Brooks Neuro

8.5
8.5 score
Runnerclick score (8.5)/10

Our overall Runnerclick score is based on 3 different factors: Editor's rating after in-depth testing. User ratings submitted on this page Overall score from the "reviewmeter" based on reviews across the web the weight of each factor is: 40% editor rating 15% user ratings 45% reviewmeter
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Editor rating: 8.7 / 10
User's rating: based on 2 user ratings
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Brooks Neuro Review Facts

When you first see the Brooks Neuro, it’s hard not to stare. The outsole of the shoe looks like it came from the bottom of the ocean, and the upper is transparent mesh, printed with some kind of circuit card graphics. Just visible under the mesh are bright bands of shoelace-like material that zigzag across the shoe from heel to toe.  

Once you get over the Neuro’s strange appearance and try it on, you soon realize that all the odd elements have a functional goal. The Neuro was designed to give the runner a comfortable and highly flexible ride at fast speeds. Its unique composition propels the runner forward and offers a running experience, unlike any previous Brooks model.

Editor's Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Amazing flexibility
  • Supportive and adjustable upper
  • Highly stable
  • Podded outsole offers unique ground feel
  • “Gearing mechanism” allows forefoot and heel to move independently
  • Unique “hammock” lacing system for a custom fit
  • First shoe in the Brooks Propel category
Cons
  • Three-layer mesh upper not very breathable
  • Bulky appearance
  • Unconventional design
See How
Reviews were analyzed here:
We read, analyze and sort reviews into positive & negative categories to give you the complete picture.
What are buyers saying?

We have spent 4.5 hours analyzing a total of 600 reviews.

These reviews are then categoried into "Positive" and "Negative" feedback.

Below you will read a summary of them:

