The Mizuno Wave Catalyst is a brand new shoe for Mizuno that was noticed immediately by Runner’s World Magazine who labeled this their “Best Debut” for Spring 2016. This shoe is meant to fill a gap left long ago by the late Wave Elixir. Though this shoe is much different than its long-lost sibling, the Catalyst still meets that lightweight and slightly extra supportive standard. Mizuno is even tagging this shoe with a “You look familiar. Where do I know you from?” vibe to the release.
If you are familiar with the Mizuno line, this shoe is a bit of a combination of the functionality of the Wave Sayonara and the Wave Inspire. The cushion is on the firmer side, which helps to feel faster making this an efficient lightweight trainer. The lightweight and firmer feel shouldn’t deter you though. Quite a few people will be able to use this as their everyday shoe because there is still a substantial amount of padding to protect you from the hard pavement.
The Wave Plate that Mizuno always uses provides extra support and a little bounce. In this case it is contoured in such a way to provide a touch of stability for overpronation. The stiffness of the Wave Plate also helps to prevent excess flexing of the arch and gives a snappy pop off the ground propelling you forward. If you generally like a more flexible shoe, this may feel a bit too stiff for your taste. The midfoot is fairly rigid. That extra rigidity just helps control the excess motion of the foot.
The upper focuses on a lightweight feel. Mizuno has been consistent with a well-structured heel counter, and this is no exception. Though the heel counter is stiff and holds the foot in place, it doesn’t feel too bulky with extra material. The majority of the upper is built of a thin, stitch-free construction that won’t weigh you down. With this thin material, the Catalyst adapts to a wide variety of foot shapes without a problem. Narrow feet will enjoy the ability of the upper to stay well in place while the wider feet will enjoy the irritation-free design.
It will be an interesting spring as more shoes start to make their way into this lightweight, fast, supportive category but the Mizuno Wave Catalyst is sure to turn heads on the roads. This will make a great shoe for someone looking for that fast feeling on your everyday loop. The Catalyst is also perfect for the runner that may have neutral biomechanics but towards the end of a long race, they like the touch of a supportive feel. This new shoe is built to take you those extra miles.
Some comparable models are the Asics DS Trainer, Nike Lunarglide, New Balance 870, Brooks PureCadence.