Brooks Beast 18 Review Facts
The Brooks Beast 18 is a men’s motion control running shoe created for runners who need extra arch support and stability features due to overpronation and flat feet issues. This is an excellent shoe that is one of the best in its category and can help alleviate the pain in the joints caused by the issues mentioned above. It’s a powerful shoe that’s priced accordingly – it is far from cheap, but the price really isn’t that outrageous given the plethora of features you’re getting with it and the overall exquisite performance. The only thing to be mindful of is the narrower fit and the fact that the shoe isn’t as visually appealing as some neutral running shoes are.
The outsole of the Brooks Beast 18 boasts three rubber compounds used in its construction to deliver reliable traction
on various surfaces. The forefoot of the shoe features Flextra rubber and grooves which encourage the natural flexibility of the foot, and the rearfoot heel area features the HPR Plus rubber compound that provides maximum abrasion-resistance, increasing the overall durability of this stability running shoe. The HPR Plus protects the heel from intense impacts as well as the wear and tear that comes with running on various surfaces. The third rubber compound, the HPR Green is an environmentally friendly material that’s placed in the forefoot section and it provides efficient traction on both wet and dry surfaces.
The smooth heel-to-toe transition of the Brooks Beast 18 is ensured by the full-length Super DNA compound, a material that offers the most cushioning and protection out of all midsole compounds that the brand uses. The Super-DNA foam adapts to the foot and complements the outsole’s flexibility even further while providing a bouncy ride. The stability
aspect of the midsole is taken care of by the Extended PDRB and the DRB Accel, technologies that are used to correct pronation issues and other gait irregularities. The ‘PDRB’ stands for ‘Progressive Diagonal Rollbar’ and it’s a triple-density BioMoGo compound that also runs throughout the length of this techy shoe. The Extended PDRB is specifically designed to stabilize the arch and correct severe overpronation. The DRB Accel is a thermoplastic polyurethane compound used to provide torsional rigidity. Finally, the Omega Flex Grooves are integrated into the midsole and their purpose is to increase the flexibility of the shoe to accommodate natural foot movements.
The rearfoot and forefoot parts of the upper are made out of perforated engineered mesh that’s durable and breathable, so as to provide sufficient airflow and increase the upper flexibility. But the real treat here is the 3D Printed Support Saddle which is fused into the midfoot section and helps to work with the mesh areas to provide a firm, snug fit to the foot. What makes it stand apart from other shoe saddles is that it isn’t too thick, so it doesn’t make this running shoe
heavier or bulkier than it should be. The toe box and the heel area are reinforced with firm overlays that both stabilize the foot, prevent it from slipping, wobbling and twisting, and offer impact protection at the same time.
At 13.1oz or 377g for a half-pair of men’s size 9D (the Beast 18 only comes in men’s sizes and it’s a men’s version of the Brooks Ariel 18), this running shoe is heavy, there’s no escaping that fact. On one side, this means that you won’t be able to race in it, or sprint in it for that matter, but on the other side, the shoe will guarantee that your gait
will be corrected, which will minimize your chances of injury, knee, joint and back pain. This is a win-some-lose-some situation when it comes to the Beast 18’s weight, but we think that a lot of runners who experience pronation problems are more than willing to sacrifice the lightweight feel for a stable, snug fit.
One of the biggest changes compared to the Brooks Beast 16
is precisely the increased upper breathability that stems, in part, from the new no-sew overlay. The perforated mesh upper material really does a great job of soaking up moisture, providing airflow, ventilation and cooling the foot chamber. Additionally, the cushiony sock liner is capable of soaking up a sweat, so it’s made to be removable and washable, and the toe box is spacious so it will prevent the creating of blisters and overheating.
We’ve already mentioned the roomy toe box, which not only aids in the breathability but the comfort as well, seeing how your toes will have more than enough room to flex, stretch and move inside the shoe. Some customers have complained about this shoe running a bit narrow compared to a regular shoe; however, this is due to the fact that it's a stability shoe that can’t afford to allow runners with overpronation
issues to have any extra space, especially in the midfoot area. If you do have wide feet, we’d suggest you try the shoe in-store before buying it and opting for a half-size up if needed. The available widths are D – Medium, 2E – Wide and 4E – Extra Wide. Other than maybe being a little too tight for runners with wide feet, the Brooks Beast 18 is a supremely comfy shoe that provides a great running experience.
The Brooks Beast 18 is the men’s version of the Ariel 18, and as such, it features a more robust, sturdy-looking design. Some runners have complained about the colorways being too bland and boring, and that may be true, but it’s worth noting that the brand has opted for a no-nonsense design for the entirety of this shoe. Its style and design are completely in the service of its function – to provide extra stability to overpronators. If we had to describe this stability shoe in one sentence, it would be: techy and rough around the edges.
With the plethora of premium, high-quality materials, it’s hard to imagine the Brooks Beast 18 ever experiencing significant wear and tear. The shoe is so sturdy, thick and well-built that it would require some extra effort to make it last less than at least 3 running seasons. Starting from the combination of durable
rubber compounds in the outsole to the elaborate and well thought-out midsole, to the resilient upper construction, this running shoe really doesn’t have an obvious flaw.
