New Balance Vs. Brooks: Differences And Similarities (With Size Chart)

Both New Balance and Brooks have won awards for quality, competition, and producing trendy running shoes for over a century. When two competitive running shoes are pitted against each other, the choice becomes critical.

Both brands make excellent running shoes and are nearly identical in price. Most people prefer New Balance because of their appearance, stability, and comfort, especially for wide feet. Others prefer Brooks due to their performance, breathability, landing, and painless walking delivery.

This article compares these high-end pairs to help you save money, time, and effort.

new balance vs brooks

Feature Comparison For New Balance and Brooks

Both brands have conducted extensive consumer research and consistently develop new technologies to outperform their competitors. But which is the most reliable? Here’s a rundown:

FeaturesNew BalanceBrooks
UpperMostly meshed Engineered mesh upper
OutsoleComes with a 6-month durability warranty( only 1006, 996, and Fresh Foam Lav). The outsole is a soft, blown rubber with harder heels. RuggedCarbon-blown rubber is spongy, soft, and thicker than most pairs. Rugged 
MidsoleENCAP with EVA and PU, REVlite, Fresh Foam, ABZORBEVA, BioMoGo DNA., and DNA loft
LiningTeddy lining, LIGHTNING DRY (for comfortable feet), nylon mesh liningSoft fabric
Arch SupportNeutral, stable, and motion-controlled shoes. Have casual arch supports for flat feet. Rollbar technology for overpronators.Neutral, stable, and motion-controlled shoes. Orthotic arch supports for overpronators. Stability shoes for flat arches. Progressive Diagonal Rollbar technology
Slip resistanceSome models have Slip resistant outsole (ASTM F2913-19-tested)No non-slip outsole and only one model has a low friction coefficient for wet pavement (Addiction Walker).
VeganSome parts are made from pigskin, so it’s not entirely vegan. However, the 990v was their first ever 100% vegan shoe.100% vegan

Our Top Picks!

Best Choice
New Balance Men's 574 Core Sneaker, Black/White, 4
New Balance Men's Made in US 990 V5 Sneaker, Grey/Castlerock, 9.5
New Balance Women's Fresh Foam Roav V1 Sneaker, Black/Light Aluminum,...
Brooks Men's Ghost 14 Neutral Running Shoe - Grey/Alloy/Oyster - 10.5...
Best Price
Brooks Women's Ghost 14 Neutral Running Shoe - Lilac/Purple/Lime - 7.5...
New Balance Men's 574 Core Sneaker, Black/White, 4
New Balance Men's Made in US 990 V5 Sneaker, Grey/Castlerock, 9.5
New Balance Women's Fresh Foam Roav V1 Sneaker, Black/Light Aluminum,...
Brooks Men's Ghost 14 Neutral Running Shoe - Grey/Alloy/Oyster - 10.5...
Brooks Women's Ghost 14 Neutral Running Shoe - Lilac/Purple/Lime - 7.5...
Amazon Prime
Amazon Prime
Amazon Prime
Best Choice
New Balance Men's 574 Core Sneaker, Black/White, 4
New Balance Men's 574 Core Sneaker, Black/White, 4
Amazon Prime
New Balance Men's Made in US 990 V5 Sneaker, Grey/Castlerock, 9.5
New Balance Men's Made in US 990 V5 Sneaker, Grey/Castlerock, 9.5
New Balance Women's Fresh Foam Roav V1 Sneaker, Black/Light Aluminum,...
New Balance Women's Fresh Foam Roav V1 Sneaker, Black/Light Aluminum,...
Amazon Prime
Brooks Men's Ghost 14 Neutral Running Shoe - Grey/Alloy/Oyster - 10.5...
Brooks Men's Ghost 14 Neutral Running Shoe - Grey/Alloy/Oyster - 10.5...
Best Price
Brooks Women's Ghost 14 Neutral Running Shoe - Lilac/Purple/Lime - 7.5...
Brooks Women's Ghost 14 Neutral Running Shoe - Lilac/Purple/Lime - 7.5...
Amazon Prime

New Balance Sizing Comparison To Brooks

When comparing Brooks and New Balance sizes for both genders, the difference isn’t the same. There is a 1.5 size difference between US Men and Women in New Balance. Brooks, on the other hand, requires you to add 1 to men’s size to convert it to US women’s.

