Reviews   Asics Running Shoes Reviews   Asics Gel Nimbus 13 Running Shoes Review

Asics Gel Nimbus 13 Running Shoes Review

 September 18, 2012 35
Asics Gel Nimbus 13 Running Shoes Review
Asics Gel Nimbus 13 - Pair

Asics Gel Nimbus 13 - Pair

Full Name:Asics Gel Nimbus 13
Category: Cushioning
Weight: 11.6 oz (329 grams) (Men); 8 oz (226.8 grams) (Women)
Suggested Price: $ 130
Recommended For:Heel strikers, runners seeking maximal cushioning, beginner runners.

UPDATE: We reviewed the new Asics Nimbus 14 !

  • Asics Gel Nimbus 13 General Info:

The GEL Nimbus series is among Asics’ most popular offerings. The latest incarnation seeks to reduce weight while still providing maximal cushioning throughout the shoe. Overall, the Nimbus 13 provides a conservative reboot of the model, offering few major overhauls in favor of minor tweaking. The GEL heel cushioning system, along with the guidance line and trussic system, aims to guide foot gait. Overall, the newest iteration should feel familiar towearers of earlier versions of the shoe—the principle difference being weight reduction. For newcomers, the shoe is a good option for runners who need extensive cushioning, are heel strikers, or wish to diminish the impact of the road on joints while running.

Asics Gel Nimbus 13 - Heel

Asics Gel Nimbus 13 - Heel

In order to reduce weight, the Nimbus 13 features newer, lighter materials which seek to provide the same amount of cushioning and support as those foundin previous models—all while boasting less bulk and weight. The heel crash padon the new model is composed of a lighter, high-carbon rubber which provides ample heel support while reducing heft. As a result of these efforts, the shoe shed three-quarters of an ounce in its latest version, which helps legs stay fresh.

  • Asics Gel Nimbus 13 First Impressions:

First and foremost, I must admit that I tend to run in lighter shoes. As a result, the shoes took some getting used to for the first few miles. As I became better-acquainted with them, however, I noticed many strong points within the model, and began to understand their popularity. The cushioning in the heel would provide sturdy, unobtrusive protection for heel strikers, and the mild corrective features could help provide support for runners with slight pronation issues. Heavier runners or runners with a history of injury would also find the shoes to provide a great amount of support to keep joints from bearing the shock of road and trail running, as there is ample cushioning from top to bottom.

Asics Gel Nimbus 13 - Medial View

Asics Gel Nimbus 13 - Medial View

At times, the shoe admittedly began feeling heavy — particularly at the end of long runs. This is an important consideration for potential purchasers, as any shoe of this nature will run the same risk of feeling weighty during long workouts. Put simply—this is a symptom of a corrective shoe, and is not a detriment to the Nimbus 13. In order to include the type of features of a more cushioned shoe, one has to live with some additional weight on their feet. Helpful features, such as the great cushioning ,come at a cost — but many runners may find the improvement in movement to beworth the trade-off.

  • Asics Gel Nimbus 13 Sole Unit:

The Nimbus 13’s outsole unit features a newly-crafted material, LiteAHAR (Asics High Abrason Rubber), which is a cross-over from the company’s crash pads on other trainer models. The high-abrasion rubber provides great traction, grip, and movement throughout a variety of surfaces. What’s more, the inclusion of the new sole material helps reduce weight — an essential feature this upgrade. Minimizing weight in the sole allows the midsole and upper to absorb the impact while still reducing the general heft of the shoe, which should come as welcome news for under-pronating runners. The outsole provides firm support for runs on various terrains: running on trails was a breeze, as was navigating uneven sidewalks and potholes while running on roads. The sole design provides plenty of grip during wet weather as well, providing firm traction that does not wear down quickly.

