Brooks is one of the most popular running shoe brands, and for good reason. They make a wide variety of models for different types of runners, and everything they touch is high-quality. They are also a company with a deep history. Founded in 1914, Brooks started with ballet and bathing shoes. They actually made a variety of different sporting shoes until 1972, when they began making shoes specifically for running. It was a good move.
Runners can be passionate about the brands they wear. If you’re a Brooks fan, it’s not a question of whether you’ll wear Brooks or something else – it’s a question of which Brooks shoe is right for you. If you’re in the market for a new pair of shoes, the Ghost and the Adrenaline are two great options. So which one?
They have different features and functions that might suit some runners but not others. We‘ll be delving into all the details and comparing them side-by-side, so you can make an informed decision about which one is best for you.
Let’s get into it!
Main Difference Between Ghosts and Adrenalines
At first glance, the Ghost and Adrenaline may look similar, but they are quite different.
- Brooks Ghost is a lightweight, neutral shoe that delivers a soft ride and keeps pushing you forward.
- Brooks Adrenaline is a stability shoe that provides you with flexibility and a smooth ride.
This is a critically important distinction, and the biggest deciding factor between your running stride and the shoes. Stability shoes are specifically for runner who over pronate. Check the soles of your current running shoes. If they show the most wear on the inside of the heel, you are overpronating, and a stability shoe will help this. Enjoy your new Adrenalines! If the wear on the heel tread is roughly even, then you have a neutral stride. Welcome to the Ghost family!
Both shoes have uppers made from a combination of mesh and synthetic overlays throughout the midfoot.
The Ghost has recently been updated to include Brooks Airmesh, which is just the right mix of soft, supportive, and breathable.
The upper on the Adrenaline has also been trimmed down, but with the added medial support guide rails, you’ll feel that your foot is being supported and is quite secure.
Both shoes have an extra eyelet added to help lock your feet in.
You’ll notice that the Adrenaline shoes normally come in a range of vibrant and bright colors, while the Ghost seems to want to “blend-in” to its surroundings with a less vibrant color, just like its name suggests. Still, Brooks periodically offers extra-funky special edition shoes (are you a fan of plaid?), so keep your eye out on their website for limited-run designs that are truly offbeat.
One of the biggest differences between the Brooks Adrenaline and the Ghost is that the Ghost doesn’t provide any additional support. It’s a neutral shoe, designed for people whose feet are fairly straight and don’t necessarily need extra stability.
The Adrenaline, on the other hand, is a stability shoe, and it’s designed for overpronators. For support, it has a guide rail that’s been bonded to the midsole.
The GuideRails let your ankle joints, knees, and hips move within your natural motion path. It also helps you to maintain a natural movement throughout your run, or what’s better known as your natural habitual joint motion.
The habitual motion path, or your personal “line” when running, is the path with the least amount of resistance of the joints. The GuideRails are designed to help runners find their natural habitual motion path. Basically, they keep your form correct so you have less chance of injury!
The midsole of the Ghost features BioMogo on the medial side and DNA Loft on the lateral side.
While it doesn’t add a lot to the stack height, you should note that this combination feels comfortable and protective. The full-length DNA Loft cushioning gives the runner a smoother transition, and provides a responsive, balanced, and stable ride.
With the Brooks Adrenaline, you’ll feel the cupped support close to the top of the midsole, and if you’ve worn the Adrenaline before, you may be able to feel that it’s softer than others. The previous versions of the Adrenaline had a firmer inner midsole.
The updated version has compression-molded EVA with raised sidewalls, and the supportive guide rail has been bonded into the midsole.
This runs from the forefoot to the heel along the lateral side of the shoe, and provides extra support.
The BioMoGo DNA cushioning, which is stacked above the DNA Loft Crash Pad, will give you a responsive and springy step, while absorbing the impact of each footfall.
The Ghost 15 outsole has recently been tweaked to improve the tread pattern. In terms of materials, the outsole is made from lightweight-yet-thick blown rubber, and has deep grooves in it to give it flexibility.
The flex grooves provide a comfortable ride with a better bounce and a responsive toe-off. Ghosts have a robust carbon rubber under the heel.