Read more on: Do New Balance Run Small, Big, Or True To Size?

Here are the size charts to prove the statements:

New Balance Size Chart


Brooks Size Chart

Men’s Brooks Sizing Chart

6.55.53925 1/4

Women’s Brooks Sizing Chart


Which Runs True To Size, Brooks Or New Balance?

New Balance typically runs true to size. However, some of their sneakers require a size down, especially if you have narrow feet. If you have wide feet, you should size up.

Brooks is distinct in terms of fit and run small. When ordering Brooks, you should go a half or a full-size up.

Related article: Do Brooks Run Small, Big Or True To Size?

New Balance Or Brooks For Running?

When it comes to running, athletes prefer both New Balance and Brooks. In terms of mileage, both cover around 300 miles and receive mixed reviews in terms of comfort and durability. Some people report shin splitting and calf pain after running 50 miles in Brooks, but they still prefer them for landing over New Balance.

While most New Balance models provide a comfortable, damage-free ride over long distances with improved traction. Despite being the right size, New Balance slips more easily on the heels. However, New Balance’s FuelCell technology provides the energy return that every runner seeks.

New Balance or Brooks For Walking?

Both brands offer excellent models that most podiatrists recommend, making it difficult to choose between them. However, the Brooks Adrenaline GTS 22 is still regarded as the best walking shoe for flat feet.

However, New Balance’s Fresh Foam technology is no less effective for comfortable, traction-rich hikes and trails.

Brooks Addiction Walker vs. New Balance 928

Brooks Addiction Walker and New Balance 928 have always been top choices, and both are suitable for all-day standing and long wear. When you compare the two, you’ll notice some distinguishing features that set one apart from the other.

New Balance 928Brooks Addiction Walker
ProsElegant design.
Great for plantar fasciitis.
Features Abzorb midsole.
PU footbed gives extra durability.
The Rollbar technology does wonder for stability and motion control.
Lighter than Addiction Walker.
Features BioMogo DNA midsole that is better than EVA.
The segmented Crash Pad and soft midsole give brilliant heel-to-toe transitions.
Slight coefficient resistance against wet surfaces.
ConsLow ventilation and very warm.
Slips easily on the heel, which can be avoided by properly lacing at the top eyelet.
Run smaller in size and width.
Looks plain and practical.
Comfortable at first, but the rubber starts wearing out after some days or months.
WeightNew Balance Men’s 928 V3: 11 oz.
New Balance Women’s 928 V3: 11 oz.
Brooks Addiction Walker V-Strap 2: 14.5 oz.
Brooks Addiction Walker Suede: 13.1 oz.
Pricing145 USD130 USD
Brooks Men's Addiction Walker 2 Walking Shoe - Black/Black - 15 Medium
  • MAXIMUM SUPPORT: Our Extended Progressive Diagonal Rollbar (PDRB) is a support system for your...
  • SLIP-RESISTANT: An innovative outsole that's been certified (SATRA TM144:2011) for slip resistance...
  • SOFT CUSHIONING: BioMoGo DNA adapts to your stride, weight and speed, to make every step comfortable...

New Balance 1080 vs. Brooks Glycerin

New Balance 1080Brooks Glycerin
ProsFlawless traction, but the rubber is less gripper than Brooks Glycerin 20.
Top-notch breathability.
Very comfortable and bouncy.
Great cushioning and support.
The Hypnokit mesh upper is elastic and easy to fit, making the toe box elastic.
Slip-on easily.
Better design than Glycerin.
Newer versions are better than the former.
More cushioned and comfortable than 1080.
Sock-like interior and can be worn without socks.
Soft upper DNA Loft v3 upgrade in Glycerin 20 reduced the clunkiness felt in previous versions.
ConsPainful heels and heel-slips.
Tread doesn’t cover the whole shoe bottom.
Cushioned, but has a cupping sensation when landing, which can be uncomfortable on long runs.
The heel cup cracks easily.
Newer versions are not muchly improvised.
Some customers have experienced blisters in Glycerin 19.
Minimal energy return.
WeightNew Balance Men’s Fresh Foam 1080v11: 10.8 oz.
New Balance Women’s Fresh Foam 1080v11: 8.1 oz.
Brooks Men’s Glycerin 19: 10.2 oz.
Brooks Women’s Glycerin 19: 9 oz.
Brooks Men’s Glycerin 20: 10.1 oz.
Brooks Women’s Glycerin 20: 8.9 oz.
Pricing160 USD150 USD

