BROOKS GLYCERIN 19 REVIEW
Brian Metzler | January 28, 2021
The Brooks Glycerin 19 is a neutral-oriented everyday trainer that provides soft, pillowy cushioning in every stride.
With a buttery soft ride and an exquisitely plush interior, the Glycerin has always been a top-of-the-line workhorse model. It exudes softness and responsiveness in every stride.
If you’re looking for a premium fit, feel and ride, this is the shoe for you. Run a few steps in the Brooks Glycerin, it’s like you’re dancing on clouds. Run 15 miles in them and it’s the same sensation.
The Brooks Glycerin 19 has been updated with more of Brooks’ soft and responsive top-tier DNA Loft midsole compound. This results in a cozier and more responsive feeling in every stride.
The new engineered mesh upper is soft and stretchy, allowing it to accommodate a wide range of foot shapes with a 3D-printed overlay design for structure.
The updates to the Glycerin 19 are significant, but it hasn’t changed the familiar feeling and smooth ride of this shoe. It’s a tad lighter, more flexible, more cushioned and generally a better shoe for a wider range of runners.
FIT, FEEL, RIDE
The Glycerin fits true to size with a medium-width interior volume with a snug, locked-down feeling from heel to toe. There’s a tiny bit of wiggle room offered in the forefoot. The engineered mesh upper also accommodates a range of foot shapes within the same size.
The step-in feeling is soft and comforting with a wrap-like sensation. This is thanks to the extra cushioning in the heel collar, foot bed, seamless interior and fully gusseted tongue.
All of those aspects contribute to a particularly smooth and consistent ride, a rolling, slightly bouncy and very forgiving sensation for short distances or long runs.
The Glycerin is not exceptionally agile or fast by nature, but it can be pushed to moderately fast paces for specific workouts or progression runs.
WHO IT'S BEST FOR
Runners who appreciate the feeling of plush, soft cushioning in every stride will appreciate the Brooks Glycerin 19.
It’s ideal for long runs, recovery runs and mid-length tempo runs, the Glycerin is a mid-weight shoe that provides subtle stability and industry-leading cushion and comfort.
Although it’s not especially adept at high-cadence running, it has enough cushiness in the midsole for consistent moderately fast running. With this in mind, some runners might even consider it for a half marathon or marathon.
If you’re a runner with a neutral gait pattern, the Glycerin will bring endless miles of soft, consistent cushioning that’s not mushy and also not too bouncy like some other neutral shoes.
Although it’s not a stability shoe, there is a bit of inherent stability. This derives from the structure of the midsole foam and the wider overall footprint. It's enhanced by the slightly flared design of the midsole/outsole chassis.
PROS: Brooks Glycerin 19
The magic of the Glycerin comes from the full-length DNA Loft midsole. It’s the softest midsole foam in the Brooks toolbox, one that produces a forgiving and resilient sensation in every step.
A stretchy internal bootie and cushy ankle collar provide a seamless, sock-like fit that allows the Glycerin to adapt to a wide variety of foot sizes, shapes and volumes.
The new double-jacquard mesh upper offers exceptional breathability that helps keep the feet cool, dry and comfortable in warm conditions. It’s slightly stretchy and more accommodating — but also slightly more secure — than the upper on the Glycerin 18.
The outsole provides reliable traction and connectivity with the ground as it has in previous editions of the Glycerin. What has changed is the array of flex grooves. They have updates to provide better midsole flexibility without compromising the sensation of the cushioning and ride.
If you like the feeling of the soft, smooth ride of the neutral-oriented Brooks Ghost 13 ($130), you’ll find the Glycerin 19 to be a notch up when it comes to softness, smoothness and plushness. The Glycerin 19 is a premium everyday trainer that compares well to other top-tier trainers from other brands in the same price range.
LOOKING FOR MORE STABILITY?
The Glycerin is probably too soft for runners who need some degree of support to accommodate an over-pronating gait pattern.
It’s worth noting that Brooks has changed the name of its Transcend stability shoe to the Glycerin 19 GTS. This launches in March 2021 ($150) with a similarly plush ride to the original Glycerin. The stability-enhancing ride of the Guiderails system that was in the Transcend is also built into the Brooks Adrenaline GTS and Launch GTS.
CONS: Brooks Glycerin 19
There aren’t really any negatives to the Glycerin 19, but there are some minor limitations. While it’s as soft and smooth and comfortable as any neutral shoe on the market, it’s not as light or energetic of fast as some of its contemporaries