ASICS Gel Cumulus 22 vs 21 [Detailed Comparison]

Written By Sunny

As a dedicated shoe enthusiast, I can’t help but get excited when my beloved running shoe, the Gel Cumulus 21 model, receives an upgrade.

Moreover, Asics has taken the already impressive Cumulus 21 and made subtle yet significant improvements to create the Cumulus 22.

So, after their progress, is the Gel Cumulus 22 better than 21?asics-cumulus-22-vs-asics-cumulus-21

In this article, I will explore the similarities, differences, and upgrade processes between these exceptional running shoes and provide you with the answer.

Let’s begin and see which is the best pair for you.

Short Overview of Asics Gel-Cumulus 21 and Gel-Cumulus 22

The Asics Gel Cumulus series offers comfy, versatile, neutral running shoes perfect for various runs.

Before diving into the details of the Cumulus 21 and 22, it’s worth noting that Asics has progressed to the Cumulus 25.

While the Cumulus 25 represents the latest innovation, our exploration focuses on the Cumulus 21 and 22 for their distinctive features and enduring popularity.

The Asics Gel Cumulus 21, a versatile and stable trainer, boasts a plush double-layered upper with textured mesh for durability and support.

Its firmer midsole, made of higher-density foam, provides stability and responsiveness, and the durable outsole features smaller gel units in the heel and forefoot for cushioning. Also, a 10mm heel drop caters to performance and tempo runs.

In its successor, the Cumulus 22 introduces significant upgrades with some similarities.overview-of-asics-gel-cumulus-22

The brand-new upper embraces a breathable mesh that offers a snug fit without restrictions. Also, the Gel Cumulus 22 features a softer, more energized ride.

It weighs 0.9 oz less than its predecessor and gives runners a lighter, smoother, and improved long-run experience.

Both shoes feature Asics’ renowned Gel technology, but the Cumulus 22 model provides a wraparound Gel that enhances heel support for runners.

In summary, Asics Cumulus 22 and 21 exemplify an innovative evolution. Now, let’s delve into a detailed feature comparison between these two models.

Feature Comparison of Asics Cumulus 22 vs Cumulus 21

Gel-Cumulus 22 and Gel-Cumulus 21 are 2 of the prominent choices in the Asics running footwear.

As Cumulus 22 is the evolution of its 21 iterations, is it better?

For your reference, I have prepared an informative table below to help you understand what to expect from this upgrade.

FeatureAsics Gel Cumulus 22Asics Gel Cumulus 21
Weight (Men’s 9)9.2 oz10.1 oz
Pronation ControlNeutralNeutral
UpperSingle-layered 3D printed upperDual-layered mesh
MidsoleFlyteFoam PropelFlyteFoam
OutsoleMore flexible with 6 forefoot flex groovesMore durable with 3 and three-and-a-half forefoot flex grooves
TongueImproved construction, stays putProne to sliding
Gel unitLonger, wraparound gel unit in the heelSmaller, encapsulated gel units in the heel and forefoot
Stack Height31 mm heel and 21 mm forefoot29 mm heel and 19 mm forefoot
Drop10 mm10 mm
CushioningBouncy and responsivePlush and stable
Cushioning amountEnhancedModerate
SizeTrue to sizeTrue to size
Stability SystemGuidance Truss LiteGuidance Truss

Now that we have examined the features side by side. Let’s explore the primary differences between the Asics Cumulus 22 and Cumulus 21.

Understanding these distinctions will help you find the iteration that best suits your running style and requirements.

Primary Differences of ASICS Gel Cumulus 22 and Gel Cumulus 21

The Cumulus 22 is a lighter, smoother shoe with a lower-density midsole, extended gel unit, and better outsole. It promises an evolved running experience over the Cumulus 21.

However, the Cumulus is more durable and better for faster-paced runs.

Here are the critical differences between Asics Gel-Cumulus 22 and Gel-Cumulus 21:

1. Upper Materials and Design

When comparing the upper of the Asics Gel Cumulus 22 to its predecessor, the Cumulus 21, a significant improvement in materials and design is evident.


The Cumulus 22 introduces a refined single-piece 3d printed mesh upper that goes beyond mere functionality, becoming a standout feature.upper-materials-of-asics-gel-cumulus-22

It’s more breathable than the Cumulus 21’s doubled layered mesh upper.

