With added FluteFoam comfort, the Asics Gel Cumulus 20 LE represents a great choice for most runners. But runners who already own a Cumulus series release might not find enough reasons to upgrade apart from cushioning.
However, runners wanting to have the first-hand experience with FlyteFoam and Asics’s gel technology can easily choose the Gel Cumulus 20 LE as a mid-range solution. With a balance of comfort and durability, they can match some of the expectations runners have from a leading manufacturer as Asics.
The Gel Cumulus 20 LE is different from the previous release of the series. While they do not revolutionize the series, they offer a more premium orientation. It is also expected the midsole and outsole to continue this premium trend orientation. It remains to be seen if Asics decides to change the approach for the upper as well. At the moment, the Gel Cumulus 20 LE has an unchanged upper which does its job, but maybe it’s time for a one-piece upper in the series.
Made with the Asics-specific High Abrasion Rubber technology, the outsole is as durable as expected. The rubber is applied on the entire length of the shoe. Some runners will start to see wear signs in key areas where the shoes first impact the ground. But it is sure that using AHAR technology, the shoes offer plenty of durability for hundreds of miles.
Flex grooves are limited compared to what is seen in other brands such as Brooks. Some may even expect reduced flexibility in the forefoot. To an extent, this is true. But at the same time, they manage to tackle multiple surfaces very well. It’s a shame to just use the shoes to runs around the block when the outsole can handle multiple other surfaces.
The same Flytefoam technology is used in the shoes as seen in the more expensive Asics releases. The technology is now based on fibers. These fibers are responsive. They offer immediate bounce back. But the organic super fibers are also quick to react back into the soft cushioned surface on lift off.
Both the rearfoot and the forefoot benefit from the gel technology. This cushioning makes the shoes a reliable solution for those who run the distance. It is not the same to have multiple layers of shock absorption and having simple cushioning. The vertical flex groove of the outsole can trick some runners into believing there is not enough cushioning.
But with enhanced gait and with better shock absorption, the shoes are a worthy bearer of the Gel series name.
One of the design directions of modern uppers follows seamless construction. It’s hard to say if this was truly necessary with the Gel Cumulus 20 LE. But the use of mesh materials with minimum overlays makes the shoes durable, breathable and versatile. Of course, the overlays will start to show signs of wear even from the first miles. But this will not impact shoe performance. The Achille’s tendon is also well-protected. With sufficient padding, they work well for those who love long runs. Even the lacing on the shoes is far above what is seen in affordable designs.
Size And Fit
The shoes are made to fit all runners. Their generous space allows for some tendencies of overpronation, even if they are made for neutral pronation. Furthermore, there are reasons to believe the shoes handle long distance running well as a result.