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Tara D ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

These shoes are overall a great pair of shoes. The comfort level is insane. I don't rush to take these off after a run. I received many compliments on this pair of shoes. They are flashy and fun! They make me feel fast and the cushion support is perfect.


Introducing the new Wave Rider 18 – the ideal balance of fit and performance.  Perfect for runners seeking a smooth ride in a sleek, lightweight daily trainer.

Building on the legacy of the Wave Rider line, the Wave Rider 18 is our best model yet, providing runners with a more resilient and responsive ride and a superb underfoot sensation, creating a more harmonious fit that works with the runner at every stride.

Key Features

  • An ideal heel fit and secure midfoot embrace make this lightweight trainer feel like a part of your foot.
  • The parallel Wave in the heel, lightweight U4ic midsole and optimal amount of forefoot flexibility all work together to make every stride smooth and flowing.

What's New

  • Refined toe-spring delivers a smooth, effortless toe-off
  • Upgraded premium sock liner provides more rebound and resiliency at every foot strike
  • New outsole design with added durability and shock attenuation
  • Learn More: Rider 17 vs. Rider 18  




Optimal shock attenuation, durability and a superior ride.
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4.5 / 5.0
49 Reviews
5 Stars
4 Stars
3 Stars
2 Stars
1 Star
How would you rate the comfort of this product?
5.0 / 5
How would you rate the durability of this product?
5.0 / 5
How would you rate the feel of the product?
5.0 / 5
How would you rate the fit and feel of this product?
5.0 / 5
How would you rate the performance of the product?
5.0 / 5
How would you rate the quality of this product?
5.0 / 5
Overall Sizing
Feels one full size too small
Feels one full size too big
Would you recommend to a friend?
Yes (40)
No (6)
Pros for Footwear
Comfortable (1)
Great Colors (1)
Durable (1)
Good Traction (1)
Best Use - Running
Running (1)
General Fitness (1)
Purchased As Gift?
No (1)
Years Playing or Participating
16-20 (1)
35 to 44 (1)
# of Days Per Week In Play
6 (1)
Describe Yourself
Casual/Recreational (1)
Male (1)
Miles per week
21-30 (1)
Pairs of Mizuno shoes
6+ (1)
Would you recommend to a friend?
Sad Runner
I have been a Rider fan almost since the first one was released (with a couple a head scratchers in the middle) and after taking sometime away was so excited for the 18, I mean just look at them! Mizuno may be the first to actually design a running shoe that truly LOOKS like it's in motion. So I had the store call me when they arrived, took them for a spin and then dropped my money and went home to prepare for my first true run. AND three runs in and I am sad and wishing I would have gone with my 2nd choice. What a disappointment. They feel great when you put them on, but I'm not sure I can remember the last time I ran in a shoe that had a less smooth transition! Clunky is the only way I can describe them as they roll from heel to forefoot. Add to the numbness I felt through the balls on my feet after 5 miles and the soreness through the mid foot and I was about ready to finish my run barefoot. And what's up with the new outsole!? I had to actually turn my music up loud enough so that I wouldn't hear the racket coming from my feet. So here I am, my shoe budget exhausted for a few months and stuck with shoes that will likely make a trip to Goodwill after a couple more I said. I am sad.
October 24, 2014
Would you recommend to a friend?
Wave Rider 18 like an old friend
When I last needed a new pair of running shoes I of course called my Fleet Feet store and told them I was on the way to pick up a pair of Riders. Little did I know that the Rider 17 was just out. The shoe was terrible. It nearly crippled me. I had to buy a pair of competitive shoes which I detest. I have been running in Riders forever so boy was I upset.A couple of months later my friend at Fleet Feet called and said the 18s just arrived so I drove right over. The "new" 18s are like an old friend. I hit the ground running. Thank You for making this great shoe available and please stay with something that works. Frank Hill, Roanoke VA.
October 23, 2014
Would you recommend to a friend?
Didn't think it could get any better
I have been a devoted Mizuno shoe runner for a while and have been running with the WaveRider17. I didn't think that there was a shoe out there for me that was better than the 17's...until I ran with the 18's. The WaveRider18 is hand down the best running show I've ever worn. I can't tell you the technical details as to why I love it, but my feet and knees feel great after a run. If you are a neutral runner, I highly recommend the WaveRider18
October 14, 2014
Would you recommend to a friend?
