Mizuno Wave Sky Neo Performance Review
THOMAS: The Mizuno Wave Sky Neo is the first Mizuno shoe I’ve reviewed in a while, and this is not how I wanted it to go. Get ready to take the red pill cause the truth is coming.
First things first, let’s get the hype out of the way. It’s a completely brand-new shoe from Mizuno. And while it retains the “wave” moniker, there is no wave plate in this shoe from what we can tell. Rather, this shoe is meant to be a highly-cushioned daily trainer (and maybe easy day?) type shoe with loads of comfort.
The midsole embraces the new Mizuno Enerzy foam, supposedly 293% softer and 56% bouncier than its predecessors, and it certainly feels good. Anyway, let’s move on, this review will move faster than the Neo.
THOMAS: The step-in feel of the Wave Sky Neo is immediately comfortable. The Enerzy foam is soft and springy, so it’s definitely a step in the right direction. The shoe looks good too, so kudos to Mizuno’s designers for that. I also feel that the upper would’ve been great if I would’ve received the proper size (more on that below). It appeared that a lot of thought and design was put into the construction of the knit upper. However, I can’t give a proper confirmation of that.
This section of the review is now complete.
THOMAS: I’ll start with this: I thought I was running in my size 10.5 the entire time. But it turns out my shoes (sent directly from Mizuno) came in a box labeled 10.5, but the actual size was an 11 (which I found out after I put my miles in).
Needless to say, I couldn’t get a good lockdown in the Neo, and the upper burrito-ed over itself. Since it’s a one-piece knit upper without a tongue, you can’t do the runner’s loop without mashing the extended tongue/lip.
The stack height feels substantial, and like I said, good– at first. The two layers of different Enerzy foam feel fun and bouncy standing and walking, but on the run, I could feel my lower leg and hips trying to compensate for the lack of guidance. Maybe a better upper or a wider platform underfoot would help. I ended up aborting my second run in the Wave Sky Neo after a mile. Normally we put 20+ miles in a shoe before reviewing it. But with this shoe, I had to stop after only 6.5 miles of running. My hips were telling me to take the shoes off, and they don’t lie.
The final death stroke to the Wave Sky Neo is the weight. Although it’s listed at 11.8 ounces/335 grams on the specs (presumably in a US size 9), in my size 11, the shoe weighed a whopping 13.6 oz/385 grams! At first, I wondered if the super bouncy Enerzy foam would make up for the extreme weight. The foam helps, but the shoe is unforgivably heavy for a performance shoe. In fact, this may be one of the heaviest daily trainers we’ve ever received. I don’t care how much energy return you have, the laws of physics will win every time.
If you can find it in the US, it’s MSRP’d at around $235. It feels like you’re paying by the ounce.
THOMAS: The Neo is a ‘no’ for me. There is no spoon.
I will say, I like the Enerzy cushioning and in a different model, it will probably be a hit. In this shoe, it’s like The Matrix Reloaded: a damned disappointment. The silver lining is that I believe Mizuno is on to something special here with the Enerzy foam and I forward to seeing what they’ll do with it in the future.
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