I appreciate the absence of restrictions, creating a feel that embraces the foot without tightness. This is attributed to advanced materials contributing to a more comfortable and unrestrained running experience.

Toe Box

A slight modification in the Cumulus 22’s toe box shape adds spaciousness to the shoe’s front half. The toes now enjoy more room, allowing for a more accessible and comfortable movement.

This adjustment caters to runners who appreciate a bit of wriggle room, enhancing the overall feel of the shoe during runs.


The vamp, or the upper middle part of the shoe, is crucial in securing the foot and providing a snug fit.

In the Cumulus 22, Asics maintains a secure fit up top, ensuring that the toe box’s newfound freedom doesn’t compromise the overall stability.

The vamp’s most notable feature is its comfortable and unrestricted toe box, which highlights Asics’ ability to balance freedom of movement with a secure fit.

The Cumulus 21 has a great vamp, but its double-layer construction is restrictive, and the perforation is compromised.materials-and-design-of-asics-gel-cumulus-21

Heel Counter

One of the substantial improvements lies in the heel counter. Asics addresses concerns from the Cumulus 21, where excessive foam led to potential discomfort.

The Cumulus 22’s heel counter strikes an impressive balance between strength and comfort. Internals provide robust support to the back of the foot, addressing the need for stability.

Simultaneously, the comfort factor inside the heel counter is spotlighted, ensuring a snug yet comfortable fit.

In essence, the upper materials and design enhancements in the Gel Cumulus 22 showcase a thoughtful approach by Asics to elevate the running experience, emphasizing a harmonious blend of comfort, freedom, and stability.

The Cumulus 21’s upper is more durable but less breathable. In contrast, the Cumulus 22 improves on its predecessor in several key areas.

2. Midsole

As we compare the midsole of the Asics Gel Cumulus 22 to its predecessor, the Cumulus 21, we see a clear evolution in technology and design.

Both models embrace the renowned FlyteFoam technology. But the Cumulus 22 uses the slightly upgraded and lighter version of the FlyteFoam – FlyteFoam Propel. That ensures a resilient and supportive foundation.flytefoam-technology-of-asics-gel-cumulus-22

Notably, strategically placed Gel cushioning remains a consistent feature for the Cumulus 21 and 22.

However, the Cumulus 22 introduces nuanced changes.

The density of the foam undergoes a deliberate reduction, accompanied by a fractional weight decrease. Also, Cumulus 22 has a wraparound Gel.

This transformation translates into a more compliant and softer feel underfoot, offering runners a harmonious balance between cushioning and responsiveness.

The Cumulus 22 isn’t tailored for those seeking abundant cushioning; it caters to runners desiring a slightly more responsive ride.

Ideal for individuals with a higher cadence or an efficient gait cycle, this model provides a snappy and lightweight experience without compromising protection.

With generous stack heights – 31 mm heel and 21 mm forefoot – the Cumulus 22 ensures a comfortable and dynamic stride, solidifying its status as a versatile and responsive companion for the discerning runner.

The Cumulus 21 has a 29 mm heel and 19 mm forefoot stack height.

Both have a 10 mm drop, but the additional 2 mm stack height difference makes the Cumulus 22 more plush.

As mentioned, the Cumulus 22 midsole has better technology and is more comfortable.

3. Outsole

In a notable enhancement in the outsole, the Cumulus 22 boasts six forefoot flex grooves, a significant upgrade from the Cumulus 21’s three and a half. This evaluation translates to a considerably more flexible ride, emphasizing ASIC’s commitment to responsiveness.outsole-of-asics-gel-cumulus-22-and-21

Moreover, the Cumulus 22 introduces the advanced AHAR+ (Asics High Abrasion Rubber) on its outsole, elevating durability by 50% compared to its predecessor’s regular AHAR.

This strategic integration solidifies the Cumulus 22’s standing as a reliable and long-lasting companion for the discerning runner.

So, ultimately, which outsole is better?

The Cumulus 21 features a broad guidance line decoupling groove in its center, while the Cumulus 22 opts for a narrower counterpart. This modification results in a smoother ride transition to Cumulus 22, showcasing an evolved engineering approach.

For implementing the new technology, the outsole of the Cumulus 22 is better and more durable.

4. Comfort and Breathability

Asics Gel Cumulus series is known for its comfort and versatility.