Asics Gel Nimbus 13 - Outsole

Asics Gel Nimbus 13 - Outsole

  • Asics Gel Nimbus 13 Upper Design:

The upper unit of the Nimbus 13 also underwent a weight-loss regimen in its latest iteration, slimming down by five grams. This weight reduction is the result of the fully-revamped heel construction, which removes the internal heelcounter (the portion of the shoe which cradles the heel and reduces pronation issues) by replacing it with a lighter external heel counter system. Cushioning in the forefoot is also improved, creating a comfortable, firm platform for push-off and landing. Additionally, the Nimbus 13 features a synthetic mesh which provides a cushioned, comfortable fit throughout the foot which keeps dry despite the elements. New to this year’s design is the shoes’ asymmetrical lacing design which more accurately follows the pattern of the foot’s skeletal structure. The lacing design helps reduce friction and follows a more naturalpath along the foot, helping create a smooth ride along with the othercushioning elements found throughout the shoe.

  • Asics Gel Nimbus 13 Opinion:

Shoe companies always take a gamble when it comes to making alterations to immensely-popular shoe models. The Nimbus line has proven to be a success for the Asics, and any changes could dramatically impact runners’ impressions of the shoe. In the Nimbus 13, Asics has managed to improve on an already-popular design by shedding weight and adding low-key features — all elements which could go unnoticed by most wearers that make a large impact nonetheless. Without making drastic changes, the Nimbus 13 provides a great update to a popular model which should leave current wearers and newcomers to the model satisfied.

As the shoe is designed to feature high-level cushioning, there is some unavoidable weight to the model. While this is greatly improved in the Nimbus 13, shoes of this type always weigh more than their less-supportive counterparts. Wearers of cushioned or supportive shoes will not likely notice any weight concerns, and will more likely find the shoes to be more comfortable than other models due to weight reduction efforts in the latest incarnation of the Nimbus 13. Overall, the Nimbus 13 is a great option for runners who enjoy a soft ride, ample cushioning, and a comfortable fit.

Review by Brian O'Connor

We thank the great people at Asics for sending us the Nimbus 13 for review. This didn’t influence the review of the shoe, written after running more than 30 miles in it.

Let us know what you think of this shoe in the comments!

  • Asics Gel Nimbus 13 Price Comparison:

Sorry - Product not found. Please try RoadRunnerSports to check in their assortment. Use Code "RUNGURU14" for free shipping and 20% off your first VIP order.

Join our Newsletter

  • Keep up to date with all the new running shoes reviews
  • Exclusive nutrition, training and technique articles
  • Bonus: immediate free download of our Marathon Training Guide
  • Deals and special offers
We treat your privacy very seriously. We hate SPAM and we'll never SPAM you. You can unregister with one click at any time!



  • I find that the toe box of the 13s are slightly smaller than the 12s, which causes tightness across the knuckle behind my big toe. I have changed to Kayano 17s because of this.

  • I LOVED the 12’s. I’ve done a couple runs in a pair of 13’s and feel they’re somewhat harder. They also don’t seem quite as bouncy as teh 12’s when walking. I’m going to keep running a few more long runs to see if I like them, but I’m contemplating putting them on Ebay for a nice discount and buy another pair of 12’s.


    • For anyone who likes the 12’s they have them (amazingly) at Costco for $59.99….

  • Bought a pair of Nimbus 13 after my sister and friend raved about the 12s. Previously ran in Kayano 16s. Within a mile of my run the balls of my feet were burning and I felt like my socks were bunching up in my shoe (only they were fine when I checked). I could not wait to take them off.
    Took them back and exchanged them for a new pair of Kanano 17s. Much happier now. Nimbus 13s weren’t for me.

  • Just got these as an upgrade from my nimbus 12. I’m getting numb toes and I got exactly the same size. Any ideas?

  • The reviewer obviously favours lighter (minimalist?) shoes and this colours the review. Could you not find someone to review the Nimbus who usually runs in this category of shoe?

    • Amen, Steven. If I ran in a motion control shoe, my review would be negative as it isn’t my category. A minimalist runner shouldn’t be reviewing these shoes.

  • I’m baffled – I’ve been wearing the Nimbus line for years – I’ve trained for and run 5-6 marathons in them. I immediately noticed the heel felt different, but I’m not really a heel-striker, so I wasn’t concerned. But something is weird about the transition… or something. My midfoot and forefoot slap down flat on the pavement. I sound like a Clydesdale (OK, I am a Clydesdale, but don’t usually sound like one). And even a five mile run this morning has left my feet feeling like someone took a billy club to them. And on the 16 last Sunday, the noise made me wish I wore headphones to run. I thought I’d go mad. I’m sad, and have to find something else to run in – likely still ASICS, though.