This goes a long way toward making them long-lasting, as they’re able to withstand road and trail abrasion for far more than the allotted 300-400 miles most running shoes last for. When Ghosts wear out, it won’t be because of the outsole.
Like the Ghost 15, the Adrenaline also features a thick blown rubber outsole with carbon rubber in the heel strike zone. The rubber in the forefoot is a little lighter and softer, which provides the spring that gives extra propulsion on the toe-off.
The Adrenaline has two full flex grooves, with a smaller slit that provides flexibility through the forefoot when you push off. The outsole is encapsulated on the medial side, which is going to give the big toe extra support through the last phase of the gait cycle. In stability shoes, this focus on the inside of your foot, from foot strike to toe off, is a defining feature, and the Adrenalin does it well.
Both the Ghost and the Adrenaline have a 12 mm heel-to-toe offset. This is on the higher side when it comes to running shoes in general, but considering they’re the same on both shoes, it shouldn’t affect your decision between these two.
The men’s Ghost 15 weighs 9.7 ounces per shoe if you’re wearing a size 9, while the women’s size 8 weighs 8.5 ounces. Naturally, the same shoes of different sizes are different weights, but not by much.
The men’s Adrenaline weighs a bit more, at 11.3 ounces for size 9, and the women’s size 8 weighs 8.5 ounces, just like the Ghost. The extra weight can be attributed to the guide rail system. Sorry, overpronators: stability shoes tend to weight more.
Either way, both of them are fairly lightweight and easy on the feet.
Firmness & Support
The Adrenaline shoe is firmer and stiffer, and provides great support for runners with low arches. The GuideRails in the Adrenaline makes it a stability shoe, and wearing them will make sure that your foot is in a proper gait.
It’s important to note that the GuideRails may cause some pain in the beginning. Your foot may not be used to being in its natural position, but once you get used to it, you’ll find that you have less pain and a reduced chance of injury.
The Ghost 15 will make you feel as though you’re walking on clouds, and the plush feeling will be felt even on long runs. Again, it’s a neutral shoe, so it will be perfectly comfy for runners who have a neutral foot.
Those who overpronate may find it to be uncomfortable, as it won’t provide the necessary support. Runners with high arches or who underpronate are more likely to find a home in this shoe. High-arched runners and underpronators/supinators tend to favor well-cushioned shoes, and Ghosts fit that bill to a T.
Whether you’re starting out or you’re an experienced runner, you’ll find both shoes to provide a smooth and comfortable ride. It’s just a matter knowing your own gait and choosing which one suits your particular foot better. Aren’t sure a out your gait? Get yourself to a local running store with a treadmill and have the staff help you figure it out.
Both shoes cost the same: $130. This is about average for a good pair of running shoes, regardless of model and brand.
The only time you’ll likely find a discount is just before a new version is released. Release dates can change, but they typically occur in late spring/early summer for the Ghost and early fall for the Adrenaline.
But don’t expect a big sale – 10-15% off is often as high as the discount goes.
Both the Brooks Ghost and Adrenaline shoes are great shoes that are widely popular among distance runners.
To get the best out of the running shoes, take the following things into consideration:
- Where you’ll be running (what kind of terrain)
- The level of arch support that you need
- What distance you’ll be running
- How frequently you’ll be running
The Brooks Ghost 15 is a neutral running shoe and is best for runners with a neutral stride who are looking to run on a daily basis.
These shoes should also be great for runners who run long distances, due to the superb cushioning that they offer. If you have high arches, underpronate, or have a mild pronation, you could use the Brooks Ghost running shoe fairly comfortably.
If you’re looking for a shoe that provides cushioning and will make your feet feel like they’re walking on marshmallows, then the Brooks Ghost 15 could be the shoe for you! It’s a great shoe for those up-tempo runs.
The Brooks Adrenaline is a stability shoe, and it is best for runners who have pronounced overpronation . The Adrenaline provides steady support for medium to low arches, as well as cushioning for everyday runs.
Those with a neutral foot may find the GuideRails to be uncomfortable, so it’s definitely best recommended for pronators.