The introduction of the Gel-Cumulus 22 is a significant upgrade over the Gel-Cumulus 21, embodying a refined blend of runner’s insights and technological innovations.

The Cumulus 22’s breathable mesh upper and 3D-printed construction provide a smooth, comfortable fit.

In contrast, while durable, the Gel-Cumulus 21’s textured double-layered mesh tends to be warmer and feels thicker.

A key difference in the Cumulus 22 is its lower-density midsole. It uses FlyteFoam Propel technology. This results in a softer, more energizing ride than the Cumulus 21’s higher-density midsole, which provides stability but can feel firmer and more rigid.

Ideal for extended, leisurely runs, particularly in warmer climates, the 22 outshines the Cumulus 21 in terms of overall comfort and cooling prowess.

With a shared 10 mm heel drop, breathable mesh upper, and similar fit, the Cumulus 22 emerges as the epitome of comfort and breathability.comfort-and-breathability-of-asics-gel-cumulus-22

5. Performance Evolution

When discussing performance, the Cumulus 22 represents a transformative stride forward, leveraging cutting-edge features.

The lower-density midsole, adorned with FlyteFoam Propel technology, infuses the Cumulus 22 with a softer, more energy-returning ride. This bouncy and responsive foam cushions the foot and propels it forward with each stride, redefining the running experience.

The Cumulus 22’s agility is heightened by its more flexible outsole, boasting 6 forefoot flex grooves compared to the Cumulus 21’s 3 and a half.

Also, both have embedded Gel technology, but 22’s wraparound profound Gel helps in pronation.

This nuanced design renders the Cumulus 22 more responsive, agile, and adaptable to a runner’s cadence.

I find the Cumulus 22 is well-suited for long, leisurely runs, while the Cumulus 21 is better for quick, high-paced activities.

6. Weight and Fit

I use the men’s size 9, and the Cumulus 22 weighs 9.2 ounces, while my previous Cumulus 21 weighed 10.1 ounces.

The significant 0.9-ounce difference makes the Cumulus 22 feel very lightweight.

While both shoes share a standard width and a 10 mm drop, the Cumulus 22 fits better in my fit.

Incorporating breathable mesh and 3D-printed construction results in a more close-fitting and smooth upper. Also, the upper part of the Gel-Cumulus 22 has more elasticity than Gel-Cumulus 21.

Although the Cumulus 21 has a more supportive and plush upper, I found the perforation insufficient. My feet became too hot after running 10 miles. Despite this, the Cumulus series consistently delivers a comfortable ride.

In terms of weight alone, Cumulus 22 is my top choice. I also find it fits better, while my brother prefers the fit of Cumulus 21.weight-and-fit-of-asics-gel-cumulus-22

7. Price

Both shoes come with a price tag starting from $120, showcasing equality in cost.

However, the Cumulus 22 emerges as a potentially more lucrative investment.

The Cumulus 22 is packed with lighter, softer, and smoother attributes. It elevates the running experience through a decreased-density midsole. Also, it has a prolonged gel unit in its heel counter and additional flex grooves in the forefoot for better traction.

These features ensure enhanced comfort and responsiveness. Which marks a significant improvement compared to its predecessor, the 21.

In terms of value for money, the Cumulus 22 stands out. It offers an optimal balance of comfort for extended runs, making it a smart choice over the Cumulus 21, tailored for performance and tempo runs.

In summary, the Asics Gel Cumulus 22 surpasses the Cumulus 21 with its lighter build, softer midsole, and enhanced responsiveness.

Benefits and Drawbacks of Asics Cumulus 21 and Cumulus 22

Choosing between Cumulus 21 and 22 is like navigating through plushness and performance.

Both promise smooth stomp, but are they indeed twins beneath the surface?

Let’s dissect their strengths and weaknesses, helping you crown the perfect Cumulus companion for your feet.

Asics Cumulus 21

  • »Excellent cushioning for a plush and comfortable ride.
  • »Durable construction.
  • »Reliable traction for various surfaces.
  • »Suitable for neutral runners seeking a balance of support and flexibility.
  • »Encapsulated gel unit in the forefoot and heel.
  • »Havier than Culumus 22.
  • »Less responsive than the 22.

