
Stack Height: 28 mm / 18 mm (Forefoot/Heel)
Drop: 10mm
Classification: Mild to Moderate Stability Trainer
Cost: $90 (I found mine for $60)


FIT/UPPER

The Asics GT 1000 7 fits very true to size.  The upper has been updated with an engineered mesh that is stretchy and breathable.  It will accommodate a variety of foot shapes.  The forefoot is much wider compared to most Asics shoes and is one of the first times I haven't felt constricted at all in this company's shoes (barring of course the old Asics Piranha and Hyperspeed series).  The midfoot is snug and responds well to the laces.  The heel is fairly average in width, but thanks to the additional cushioning in the upper, I do not feel or am aggravated by the normal heel counter (used in almost all Asics shoes)


RIDE/MIDSOLE

I previously have been frustrated with Asics continual use of a posterior heel flare in almost all of their shoes.  While the Asics GT 1000 7 is no different, the switch to Flytefoam Lite in the heel makes landing in the rear far more smooth.  While those who land hard in the posterior section will still experience what I call the "heel brake" occurring from the posterior flare, the sole gives much better upon landing.   On the other end, there is a decent amount of heel spring.  Combined with the decent forefoot flexibility with the substantial grooves up front, rolling through the forefoot in this shoe is very smooth.  The transitions in this shoe are by far the smoothest of any Asics shoe I have tried.  While there is traditional a 10mm drop, it is not noticeable.


STABILITY

The stability of the Asics GT 1000 7 is on point.  In addition to the normal dual density DuoMax, there is a midfoot arch bridge.  I did not feel either one of these, but they both work together to provide a stable ride without being intrusive.  I did notice the lack of additional lower body fatigue during long runs that I get in neutral shoes, so know that something must be working (or it is just the psychological expectation of this being a stability shoes... who knows).  The guidance line in the sole was not noticeable until I started doing strides.  At that point it became apparent that my foot was being directed forward.  It was a subtle feeling however.  Subtle is probably the word I would use for how stability feels in this shoe.  It is not a high level stability shoe, but borders on the minimal level.  As in just enough but not too much.


SPEED

The Asics GT 1000 7 is a daily trainer.  While is feels far lighter, it works best as a mileage shoe but can handle tempo runs, hills and strides.  It would not be my first choice for hard workouts, but could perform them if necessary.  The Flytefoam Lite and SpEVA soles both are quite response, but there is too much weight to make this a faster shoe.


DURABILITY

I have well over 200 miles in this shoe and I am barely seeing any wear on the outsole or the upper.  I have used it on a variety of long road runs, trail runs and more and have yet to make much of a dent in the sole.  The durability of the Asics GT 1000 7 has been fantastic.  I am seeing barely any wear at the posterior lateral heel, the forefoot still looks great (albeit dirty) and the upper has no fraying.  I expect to get well over 500 miles in this shoe, although I always retire shoes by feel early just to protect my legs (that is not based on research/evidence, just personal feel)


THOUGHTS AS A DPT 

I am really impressed biomechanically at the changes Asics has made in this shoe (and several of their other shoes recently).  The addition of a full ground contact outsole makes the ride far more smooth and stable.  The midfoot trussic system is still there, but it is integrated into the sole instead of being exposed.  The forefoot is wider, more anatomical and there are far less overlays.  Finally, several methods are used for stability.  A midfoot arch bridge, mild dual density foam, a slightly wider last through the midfoot, full ground contact outsole and a guidance line.  Several parts of the stability have been used before by Asics, but the midfoot arch bridge and full ground contact outsole are nice new additions that make the shoe stable but not overbearing.  Due to the variety of stability methods used and no overly reliance on dual density foam, the Asics GT 1000 7 feels extremely smooth and more like a light stability trainer to me.  It is still very stable, but has enough there to let the foot do some work too.


WHO THIS SHOE IS FOR (Conclusion)

In a world where $150 is normal for a pair of running shoes, the Asics GT 1000 7 proves you can still produce an up to date trainer without the insane price tag.  The upper is adaptable and breathable.  The sole is now full ground contact, smooth and responsive.  The stability is mild to moderate (not too much or little).  Despite the 10.2 oz weight, it feels more like a lightweight trainer.  For those looking for what I consider a lighter stability trainer (which are my favorite kind) but still want enough there to protect them for long miles, I cannot suggest the GT 1000 7 enough.  This shoe has given me far more faith that Asics is adapting to appropriate current day footwear trends and has the potential to come back to the forefront of footwear.

GRADING

Fit/Upper          9/10
Ride/Midsole    8/10
Stability            9/10
Speed                7/10
Durability         10/10
Price  (NEW)    10/10

Total Score: 88%

Thanks for reading!

Editor's Note: As always, the views presented on this website belong to myself or the selected few who contribute to these posts. This website should not and does not serve as a replacement for seeking medical care. If you are currently injured or concerned about an injury, please see your local running physical therapist. If you are in the Los Angeles area, I am currently taking clients for running evaluations.

Dr. Matthew Klein, PT DPT OCS
Doctor of Physical Therapy
Board Certified Orthopedic Clinical Specialist
Kaiser SoCal Manual Therapy and Sport Fellow

***Disclaimer: These shoes were purchased for their full US retail price.  This in no way affected the honesty of this review. We put at least 50-75 miles on trainers and 10-25 miles on racing flats prior to reviewing them. Currently I have 205 miles on my pair. My views are based on my extensive history in the footwear industry and years testing and developing footwear. If you are a footwear rep looking for footwear reviews or consultations on development, we are currently looking to partner with companies to assist, discuss and promote footwear models. Partnership will not affect the honesty of our reviews.


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