ASICS Gel Sonoma

8.8 score
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ASICS Gel Sonoma Review Facts

The Gel Sonoma from Asics has a durable, breathable mesh and synthetic upper. There is a full lace-up closure for secure yet adjustable fit. It has a padded tongue and collar for extra comfort around the heel and ankle. The shoe has a breathable fabric lining with a lightly padded insole that offers a light underfoot cushioning. It also has wonderful midsole material that decreases midsole breakdown for long-lasting wear. It has rear front gel cushioning outsole that attenuates impacting shock with reversed lugs that provide uphill and downhill traction on a varied terrain. You will be comfortable and stylish in the Asics Gel Sonoma shoes.

Editor's Pros & Cons
  • Breathes well
  • Comfortable
  • Durable
  • Protective toe overlay
  • Snug fit


  • Limited color selection


The outsole is the base of a running shoe. ASICS scientists developed AHAR+ as the ideal outer sole material. AHAR is an acronym for ASICS High Resistance Rubber. The cushioning and grip qualities are great for wet or dry surfaces. Runners are able to run longer in one pair of shoes.

The outsole is extremely durable rubber that is reinforced in the high wear areas. It is designed specifically to give a very steady ride on the trail. The outsole is also very flexible. A man-made upper, lace-up closure, a padded tongue and collar, a cushioned footbed, a midsole, and rearfoot gel cushioning are features that fit on the outsole. It has reversed lugs for uphill and downhill on various terrains.


The midsoles of running shoes are molded. EVA midsoles are made by compression a block of Ethylene Vinyl Acetate (EVA) foam in a metal mold. The material fills the mold interior as it expands. Under pressure the foam takes on the shape of the cavity of the mold that includes the design that is etched on the sides. The EVA midsole provides a ton of lightweight cushioning without without weighing the shoe down. It helps improve bounce back and is made in such a way as to decrease midsole breakdown.


The upper is the portion of the shoe designed to hold the foot firmly in place. ASICS uses soft, breathable, form-fitting materials in the upper They keep feet cool and in position. They help keep the feet dry in wet weather.

The upper is man-made fabric mesh. Mesh is a durable material used to boost breathability and reduce weight. The lace-up closure ensures a secure fit. A padded tongue and collar provide additional comfort. There is a soft fabric lining and a cushioned footbed added for comfort on the inside.

The mesh trail running shoes have synthetic overlays that feature the ASICS signature stripes on the side. Synthetic leather is a supple, abrasion-resistant, and durable material made principally from polyester and nylon. It is lightweight, is more breathable, and dries quicker than real leather. Little to no break-in time is required. There is a textured toe guard.


Women’s ASICS Gel Sonoma weigh approximately ten ounces. Men’s weigh around 14 ounces. Running shoes vary in weight depending on the construction and size. Lightweight or minimalist shoes range from five to almost ten ounces. Stability shoes range from ten to 14 ounces. Motion controlled shoes may be heavier. Based on the given information women’s and men’s ASICS Gel Sonoma shoes are considered stability control shoes.

The trick for runners is to find a balance between the amount of support and cushioning and weight. Light shoes make moving freely easier. Runners enjoy a boost of speed. Shoes that are too light provide less support that forces muscles of the runner to compensate.


The shoe breathes well and helps dry feet quickly. Breathability is an issue that is often overlooked with respect to knee issues. Picking a shoe that feels the most supportive may be a mistake. Breathability needs to be right.

You want a solution made for ultimate comfort and helps runners concentrate on running. Breathability is tailored to the average runner. The solution is found in designs that use engineered mesh. It is the top choice for breathability. ASICS Gel Sonoma uses mesh in the design of the shoe which makes it rank high in breathability.


The ASICS Gel Sonoma fits snugly and prevents the foot from slipping. Snug fitting shoes can cause blisters and pain on the top of the foot. The soft, durable material of the Gel Sonoma doesn’t cause injury to the feet.

Stretch reinforcements combined with multi-directional stretch mesh in the Fluidfit upper technology create a customized glove-like fit. The inside is super cushioned to make the feet feel good all day long. Cushioned footwear lets the feet roll inward and absorbs the shock.

Try to run in as little shoes as you can that feels comfortable. There is no conclusive research that says minimalist or pronation control elevated heel cushioned shoes reduce injuries. Go with what is comfortable to you.


Choosing the perfect training shoe involves specific aspects that include understanding your pronation, foot type, and the features of the footwear. Pronation is motion of your foot rolling from the heel to the toe as the foot strikes the ground while running.

Everyone runs slightly different For overpronation, motion control footwear is often the solution. Motion control footwear prevents the foot from too much rolling. Milder pronation suggestions include both motion control and stability .

Stability footwear offers a blend of durability, medial support, and cushioning. The foot is not as strictly controlled as motion control shoes. People with neutral pronation may choose between stability and cushioned footwear for extra support and comfort.

Under pronators want to look at shoes in the cushioned range for added shock absorption. Runners are often given advice or prescribed particular shoes based on their arch height, the amount of pronation they exhibit when running, or the latest trends like minimalist shoes, cushioning, and energy returning midsoles.

There is research that show these practices are without merit. There are no established rules to follow establishing the nebulous term called ‘pronation.’ Trends have gone in different directions in the past few years.

In the 90s, stopping pronation was advised. Years later going barefoot or wearing minimalist shoes was recommended. The current trend seems to be maximum cushioning. What works for one individual may be harmful to another.

The one conclusion that can be drawn is that we all react differently to a particular shoe which makes predicting the right shoe difficult. The ASICS Gel Sonoma style is for the most part a maximum cushion style. It does have motion control and stability footwear features that make it a possibility for any runner.


