Sunday, May 05, 2024

Mizuno Neo Vista Review: a Bold and Practical Super Trainer

Article by Sam Winebaum

Mizuno Neo Vista ($180)


The Neo Vista is Mizuno’s entry into the “super road trainer” category. What are super road trainers? I generally consider them to be shoes whose heel height is higher than the World Athletics standard of a maximum 40 mm for elite level racing and in the Vista we are 44.5 mm. 

Designers of such shoes have a tricky task. The higher the stack the less stable and stiffer a shoe can become. Thus, most but not all, such giants incorporate a plate and/or broaden the underfoot platform. Broaden the platform and you get more weight and less agility and flexibitity so many incorporate the new lighter more resilient super critical foams as midsoles and use a plate to provide a propulsive rocker and to stabilize the foam. 

The Neo Vista incorporates a lower soft layer of Mizuno’s Enerzy NXT supercritical foam with above that a full length and somewhat flexible glass fiber reinforced nylon plate and then above that its more conventional light Enerzy EVA blend foam. 

Part of the design magic here is that the center of the shoe is deeply “canyoned”with a closed loop of foam and outsole all around  to reduce weight, decouple the platform in motion and by compressing give some deflection at landings.  

The result is a shoe that sits on a very broad 90 mm heel / 85 mm midfoot / 115 mm forefoot platform yet weighs just 8.96 oz / 255g  in my US8.5 sample. Its closest competitor, as I see it, is the New Balance SC Trainer v2, also $180  which is about 0.25 oz / 7.1 g heavier with a 4mm lower heel.

The upper is a quite compressive engineered stretch knit. Wait a knit upper? I thought we were done with them due to their sloppy hold, thickness and weight. Here the knit is thinner and along with the upper design leads to a secure smooth performance fit heel to toe and this without even including or needing a conventional heel counter.

After their radical Wave Rebellion Pro and overly stiff and firm Flash, Mizuno places the Neo Vista right between the other two with lessons learned from the heavier lower stack Neo Ultra with its sights set on leading the super trainer class with a combination of “semi” radical design and, as I found so far ,practical versatility and any pace or distance reliability and performance 


Versatile: wide range of training paces and distances, also a racer

1st true “daily trainer” super trainer (>40mm heel) 

Fiberglass plate is clearly propulsive, has some flex and in no way harsh ( unlike Flash)

Foam combination of softer supercritical below plate and EVA above blends together seamlessly 

Notably stable for just a big stack without overdoing the stability

A flawless stretch knit upper: hold & comfort. Never thought I would see one!


Weight: very tough to reduce given broad platform, high stack and reasonable price point but wish it was lighter

Most comparable shoes
Adidas Prime X Strung 2 (RTR Review)

New Balance SC Trainer v2 (RTR Review)

ASICS Glide Ride  (RTR Review)

Hoka Skyward X (RTR Review)

ASICS Superblast (RTR Review)


Approx. Weight: men's 9.2 oz / 261g US9

  Sample Weight: men’s  8.96 oz / 255g US 8.5 

Stack Height: men’s  44.5mm heel /  36.5mm forefoot ( 8mm drop spec) 

Platform Width: 90 mm heel / 85 mm midfoot / 115 mm forefoot 

$180 Available June 1

First Impressions, Fit and Upper

The Neo Vista looks big, sleek and modern.  All things it actually is under the hood! 

Starting with the upper, I have rarely found stretch knit uppers to be effective in performance running shoes. They tend to be thick, hot and difficult to secure the midfoot and rear without plastic cages and such.

This remarkable one piece knit upper here has a totally secure hold with no overlays or cages whatsoever and without even a heel counter or any rear padding. 

The high collars at the rear in combination with a thin non-stretch side gray underlays (that it seems is also intended to grip the heel while also reducing friction) had me very well held. 

Totally effective and comfortable.

The midfoot is equally secure without any added gimmicks. The upper is literally a sock as even the tongue area is the exact same material without seams as the rest of the upper. 

A cord is woven over to create a touch of structure and of course hold the laces. Elegant and simple.