Asics Cumulus 22

  • »Improved cushioning for enhanced comfort and shock absorption.
  • »Wider toe box to accommodate a variety of foot shapes.
  • »Enhanced breathability for a cooler and drier running experience.
  • »Smooth transition from heel to toe for a more natural gait cycle.
  • »Better energy return than Cumulus 21.
  • »Longer and wraparound gel unit in the heel.
  • »Slightly less durable than Cumulus 21.
  • »A higher overall stack height may not be everyone’s preference.

Asics Cumulus 22 vs Asics Cumulus 21: Which One is the Best Suits You?

Choosing between Asics Cumulus 22 and Cumulus 21 is akin to picking destinations for your running journey. Both offer comfort and versatility, featuring gel cushioning, FlyteFoam midsoles, and breathable uppers.

The Cumulus 22, a lighter and smoother option, boasts a lower-density midsole, an extended gel unit in the heel, and increased flex grooves in the forefoot.

On the other hand, the Cumulus 21 prioritizes firmness, stability, and durability with a higher-density midsole, smaller gel units, and fewer flex grooves.

Opt for the Cumulus 22 for sublime comfort during longer, easy runs.

For shorter, faster sprints, the Cumulus 21 delivers enhanced performance.

As a fellow runner, my choice aligns with Cumulus 22 for leisurely distances and Cumulus 21 for swift endeavors.

Why Should You Consider ASICS Cumulus 21 and Cumulus 22 When There is Cumulus 25?

Asics Cumulus 25 is undoubtedly a top-of-the-line neutral running shoe. The older siblings – the Cumulus 21 and 22 deserve a closer look before making your final decision.

Each version provides unique advantages that may align better with your running needs and preferences.

The Cumulus 21 stands out for its exceptional comfort, featuring PureGEL™ cushioning that delivers a plush, spa-like experience for your feet. Which makes it an excellent choice for long, easy runs and recovery sessions.

The Cumulus 22 is an excellent option for runners prioritizing stability and control. It features a flatter sole and enhanced support, providing confidence on uneven terrain. With these features, it becomes perfect for trail runs and tempo sessions.

Additionally, the Cumulus 22 is more budget-friendly than the 25, making it an excellent value for runners on a budget.

In contrast, the 25 is designed for runners prioritizing a more agile feel. It is lighter in weight compared to the Cumulus 22, making it a good choice for runners who want a fast and responsive shoe.


Is Gel Cumulus 22 a neutral shoe?

The Gel Cumulus 22 is a neutral running shoe designed for runners with a neutral pronation pattern. Which means the shoe provides a balanced and stable platform for runners who do not overpronate or supinate.

What is the best alternative to Asics Cumulus?

The Asics Cumulus is a popular running shoe, but the Brooks Ghost is an excellent option if you’re looking for an alternative. It’s known for its cushioning, versatility, and comfortable fit. Runners who want an alternative to the Cumulus will choose the Ghost.

Are Asics Gel Cumulus 22 suitable for walking?

Though designed for running, you can also use the Gel Cumulus 22 for walking. Its cushioning, supportive features, and overall comfort ensure a pleasant walking experience.

Which is Better: Asics Gel Nimbus or Gel Cumulus?

The choice between Asics Gel Nimbus and Gel Cumulus depends on personal preferences. The Nimbus offers maximum cushioning and is ideal for long-distance running, while the Cumulus provides a lighter and more responsive feel for versatile running needs.

What is the most comfortable ASICS model?

The Asics Gel Quantum is known for being one of the most comfortable running shoes on the market, thanks to its plush cushioning and supportive fit. This makes it an excellent choice for runners who want a relaxing and enjoyable running experience.

What is the difference between gel cumulus 22 and 23?

The Asics Gel Cumulus 23 offers enhanced breathability, a secure upper, and a lighter, more responsive midsole with FlyteFoam technology. The redesigned outsole improves flexibility, while the reduced weight ensures a more agile running experience.

About The Author
Sunny is all about action and activities. He finds it difficult to contain himself. Be it motorcycling, playing football, or exploring the great outdoors, he loves to keep his legs busy.Sunny quickly realized the importance of footwear to keep himself going healthily. This was when he decided to share all his knowledge and expertise regarding different footwear and their significance.Now, he’s on a mission with this humble platform by his side. With time he plans on doing bigger and better things.Apart from his writing and other hobbies, he loves spending time with his cat Sophie. He loves to cook for his friends and family too.

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