Durable enough to withstand Ultra Runner training
The Mizuno Wave Rider 18 is not only a great looking shoe but is a solid shoe for road or even light trail running. It's light weight makes it a perfect race shoe and the Wave Rider is durable enough to withstand �ultra runner� training. This is currently my go to shoe for day to day training and races. Love it!
October 25, 2014
Would you recommend to a friend?
New Mizuno Fan
I had the opportunity to try the WaveRider18s for the first time this month. Having been a stability shoe wearer I now realize I can get enough support from a light neutral shoe and still run 2 days in a row. Great for running, but also quite supportive while hiking in Switzerland. Not to mention. All the cobblestone streets. Having used other popular brands and working as a Foot and Ankle surgeon, this shoe will now be on the list of shoes that I recommend. Very satisfied. 5 stars
October 21, 2014
Would you recommend to a friend?
Great shoe...
Completely satisfied with these shoes. From comfort to support, street, trail, or treadmill this shoe can handle everything. Whether I run 4 or 9 miles these shoes never fail. I was an asics fan, but Mizuno is my new brand. I highly recommend these to anyone. I just hope they come out with a new color, I have the red ones, and they show little wear and tear with 170+ miles on them. I cannot express how happy I am with them.
January 18, 2015
Would you recommend to a friend?
The Rider 18's are a huge improvement.
I had a couple pairs of Wave Rider 17's, and I have a few different brands of shoes that I can run in, so I have plenty of perspective to draw from. The 17's did the trick, but there were definitely some things about them that could have been improved upon. Mizuno did just that. I have been wearing the 18's for about 3 months now, and they are better in all the areas that I thought needed some work. The upper fits more snug, it is much more streamlined, it fits, and just looks better. I have a low-volume foot (skin and bones), and the upper on the 18 is fantastic. I had some issues with the sole, the lugs weren't deep enough and the tread pattern just didn't make sense for a fast, neutral, shoe, that I take on the trails as much as I run on pavement. Mizuno took care of that on the 18 as well. The whole package is a big improvement, and in my opinion there isn't much more they need to change on them. Bravo guys, you weren't afraid to go back to the drawing board and push the envelope a bit. Nice work!
January 10, 2015
Would you recommend to a friend?
Comfortable and Durable
The shoe fits true to size, and feels very light on my feet. Even on my first run, the shoe felt good on my feet. The Wave Rider 18 has a high level of responsiveness, shock absorption, and provides a smooth ride. It is a light feeling shoe while still providing the needed support to log my miles. Mizuno is able to keep the lightweight feel while also providing a shoe that feels supportive and able to sustain the rigors of a runner�s weekly mileage. The shoe feels very durable on your foot, and seems to be constructed well. Also, the shoe is very sharp looking. I normally do not buy running shoes based on looks, but when a shoe looks good, that is a definite bonus.
November 1, 2014
Would you recommend to a friend?
Improved Iteration of this Popular Shoe
There have been a lot of comparisons to the Wave Rider 17, some good, some bad. As with all shoes, you have to try them on to see how they work for you. The new design improves on the previous model, in my opinion, in more ways than one. Immediately noticeable is the color gradient that is dark at the heels and lighter towards the toes, a very pretty look. The sole's general pattern remains the same, though the colorful swirls of the 17 have been replaced with a simple black rubber. While both models retain a narrower arch, the 18 feels roomier overall, with a wider base feel (though physically they appear equal). Breathability seems better with the 18, perhaps due to the larger circular-shaped mesh used. While also a bit stiff out of the box, these were definitely a lot more flexible than the 17s, a welcome improvement. Perhaps the strangest difference are the noticeably shorter laces on the 18s, not sure why this change was made.
October 29, 2014
Would you recommend to a friend?
Great neutral, firm shoe
The Wave Rider 18 is a really impressive shoe. It has all of Mizuno's current top tech - U4ic to cut 30% of the weight over the old AP+ foam; Wave Technology to really transfer energy through the stride so you get a lively, energizing run; Dynamotion Fit to keep the shoe fitting perfectly throughout your entire strike and stride. Not too heavy, not overbuilt or under-built - a good balance for a wide range of runners. Also worth noting, I forefoot strike, and these were totally fine for that (many traditional looking shoes don't work well with forefoot striking).

