The Asics GlideRide is based on the company's Guidesole sole technology first seen in the MetaRide running shoes, which I reviewed earlier this year.
The Guidesole design features an upward curl of the sole at the forefoot area. This rocker-like design works by shifting the body weight forward to propel runners forward more efficiently.
The MetaRide provides great energy return, or bounce, but is rather heavy at 317g and expensive at $399. The GlideRide is 30g lighter and $160 cheaper. It has a heel drop - the height difference between the heel and the forefoot of a shoe - of 5mm, unlike the MetaRide, which has no heel drop.
Like the MetaRide, the GlideRide's mid-sole is made of Asics' Flytefoam Propel foam GEL cushioning, which is said to enhance responsiveness during toe-off and reduce muscle fatigue.
It also has the 3D Guidance Line technology, which places the shoe's centre of gravity towards the rear to help runners swing through each stride quickly and easily.
The upward curl of the sole at the forefoot area in the GlideRide is less pronounced than that of the MetaRide. Still, the shoes edge my body forward more than most do during running. This works whether you are a heel or forefoot striker; the MetaRide tends to favour forefoot strikers.
I also like the thick cushioning of the mid-sole, which provides plenty of protection for my feet and knees.
The combination of the curved construction and ample cushioning should enable longer, easier runs. But its heft is not ideal for marathons or speed training.
In terms of comfort, the GlideRide felt great from my first 5km jog. It is a bit tight around the shoe tongue, but there was great support for the feet and ample wiggle room for my toes.
• Great energy return
• Very comfortable
• Plenty of cushioning
• Lighter and cheaper than the MetaRide
• Not a fashion statement
• Unstable when walking
MATERIAL: Asics’ proprietary Guidesole curve sole, Flytefoam mid-sole, engineered mesh upper
HEEL DROP: 5mm
WEIGHT: 281g (US 9, Men’s)
VALUE FOR MONEY: 4/5
But, while the GlideRide provides great bounce, it pales in comparison to the likes of Adidas' Ultraboost.
Also, due to the construction of the sole, the shoes do not feel very stable when one is walking in them.
The curved sole also makes the GlideRide look odd - certainly not the shoes for making a fashion statement.