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Mens Mizuno Wave Rider 21

Mens Mizuno Wave Rider 21
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The Mizuno Wave Rider 21 is a neutral daily training shoe that offers a firmer ride than many. An adaptable and reliable shoe.

Mens Mizuno Wave Rider 21

The Mizuno Wave Rider 21 is a neutral daily training shoe that offers a firmer ride than many. An adaptable and reliable shoe.
Write a review
View reviews

Our verdict

A great one-stop shop of a shoe. A great all-rounder and an improvement over the previous model but it is firmer than most shoes.

  • Positive
  • Good cushioning for those who like it firm
  • Breathability and construction
  • Negative

First impressions

The next generation Mizuno Wave Rider 21 follows in the same vein as it’s predecessors and it’s all the better for it. Having been a fan of Mizuno shoes and their responsive ride, this new model features a few updates so let’s see how they fair.

On the foot, the first thing we noticed was a slightly wider toe box area which will come as good news for those with a slightly wider foot with plenty of toe wiggle room that will, no doubt, reduce any pinching. That said, the shoe held my long skinny feet perfectly well which was a relief. The shoe’s sizing seems true to size.

They also feel luxurious on the foot. Mizuno quality has long been accepted but the heel area has been revamped to offer a plusher feel and the new anatomical sockliner offers a softer feel directly under the foot.

Out on the runs, the Wave Rider 21 was as good as it’s ever been and maybe better. The Cloudwave midsole has not changed from the previous model but the heel wedge is now lighter and more cushioned than the previous model making landings softer. The big blown rubber outsole under the forefoot adds to the comfort.

Due to the Wave Rider’s firmness though, these shoes are very responsive and are also light weight making them a very practical shoe. That’s a boring and uninspiring word isn’t it – ‘practical’ – but I mean that is a positive way. The Wave Rider 21 is great for your daily runs, feels fast if you want to pick the pace up for a tempo run or some fartlek in the park, and you could also run longer races in it. Now that’s a shoe that offers value for money.


The ride is smooth and reactive. The Cloudwave does offer a very different feel to shoes using just a conventional EVA midsole. They are responsive and well-cushioned but that cushioning is firmer so particularly good if you’re a little heavy on your shoes as I am.

That new heel wedge does make them feel slighter softer than the previous model which will be well received by Wave rider fans.


The upper features a dual mesh which is extremely breathable so particularly good for hot climates. Build quality is as good as ever but aesthetically, they just lack a bit of wow factor to me.

The shoe features a stretch mesh in the forefoot which is comfortable and enhances fit. The aforementioned heel area has been re-worked to offer a more comfortable fit at the heel and the sockliner adds to that plush fit and feel experience.


Nothing has changed from the previous model. The X10 carbon rubber area in the heel features for durability and the blown rubber offers good cushioning under the forefoot. This blown rubber outsole features flex grooves in high flex areas. The grip was fine on the road, wet road and also on light trail in the park.


We are delighted to announce that the Wave Rider 21 follows in the footsteps of its predecessors and the changes to this new model have improved it for the masses. The slightly wider toe box and softer heel landing area will be well received. The responsive ride will work well if you wish to pick the pace up and for general running, it offers a durable comfortable but firm ride. Those wanting a softer, bouncier shoe might be better off looking for a shoe like a Brooks Ghost but one great advantage the Wave Rider has over many shoes is that this one shoe will be good for all the average runner’s needs – slower training, pacier runs and even racing.

Technical info


Cloudwave consists of a redesigned elastic, thermal plastic wave running from the heel to the midfoot, creating an incredibly springy and well-cushioned ride.

Smooth Ride is a gender specific network of grooves that minimizes the rapid acceleration and deceleration of the foot to create a smooth heel to toe ride.

U4ic is a lightweight midsole that provides optimal shock absorption, improved durability and a resilient ride.

U4icX Heel Wedge is a lighter, more cushioned version of U4ic that delivers a soft, pillowy underfoot feel for cushion upon impact.


X10 located in the heel is made of durable carbon rubber for enhanced traction.

Blown rubber in the forefoot increases cushioning and responsiveness.

Flex Controllers placed in high flex areas on the outsole act as miniature wave plates for increased flexibility and reduced weight.


Dynamotion Fit creates optimal fit with stretch material in the forefoot and a collar construction that prevents the heel collar from buckling under load.

Dual Zone engineered mesh in the forefoot is updated to better respond to foot movements for a distraction-free fit.

Premium Anatomical Sockliner helps provide a natural fit while creating a softer feel directly beneath the foot.

U4icX Strobel Lasting board for a comfortable and cushioned underfoot feel.

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Shoe details

Gender Mens
Year 2017
Season Summer
Current model
Release date 2017
MSRP $119.95
Weight 10.1 oz. / 286 grams
Heal Drop 12mm


Shoe Type
Light Trail
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