I'm used to more minimalist shoes, so I found it to be a bit firmer than I would prefer, but not problematically so. Overall, I would feel comfortable recommending this to other runners.

One note on fit - I wear a 10 in literally every other brand, but wear 9.5s in most Mizunos, including the Rider. Definitely try a half size smaller if you aren't used to Mizuno sizing.
October 17, 2014
Start typing your question and we'll check if it was already asked and answered. Learn More
Browse 51 questions Browse 51 questions and 46 answers
I'm looking to replace my Wave Exilir 8. I had 7's before that and find those are the best running shoes for me. I have over 600mi on them that's how great they are. What is the closed shoe you have to the Exilir
Bryanhop on Oct 13, 2014
BEST ANSWER: Really? I wouldn't completely disagree with that statement.As Chitown mentioned above, the Elixir and Paradox are completely different shoes. Having run in both Elixir, Inspire, Sayonara and Alchemy shoes, in the current lineup nothing seems to compare to the Elixir 8 at the moment.
So I had the rider 16 and loved them, but when I tried on the rider 17 I wasn't very impressed. Would you still recommend the 18?
Dylan on Oct 15, 2014
BEST ANSWER: Right there with you Dylan. I had about 5 or 6 pairs of the 16 because the 17 didn't feel right. The 18 is very similar to the 16. I have a few runs in the 18 and predict I will be buying a few more 18s!
When are the Wave Rider 19s being released? I've seen them on other sites but they look extremely similar to their predecessor.
NevM on Sep 19, 2015
BEST ANSWER: As of right now the Wave Rider 19's are going to be released October 5th.
Long time Mizuno runner using WR & precision's, recently got WR 18 instead of hitogami 2. Experiencing top of foot & heel pain for the 1st time ever in Mizuno's. Bought at a shop out of state, concerned about potential injury, any suggestions?
cmedwardz on Sep 3, 2015
BEST ANSWER: Yes I had the very same problem ,especially heel area, never had this problem before with wave rider
Is this available in woman's as well?
Rosalie on Sep 22, 2014
BEST ANSWER: The Wave Rider 18 will also be available in women's starting 11/5/14.
Is. WR 18 suited to my high arches?
Gill H on Apr 4, 2016
BEST ANSWER: The Wave Rider 18 is suitable for runners with high arches. However, we would strongly recommend visiting one of our Mizuno Authorized Retailers to go through a full fitting to determine which size is best for you. Please visit the link provided below to find the nearest retailer to you. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to give us a call at 1-800-966-1211.
I recently purchased a pair of Inspire 11s and also a pair of Rider 18s and noticed that both have a strip of fabric along the center of the inside mesh of the toe box. I understand that this is for added durability of the mesh. However, I also have a pair of Inspire 11s purchased about a year ago and these do not have this strip of fabric. Why the inconsistency?
A shopper on Feb 11, 2016
Men's Wave Rider 18
Men's Wave Rider 18
Men's Wave Inspire 11
Men's Wave Inspire 11
BEST ANSWER: We are not exactly sure what you are referring too. We would love to address the question though. If you would, email pictures to of the area you are referring too and a little more detailed explanation. We would be more than happy to give you the best and correct answer.
How many kms can I get out of the wave rider 18?. Only used for road running. Current pair has done 290km.
David R on Feb 3, 2016
BEST ANSWER: Many factors determine the amount of miles one can get out of a pair of running shoes. Therefore, we do not like to put a number with our running shoes. Some of these varying factors include running form, body type, and what type of training one is doing.
I purchased a pair of WaveRider 18's (Men's) this past week & the person helping me at the store said that I needed a 11 because feet swell during run. The size 11's seem big and loose feeling, is there that much difference or should I return for 10.5?
jeremym22 on Sep 15, 2015
