Click Here to read our latest COVID-19 update (Updated 28/7)
×

Brooks Ghost 14 vs 13 Comparison Shoe Review

by Sportitude
16 Jun 2021

Josh reviews the Brooks Ghost 14 running shoes, your stable neutral ride with heel striker-friendly engineering and consistently reliable performance. It delivers slight improvements without overhauling the winning formula of its predecessor, the Brooks Ghost 13.

Harder wearing rubber at the rearfoot reinforces this high-impact zone, extending the lifespan of your running shoes while protecting the asset from impact forces, being the DNA Loft cushioning. Higher rigidity at the forefoot provides the support needed for the outsole to work in harmony with the updated midsole geometry, being softer compared to the Brooks Ghost 13.

DNA Loft cushioning runs from heel-to-toe with a consistent density throughout. Up top the deep upper fit is accommodating of orthotics. True to the heel counters of Brooks running shoes gone by, the Brooks Ghost 14 offers a structured, locked-in feel and lasting comfort.

As the fit and stack height is consistent with the Brooks Ghost 13, loyal Ghost runners will find it easy to transition to this newest best seller. Multiple width offerings from narrow to extra wide allow you to dial in the fit precisely.

A slightly lighter, more breathable mesh upper keeps your feet in cool and fresh conditions during your high mileage runs.

Check out the full review with transcript below.

Hey guys, Josh here from Sportitude Running and today we have a very exciting shoe review. We're going to be talking about one of the most reliable running shoes that's been on the market for the last couple of years, none other than the Brooks Ghost. In my hand I hold the 14th edition of this shoe.

Brooks rarely change much with this running shoe and we've seen that over the last three to four years. However, with the Brooks Ghost 14 there's been a couple of little tweaks which we'll get into in today's review. We’ll talk about the changes which Brooks have made from the Brooks Ghost 13 to the Brooks Ghost 14.

Like all my shoe reviews in the past we'll be talking about the outsole, midsole and upper. We’ll discuss the performance and the foot type that could be considering the Brooks Ghost 14. Without further ado let's get stuck in.

Runner Profile

Let's talk about the foot type first before we dive into the engineering componentry of the Brooks Ghost 14. In my hand I hold a static position of what we classify as a high arch or a mildly supinated foot type. For this runner when they land either under the heel or on the midfoot, as they come through their transition and get ready to toe-off most of the pressure will be towards the central part of the foot or towards that lateral component.

They're leaving the ground on that third or fourth metatarsal at the front. Generally speaking, they will have a little bit of space between the arch and the ground. However, being a stable neutral shoe and especially with the Ghost 14 they've made it a little bit more supportive, and we'll tuck into the specifics of that in two ticks.

It's how my foot sits as well, being flatter in the arch. This runner can either be relatively neutral so when they transition through the central part of their gait cycle, pressure is still through the central part of their navicular as they transition through to toe-off.

However, if this person tends to mildly overpronate and doesn't get along with support systems, you can roll out the Brooks Ghost 14 but you obviously want to be fitted just to make sure you qualify for that type of shoe.

Outsole

This is the fun part, let's dive into the tech specs of the Brooks Ghost 14. I will firstly talk about the outsole. When we look underneath the shoe with the Ghost 13 in my right hand and the Ghost 14 in my left, you can see nothing's really changed with regards to the fact they've still gone with that full-length outsole.

There's no Trusstic system that sits in between the heel and the forefoot and they've done this now for the best part of five to six years. With the rubber componentry underneath the foot, they have placed that harder wearing rubber at the back of the heel.

This has been a great shoe for that heel striker that comes down on that entry point underneath the heel first. It provides plenty of cushioning and the rubber has been strategically placed at the back to make sure that the DNA Loft cushioning system is not going to be impacted by the first point of contact with the ground.

As you come through to the midfoot, the other mild change is that they've made this piece of the outsole a bit more prominent. Through that arch region of the outsole there's a little slit through the Brooks Ghost 13 and on the Ghost 14 it's covering a little bit more area underneath the arch.

As you come through to the forefoot the second flex groove from the toe is encapsulated underneath the toe box in the Brooks Ghost 14 in comparison to the Brooks Ghost 13 which has full horizontal flex grooves across the forefoot. There are three flex grooves in the Brooks Ghost 13 and underneath the Ghost 14 we have two and a half. The main reason Brooks have done that is purely and simply because how they have changed the engineering of the midsole.

Midsole

Let's talk about the midsole of the Brooks Ghost 14. First things first, I want to talk about how they're going to use DNA Loft in this shoe. The shoe has full-length DNA Loft cushioning system and it is the same density on the lateral side as it is the medial side. No surprises there, that is how a neutral shoe is put together.

However with the Ghost 13, Brooks used the DNA Loft cushioning system along the lateral side of the shoe. There was a marginal change between the medial density of foam and the lateral DNA Loft density.

Brooks used that engineering philosophy in the Brooks Ghost 13 to provide a little bit of extra cushioning for that mild supinator which was a success. There was great feedback with the Brooks Ghost 13, it worked quite well.

With the Ghost 14 Brooks have decided to run with the same density on the lateral side as well as the medial side as I just touched on. Therefore, it's going to be a softer shoe underneath the foot for most runners, hence why they have changed the outsole configuration.

This provides a little bit more rigidity through that forefoot underneath the first metatarsal with those encapsulated flex grooves. It has two and a half flex grooves as we touched on a minute ago.

While we're talking all things midsole nothing has changed with the stack height. You have a 24mm stack in the heel and 12mm stack in the forefoot for a variance of 12mm.