The toe box is moderately wide and of course stretch knit as with the rest of the upper with enough stretch to accommodate moderately wide feet. My feet are narrow to medium and the hold is perfect with a small touch of felt and appreciated vertical and bunion area stretch room, a bit of a toe bumper and impeccable hold. Even at faster paces things never got sloppy and loose as knit uppers can get. The fit is true to size in length, width and overhead toe volume.   

Midsole & Platform

The stack height is 44.5mm heel /  36.5mm forefoot ( 8mm drop spec) with the platform width 90 mm heel / 85 mm midfoot / 115 mm forefoot.  So clearly, we have a super max cushion shoe. The only super trainers that I know of that are higher stack at the heel are the Hoka Skyward X at 48.5mm and adidas Prime X Strung 2 at 50mm. Both are about 1.5 oz more heavier than the Neo with the Skyward sitting on a slightly wider platform with more forefoot cushion stack height and the Adizero on a considerably narrower (and less stable) rear and midfoot platform.

To give a sense of comparison, an “old school”  Nike Pegasus 40 has a mere 33 mm heel / 23 mm forefoot stack height, weighs about 0.2 oz more, and is on a far narrower platform, My have trainers evolved!

The midsole consists of a Enerzy NXT supercritical foam bottom softer layer with above the full length fiberglass reinforced nylon Wave plate a slightly firmer Enerzy EVA blend.

The prominent central cavity reduces weight, provides very good stride transition decoupling and I think, on landings, splays out to further cushion yet with all well under control, and at all paces. 

This is unlike the more open at the heel all soft foam SC Trainer’s Energy Arc approach which can feel mushy and somewhat unstable at the heel, especially at slower paces.  The geometry and cushioning remind me most of the ASICS Glide Ride 3, close in heel height to the Mizuno but with the Glide having a more rigid heel for sure and stiff rocker based ride at the  front. 

The midsole feel here was always consistent, very well but not mushily cushioned, easy to turn over, stable and propulsive and at any pace from slower (10:30 min miles)  to faster (sub 8 min miles) in my initial testing. 

Big credit goes to not only the careful overall design but the moderately flexible and snappy fiberglass plate and to the lay up of slightly firmer foam underfoot to stabilize and mask the plate with softer more energetic supercritical foam below toward the road. The combination popped me off the heel, decisively but without shock at all paces and off the front by cushioning the plate from the ground just right and, as at the heel, providing a noticed friendly return and easy any pace roll through the flexible yet snappy plate. 

The platform is very stable (far more stable than say the Prime X or SC Trainer)  without overdoing it or making the shoe feel rigid or awkward although I do wish for a touch less midfoot stability/rigidity but only a touch. 

Mizuno calls the combination Smooth Speed Assist with a focus on relieving calf stress and I fully agree with the marketing slogan! Full on carbon race propulsion feel? No, but for most a midsole that is suitable for all forms of training, and for all but the slowest of paces.  And if carbon super shoes are too aggressive or the combination of soft foams with rigid plates especially at the heel, hard to run to the finish, the Neo Vista is certainly a great choice for racing even if a bit heavier than “super race shoes”.


The outsole is “full” coverage, that is except for the giant cavity! 

Removing all the midsole foam and rubber that isn’t needed is genius.  Using the plate way above keeps things stable while the outer walls deflect a bit to increase cushioning but never so much to feel overly soft or unstable. 

The rubber appears to be a softer variety and is relatively thin and of a consistent thickness back to front. I will be watching carefully for wear especially at the front on the medial side as 12 miles I am already seeing some scuffing.  Mizuno is always careful about durability and I assume the rubber will hold up but will update after more runs.

Ride, Conclusions and Recommendations

Mizuno, known for being somewhat conservative strikes a powerfully effective middle road here between their super radical Rebellion Pro and their more mundane stalwarts such as the Wave Rider. Last year they hinted at more bold things to come with the highly sustainable (and pricey) Neo Ultra which also had a superb knit upper and great ride although it was a heavier shoe than here and considerably lower stack,

A thoroughly modern do it all super trainer Vista is light, lively, very well cushioned and priced reasonably. I was very surprised how well it handled both easy paces and more uptempo ones, something I have not as of yet experienced with super high stacked trainers. Such trainers are either wildly fun (Prime X) but not practical day in day out, struggle at slower paces and in terms of stability with a combination of soft foam, a deep central cavity and rigid carbon (SC Trainer) or provide tons of cushion roll well but end up on the heavy side (Skyward X RTR Review). 