  • If you liked the Nimbus 11’s and the 12’s, chances are that you will dislike the 13’s. They’re a pretty shoe , but not much in the line of cushioning for a cushioning shoe. I just put 85 miles on them and they are no better than day one, so it wasn’t a breaking in thing. I will look elsewhere for a new cushion shoe.

  • The toe box feels much tighter. The 11’s and 12’s worked great for me, the 13’s are causing painful numb toes after three miles. I sure hope it’s worked out for the next series.

  • I’m not an experienced runner and have never owned a pair of Asics before, so I really cannot compare it to 11’s or 12’s. I started running with a pair of crosstrainers, so getting the Nimbus 13 felt quite good on the knees. HOWEVER, I’m also experiencing the numb toes – since the first run with these new shoes. I thought maybe I’m fastening my shoe too tight or doing something wrong. Glad to see I’m not the only one who is experiencing this. I hope to return the pair and will opt for 12’s??

  • I took a research visit to sport authority to check out the glycerin and nimbus 13. I’m new to the runner shoe world, and the sales associate was somewhat helpful. He informed me that I had a moderate pronation and told me that the Nimbus would not be good for me, but was a little vague on why. He did suggest the 2170 though, but I was hoping for more heel cushion, since that’s where I have been hurting lately. Is there any reason to believe that the nimbus is not well suited for pronated feet?

    • I’m slightly surprised to hear that the sales associate said the Nimbus wouldn’t be a good fit for a mild pronator. The common consensus indicates that the shoe is perfect for someone from mild to moderate pronation issues. He may have recommended the GT-2170 since you might not need the support and correction of the Nimbus, which is in the next-highest category for support. Either way, I would try out both and determine which is a better fit for you. Check out our review of the GT-2170 here:

      • Hi, I’m also a rookie runner, I’m training for a Marathon. I have a neutral foot and mild pronation on the other one. I had shin splints problems before knowing this. Then I got a pair of Nimbus 14 and put a good amount of kilometers on them, I find it’s a very confortable shoe. When getting another set of running shoes and investigating more about my feet issue, I also got the same reply from the sales associate, saying the Nimbus 14 are strictly neutral shoes. But said that the Duomax line would be to heavy for my weight (around 110pounds), then recommended to get the Brooks Ravenna 3 instead. I love my Nimbus 14, and I hope I can still use them, can I?

  • The Nimbus felt amazing trying it on against many other shoes. However, when running I also felt the burning on the balls of my feet and got a blister. Additionally, when training for a half marathon, my left calf ruptured. I took two months off for the muscle to reattach and started to slow jog in preparation for a half ironman. My left achilles became sore and my right calf ruptured. Luckily, I was able to switch to the aqua bike event. Something seems odd with these shoes and stresses my lower legs. I am not sure if it is the lower heel. I will have to switch to another shoe.

    • I would consider switching to another shoe, but I also wonder what your stretching/cross-training regimen is like? Do you stretch your calves pre-/post-workout? If not, this may have a huge factor in the frequency of injury you’re experiencing.

    • My feet have really had a problem with these shoes. I have been a runner for 30 years and never have I had any foot pain, but these make my balls of my feet hurt and when I switch to my other walking shoes, they are fine. I think they are too softly cushioned for me and I need more structure. This is the first Asics shoe that I have been unhappy with.

  • Oh crap!! What the hell is wrong with the nimbus? Mmm scary!! I normaly run in a Nike shock … Or a nimbus …I switched to the nimbus after having lots of durability issue wih the Nike! And I notices the Asics har lasted longer so that’s better for the pocket and or the knees yeah? After reading these reviews I’m like wtf!! Ok ok ok … Here’s the thing… Ok I’ve ran in the nimbus for the past 4 years and have always ran them into knubs!! As I have with every running shoe I’ve ever owed! But after reading all these bad reviews and knowing I’ve just invested into a new pare the 13 and have yet to run in them I’m kinda conserved that they won’t be as great as previous models I’ve owned!!! Any suggestions ? And what’s the difference between the kayonos and the nimbus? I just want really comfy shoes as I like running lots and long distances! Thanks

  • I LOVED my Kayanos, bought a pair of the Nimbus 12’s as a second option and did not really like them. Just bought a new pair, and although I thought I’d leave with Kayanos, I bought the Nimbus 13’s. I’ve run about 45 miles in them so far and really like them. I had an issue with numbness at first, but I really did have them laced too tight. Ran my 14 miler on Sunday and they were great. Hopefully they continue to be fine. Love that they’re lighter than the Kayano, but still cushy.