New Balance 574 vs. Brooks Ghost

New Balance 574Brooks Ghost
ProsFeatures ENCAP midsoles have a polyurethane rim, which is
considered the best outsole in the market.
Well-supported and durable.
Excellent traction for all surfaces.
Comfortable and has Teddy liners installed.
Lighter than New Balance 574 (10.1 oz.).
Smooth and balanced ride.
Features a 12mm drop.
ConsHeavier than Brooks Glycerin (1.4 lb)Some models can cause blisters.
WeightNew Balance Men’s 574 V2: 12 oz.
New Balance Women’s 574 V2: 12.5 oz.
Brooks Ghost 14 Men’s: 10.1 oz.
Brooks Ghost 14 Women’s: 9 oz.
Brooks Ghost 13 Men’s: 9.7 oz.
Brooks Ghost 13 Women’s: 8.5 oz.
Pricing100 USD150 USD
Brooks Women's Ghost 14 Neutral Running Shoe - Lilac/Purple/Lime - 9...
  • THIS WOMEN'S SHOE IS FOR: Runners looking for a smooth ride that won’t distract from the fun of...
  • SUPPORT AND CUSHION: The Ghost 14 offers neutral support while providing high energizing cushioning....
  • BALANCED, SOFT CUSHIONING: BioMoGo DNA and DNA LOFT cushioning work together to provide a just-right...

New Balance 327 vs. Brooks Adrenaline

New Balance 327Brooks Adrenaline
ProsRetro design.
Grippy notched, lugged outsole.
Oversized ‘N’ logo.
Low Price.
Guiderails gives on-demand arch support.
Highly stable and responsive.
Flexible and secured fit.
12mm drop from heel to toe to reduce weight in this area.
Best walking shoe for flat feet.
ConsRun a half-size small.
Not very comfortable like Adrenaline.
Doesn’t provide enough support.
Has stitching and adhesive issues.
The toe box isn’t very wide.
Low breathability.
Not for high-speed runs.
WeightNew Balance 327: 12.3 oz. Brooks Adrenaline Men’s Gts 21: 10.4 oz.
Brooks Adrenaline Women’s Gts 21: 9.1 oz.
Brooks Adrenaline Men’s Gts 22: 10.4 oz.
Brooks Adrenaline Women’s Gts 22: 9.1 oz.
Pricing100 USD110 USD

How Does Brooks Fit Compare To New Balance?

When it comes to shoe fitting, the size and width of the toe box are extremely important. And, in comparison, New Balance excels in fit, particularly for wider feet.

Why? New Balance have a larger toe box and wider width options than Brooks. However, because the model varies, you must try on the shoe to see if it fits properly. Because a good fit isn’t everything. You should be able to wiggle your toes easily and there should be at least a thumb size difference between your toe and shoe. Fortunately, both brands have a return policy that you can use if it’s not a good fit.

However, it is not always the toe box. A properly fitted shoe eliminates bunions, blisters, hammertoes, and aches. Similarly, if you ask, New Balance is still a better option. But some New Balance models, such as the 1080v9, have heel-slip issues, in which the heel slips after most steps. And this is not common with most Brooks.

Which Brand Is Better, Brooks Or New Balance?

To sum up, neither of the two is the best. People have mixed reviews and have some personal picks as both New Balance and Brooks have several models. However, most customers prefer New Balance for their appearance and consider Brooks to be only good as plain running shoes. Podiatrists prefer New Balance because of its broader variety of widths and toe box dimensions.

However, both have great options for flat arches and plantar fasciitis. When it comes to customer service, Brooks takes the lead, as both brands still struggle to find the right size. Brooks also has better customer service ratings than New Balance. Overall, New Balance outlasts Brooks in the 300-mile endurance run and offers a mix of bounce and softness. Brooks, on the other hand, is ideal for landing.

So, as I previously stated, everything is up to you. Both have distinguishing features that set them apart, and you must choose what best suits your needs and style.

Brooks stands out in terms of progression; almost every new version is free of the issues that plagued previous versions. This is where New Balance must focus its efforts. Otherwise, there isn’t much of a price difference between the two brands, which I don’t believe justifies the performance seen in other high-end shoes such as Nike.

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