It has been a generous stack height over the last few years. Some could argue that while brands are starting to drop to that 10mm to 8mm heel drop and even going lower than that, most mileage shoes will sit anywhere between an 8mm to a 12mm heel-to-toe offset.

Brooks have had such a good run with this shoe. They're not going to go back to the drawing board and change it any time soon, so you still get your 12mm offset which is great.

Upper

Let's talk about the upper of the Brooks Ghost 14. Before I start talking about the technical aspects of this shoe, let's call out the widths because it's my favourite feature of this shoe.

Brooks back it, they back their engineering. They love making it accessible to as many neutral runners out there.

We have in the men's model a B width on offer which is a narrow width, standard D width, 2E and 4E width. There are four widths on offer in the men's which is awesome.

In the women’s model we have three widths. We have a 2A width which is narrow, B width which is standard and then also a D offering.

That gives me a lot of satisfaction because when you're fitting a shoe on the shop floor and you dial into what engineering components of a running shoe will work for someone, having the variety of widths gives us a lot more confidence to put this on someone's foot. If we need to go wider we can and if we need to go narrower we can do that also.

Well done to Brooks. They’re leading the way with regards to width offerings in the running shoe market which is fantastic.

Inside this heel collar we have an internal heel counter system. It’s a plastic system that supports the heel perfectly. It's nice and structured, deep enough as well so you can throw an orthotic into this shoe depending on the heel height of course. We have had great success fitting Ghosts over the last few years with orthotics and nothing will change with the Brooks Ghost 14.

Inside the heel collar and I have said this in Brooks reviews gone by, it doesn't matter whether we're talking about the Brooks Adrenaline, the Brooks Glycerin, the Ghosts or any other Brook shoe, they just know how to make heel collars.

Nothing has changed with the Brooks Ghost 14. It has the perfect amount of foam insert around the inside of that heel and Achilles insertion. From the memory foam perspective it holds its shape from that first kilometre right through to the last. It's a really good construction that offers a great fit and is very comfortable.

As you're coming through to the arch region of this running shoe nothing really has changed with regards to the depth on offer. It has the same fit and feel from the Brooks Ghost 13 to the Ghost 14 and that goes with the forefoot as well. They haven't changed the structure of the forefoot to say that it's going to be deeper, wider or narrower. If you have been a specific width in the Ghost 13 you will be the same width in the Ghost 14 which is fantastic. Continuity is a big thing with performance running shoes so well done to Brooks.

The only thing I will say with regards to the mesh is it's marginally lighter and it breathes a little bit better. With that being said, the Ghost 13 wasn't a poor performer in that space by any stretch of the imagination. It's just the Ghost 14 has a couple of little improvements. The better ventilation is an absolute win on my end.

Another minor change that we need to call out to you at home is that the lace has changed. In the Ghost 14 you're going to see more of a flat lace design and regarding the Ghosts gone by they use an oval concept. In my opinion the oval concept has been one of the best laces that Brooks have ever executed and in comparison to other brands they just get it right.

The feedback for Brook laces has been overwhelmingly positive. It's only a small thing but it can make such a difference with regards to your lockdown, your fit, your comfort and overall satisfaction with the running shoe. In saying this, the flat lace is not bad. They have used the flat lace to cover a little bit more area when you get the tension right so it should in theory give you a better lockdown.

One thing we do need to call out is the Brooks Ghost 14 has the same tongue structure as what it had in the Ghost 13. It is stitched down the bottom and it is a hidden stitch so you're not getting any rubbing or irritation. There's no gusseted system which is used in the lateral or medial side, so again that's a bit of a controversial topic.

A lot of runners like to feel like their foot is locked down with some sort of gusseted tongue structure. However, Brooks in my opinion with the Ghost especially get everything right with regards to the height, depth, width and the actual materials they use with their upper.

They don't necessarily need to add in that other layer of complexity with that gusseted system. It's worked for them over the last couple of years and that's another reason why they didn't change with the Brooks Ghost 14.

The Wrap Up

Let's wrap up the Brooks Ghost 14. There's one word that I like to use when describing the Ghost and it is honest. That is exactly what you want out of a good mileage running shoe. It's nice and cushioned underneath the foot. It's light enough so you can take it for some shorter, quicker runs or do a progressive run in it. There's enough response through that forefoot to get a little bit of energy back from the ground.

The running shoe has been super consistent over the last half a decade and the great thing is Brooks are not really changing too much of the winning formula from year to year which is fantastic.

The Brooks Ghost 14 is marginally softer underneath the foot and that's purely and simply because they're using full-length DNA Loft and the geometry is the same in the lateral and medial side.

However, to counteract that softness they have provided a little bit more support with how they've strategically placed the outsole underneath the foot. It comes in widths, can take orthotics quite well and it is and will be one of our better sellers yet again.

There you have it, that is my take on the Brooks Ghost 14. If you have any questions, comments queries or theories on this running shoe or any other running shoes please contact our Sportitude shoe experts.

Please subscribe to the Sportitude YouTube channel if you haven't done so already. Hit the red button to stay notified and we'll keep pumping out these shoe reviews for you the running community.

Until next time stay safe, be kind to one another, happy running and we'll see you on the road. Take care.

FEATURES

Brooks Ghost 14

  • Support: Neutral
  • Upper: Mesh
  • Midsole: Brooks DNA Loft
  • Heel Height: 24mm
  • Forefoot Height: 12mm
  • Offset / Drop: 12mm

Men

  • Weight: 281g / 9.9oz
  • Width: B (narrow), D (standard), 2E (wide) and 4E (extra wide)

Women

  • Weight: 255g / 9oz
  • Width: 2A (narrow), B (standard) and D (wide)

Brooks Ghost 13

Shop / Review