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Shoe Of The Week: Mizuno Wave Kazan

The Wave Kazan is one of two great trail running shoes Mizuno debuted this year.

The Wave Kazan is one of two great trail running shoes Mizuno debuted this year.

Mizuno said goodbye to its Ascend trail shoe last year, a longtime cushy favorite that was really just a road shoe with a knobby outsole. In its place is the Kazan, a more flexible, moderately cushioned and very agile shoe that is less beefy than the Ascend but considerably better across the board. The Kazan is a versatile shoe that does a little bit of everything pretty well, running dirt roads and smooth trails with ease but also holding its own on semi-technical terrain. Although it’s purely a neutral shoe, the wide profile and built-in structure from the thermoplastic “Wave” insert offer a bit of inherent stability. The Kazan’s directional flex grooves and widely spaced star-shaped outsole lugs allow for exceptional traction, foot flex and the ability to adapt to constantly changing terrain. The name of the shoe is derived from the Samurai battle standard of “Furin Kazan,” meaning “moving as swift as the wind, staying as silent as the forest, attacking as fierce as fire, and being as undefeatable as the mountain,” or at least that’s what Mizuno says. A few of our wear-testers suggested the forefoot was a bit too spacious, taking the shoe’s agility down a notch from what it could be. If you’re looking for a lighter, lower-to-the-ground trail shoe, check out the nimble, race-ready Mizuno Wave Hayate, which came out earlier this year when the Kazan was released.

Price: $120
Weights: 9.8 oz. (men’s), 7.9 oz. (women’s)
Heel-Toe Offset: 12mm; 29mm (heel), 17mm (forefoot)
This shoe is for you if … you want a versatile, softly cushioned shoe for running on mild to semi-technical trails.
Info: mizuno.com

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