Brooks Neuro Review: Not Your Father’s Brooks

I can’t remember when Brooks came out with an entirely new shoe model since before the Pure Project series.  That’s the kind of cool thing about Brooks, they don’t go chasing the newest fad just because everyone else is doing it.  Case in point: Brooks hasn’t yet joined the max cushion movement, especially in trail shoes.  Here is the Cascade, they tell you, it will get you there.  We worked long and hard on it, we stand by it.  Something to respect about that.

So I was surprised when I heard about the Neuro, a new neutral trainer (some have called a racer) that introduces a little bit of everything new, from “propulsion pods” to a new style of upper (Hammock System) that wraps the feet to a Gearing Mechanism that allows for more foot flexibility, a more natural experience.

IMG_0467 IMG_0676

It looks unlike anything Brooks has produced in the past few year.   A neutral trainer that successfully maintains responsiveness without sacrificing cushion.  You could go long miles (20+) in this shoe while also using it as your track session go to.

I like these shoes a lot.  To be honest, I like a lot of what Brooks does with their shoes.  If you’ve read my past Brooks reviews you know that I’ve worn more Brooks shoes than any other brand and that’s because, with the exception of  few misses for me, they do their craft well.  They don’t make drastic changes for the sake of making change.  And when they do introduce something new, like with the Neuro, then it is well worth the wait.

Out of the box:

Brooks sent me the white/black color way and they were bright and unlike any Brooks shoe I’ve seen before.  Brooks is giving us a few new terms with regard to its shoes, or at least this model.  Propulsion Pods allow for responsiveness without sacrificing cushioning.

Nice view of the Propulsion Pods
Nice view of the Propulsion Pods

The sole is a little less than a typical Brooks shoe.  If you see the image above, you see theres a lot of “unfilled” space in the middle of the sole which allows for lower weight but also, which I think is more important to Brooks here, more flexibility.  They also introduce the Gearing Mechanism that allows the forefoot and heel to move separately.  For all the new jargon, the Neuro gives you a good ride.  These pods allow the foot to move more naturally and not feel restricted by the construction of the sole. In sort, the foot determines the movement, not the sole.

IMG_0491

The upper is a multilayer design which features the Brooks Hammock system which is a series of cords or laces that wrap the foot and connect to the laces.  The tighter the laces, the higher the hammock around the foot.  Over all this is an layer of sheer PVC type material.

A good look at the outside layer of he upper and you can see the laces that make up the Hammock just below
A good look at the outside layer of he upper and you can see the laces that make up the Hammock just below

I like the feel of the shoe.  The ride is smooth and the ability to tighten laces for a custom feel around the foot is nice.  I’ve not run longer than about 10 miles in these since I was tapering for a 100 miler, but I don’t see how you couldn’t go at least 20 or more.

Details:  Brooks Neuro 11.5 D Men’s.  The 11.5 weighs 11.1 ounces.

They are $130 on the Brooks website

Mens color ways:

110211_159_a_ZM 110211_069_a_ZM

Women’s color ways:

893802 38bf38b0-fff1-4b05-90b7-0922d052a8e4

 

 

Provenance: Brooks sent me this pair gratis for purposes of review.  Many thanks

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