Positive
  • I bought these for the stability. They are fantastic. I am comparing to the Asics GT-21. These are a bit more snug but they are comfortable. I had to get a half size larger in EE.
  • The cushioning in this shoe makes for a great ride. They are really a well made shoe and they fit perfect.
  • These are great running shoes. They are a great quality and they have amazing cushioning. My feet feel like they are resting in clouds.
  • The top of this shoe keeps your foot in place and really snug and has tons of support al through the shoe. I love these on long or short runs. They have a great rubber sole that helps contact support. I love these shoes.
  • These have great traction and are good for using on pavement or mild trails.These are a awesome comfortable shoe as well.
  • I walk around 4 miles a day and these offer me the support I need to not have any pain after. They are really great or my overpronating. I probably will always purchase Brooks.
  • I wear light socks with these and they fit perfect. They needed some readjusting at first as the sole slid a bit.Other than that, they needed no other breaking in. The lacing held up great and I had no issues with rubbing my first 5 mile run. They were flexible and light and had no bulky feel to them. I was able to use these easy peasy in the gym with no issues. They have a great look and design as well.
  • They are a tad bit narrow but really comfortable and flexible. They are not as clunky as I thought they would be and you cannot see how round they actually are from the top. I got a tiny pinky toe blister, but I am going to say that is because I went hard right out of the box.
  • The look and the comfort are there with these shoes. They last a long time and keep their cushioning and comfort. They really have lasted longer than any other brand I have bought before.
  • I bought these on a whim because they were on sale and I love Brooks Revenna’s. I trained for my half marathon in these and had zero issues. They have also helped take time off my run. These have officially replaced my Revennas.
  • These have a real stable traction to them and they are really flexible to boot. I like the weight, doesn't hurt my ankles. These are great from any type of runner I feel.
  • These really take a pounding and I do not feel a thing. They are super absorbent. They help with my stride and give me an extra boost as I run. I really enjoy these shoes.
  • These molded to my oot right as I put them on, genius. My heels were nice and secure and didn’t slide around. I had no break in time issues and they really absorb my run impact, air shocks.
  • Other than the tongue bunching up under the laces they are really comfortable. They have a real lightweight feel to them and are super cushy.
  • These are lighter with a lot of great cushion in there. They aren't bulky and haven't bothered me with my pronation. I am an average to wide width and they fit good. I really love Brooks and highly recommend them.
  • These are conversation pieces, people always compliment them. I bought them for work because I need a good comfortable, supportive shoe for my 12+ hours at the hospital. These have exceeded y expectations. I will be getting Brooks again.
  • I got these a side larger after reading the reviews and they are perfect. They have a good weight to them, very light. They are also really comfortable and feel wonderful when I run in them.
  • The insoles could use a bit more comfort. However, they work great walking around at work all day.
  • Not my choice for running. They did not provide the support I really needed. But, they are good and comfortable.
  • Poppin' colors and great design. I used these all day at work the first wear and they didn't create any extra ain. good , comfortable, stable work shoe. I was happy with my purchase.
  • I use these for walking around on concrete all day. I do not feel a thing. They are really cozy and keep my feet alive during the day. The most comfortable shoes I own.
Negative
  • This is not an upgrade to anything in my opinion. Not a good shoe. Thye crunch my toe box and give me pain after a bit of use. Brooks usually is always a good buy, not this model.
  • After one use, the sole started splitting and the glue was showing. They had a tongue issue where it would not sit secure and bunched up. This is just a crappy design for Brooks. NEXT!
  • These rubbed a debilitating blister on the bottom of foot, just horrible pain. And the tongue,UHGG! It digs into the top of my foot and has some hard spot to it. I had to send these back. They really hurt my feet.
  • These caused me so much pain and when I contacted Brooks they informed me that I need better socks. What? I had blisters on my heels that bled and the tongue put so much strain on the top of my foot it was bruised. Really bad design and customer service from Brooks.
  • These are not a heel striking shoe. I was in a lot of pain after running a short distance. They had very little cushion. Usually a great brand, the Neuro just didn't stand up.
  • I loved my other Brooks, all 9 pair. These, I hate them. The tongue digs into your ankle, the heel slips because the shoe laces are not setting right, and they just are not comfortable. I would not recommend the Neuro to anyone.
  • These kept catching my toenail on the seem inside. It also runs a bit bigger than my other Brooks, consistency much. These were supposed to replace the Pureflow but these are a pure-bust.
Reviewmeter
The Reviewmeter shows you an overall score that you can easily refer to. The highest rating is 10 (100% positive feedback)
Of the 600 reviews we found in total, 15% were negative, and 85% were positive.
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Outsole
Outsole

Outsole

The outsole of the Neuro is unique, to say the least. The Neuro is the first shoe in the new “Propel” category for Brooks which translates into a fast and bouncy ride. Round, BioMoGo DNA foam pods, placed throughout the bottom of the outsole, allow for adaptive cushioning throughout the shoe. The pods also create bounce as they compress on impact, then firm up and transfer the energy back to the runner. These pods give the shoe a slight "sea creature" appearance, but work well to give the runner a quick transition with every foot strike. Many runners said that the faster they ran, the more they felt the bounce and energy. The pod design also adds flexibility to the shoe and a level of ground feel that is quite different. Some runners said it took a few miles to get used to the feel, but was very enjoyable and made them want to run faster.

Having individual pods on the outsole also allows the foot to move more naturally and independently in all directions as opposed to a single piece outsole. According to Brooks, this independence is further enhanced by the pods being decoupled at the midfoot which releases the “sub-plantar joint”. Brooks calls this “the Gearing Mechanism” which allows the forefoot and heel to move independent of each other and gives the runner a powerful toe-off.
Midsole
Midsole

Midsole

The midsole features Brooks’ BioMoGO DNA cushioning which is specifically designed for a lightweight and responsive ride. The cushioning adapts to the foot based on the amount of force placed on it. “Dynamic Flex” foam in the forefoot area gives the shoe flexibility and a rounded heel encourages a natural running movement and a smooth landing. The decoupled midfoot, or gearing mechanism, allows the heel and the forefoot to move independently of each other which helps with power generation. Runners liked this feature for uphill runs.
Upper
Upper