The most durable parts of the ASICS Gel Sonoma are the outsole and midsole. Two things determine how long an outsole will last. The layout/geometry of the outsole and the quality of rubber material. Running shoes that have hard rubber outsoles outlive models that use a mix of soft blown rubber under the forefoot and hard rubber under the rearfoot. ASICS patented HAR is known for its overall endurance for wear and tear and excessive mileage. The ASICS Institute of Sports Science used cushioning materials in the midsole that combine bounce and durability.


The ASICS gel cushioning technology consists of gel pads made from semi-liquid material that has superb impact absorption properties. During the impact phase, shock is attenuated with the rearfoot gel cushioning system that allows a smooth transition to midstance. Ground reaction force is the impact forces that travel from the ankle to the knee during running. During propulsion a forefoot cushioning system enhances shock attenuation.

Pronation is the normal motion of the human foot that helps people run and walk. There are three types of pronation. Neutral pronation is the most common. The action of the foot makes impact with the outside of the heel and rolling up to the ball of the foot evernly. The stress of impact is distributed proportionately. You push off evenly from the front of the foot.

Overpronation makes initial contact with the outside of the heel. However, when the foot continues to roll, the ball of the foot tilts inward more than the usual 15 degrees. The ankle and foot have problems stabilizing the body. The shock is not efficiently absorbed. At the end of the cycle the foot pushes mainly off of the big and second toe.

Under pronation means the foot makes contact with the ground with the outside of the heel. The foot continues to roll toward the outside of the foot. The impact is forced on a concentrated area of the foot. When you push off, pressure is primarily applied to smaller toes.

Trying to stop pronation may increase the risk of injury if pronation is falsely blamed for an injury. Studies linking overpronation to injury are conflicting and inconsistent. Many people try to blame overpronation on many injuries.

There are many studies that show no association. There are also studies showing reduced pronation is associated with more injury and that excessive pronation is protective of injury. Shoes do play a small role in injury. Your body mechanics and training errors play a much larger role. It makes sense that the ASICS Gel Sonoma with its cushioning technology that absorbs shock is a safe bet for any foot formation.


Running economy and runners wearing regular shoes or minimalist shoes was compared in a study conducted in 2012. The study found on average, wearing minimalist shoes improved running economy.

There were some shoes that were less economical. The unpredictable and erratic variability between running subjects is found in nearly every running study evaluating how people react to different shoes or orthotic insoles.

The inability of researchers to predict or calculate how runners will react to different footwear is on the the reasons we can conclude that running in shoes for no other reason than being trendy is without merit.

Experienced runners without many injuries may know what works for them and should stick with it. Don’t buy into the hype of new technology. Incorporate newer shoes slowly into weekly mileage and only as an occasional change of pace from shoes that have worked in the past. If you do not own a pair of ASICS Gel Sonomas, they are a shoe that should be on the list of possibilities. ASICS is a trusted brand and many people find it is the perfect shoe in the area of response.


Footwear with a straight shape give the maximum support. It is a rigid, control oriented shoe. A curved shape encourages foot motion. Cushioned footwear has the least medial support. For some time, shoe prescriptions were based on the idea that people with flat feet needed motion controlled shoes that support the arch and are generally stiff. Neutral feet should be placed in stability shoes. Those with high arches have rigid, stiff joints and thus lack shock absorption.

They need extra that of the ASICS Gel Sonoma. Recent research has found shoes prescribed based on arch height put runner at the same risk if not more of becoming injured that runners give a random shoe type. There is a strong link between comfort and support. Comfortable shoes fit properly and do not cause the foot to compensate for anything bothersome. The ASICS Gel Sonoma shoe is comfortable.


Trail running shoes like the ASICS Gel Sonoma have reversed lugs for uphill and downhill running. They are built to prevent excessive rotation of the foot. Footing is optimal for the variable strides needed for trail running.


On Amazon men’s ASICS Gel Sonoma are priced from $50 to a little less than $80. A pair of women’s Gel Sonomas sell for prices ranging from $65 to $120. Customer reviews say the shoes are reasonably priced and a good shoe for the price.


The power packed ASICS Gel Sonoma offers power and traction that take trail running to a new level. Lugged shoes improve traction to help runners move more sure-footedly over rock slabs, roots, gravel, mud, and dirt.


The gel cushioning used in the forefoot and heel of this shoe does more than reduce shock. Because of the gel, the body is cushioned and requires less energy for stabilizing tasks. The runner can focus on forward motion.


The height from the forefoot to the heel is the drop of a shoe. Most running shoes have a 10mm appears to be the most comfortable for runners. The ASICS Gel Sonoma has a 10mm drop.

Key Features

EVA midsole
Handy pull tab on the back
Outsole with High Abrasion Rubber
Padded collar and tongue
Protective toe overlay
Rearfoot gel cushioning
Synthetic and breathable mesh upper

Bottom Line

Feet are traditionally categorized as flat feet, neutral, and high arches. For some time shoe prescriptions were based on the idea that people with flat feet needed motion controlled shoes that support the arch and are generally stiff.

Neutral feet should be placed in stability shoes. Those with high arches have rigid, stiff joints and needed extra cushioning. The theory of prescribing a shoe based on the shape of the foot feel apart when put under investigation.

Experienced runners without many injures should know what works for them and stick to it. New runners should try on a few different pairs and choose what feels comfortable. The ASICS Gel Sonoma has features that fit all categories of shoes - motion control, stability, and minimalist. It is possible that any runner will find the Gel Sonoma ideal for them.