Asics Metaspeed Edge Paris & Sky Paris: For Stride and Cadence Runners

Metaspeed Edge Paris & Sky Paris

The upcoming release of the Asics Metaspeed Edge Paris and Metaspeed Sky Paris is imminent, and I've had the opportunity to test out both pairs. Am I a fan of the naming scheme? Not really; it seems to generate quite a bit of confusion. As someone who reviews shoes, it's challenging to keep track of which iteration of Asics we're currently on (for the record, it's the Metaspeed 3).

However, the shoes stand out on their own merit, allowing me to overlook any peculiarities in the naming. They've already achieved success. Clayton Young, sporting the Asics Metaspeed Sky Paris (customized to look like the Sky+), used this footwear on his journey to securing a spot in the Olympics at the US Olympic Marathon Trials in early February 2024.

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Moreover, multiple top-10 female athletes had the same shoe on. Undoubtedly, it's making a difference for the professionals.

What's new?

Numerous changes have occurred, with the most significant being the midsole transformation. The introduction of the new FF Turbo+, which is Peba-based, finally gives Asics' premium foam the softness it lacked.

While the previous FF Turbo version was impressive, it fell short in offering the soft yet rebounding characteristics typical of a Peba-based foam. This new development places the Metaspeeds on a level playing field with competitors, as they provide enhanced comfort right from the first step, embodying the essence of a super shoe with virtually no need for a break-in period.

Both shoes received an upgrade with additional foam. The Metaspeed Sky Paris receives an additional 0.5mm in both the forefoot and the heel, while the Metaspeed Edge Paris benefits from an extra 3.5mm in the forefoot and 0.5mm in the heel.

This adjustment leaves the Metaspeed Sky Paris with the same 5mm heel drop, but brings the Metaspeed Edge Paris from an initial 8mm drop to a more uniform 5mm drop.

However, you shouldn't choose these shoes solely based on the drop. Ideally, you should try on one or both pairs before forming an opinion. The modifications in the midsole geometry and foam that Asics has implemented are truly noteworthy.

Even with the addition of softer foam, Asics has successfully preserved the stability that originally drew people to the Metaspeeds series. I enjoyed the comfort of the extra softness, yet remained confident during fast, sharp corners.

In my last half marathon, despite a couple of challenging 90-degree turns (not my favourite), I could hold my speed around them. Meanwhile, other runners in different super shoes, such as Alphafly, had to reduce their pace and tread cautiously.

Related: Guidance for a Half Marathon Taper

The shoe upper has been upgraded to Motion Wrap 2.0 which, while not as significant a change as the midsole, is a favourable adjustment. The forefoot of the upper is less protruding, offers excellent breathability (my toes felt quite chilly during my half marathon in the 28-degree temperature), and is lighter, yet remains spacious enough.

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The Metaspeeds shoes are remarkably lighter than anticipated. Owing to the new foam, updated upper design, and minor alterations to the outsole rubber, their weight rivals that of Nike's Vaporfly 3. To come in under 6.5 ounces is exceptional, even in the realm of super shoes.

While racing in the Asics Metaspeed Edge Paris, I was able to discern the reduction in weight.

During the later stages of my strenuous half marathon, I found it relatively easy to keep my feet in motion without any sense of heaviness. This can be quite unique given that, as someone who stands 6'6" tall and weighs 200 pounds, pairing my physique with vigorous race-day footwear often results in my feet feeling burdened and fatigued.

The only constraint towards the end of the race were my over-stressed hamstrings. Yet, I was still able to muster the energy for the final mile, which was a welcomed downhill segment throughout.

Which Asics Metaspeed Shoe Suits Me Best?

The Asics Metaspeed range may seem overly intricate and demanding to understand. The Metaspeed Sky Paris is specifically designed for Stride runners. Let's delve into what Asics implies by that term:

"We call those with the most popular running style Stride runners – they have a long-loping gait with large periods spent airborne who increase their speed by extending their stride length."

The Metaspeed Edge Paris is crafted especially for Cadence runners. Now, let's examine Asics' interpretation of this term:

"The other we call Cadence, which features smaller steps made while hovering over the ground with minimal up and down motion. Crucially, these runners increase their speed by both extending their stride length and increasing the number of steps they take per minute."

I fall squarely under Asics' cadence category, due to my hover action and the increased pace as I gain speed. Yet, even after understanding that, I found myself favoring the Asics Metaspeed Sky+ over the Edge+ last year.

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However, this year, it was instantly clear after my initial runs that the Metaspeed Edge Paris suited me better. I experienced a superior bounce, enhanced stability, and the toe off seemed more organic.

The issue here is, I doubt if a majority of individuals can certainly identify whether they're a Stride or Cadence runner. Furthermore, I question if it's as black and white as Asics assumes it to be, regarding which shoe would perfectly fit you.

Strides and footprints are different, and I could easily envision many cadence runners finding the Metaspeed Sky Paris more favourable, and reciprocally, stride runners could resonate better with the Metaspeed Edge Paris.

While Asics Great Britain offers a convenient guide for selection, I believe it turns out to be less helpful than the descriptions I mentioned earlier. These two models are closely comparable and they both perform extremely well, yet determining which one is the right match for you remains rather unclear at best.

Are they Good for Runners with wide feet?

Both the Asics Metaspeed Sky Paris and Metaspeed Edge Paris offer an accurate fit and accommodate a wide-footer friendly last.

Just as in the past, many wide footers found their fit to be satisfactory with previous Metaspeeds, the same will hold true for these pair, despite the upper section being slightly more adjusted.

Do they deserve the price?

Indeed, they certainly do. While numerous footwear manufacturers are hiking the prices of their marathon racing shoes from $250 to $260, commendations to Asics for maintaining the $250 price point. This decision undoubtedly makes these a more obvious choice over most super shoes in the market.

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The combination of new foam material, fit, and lighter weight makes both the Metaspeed Edge Paris and Metaspeed Sky Paris two of the top options for road racing shoes, undeniably deserving of your investment.

Summary and Conclusion

The Asics Metaspeed Sky Paris and Asics Metaspeed Edge Paris represent the pinnacle of Asics' road racing shoes, offering an incredible fusion of excellent fit, comfort, breathability, stability, an upgraded midsole foam, and a remarkably lightweight design.

The preference between these two shoes may not be immediately apparent, but once you determine which one suits you best, you will have a high-performance, reliable shoe for marathons and other road races. Both the Metaspeed Edge Paris and Metaspeed Sky Paris are set to claim a spot on our best marathon racing shoes list. I foresee persistent popularity for these shoes both in our ranking and among runners' footwear collections.

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