Upper

Just like the unique outsole, the upper of the Neuro is also a totally new design for Brooks and features a light, three-layer, mesh construction. The outermost layer is made of a thin PVC-like material that is very durable. Unfortunately, this material does not allow the shoe to breathe very well despite laser cuts for ventilation. This outer layer is fused to a very fine mesh that helps keep debris out of the shoe. The third innermost layer is a much softer mesh that is comfortable against the foot and wicks away moisture quite well. What really makes the upper of the shoe unique is the “Dynamic Hammock” lacing system. This system uses a series of laces that weave in between the outer and inner mesh layers and wrap around the entire foot, not just the midsole. The laces tighten at the eyelets to hold the foot to the sole and keep the foot aligned. Many runners raved about this feature as it allowed them to create a custom fit by simply adjusting the shoe’s laces.
Weight
Weight

Weight

The Brooks Neuro weighs in at 9.3 ounces for men and 7.9 ounces for women. For a running shoe designed for fast speeds, this is a little on the heavy side. The Brooks DNA midsole is fairly light, but the podded outsole and flashy upper add a lot of extra weight to the shoe. Several runners complained about the weight of the shoe, but enjoyed the flexibility and high energy of the overall ride.
Breathability
Breathability

Breathability

There were many complaints about the Neuro being a hot shoe. The thick upper does not breathe well. The innermost layer of the upper that rests against the foot has some moisture wicking properties, but there is very little airflow coming into the shoe. Laser-cut vents in the upper did not seem to allow much air into the shoe. For 5K races and short runs, most runners were able to tolerate the heat, but would not recommend the shoe for long distances. Some runners had no problem using the shoe for long distance runs and said their feet were a little hot, but not too bad.
Comfort
Comfort

Comfort

Although not a heavily cushioned shoe, the abundant pods on the outsole provide a cushioned ride. Many runners praised the “dynamic hammock” lacing system that allowed them to customize the fit of the upper to their foot. A padded tongue protects the top of the foot and allows for a snug fit. There was very little if any, break-in time needed. The toe box was wide enough for the average foot. Most runners said the shoe ran true to size; only a few felt it ran small. The Neuro is best for runners with medium to high arches. Flat-footed runners may find the shoe a little uncomfortable.
Style
Style

Style

The radical design of the Neuro is not for everyone. The pods on the outsole give the shoe an unconventional look and the graphics and overlays on the upper were a bit too flashy and confusing for some. Younger runners seemed to appreciate the design more than older runners. Colors for the Neuro are red with black, blue with black, and white with black for men. Women have a choice of blue, teal, and pink. The Brooks logo sits towards the back of the shoe and fits in well with the overall abstract design.
Durability
Durability

Durability

While not necessarily meant to be a long distance shoe, most runners said the Nero held up as well as any Brooks racing shoe. Many runners were able to get 300 miles or more from the shoe before noticing a decrease in comfort and stability. Some runners reported the pods on the outsole wore unevenly, but this did not seem to affect the performance of the shoe. The three-layer upper was said to be very durable and could withstand a lot of abuse.
Protection
Protection

Protection

The BioMoGo DNA foam pods on the outsole are designed mainly for propulsion and energy transmission, but they also protect the foot from sharp rocks and rough pavement. The pods are a mix of hard and soft rubber strategically placed for even wear. The durable upper makes up most of the shoe and does a fairly good job of protecting the foot, but the outsole pods provide the majority of the protection. There is no traditional toe guard, but a raised section of the outsole at the front of the shoe provides some protection to the forefoot. The Neuro is listed as a road shoe and would not offer much protection on rough trails.
Responsiveness
Responsiveness

