Asics Gel Pulse 7 GTX Review Facts
Similar to the Gel Pulse 7, the Asics Gel Pulse 7 GTX has many of the same features. The biggest and one of the only differences to the shoe is that it now features Gore-Tex waterproof technology in the upper of the shoe. While this is supposedly the only part of the shoe that Asics changed, many feel the GTX ruined the quality of the shoe, noting that this change reduced the original comfort of the upper. If you are someone who isn’t too concerned about this though and are looking for a shoe that is not only loaded with cushioning but will also keep your foot dry, this may be the shoe for you.
Like most current Asics road running shoes, the Gel Pulse 7 GTX features an AHAR rubber outsole. The AHAR is the Asics High Abrasion Rubber outsole, basically meaning the rubber is made so that it won’t deteriorate quickly.
This is going to be great for runners who plan on doing a lot of running because they are going to get a lot out of the shoe; especially the outsole, before they see any deterioration of the shoe.
Additionally to the outsole is the Guidance Line System added by Asics. What the Guidance Line System does is adds a groove into the outsole of the shoe to help runners while they take off and land, so that the shoes stay in the right place and stay very stable. These are the two most important features runners are going to see on the outsole of the shoe.
The midsole of the shoe is where runners are going to see the most cushioning, as Asics put their two most famous types of cushioning in this shoe. The Gel Pulse 7 GTX features the forefoot and rearfoot Gel Cushioning System,
strategically placed in the forefoot and rearfoot of the shoe to provide the best comfort/cushioning for runner’s feet. This is going to help the foot stay comfortable during the run, enabling a soft landing every time.
The next feature seen in the Gel Pulse 7 GTX is going to be the SpEVA foam midsole. The SpEVA foam material is a newer, lighter weight version of the typical EVA midsole seen in a lot of shoes. The SpEVA foam material focuses more on the bounce-back aspect
than it does total cushioning since the Gel Cushioning Systems take care of a lot of that.
This doesn't mean that the foam midsole doesn’t offer a lot of cushioning, but it does make sure the cushioning in the shoe is still very responsive
, which is important for a high cushioned running shoe.
The upper is supposedly the only part of the shoe changed in the Asics
Gel Pulse 7 GTX, where there was an addition of a Gore-Tex upper to make sure water stays out of the foot.
This addition to the shoe though did bring back some negative responses from runners, as many say it ruined the comfort of the upper, and that it wasn’t very necessary.
Regardless, the Gore-Tex material does its job and everyone who has used the shoe claims it does do a very good job at keeping water out of the shoe. The upper of the shoe is made of a mesh material, that doesn’t fit either too tight or too loose
to the runner’s foot.
The shoe could certainly be lighter, but it is by no means extremely heavy. The male version of the shoe weighs in at 11.2 ounces, making it a shoe that isn’t going to be too overly heavy, not extremely light either. Runners are going to have no problem with this shoe as far as weight goes unless they are used to running in very lightweight shoes.
With the addition of the Gore-Tex material in the upper of the shoe, many runners feel the breathability of the shoe decreased. The GTX material was made to keep all water out of the shoe, which means there is going to also be less air coming in and out of the shoe. If breathability is something you’re looking for in your shoe, this probably isn’t going to be one you’re going to want to buy.
Again, like the breathability, many runners feel the Asics 7 GTX was ruined in terms of comfort by the addition of the Gore-Tex. This lack of comfort is mainly in the upper though, which may be an inconvenience for many runners.
The shoe is still comfortable in the bottom of the foot because of all the cushioning in the shoe. Depending on what your preference is for comfort, this may be something you want to consider as a runner if you’re looking at this shoe.
The style of the Gel Pulse 7 GTX isn’t much different from the non-GTX model.
It looks like a traditional road-running shoe. The only thing to complain about with the style of the shoe is that there isn’t much to choose from in terms of color options
. The color options look fine even though they are very basic. If you’re looking for something that doesn’t stick out too much, this is a good option as far as the style goes.
The durability of the shoe is very good, and many runners feel the shoe lasts them a pretty long time before wearing down and breaking apart. The outsole of the shoe is made with Asics High Abrasion Rubber, so it is made to last a long time.
In addition to the AHAR, the Gel Pulse 7 GTX has its SpEVA foam midsole, which is also made to last the runner a long time before wearing down. The upper of the shoe is made with a durable mesh and also has the waterproofing GTX material, which lasts runners a long time as well.
The Gel Pulse 7 GTX has pretty good protection
, especially in the lower parts of the shoe.
