ASICS Gel-Cumulus 22 Review
Whether you are a newbie or a veteran running, this trainer has something for just about everyone. It doesn’t break the mold with any new or advanced features but instead sticks with incredibly durable and comfortable materials to make your runs lightweight and responsive. It also boasts a dynamic fit that gives your feet plenty of room to breathe and move while still providing excellent lockdown to prevent the dreaded rolled ankle.
Below, I wanted to dive deep into the specs of the ASICS Gel-Cumulus 22 that make it a really great pair of everyday trainers.
Incredibly breathable upper
Durable AHAR rubber lasts for over 400 miles
Great shock absorption in the gel-cushioned heel
10 mm drop
Great for short tempo runs or long distances
Affordable price point
Narrow in the midfoot
Runs about a ½ size too small
Awkward cushioning in the midfoot
As I mentioned before, this is the perfect pair of trainers for Goldilocks, or for runners that are looking for something that feels “just right”. The midsole runs in the middle of the pack as far as cushioning and performance are concerned. It’s not too hard, and it’s not too soft. The midsole is composed of a few different layers of responsive cushioning that give you flex and movement where you need it most, as well as a heightened level of cushioning around the heel.
The midsole is composed of ASICS proprietary FlyteFoam Propel Technology that cradles and cushions your feet without that squishy marshmallow feel found in some of the higher cushioned runners. As you run, this FlyteFoam offers a good deal of bounce and adds an extra spring to your step without getting lost in heavy foam padding. I love that the design of this midsole is a great compromise between minimalist trainers and stability shoes.
I also wanted to take a minute to talk about the added heel cushioning in this shoe. Knee and joint pain often occur when the heel bed doesn’t provide runners with enough cushioning. As your heel strikes the hard pavement, it sends shockwaves up your legs that can cut your runs short. The Gel-Cumulus 22 works to prevent that painful shock by offering an additional layer of gel cushioning on the heel. This added layer of protection in the heel helps to cut down on knee pain without adding too much weight and bulk to the shoe.
I found that this shoe really shines in the construction of the upper. It is constructed from strong and lightweight materials that work to keep your feet cool and dry on those super hot days. The upper is composed of 3D print mesh materials that are completely seamless. The absence of seams reduces the risk of hot spots, and even allows runners to wear these shoes without socks without running the risk of developing blisters, even on your first few break-in runs together.
Runners also love the padding found in the heel collar and the tongue. While the outside of the heel is strong and secure to promote lockdown and prevent rolled ankles, it is lined with a thick layer of foam padding. This foam padding is incredibly soft and fights blisters, but it isn’t too heavy and bulky like the foam found in other stability trainers.
While the tongue isn’t gusseted, it won’t shift around on you. It stays in place due to the shoelace loop found around the top that really holds the tongue in place and helps provide a more secure fit to your foot.
The outsole of this shoe doesn’t set out to break the mold in terms of style or performance. It offers a pretty basic AHAR+ rubber outsole that offers runners heightened durability. The lugs are modest, which means that you can wear them on the sidewalk, on the treadmill, or even on modest trailheads. Personally, I haven’t logged in very many miles in this trainer to report back on the overall durability. However, I have found that some runners that have logged in over 150 miles found little signs of wear and tear on the outsole.
Based upon what long-distance runners have reported back on the durability of this shoe, it should easily be able to tackle up to 400 miles before it needs to be replaced. The added padding and higher drop may even allow heel-strikers to log in even more miles than runners with a more neutral gait cycle.
What I love most about the ASICS Gel-Cumulus 22 is that it is built for just about anything. Whether you want something to take out on a nice and easy tempo run or are looking to clock in quite a few miles, the modest design and the comfortable fit make this shoe perfect for just about anything.
The lightweight design also makes it ideal for wearing when engaging in HIIT or CrossFit. While it provides a good deal of stability features, these features still allow for heightened flexibility and movement.
The overall style of this shoe is pretty basic. It boasts a low, classic cut on the foot, and rocks the ASICS branding along the side. While the style isn’t breaking any molds, I love that it is offered in a wide range of truly unique color options. If you love a simple black or white pair of trainers, you will find a style that is perfect for you. However, if you are looking for a punchy color palette that will get you noticed at the gym, it also comes in bright colors such as orange, green, and purple.
One thing worth mentioning is the overall fit of this shoe. It boasts a dynamic upper that contours to the shape of your foot and has a seamless design that limits the occurrence of hot spots. Runners really appreciate the wide fit of the toe box that allows your toes to naturally splay inside of the shoe, even when your feet start to swell on those long runs.
While the toe box is wide and roomy, and the heel is slightly stiff to help boost lockdown, some runners do not like the fit in the midfoot. The midfoot of this shoe runs slightly narrow, which can feel uncomfortable to some. It was designed to be a little snug in the midfoot to help boost lockdown, but some runners feel that it is just a tad too tight.
I was pleasantly surprised by the price of this shoe. It comes in at a super affordable price point that enters the realism of budget-friendly trainers without sacrificing overall durability. Many trainers that clock in at under the 100 dollar mark are often less durable than their 100+ counterparts.
However, despite the lower price tag, many runners were able to clock in well over 400 miles before it was time to replace their running shoes, making the Gel-Cumulus 22 one serious value!
Comparisons to Previous Versions
The biggest change made between these two shoes is the construction of the upper. Runners found that the 3D print seamless upper is far more breathable and comfortable when compared to the 21. The 22 also boasts a slightly softer midsole, while offering a more comfortable and supportive ride. The newer version of the Gel-Cumulus is also more durable than the previous versions. It boasts an AHAR+ rubber outsole that is built to tackle more miles than its predecessors.
Whether you want something for nice and easy tempo runs, or want to put some miles behind you, this is a great trainer. I love that it has a breathable upper that I can wear with or without socks, and is incredibly versatile. They’re incredibly versatile and are built not only for the sidewalks or trails but the weight room or CrossFit classes as well. Plus, the affordable price point gives you little to no reason not to give these trainers a try!