  • I’m an experienced and regular and keen runner with a light to medium frame and run around 50 kilometers per week. I am a light to medium supinator ( roll to the outwards of the foot ) and I also happen to be a mid foot striker rather than a heel striker. I normally run in 2 different brands of shoes to rest them so can compare with confidence. The asics gel Nimbus are a nice runner that moulds to your foot well and feels streamlined with your foot as one and is very comfortable. If you are a heel striker that needs a neutral runner then this is a good option, although feels a little more like a comfortable lighter race runner than a heavy duty high mileage trainer that you will get a lot of mileage out of. However read the comments above about sore balls on peoples feet in these runners….. if you are not a heel striker and you tend to be a mid foot to front foot striker then you should give these a miss and go for the asics cumulus as they are designed as a neutral runner but more suited for more cushioning for mid foot strikers. If I compare these to my new balance neutral shoes, the asics nimbus are more comfortable and moulded to the foot compared to my new balance neutrals, more lightweight and suitable as a race runner rather than a high mileage runner compared to my new balance neutrals, but do not offer the same cushining or protection to the balls of your foot or mid foot for heel strikers compared to my new balance neutrals.

    Hope this helps.


  • I hated these shoes. After running in them for 6 weeks training for a Marathon, the pain in the ball of my foot after a 15km run this past Sunday became excruciating! I now feel like it’s bruised. I took the sole out of the soe and felt around to see if it was the shoe. There is a bump right where the pad of the foot is. A sports store told me that some shoes are being made this way to stimulate the foot and prevent tingling and numbing while running.
    This did not work for me. I’ve since purchased a different pair of ASICS and did an 8km run last night. My feet are sore today but I think it’s still from Sunday 15k in the awful shoes.

  • I previously ran in the Nimbus 11’s which , for me, we’re amazing. I’m a heavy runner with a neutral gait and these shoes suited me perfectly…..did many many miles 2 half marathons never injured once. By the times these fell apart the 13’s were out so passed over the 12’s. The 13’s from 1st run were amazing, same comfort and cushioning and you can feel they are lighter. Unfortunately they do not last as long as the 11’s. Definitely only 6 months max…..then they lose there bounce and I injured my calf. Bought another new pair and all is fine….I think you just need to watch out for them going off which annoyingly for the price is very fast? I’ll still buy though as I’ve never, apart from the calf, had any niggles or serious injurys running high mileage. Anyone tried the 14’s??

    P.s. can’t understand why people are switching between nimbus and kayanos? They are for completely different structured feet? Nimbus for neutral/mild underpronaters. Kayanos for mild/ moderate overpronaters?

  • I have worn Nimbus shoes for YEARS and loved all that I owned, up to and including the 12. After that, Asics created a narrower toe box for the Nimbus. The shoe is now a torture chamber for my wide-toe area. And there is less cushioning under the ball of the foot. I actually counted the mesh holes across the top of the toe box. In the 12 and earlier, there is more material across the toe box.

    WHY, ASICS? WHY did you mess with an oh-so-popular and great fitting shoe? I have now gone over to Saucony

  • No Nimbus 14 review yet? really?

  • Would the Nimbus 13 be considered orthopedic?

  • Hi Krista,

    Though the Nimbus is a shoe with plenty of cushioning, it is not an orthopedic shoe. Orthopedic shoes are usually designed specifically by medical suppliers, and though this shoe might be very helpful for specific orthopedic conditions, the Nimbus in and of itself would not fit this classification.

  • I recently bought a pair of 14’s, owning and wearing nimbus shoes for the past 5 years. My last pair were 12’s. I got them home and were so excited to get them on. I don’t run, but I do go on long walks pushing a stroller, clean house, teach school, and play with my family in these shoes. After a really long session of cleaning our church I couldn’t wait to get the 14’s off. My toes were numb and hurting! I tried to wear them one other time with different sock and loosening up the laces, but it didn’t help. I’m so upset. These were my go to shoes. I started researching to see if it was just me or if others have had this problem. Now I know. Sad, very sad!