The main form of protection comes from the cushioning, as it protects the runner’s foot from injury due to the shock of the ground.
The SpEVA foam midsole, combined with the rearfoot and forefoot Gel Cushioning Systems make for a great pair of protection to the bottom of the runner’s foot. Besides this, the upper offers protection from water getting in the shoe, which doesn’t do much to prevent injury, but it at least prevents the foot from getting soaked.
Protection from injury in the upper, however, is mainly nonexistent
, as there are no real technologies or features for protection up there.
The responsiveness of the 7 GTX isn’t bad despite all the cushioning. The purpose of the SpEVA foam midsole is to provide cushioning that doesn’t take away from the responsiveness of the shoe. This shoe is a good example of what the SpEVA midsole does for the responsiveness of the shoe. Many runners feel this aspect of the shoe is one that isn’t anything to complain about.
There’s no special feature for support in the Asics Pulse 7 GTX, but some runners feel the shoe does a decent job at keeping the top of the foot supported, through the upper of the shoe. The shoe keeps the foot locked in relatively tight to the foot, not quite giving a glove-like feel, but still keeping the foot tight enough from moving around all over the place.
The only problem is that some runners feel the shoe doesn’t offer a lot of comfort in the upper, so even though the shoe keeps the foot locked in well, it is a very uncomfortable fit. If you prefer support over comfort, this will be okay for you most likely, if not, you may want to reconsider.
The terrain this shoe is meant to be run on is road or asphalt. The shoe will do its best running on this surface, though some runners use it for a little bit of trail running. Like most shoes, using it on a surface it is not recommended to be run on will most likely result in faster break-down and deterioration of the shoe. By sticking to road and asphalt, the runner will most likely prolong the life of the shoe and traction.
The Asics Gel Pulse 7 GTX comes with many features, and that means this shoe has a moderately high price tag. The shoe does have a lot of features which may pay off for the higher price, though again, the comfort of the shoe is something a lot of runners feel ruins the shoe.
This leaves many wondering whether or not the higher price of the shoe is worth it because most runners don’t find the shoe to be all that comfortable. However, the shoe does offer a lot of cushioning and comfort at the bottom of the foot, which makes it a tough call for the buyer in some cases. Regardless, the shoe could definitely be priced a little lower.
Many feel the traction of the shoe is very good, and that it lasts them a long time. Going back to terrain, the shoe will have the best traction when being used on road and asphalt, but some runners who use the shoe for occasional trail running also feel the traction works well out there. The only downfall about that is the traction of the shoe will most likely wear out faster than if it were only used on road type terrain.
Another downfall of the Asics Gel Pulse 7 GTX is the flexibility. While it’s not the worst, many feel the original version of the shoe had much more flexibility, and the addition of the Gore-Tex material took away from how flexible the shoe was.
This was never proven, though based on how many people used the shoe, there weren’t too many positive responses from it. If flexibility is something you really care about in your shoe, this may be something you want to look into.
The stability of the shoe is very good. The Asics Gel Pulse
7 GTX has a very stable outsole, helping to keep the runner’s foot very stable as they run. Additionally, the SpEVA midsole also helps a little with the stability of the shoe. The upper of the shoe helps with stability
by keeping the foot locked in tight to the shoe.
This at least keeps the upper of the foot stable,
so that it won’t be moving around during the run. This stability in the upper is something most runners liked about the shoe. Also, the upper of the shoe isn’t as soft as some, which also adds a little bit of stability in the upper of the shoe.
The drop of the Asics Gel Pulse 7 GTX is 10mm
, which is a standard drop for a running shoe. This drop is something most runners are going to be used to, so it shouldn’t come as a shock to anyone. For runners who prefer a close-to-the-ground
feel though, this is not going to be the shoe you’re going to want. For runners used to an average drop of a road shoe though, this won’t be too much of a surprise.
• SpEVA foam Midsole
• Rearfoot and Forefoot Gel Cushioning Systems
• Asics High Abrasion Rubber (AHAR)
• Gore-Tex Waterproof upper
The bottom line is that the Asics Gel Pulse 7 GTX is a shoe that most runners feel was ruined by the addition of the Gore-Tex material. Though the GTX did do a good job at waterproofing the shoe, it takes away from many other aspects of the original shoe that runners love. The compromised features include the comfort, flexibility, and breathability of the shoe.
If, however, you are looking for a waterproof running shoe to hit the road with, this is going to be a great shoe for you as long as you can deal with the couple of negatives the shoe has. The Gel pulse 7 GTX still has a lot of cushioning throughout the shoe, so to you, the negatives may not be anything to worry about.