BEST ANSWER: We would recommend trying the 10.5 if you feel they are too big while running. If your feet are coming out of the shoe while running, try the 10.5.
Do the wave rider 18 and legend 2 both have 12 mm heel-toe drop and which one has a firmer sole?
uzii on Jul 22, 2015
BEST ANSWER: Both shoes do offer a 12mm drop, and each will have a similar feel in terms of softness.
Will there be a Wave Rider 19?
NevM on Jul 12, 2015
BEST ANSWER: Yes there will be a Wave Rider 19. At this time we do not have specific information regarding when it may come out.
Is it just me or did they shorten the laces? I can't fully lace the shoes! Had to pull the laces off my 17's... Boo!
bgallien on Jul 5, 2015
BEST ANSWER: For further assistance please contact us at 1-800-966-1211.
Every pair of wave riders I have ever owned (and there have been many) have all worn through in the big toe area. From the reviews written, I see other people with the same issue. When will this area get extra re-inforcement?
Colesy on Jul 1, 2015
BEST ANSWER: Holes in the upper of a shoe can develop for a number of different reasons. We have incorporated design elements into our newest shoes to help combat this type of wear.
Please make a wave runner shoe with a traction sole that I can use as a golf shoe?
Mark7034 on Jun 4, 2015
BEST ANSWER: We appreciate your feedback on the design of our running shoes. Your suggestion will be passed along to our product development team as they always appreciate hearing from our consumers.
I have Huglund's deformity in my right foot and im a heavy, neutral runner. Will 18s benifit me more than the 17's?
Ompong on Jun 2, 2015
BEST ANSWER: The Rider 18's have some changes to the lasting, toebox, mesh material and overlays, but the ramp and overall structure of the shoe will be similar to the 17's. We recommend a fitting in the Rider 18's to ensure the fit and feel of the shoe is what you are looking for.
Do you carry narrow widths? I wear a 14, but need a narrow shoe.
Higgo on May 30, 2015
BEST ANSWER: We do not carry narrow widths in our men's shoes.
Strange question, but my teenage son is going on a youth training ship and needs non-marking soled shoes. Would the Wave Rider 18 qualify? Easier to ask you than get him to put them on and see if he can mark a boats deck before he goes!
Dave O on Apr 28, 2015
BEST ANSWER: Our running shoes all use non-marking soles.
Is this shoe recommend for a Flat Foot with Overpronation?
bubba55carr on Apr 28, 2015
BEST ANSWER: The Wave Rider is a nuetral shoe that is recommended for higher arches and runner's who may underpronate or supinate. Please check out our Inspire 11 or Paradox in the support shoe category if you need a shoe for flat arches and overpronation.
I used to have a pair of size 10 Wave Creation 8. What size should I go with for the Wave Rider 18? Thank you.
Ariel69 on Apr 24, 2015
BEST ANSWER: The Creation and Rider use different technologies in the midsole that may make the shoes fit and feel differently on your feet. We would recommend a fitting in the Rider 18 to ensure you get the best size for you.
Mizuno Alchemy 12's...why in the world did you quit making them ? Loved them...Paradox was recommended as a replacement-supposedly the replacement model for the Alchemy. Not so. I have seen many Alchemy people say the same...not the same cushioning. HELP
Jim B on Apr 21, 2015
BEST ANSWER: We appreciate your feedback on your experience in your Mizuno running shoes. Our Wave Paradox 2 is releasing July 5th. We have added a mm of blown rubber to the outsole for increased comfort and durability. We recommend trying this new model when it is released to see if it provides the desired cushioning you are looking for.
I am a mid foot striker, landing on the outer side of my foot (pinky toe side). Why do you use a softer rubber on the outer sole in that area? It wears out much faster then the black portion you use on the heal portion.
Richard125 on Apr 18, 2015
BEST ANSWER: We use blown rubber in the forefoot to provide a cushioned and supportive feel for the underfoot. Different parts of the shoe will break down more quickly for different runners depending on their bio mechanics and the gait of the foot.