  • I previously owned 11’s that I ran into the ground. LOVED THEM. So sad I can’t replace them with an exact duplicate. I have a very high arch and tend to run with my outer edges of my feet turning outward. I just bought Nimbus 14’s, received them in the mail last week. Ran 3 miles on Day One, ran another 3.5 miles on Day 2. After day one’s run, my heels hurt so bad. I thought maybe it was due to wearing a 2″ heeled boot to work that day and running after work. So, Day two I wore flat shoes to work and my feet felt better after healing one day in between from first run. Then, I ran my 3.5 miles after work, my heels are absolutely destroyed today. I tried to give this shoe a chance and am pissed that I am out $130 bucks. They are going to be my lawn mowing shoes now.

  • I have run in Nimbus for years and just bought 14’s after my 13’s gave out. I’m not a serious runner but do 4-5 miles 5 times a week. My problem with the 14’s is they have given me a big blister/callus on the side of my big toe and the balls of my feet are starting to burn/hurt while running and after. Loved my 11’s, 12’s, and 13’s but hate the 14’s. Can someone suggest a comparable Asics shoe to Nimbus that I could try? Thank you!

  • I’m hoping someone can recommend a comparable Asics shoe to the Nimbus line. I am a recreational runner — 4-5 miles 5x a week — and have worn Nimbus for years. I loved my 11’s, 12’s, and 13’s. Just bought the 14’s and they have given me a blister/callus on the side of my big toe and now the balls of my feet hurt/burn. I’m pretty disappointed since those were my go-to shoes. Any suggestions? Thanks!

    • Sorry for the double post. Thought it didn’t go through.

  • I am really, really disappointed. I am sitting her with 3 news boxes of Asics, all worn once, all sucked. What do I do with store credit for all these stores?! My absolute favorite trail-runner was the gel sensor4. (I typically put on 20-28 miles just in mtn trails/wk with no pain) I’ve gone through 6 different pairs now trying to find a comparable Asics trail runner. I bought 2 pairs this week. Hated them both, the 2000 gt (no medial support, made my glutes and knees hurt), then the trabuco 14. These were the worst. It flared up an old back injury from falling backward through a cellar. By the end of my 7.5 mile run, my adductors were locked up, excruciating hip pain and knee pain. I’m in the same place I was after my fall. And I have the horsetooth half marathon in 3 days. Wonderful!

    • I purchased the Asics gel on the recommendation of Runners Need (UK) and trialled them at home on carpet as I knew I wouldn’t be able to take them back once they had been worn outside. The soles of my feet felt like they were burning and my foot felt like it was slapping down. The shoe also put pressure on my ankles. I returned them to Runners Need who said I just needed a larger size as they were too small – I tried outside with the larger size thinking that the problem must have been with me and had the same issue. By then I could not return the shoes, I have not even kept them for walking as they are so uncomfortable. Back to Mizuno for me, I wish I had come across these posts before buying!

  • I’m in the Army, which means that during group runs you constantly are forced to slow down and keep pace with people running much slower than your normal gait for extended periods of time. Thanks to this I injured my ankle running in a pair of Zigs. After that instance I wen and purchased a pair of the Gel Nimbus 13’s and it turned out to be the perfect fit for my situation. I pronate slightly, and am constantly doing endurance runs, and these shoes are a good fit for both. They are a bit weighty at first, but after about a week you’ll forget all about that. As well, the shoes have so much cushion that you can’t help but jump around a little bit in them. I eventually used them for a half marathon on a gravel road track and they performed well. They don’t build heat, or hold sweat, and I’ve never had chaffing issues. Over the last year I put between 8-10 miles on them per week and they have just now worn through the insoles. Otherwise the shoe is still in remarkable condition, seeing as I’ve never payed too much care to maintaining my shoes. Even the reinforced sections of tread are only mildly worn. Overall I would recommend these for anyone with pronation issues, that requires some padding.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title="" rel=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Run Your First Marathon