Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3 Shoe Review
Gear Review, Running

Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3 Shoe Review

Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3 Shoe Review

The Mizuno Wave Rider has been around for years. It’s consistent and well put together shoe that has a strong following. For a while, I didn’t consider it a “shoe for me,” but in the last few years, I’ve enjoyed the firmness of the Mizuno Wave Rider.

Recently Mizuno created the Mizuno Rider Waveknit, which is a knit version of the Wave Rider. The Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3 fits wider than the traditional Wave Rider which makes my feet happier.

Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3 Shoe Review

What is the Difference between the Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3 and the Mizuno Wave Rider 23?

Basically the Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3 and the Mizuno Wave Rider 23 are the same shoe but with slightly different uppers. 

  • Both offer comfort and dynamic rides
  • Both use the Mizuno Wave cushioning featuring the smoothride midsoles crafted by combining u4icx and u4ic cushioning.
  • Both offer a natural fit with sleep design while working on a modern featherweight frame

There makes no sense to review both of them since the ride Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3 and the Mizuno Wave Rider 23 is the same.

The newest Wave Rider keeps the same responsive ride and laid back fit that made it famous, but it was due for a refresh. So Mizuno overhauled the look this year of both the Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3 and the Mizuno Wave Rider 23 to give it a fresh and modern look.

Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3 Shoe Review

Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3 Quick Facts:

Weight 8.3 oz,

Drop 12mm

Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3 Fit:

Most of the update in the Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3 comes with the upper, so the fit and upper will be much more substantial. According to Mizuno, the Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3 looks better but still accommodates your foot well. The look of anything is subjective and only you can decide what looks good.

The Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3 now uses a two-layered engineered mesh upper.  The two-layered breathable mesh upper allows for both stretch and structure.  Some years Mizuno runs slightly narrow, but this year they are a bit wider.  The Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3 knitted upper combines a natural fit with sleek design to provide the ultimate comfort and dynamic response.  The moment you put your foot into the shoe you feel how sleek the design is.

Finally, both the Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3 and Mizuno Wave Rider 23 has a higher internal heel counter, which allows the foot to feel more secure in place. The super secure fit continues throughout the most every version of the Mizuno Wave Rider and now the Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3. The ankle collar is now much less bulky.

In all, the upper has the biggest update but all positive. In running shoes, I wear between a size 10-11 and I’ve found the Mizuno Wave Rider 23 and Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3 size 11 to fit the best. They do come in wide, but the regular width size 11 is fine.

Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3 Shoe Review

Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3 and Mizuno Wave Rider 23 Ride:

The Mizuno Wave Rider 23 remains the same as the previous version Wave Rider 22 and Mizuno Waveknit R2. The midsole and cushioning didn’t change. So if that didn’t change, the ride didn’t change. So yes, all of the updates for the Mizuno Wave Rider 23 was in the upper.  This is the same with the Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3.

If you are new to the Mizuno brand, they a wae plate to absorb and disperse shock. This keeps the shoe firm but also light.

To get nerdy with you, the Mizuno Wave Rider features a dual compound midsole with two foams: U4ic and U4icX foams.

    • The “U4ic foam” is durable and also reduces shock.  It runs the length of the shoe.
    • The compound midsole using “U4ic foam” is lighter and adds cushion but is only in the heel. That way, the heel has a cushioned and soft, but the Mizuno Wave Rider 23 remains responsive.

The Mizuno Wave Rider also has a 12 mm heel to toe drop, which means the heel is much higher. This allows for a smooth transition from heel to toe.

I’ve done a few runs in the Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3 and I’ve found it works best for easy or daily runs. I like a little lower to the ground shoe for workouts. It can be used for long runs, but I prefer to keep it to runs under an hour.

Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3 Shoe Review

Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3 Conclusion:

The Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3 is lightweight and consistent shoe. I like that there is the option of the Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3 or the Mizuno Wave Rider 23. I do wonder if eventually Mizuno will phase-out of the Wave Rider and the only option will be the Rider Waveknit. (I haven’t heard anything)

It’s a great daily trainer if you are looking for a lighter and firmer shoe. The most significant change (and only) change with the upper. I like the ultra-soft comfort Mizuno added to the Wae Rider a few years ago and it continues to a solid neutral shoe.

Current Rotation:

Easy/Daily Runs: Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3, New Balance 1080 v10Diadora Mythos Elite TRX, Hoka Bondi 6,

Speed Work: New Balance FuelCell RebelReebok Float Ride Run fast ProNike Pegasus Turbo 2

Long Runs: New Balance FuelCell RebelMizuno R2, Altra Escalante 2.0, Hoka Cavu 2

Races: New Balance Fuelcell 5280Nike Next%,  Reebok Run fast Pro 

You Can See All Current Shoe Reviews Here.

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Questions for you: 

What is your favorite running shoe?

What are you currently running in?