Here, balance is achieved with a friendly yet effective (and cost effective) combination of foams, a fiberglass plate with both snap and some flex, a central cavity that reduces weight and aids decoupling and strong stability for such a high stack shoe. I would add another surprise: a knit upper that works brilliantly for me. 

If you have not yet considered a super trainer, and maybe are worried about the practicality of such giant shoes for day in day out training, the Neo Vista is for sure worth considering even, I would say, as a single shoe rotation for all your runs and even races, a first for me in the category.

Score: 9.5 /10

Deductions for weight and a bit less rigid easier to transition midfoot platform although those seeking a touch of stability will be happy,


In Depth Comparisons soon with our upcoming multi tester review and as I run them more.

The Mizuno Neo Vista will be available June 1, 2024

Tester Profiles

Sam is the Editor and Founder of Road Trail Run. He is 66 with a 2018 3:40 Boston qualifier. 2023 was Sam’s 51th year of running. He has a decades old 2:28 marathon PR. These days he runs halves in the just sub 1:40 range if he gets very very lucky. Sam trains 30-40 miles per week mostly at moderate paces on the roads and trails of New Hampshire and Utah be it on the run, hiking or on nordic skis. He is 5’9” tall and weighs about 164 lbs, if he is not enjoying too many fine New England IPA’s.

Samples were provided at no charge for review purposes. RoadTrail Run has affiliate partnerships and may earn commission on products purchased via shopping links in this article. These partnerships do not influence our editorial content. The opinions herein are entirely the authors'.

Comments and Questions Welcome Below! Please let us know mileage, paces, race distances, and current preferred shoes

RoadTrailRun Official Store Custom Fractel Caps and Bucket Hats
Cap:$39                                                             Bucket:$49
Limited Release! SHOP HERE

Men's & Women's SHOP HERE
FREE 2 Day Shipping EASY No Sweat Returns

EUROPE Men's & Women's SHOP HERE

Europe only: use RTR code RTR5ALL for 5% off all products, even sale products 


Men's & Women's SHOP HERE

Men's & Women's  SHOP HERE

Men's & Women's  SHOP HERE

Men's and Women's SHOP HERE

Men's & Women's SHOP HERE
Use RTR code RTRTOP4 for 5% off all products, even sale products

Use our code RTR235 for 5% off all products
Men's & Women's SHOP HERE

Men's and Women's SHOP HERE


Men's and Women's SHOP HERE


Men's and Women's SHOP HERE

Men's & Women's  SHOP HERE

Men's & Women's  SHOP HERE

Men's & Women's SHOP HERE
FREE Shipping on most orders over $40


Find all RoadTrailRun reviews at our index page HERE 
Google "roadtrailrun Shoe Name" and you can be quite sure to find just about any run shoe over the last 10 years

Enjoyed this post? Never miss out on future posts by Following RoadTrailRun News Feed

Please Like and Follow RoadTrailRun
Facebook:  Instagram: @roadtrailrun
You Tube: @RoadTrailRun


Anonymous said...

Is the knit upper breathable or do you feel like it will trap heat during the warmer months?

Sam Winebaum said...

Still not super warm here but as noted it is thinner than the usual knit and has ventilation holes. It is really not much thicker or denser than many of this year's similar more closed engineered mesh uppers so it should be decent in heat.
Sam, Editor

Anonymous said...

Sounds like you have not run in the Flash 2, which is much softer (and superior, imo) to the original Flash. It’s quite an overhaul.

Stephen said...

I’ve put 50+ miles on the Flash 2 and find it one of the firmest shoes of the past few years, even when doing reps at 5:20-pace. I agree with other reviewers that it’s harsh—but I’m glad it’s working for you, at least.

Anonymous said...

Wow, not my experience at all! I actually find it works well for daily training paces as well as moderately fast stuff.

Anonymous said...

I love the Mizuno Wave Rebellion Pro V1 but the Flash V2 felt narrow (long) and bottom heavy.. Cheap imitation of the Rebellion Pro V1 in my opinion..