The Mizuno Wave Alchemy 12 has a lot to live up to. It is the predecessor to one of the most successful and highly praised running shoes in the Mizuno catalogue, the Alchemy 11. Despite not being the lightest or the most aesthetically pleasing running shoe available, this particular line of shoe always offered incredible comfort and usability. The Mizuno Wave Alchemy 12 offers this and a lot more, making it a viable and somewhat inexpensive running shoe if you are in the market for a trusted shoe brand.
If there was one criticism that you could possibly make of the Mizuno range, it is that their visual designs are not the most enticing on the market, usually relying on a somewhat understated black, white and silver colour scheme. The Wave Alchemy 12 takes this preconceived notion and turns it completely on its head.
The incorporation of lime green into the design immediately makes the shoe stand out more, especially on the soles where a lot of Mizuno’s best features are traditionally found. Its offsetting with black in the point of the shoe and laterals is also visually appealing and eye catching.
One of the other rare complaints focused around the Wave Alchemy 10 and 11 design was that it was not the lightest running shoe available on the market and this is an issue Mizuno has sought to rectify. On the upper part of the shoe, there has been an extensive redesign of not only the appearance, but the materials used. This means that the overlays are lighter, the Dynamotion tab from the lateral aspect of the shoe has been removed and the heel support is also notably lower than previous models.
In terms of the redesign of the sole, not as radical steps have been taken. This, it is felt is to ensure that the support and general balance that helped Mizuno make a name for themselves within the running shoe is retained. A notable difference is that lightweight AP+ foam has been utilised in the heel of the shoe, which retains the ‘bouncability’ factor whilst still delivering a lightweight and supportive design.
INSOLE AND UPPER
This has traditionally been a real highlight of Mizuno’s past products and on paper the Wave Alchemy 12 follows this same trend. The upper of the shoe has not only been designed to be lightweight, it also incorporates incredible breathability to the extent where, once you are running you barely feel the shoe on your foot. There is good air passage when in motion, reducing half the battle faced when undertaking running of any kind.
The weight of the shoes is also a mere 12 ounces, which in more practical terms is the weight of a can of soda pop. You heard that correctly. This is one of the lightest running shoes available on a budget and the lack of burden upon your running stance is incredible.
The ride quality and cushioning of the shoe is also excellent thanks to the sole of the shoe comprising of 70% heavy duty carbon rubber. It is springy in nature, yet it is also broken down for your foot shape incredibly quickly, meaning that the Wave Alchemy 12 is ready for full capacity running well within an hour of opening. The shoe also has a somewhat more shallow feel to it, which is unlike its predecessors and may throw long term users of the brand initially but after some heavy duty running you will barely notice the difference.
A brief note should be made regarding the sole design and how it corresponds to your foot shape. The arch is located much further back than in your standard running shoe, and whilst this can be alleviated somewhat by wearing your pair in, it can be problematic for some as it places excess pressure upon the forefront of the ankle. Whilst you may be willing to change your running style sufficiently, for most this has been an aspect of significant complaint as is something you should be made aware of when purchasing.
- Much more visually striking than previous Mizuno footwear
- One of the lightest budget running shoes available
- Excellent running and strike pattern thanks to the carbonised rubber sole
- The sole design is not for everyone, especially those with a wider and longer foot shape. It can place excess pressure upon the front of your ankles which is extremely uncomfortable
The Wave Alchemy 12 is a great budget running shoe that is incredibly lightweight and supportive if you have a shorter foot shape than most. The runability factor of the shoe is high and visually it is Mizuno’s boldest step forward to date. This shoe is not for everyone however and if you have a longer or wider foot-base than most you will want to look elsewhere. I hope this Mizuno Wave Alchemy 12 review has been helpful.