Are Brooks Ghost 15 Good for Running?

The Brooks Ghost running shoe series has been a popular choice for runners of all levels since its initial release in 2008. With each new model, Brooks aims to improve comfort, support, and responsiveness while retaining the signature DNA of the Ghost line.

The Ghost 15 is the latest iteration – but are they good for running? In this in-depth review, we’ll take a close look at the key features of the Ghost 15 and assess their suitability as a daily training and long distance running shoe.

Key Features of the Brooks Ghost 15

The Ghost 15 retains the same general design and aesthetics as previous Ghost models but with some updates under the hood:

  • BioMoGo DNA midsole – Provides adaptive cushioning from heel to toe
  • Segmented crash pad – For smooth transitions
  • Engineered mesh upper – Strategically structured for coolness, flexibility, and stretch
  • Plush tongue and collar – Prevents debris and enhances comfort
  • Rubber sole with flex grooves – Enables fluid movement

Cushioning and Responsiveness

The highlight of the Ghost 15 is the midsole foam – Brooks’ renowned BioMoGo DNA. This proprietary material adapts instantly to the runner’s size, speed, and stride to provide tailored softness and responsiveness. Under the heel is a new DNA LOFT insert for even plusher cushioning on impact.

In testing, the DNA midsole feels both soft and snappy. Though not as lively as shoes featuring lighter foams, the Ghost 15 offers a good balance of cushioning and energy return for a daily trainer.

The 12mm heel-to-toe drop promotes smooth transitions through the gait cycle. Most runners should find the cushioning adequate for long distances all the way up to marathon training and racing.

Traction and Stability

The outsole uses blown rubber in the forefoot and harder rubber under the heel for enhanced traction and durability in key impact zones. Segmented crash pads encourage gradual compression for smoother landings.

For such a cushioned shoe, the Ghost 15 feels laterally secure thanks to the structured mesh upper, padded ankle collar, and raised sidewalls around the midsole. This helps prevent excessive side-to-side movements or torsion for runners who need a little extra stability.

Breathability and Comfort

A big highlight of the redesigned upper is the engineered air mesh which is both breathable and stretchy. Interior padding around the ankle collar and tongue provide next-to-skin plushness.

Compared to the previous Ghost 14 model, testers found the Ghost 15 to have reduced forefoot pressure and irritation for greater long run comfort. The roomy toe box accommodates natural toe splay.

Weight and Flexibility

At around 10 ounces in the men’s size 9 (and 8.5 oz for women’s size 7), the Ghost 15 sits right in the middle of the pack in terms of running shoe weight. It tips towards the lighter range of daily trainers while still providing ample cushioning.

The grooved outsole and partial bootie construction allows the Ghost 15 to flex with the motion of the foot. While not the most nimble, testers felt they provided a good blend of flexibility with supportive stability.

Performance and Versatility

As an affordable daily trainer from a trusted brand, the Ghost remains a workhorse shoe that can handle a wide variety of training. The neutral platform makes them suitable for runners with neutral or mild under/over-pronation.

The cushioning manages hard surfaces well while providing enough road feel for tuned-in trainees. The secure upper holds the foot securely whether sprinting or going long and slow. In testing, the Ghost 15 felt just as home pounding out tempo miles as easy jogs. The durable materials show minimal wear even after several hundred miles.

The Ghost can also serve as a race-day option for longer distances like half and full marathons. The DNA midsole provides 6-8mm more cushioning than racing flats for reduced fatigue and impact during those last painful miles. Just be aware they may feel a bit bulky and less responsive if trying to set new PRs.

Sizing, Fit, and Feel

The Ghost 15 runs true-to-size for most foot types. Increased volume in the toe box makes them more accommodating if you have wide or swelling feet near the end of long runs. High and low volume sizes are also available.

Testers found the upper hugs the midfoot securely while allowing plenty wiggle room up front for toes. The plush interior creates a smooth, comfortable foot wrap right out of the box with minimal break-in.

Compared to prior year’s models, the Ghost 15 weights ever so slightly less with a more breathable upper. loyal fans praise the familiar soft yet responsive ride they’ve come to love in Ghost. New runners will appreciate the balanced cushioning which works for nearly any training need.

The Cons

No shoe is perfect and the Ghost does have some downsides:

  • Lacks the pop and energy return of shoes with bouncier foams
  • Traction could be better in wet or slippery conditions
  • Price increased slightly over Ghost 14 to $140 USD
  • Outsole wears faster than competitors in the same class

While responsive, the Ghost isn’t quite as speedy or propulsive as trainers containing midsoles like Nike’s ZoomX or Saucony’s PWRRUN PB. Traction lugs are fairly shallow so trail runners or those dealing with regular rain or snow may want more grip.

The Ghost 15 is $10 more than the 14 which puts it at the higher end for budget-minded runners. And testers found the outsole rubber seems to lose tread faster than expected for how much cushioning is packed in.

Brooks Ghost 15 – The Bottom Line

The Brooks Ghost 15 delivers on the reliable comfort long-time fans expect with a slightly more responsive and smoother riding experience. An upgraded upper improves ventilation and foot lockdown while retaining plush interior padding around the ankle collar and tongue.

The DNA midsole provides adaptable cushioning for both lighter runners and heavier runners at slow to moderate paces.

For runners looking for an affordable daily trainer suitable for everything from easy jogs to marathon training, the Ghost 15 offers some of the best bang for buck without sacrificing comfort or support.

Neutral runners should find the blend of softness and snap meets their needs for varied training. Mild over- or under-pronators can also benefit provided they don’t require correction or stability features.

With small but meaningful improvements over prior Ghost editions, the 15 continues the legacy of the franchise that made Brooks famous among runners. It may not break records, but will break in your feet gently while providing dependability mile after mile.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are answers some common questions about the Brooks Ghost running shoe line:

What types of runners are Brooks Ghost shoes best for?

The Ghost is one of the most versatile neutral cushioned trainers available. It works well for runners with neutral to mild over- or underpronation. The cushioning manages long miles while the support works for moderate pace training.

How do the different Ghost models compare (13, 14, 15)?

Each Ghost edition features evolutionary refinements. Main changes in Ghost 15 vs 14 include a slightly lighter weight, more breathable upper, tweaked midsole foam for a smoother transition. Expect a similar DNA midsole feel but fine-tuned.

What is the Ghost line known for?

Brooks Ghost is known primarily for providing reliable comfort and cushioning in an affordable package built to last. Runners love the versatile performance good for daily training all the way up to marathon racing.

Do I need to size up or down with Ghost shoes?

Ghost shoes generally fit true-to-size for most. Brooks makes the Ghost in a variety of widths from narrow to wide to accommodate variation. Size up or down slightly if you have exceptionally wide or narrow feet.

Is the current Ghost 15 model good for walking?

Yes! The DNA foam midsole, segmented crash pads and flexible grooved sole make Ghost 15 a comfortable choice for long walks, travel, or all-day wear for folks on their feet frequently.

So if you’ve been considering trying out the Brooks Ghost or want to know how the latest Ghost 15 stacks up, hopefully this detailed overview gives you all the details to decide if they are a good match for your running needs. They continue to be a well-rounded, cushioned trainer built with the everyday runner in mind.

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