Responsiveness

The Neuro is an amazingly responsive shoe. It responds quickly to forward and lateral movements thanks to the Gearing Mechanism which allows the forefoot and heel to move independently. The pod propulsion system also allows for a quick spring-up after initial contact with the ground. Despite its rather bulky appearance, runners were pleased with the responsiveness and speed of the shoe and praised it for its quick turnover and a cushioned ride. Wearers stated that the shoe liked to go fast and the rebound energy increased as the speed increased.
Support
Support

Support

The Neuro gets high marks for support. The highly adjustable upper allows the runner to customize the shoe to his or her foot. There is a moderate amount of cushioning and medium arch support without the feeling of being overly corrective. The shoe is listed as a neutral road shoe, but there is some level of mild pronation control from the podded outsole. The supplied insert is easily removed to accommodate a more supportive insert if desired.
Terrain
Terrain

Terrain

The Neuro is a great road running shoe, but not really designed for offroad. Runners looking for an off-road shoe similar to the Neuro should consider the Brooks Mazama which shares some of the same technology. The outsole of the Neuro is designed to absorb the shock of hard pavement and does not do as well on grass or soft trails. A few runners did wear the shoes on mild trails and were surprised by the smooth ride, but commented that the pods do tend to collect small rocks.
Price
Price

Price

The manufacturer's suggested retail price (MSRP) of the Neuro when new was $130 making it a moderately priced shoe. Because the shoe has been out for over a year, and the Neuro 2 has been released, some pretty good bargains can be found.
Traction
Traction

Traction

The podded outsole of the Neuro provides plenty of traction on roads and hard surfaces. The outsole’s ability to “propel” the runner means the sole has to make good contact with the ground in order for it to spring back and push the runner forward. There were no reports of the shoes not doing well on wet roads, but runners will want to avoid muddy conditions as the outsole does not grip well in mud. The shoes performed OK on mild trails, but their real home is on the road.
Flexibility
Flexibility

Flexibility

The design of the Euro makes it a very flexible shoe. The uncoupled midfoot is great for attaining fast speeds and the adaptive cushioning enables the shoe to feel firmer during fast runs and softer at slower speeds. The podded outsole, although stiff and bulky looking, has a great deal of flexibility. Runners said the outsole allowed their big toe to move freely which helped achieve a more balanced push-off. More than a few runners described the shoe as the most flexible running shoe they had ever owned.
Stability
Stability

Stability

The Neuro is considered a neutral shoe and has limited motion control to prevent overpronation, but the hammock-style lacing system allows the runner to customize the shoe to their foot and stride. The design of the shoe promotes a forefoot strike, but heel strikers had no problem running in the shoe. The outsole makes full contact with the ground and provides a stable base for efficient push-offs. Runners reported the propulsion feel took a little getting used to but allowed them to run at faster speeds with less effort. Runners needing more stability might want to try the Brooks Asteria or Hyperion which share some of the same design features as the Neuro.
Drop
Drop

Drop

The stack heights (23 mm heel, 17 mm forefoot) and 6 mm heel-to-toe drop make it ideal for fast paces and high foot turnover. The lower drop enhances the stability and responsiveness of the shoe by keeping the runner’s foot closer to the ground and in a more natural position.
Key Features
Key Features

Key Features

• Unique design for fast speeds
• 6 mm heel drop
• Adaptable material adds firmness when needed
• A very adjustable lacing system
• Propulsion pods on outsole for fast turnover
• Superior flexibility from “uncoupled” midsole
Bottom Line
Bottom Line

Bottom Line

Brooks has shaken up the running shoe world with the introduction of the Neuro. With an adaptive midsole and unique propulsion pods, this lightweight shoe offers efficient energy return with every step. Runners can easily customize the shoe through the use of Brooks’ “hammock” lacing system which provides a sock-like fit and helps align the foot with the shoe. Uptempo runners praised the new “propel” category which now features several models including the improved Neuro 2.