The Brooks Beast 18 is intended to be a daily running shoe, meaning that it requires underfoot protection that reinforces its purpose. The Super DNA foam provides great shock-absorption
and the overall midsole cushioning system can help resolve aching ankles as well as knees. Furthermore, the shoe features a full-length Segmented Caterpillar Crash Pad, which provides a smooth gait cycle and converts impact shock into kinetic energy that is used to further promote the gait smoothness.
The reactive nature of the Super DNA foam ensures that the energy-return of the Brooks Beast 18 is nothing short of exquisite. Not only is the ride in this high-quality motion-control shoe responsive, but it remains cushioned and soft throughout the entire running session. The before mentioned Caterpillar Crash Pad provides an incredibly springy ride, which adds to the overall comfort and effortless running experience in the Beast 18.
The Brooks Beast 18 is a motion-control shoe aimed at runners who have moderate to severe overpronation issues and flat feet, which constitutes around 15% of all runners. Needless to say, this shoe provides significant additional arch support and its classification as a motion-control shoe means that is has stabilizing features that can counteract the extreme irregularities in the gait cycle that are present with runners with flat feet and severe overpronation. If you’re not sure if you are a severe overpronator, take a look at a pair of shoes you wear every day – do they seem much more run-down in the medial side of the sole and/or has the upper bent inwards a bit? If you find any of these two signs, you might be in need of a motion-control shoe. This isn’t just another fitness trend to ignore; runners who have pronation issues have a much higher risk of experiencing shin splints
, knee pain, and plantar fasciitis.
This is a shoe meant to be worn on roads, pavements, track, gym floors, light gravel, and other various flat surfaces. While this is a running shoe, its weight prevents it from being a long-distance or racing shoe – our advice is to cap it off when you reach 10 miles in one day because the weight and tiredness of the feet it causes could, in turn, cause you to compromise your running form. If you want to participate in a race
, our advice is to invest in a good race shoe that you’ll hop in when race day comes and hope for the best.
Fans of lightweight shoes will frown upon the higher three-digit price of the Brooks Beast 18, but the truth is that a lot of other neutral shoes go for an even higher price just on the account of their stylish looks. From an investment angle, the Brooks Beast 18 is an adequately-priced shoe (although we could never call it affordable) that has the ability to improve your overall health, joint pain, shin splints, etc. This kind of assistance is worth the money, in our books. However, it’s never a bad idea to wait for a discount, especially seeing how the Christmas holidays are just around the corner.
The combination of the HPR Green and the HPR Plus rubber compounds in the outsole provide fantastic traction on various surfaces, both in wet and dry conditions. Not only is the traction the Brooks Beast 18 provides firm and grippy, but the durable outsole rubber is a guarantee that the outsole won’t wear down and become slick and slippery, as with some other running shoes.
The initial impression of the Brooks Beast 18 is that they’re a really firm, stiff shoes that don’t offer much in the flexibility department. However, the thing is that the foam midsole takes some time to break in, and once it does, it becomes much more flexible, which is accentuated by the Omega Flex Grooves that not only increase flexibility but also help the foot more in a more natural manner. Additionally, the Strobel technology is integrated into the upper, which is stitched to the Cushsole S-257 platform that provides additional flexibility and softness to the foot.
Given the elaborate technologies used in the midsole to improve the medial stability and torsional rigidity, the Brooks Beast 18 will be a running shoe greatly appreciated by runners who experience severe overpronation issues or have flat feet. Further assisting the midsole technologies is the reinforced heel which provides additional stability and prevents slipping and wobbling of the foot.
The Brooks Beast 18 features a medium-to-high drop of 12mm, the heel stack height measures 30mm and the forefoot stack height is 18mm, which makes this a shoe that favors heel-strikers and enables them to experience easier heel-to-toe transitions. This choice of the drop is logical when you consider the fact that a lot of people with pronation issues and flat feet do tend to be heel strikers.
● Three-rubber outsole
● Flextra rubber on the forefoot
● Super-DNA foam midsole
● Extended PDRB and the DRB Accel stability features
● 3D Printed Support Saddle and perforated mesh upper
● Extremely comfortable
● Higher price point
● Very durable, high-quality materials
● Road, track and treadmill shoe
● Incredible responsiveness
● Motion-control shoe suitable for overpronators and runners with flat feet
● Arch support
● 12mm drop
● Function-oriented look
Given all the info above, we really couldn’t find a straight-up flaw in the Brooks Beast 18 men’s motion-control shoe. It is a comfortable shoe with a spacious toe box, made of quality materials that work in unison like a charm. When it comes to durability, stability, support, traction, flexibility, and responsiveness, this shoe performed beautifully. The only negative aspects are that it runs a bit narrow for some people, that it doesn’t have an exciting design and that it’s heavy, which isn’t unprecedented for a stability/motion-control shoe. All in all, we consider this to be one of the best motion-control shoes on the market to date.