Brooks Ghost 16 VS Asics Cumulus 26: What Should I Buy?

Choosing the right running shoe can make a significant difference in your comfort, performance, and injury prevention. In this article, we’ll compare two popular neutral cushioned road running shoes: the Brooks Ghost 16 and the Asics Cumulus 26.

We’ll delve into their features, materials, durability, fit, stability, cushioning, and value for money, to help you determine which one better suits your needs.

Similarities And Differences Between Brooks Ghost 16 And Asics Cumulus 26:

FeatureBrooks Ghost 16Asics Cumulus 26
Launched In20242023
Weight9.5 oz / 269.3g9 oz / 255g
OutsoleRubberRubberized EVA blend (FLUIDRIDE™)
MidsoleDNA Loft v3FF BLAST™ PLUS, PureGEL®
UpperEnhancedEngineered mesh
Retail Price$140$140

Features Comparison:


The Brooks Ghost 16 features a rubber outsole for traction and durability. The midsole utilizes DNA Loft v3 cushioning for a smooth, responsive ride. The upper is enhanced for a secure yet breathable fit.



The Asics Cumulus 26 has a unique rubberized EVA blend outsole (FLUIDRIDE™) that provides soft impact, enhanced traction, and smooth transitions.

The midsole incorporates FF BLAST™ PLUS cushioning for lightweight impact absorption and a responsive toe-off. It also has PureGEL® technology for soft landings. The upper is made of engineered mesh for improved breathability.


Both shoes are designed for high mileage and should provide good durability. The Ghost 16’s rubber outsole is built to last, and its updated upper construction suggests enhanced longevity.

The Cumulus 26 incorporates Asics’ durable rubberized EVA FLUIDRIDE™ outsole, engineered for enhanced traction and smooth, long-lasting transitions. While specific mileage ratings aren’t provided, the quality materials and construction of these premium neutral trainers indicate they can withstand the demands of regular road running over the long haul.


Achieving a secure, comfortable fit is crucial for running shoes. The Ghost 16 has an “enhanced upper” designed to wrap the foot in a breathable yet locked-in feel. The Cumulus 26 uses an engineered mesh upper that aims to mold to the foot’s shape while allowing ample airflow.



Fit can vary based on individual foot dimensions, but both shoes utilize premium upper materials and construction to deliver a dialed-in fit without restrictive tightness or sloppy looseness. Try them on if possible, as the perfect fit will maximize performance and comfort over long runs.


In terms of stability, the Ghost 16 and Cumulus 26 are both categorized as neutral cushioned shoes, designed for runners with normal pronation. This means they provide an ideal foot motion for those without excessive inward or outward rolling.

However, the Cumulus 26 is also recommended for underpronators with high arches, giving it slightly wider stability applications. Neutral runners should find sufficient support in either shoe, while the Cumulus 26 offers additional options for those requiring greater stability.


When it comes to cushioning, both shoes bring ample impact protection to the table. The Ghost 16 utilizes Brooks’ DNA Loft v3 midsole compound, designed to provide a smooth, floaty feel.

Asics takes a dual-cushioning approach with the Cumulus 26, combining responsive FF BLAST™ PLUS foam with its signature gel-based PureGEL® technology for softened landings.

The cushioning systems differ, but the end goal is similar – to deliver a plush, comfortable ride that protects joints from jarring impact. Generous cushioning is a hallmark of both premium neutral trainers.

Value for Money:

At $140 MSRP, these shoes are evenly matched on price. Their technologies, materials, and intended purposes are also quite similar. For neutral runners, either could represent a good value depending on personal preferences and product availability.

Performance Comparision:

For Walking:

Both the Ghost 16 and Cumulus 26 are excellent options for walking, thanks to their plush cushioning systems. The Ghost 16’s DNA Loft cushioning and smooth heel-to-toe transitions could give it a slight edge for an easy, comfortable walking stride.

However, the Cumulus 26’s combination of FF BLAST™ PLUS foam, PureGEL® inserts, and rubberized FLUIDRIDE™ outsole may provide superior impact protection and traction on surfaces. Walkers looking to maximize cushioned comfort will be well-served by either shoe, though the Cumulus 26’s technologies may make it the ultimate walking shoe.

For Running:

As neutral cushioned trainers, these shoes are designed for running. The Ghost 16’s DNA Loft aims for a smooth, “floaty” ride, while the Cumulus 26 combines responsive FF BLAST™ PLUS with shock-absorbing PureGEL®. The FLUIDRIDE™ outsole also enhances traction. Preference may come down to the specific cushioning feel and transition quality a runner prefers.

For Plantar Fasciitis:

Neither the Ghost 16 nor Cumulus 26 are specifically designed for plantar fasciitis relief. However, their generous cushioning can help reduce stress on the plantar fascia.

The Cumulus 26’s PureGEL® forefoot cushioning and FLUIDRIDE™ outsole may provide a slight advantage by cushioning the heel strike and promoting smooth transitions. But both shoes’ substantial midsole cushioning provides shock absorption that could potentially help alleviate plantar fascia pain and inflammation.

For Standing All Day:

The plush cushioning in both the Ghost 16 and Cumulus 26 should help make them comfortable options for those who spend long hours on their feet. The cushioning aims to reduce fatigue and potential pain from extended standing and walking. The Cumulus 26’s FLUIDRIDE™ outsole could give it an advantage for smooth, comfortable transitions.

final verdict:

In the battle of the Brooks Ghost 16 vs Asics Cumulus 26, there is no clear overall winner. Both are excellent neutral cushioned trainers packed with innovative technologies to promote comfort and performance.

The Ghost 16 may get a slight edge for its smooth heel-to-toe transitions and updated upper fit. However, the Cumulus 26 has wider stability applications for neutral runners and underpronators. Its rubberized FLUIDRIDE™ outsole also enhances traction and transitions.

Ultimately, the choice could come down to brand preference or the specific cushioning feel you prefer – the Ghost 16’s DNA Loft v3 offers a “floaty” ride, while the Cumulus 26’s FF BLAST™ PLUS and PureGEL® aim for impact protection and responsive toe-offs.

Test out each shoe if possible or consult a specialty running store for personalized advice. With their high-quality cushioning, durable construction, and smooth transitions, either the Brooks Ghost 16 or Asics Cumulus 26 could be an excellent choice for your neutral road running needs.

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