Shoe ReviewsTrack & XC

Brooks ELMN8 v5 Performance Review

What You Need To Know

  • Weighs 4.3 oz. (121.9 g) for a US M9 / US W10.5
  • Thin woven upper
  • STIFF carbon plate
  • 7/10 on the no sock scale

MERCER: I’ve never worn a Brooks spike before, and have heard pretty lukewarm reviews about them. Despite that, I was very intrigued to try out the brand’s mid-distance spike, the ELMN8 v5.

Continuing with that carbon fiber goodness from the V4, the ELMN8 v5 added a streamlined upper. Along with a six-pin forefoot plate that wraps around to the bottom of the foot, the gives off a glisten in the sun and wins major style points from me.

elmn8 v5

The Good

MERCER: I’d like you to go outside right now and grab a rock. Now try and bend the rock. That’s how stiff this spike is. Because of that, when you get up to speed and start bending the shoe, the snap is powerful, like Thanos snap powerful. If you’re a sit and kicker coming down the home stretch it’s going to feel wonderful.

Along with both of the plates, this shoe is built like a spoon with a very thin arch and heel and wide toe box (for a spike). It also features a huge dip that pushes you to the balls of your feet, which is great for race day.

The upper on the Elmn8 v5 is the same material as the Hyperion Elite 2 and it works at times. The woven material works well but has its drawbacks (more on that later). The tongue is padded enough to protect your foot from locked-down laces. It’s also worth noting that there is zero heel lift.

This spike doesn’t have that much cushion, but it’s plenty enough for the mile.

Shop ELMN8 v5

elmn8 v5

The Bad

MERCER: I did a longer workout in these spikes and by the end, the upper just felt gross. It’s perforated for breathability but isn’t enough for the summer. The v5 runs a bit long, too, so much so that there’s a little bit of puckering.

The pop of this shoe is great for straightaways, but it gets a bit sloppy taking turns. I swapped out the stock studs from Brooks with some longer ones and that helped a little bit. The spoon-like shape and the aggressive pop also left my calves a bit fried after about a mile.

Shop ELMN8 v5

elmn8 v5

Conclusion

MERCER: I had a teammate try these on and he described them as “funky.” That’s a perfect description of the Brooks Elmn8 v5. It’s fast yet unstable and can work for distances from the 400 to possibly 1600. This spike is just a few small changes from being great. Some spikes that are comparable to the Elmn8 are the Hoka Rocket MD and the Nike Victory 3.

You can pick up the Brooks Elmn8 v5 at Running Warehouse (featuring free 2-day shipping and 90-day returns) by using the shop link below.

Shop ELMN8 v5

Merc is a junior at Thomas A. Edison (the one in Virginia), and has been running for six years. He also works at the iconic Potomac River Running in Northern Virginia, so if you live near there, go straight to the source for shoe advice.

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