I have the 17s and like them, they were my 1st pair of Mizunos. They were recommended to me after I did the test on the website. I'm looking for a new pair and am wondering if I should upgrade to the 18s?
Nick L on Apr 12, 2015
BEST ANSWER: The Rider 18's use an updated mesh material in the upper, synthetic overlays, and traditional stitching. We recommend a fitting in the 18's to ensure they provide the desired fit and feel you are looking for.
I wear a size 10 in the women's wave rider 18. I like some of the men's colors and was wondering what size this would be in men's?
Jdavied on Mar 21, 2015
BEST ANSWER: We recommend going down about 1.5 sizes in a men's shoe. The size 8.5 should be equivalent in length to your women's shoe, but it will fit a little wider.
I was fitted and used to run on the Mizuno Nirvana shoe. I don't think you make this shoe anymore. What has replaced it or what would you recommend that is close to this shoe?
ckgta on Mar 16, 2015
BEST ANSWER: The Wave Nirvana was replaced by the Wave Paradox. We recommend visiting a local specialty store for a fitting in this shoe to ensure it provides your desired fit.
How durable is the wave rider ( about how long will it last?) , and what is the most amount of miles that should be run in a week in them?
Joseph123456789 on Feb 8, 2015
BEST ANSWER: Estimating the number of miles someone gets out of a pair of shoes is always difficult because there are so many variables involved such as your size, speed, bio mechanics and predominant running surface. But generally speaking, our running shoes will get about 300-450 miles out of a pair. Some will get more miles than that; others less. The mid-sole cushioning for most of our shoes is foam and it gradually does break down with the repetitive impact from running.
Is 18 a bit heavier than 17? What's the EXACT WEIGHT for each of them? Is it 9.0 oz at 9 for 18? Is the difference between 17 and 18 negligible? 17 differed from 16 and 15 in weight but not by much.
runnie on Jan 3, 2015
BEST ANSWER: The Rider 18, size 9 weighs 9.2 oz. The Rider 17, size 9, also weighs 9.2 oz.
I have been running on the Rider 14s and 15s for a few years with great success, and now that I am having a hard time finding my size in either, I am looking for a new model. Is the 18 comparable to the 14s and 15s? Thanks!
jnrob on Dec 2, 2014
BEST ANSWER: The Rider 18 is still built on a neutral last with moderate cushioning. Changes have been made to the upper and the toe box over the years that may make it fit and feel slightly different on your foot. We recommend visiting a local specialty retailer for a fitting to ensure it is still the best shoe for you.
It is the same size mold model 16 and 17 ?? I use 9US, ask the same number? thank you
jm007 on Nov 29, 2014
BEST ANSWER: Different models of running shoes can fit differently. We recommend visiting a specialty retailer for a fitting in the new Rider 18 model to ensure that a size 9 is the best fit for you.
I have been wearing the Wave Rider16 for a year (size 12), hated 17. Tried the 18. Felt a little too big and thought I may need to drop to 11 1/2. Lady said a 11 is ok (didn't like). Which is more comparable size: 16vs17, 17vs18, 16vs18 or all same?
Getswole3 on Nov 19, 2014
BEST ANSWER: The Rider 17 is going to run a little larger than the 18. The Rider 16 an 18 should be the most comparable in sizes. Please visit the link below and click """"Get a Size Recommendation"""" for suggestions on sizing in the Rider 18 or visit a local specialty retailer for a fitting to ensure you find the correct size shoe for your foot.
When will you guys offer an all black shoe? The company I work for as well as many others require all black shoes. Would love it Mizuno were to have this as an option.
Mbrad on Nov 16, 2014
BEST ANSWER: We are happy to help you find a shoe that would be acceptable for work. For further assistance with your inquiry please contact our Running Consumer Support Team directly at 1-800-966-1211.Best regards,