Brooks Adrenaline vs Ravenna – Explaining the Difference

Even if you’ve just started your search for running shoes, you’ve no doubt come across Brooks running shoes. 

Over the years, Brooks has created quite a number of award-winning franchises such as Glycerin, Adrenaline, Ghost, and many more. But how exactly do you know which one is right for your running requirements?

To help you narrow it down, this article puts two of the best models from Brooks in a head to head battle of performance.  -  Brooks Adrenaline vs Ravenna. If you were looking for a comparison between the Brooks Ghost and Adrenaline, you can find it here


Since its inception back in 1914, Brooks Sports has been at the forefront of innovative sports shoes. With an entire century of experience and their trademark transparency, it’s no wonder that Brooks has risen to the top to become an all-time athletes’ favorite brand.

Today, the brand consistently releases new models by the day; incredible pieces of footwear that actually do what they’re designed to do. Whether you’re out on the road, hiking trails, or just ripping the treadmill, you can be sure that Brooks has a shoe for everything.

But as it happens with most brands, Brooks fell victim to the variety principle. See, the more their collection starts to fill up, the harder it is for runners and athletes to understand the purpose of each shoe. That’s why I’ve been comparing and contrasting different shoes within the same brand; Adrenaline vs Ravenna.

Adrenaline GTS 18 vs Brooks Ravenna 8

Looking at these two great models, it’s clear that both shoes fall in the stability category of running footwear from Brooks. But even with a few similarities, these two models differ considerably when it comes to certain aspects.

With the Ravenna 8, you get a highly cushioned ride with considerable amounts of stability. I especially loved the fact that there’s no stiffness, bulk, or hard medial post that could affect the run. Still, I did notice that the shoe seems confused about whether it’s a neutral shoe or stability footwear. But we’ll get to that later on.

The Adrenaline GTS 18 makes a comeback as Brooks flagship stability model. Not only does the shoe promise a much smoother ride, but the overhauled uppers and interiors make it the go-to shoe for overpronators.

And that’s not even the best part! So, let’s dive right into the devilish details, shall we?

Brooks Men's Adrenaline GTS 18 Grey/Blue/Black 11 D US

Currently, the Brook Adrenaline GTS series is the most popular stability shoe from the top selling Brand. It’s a well known fact that Brooks makes continued, substantial improvements to their shoes every year so that we can get a more satisfying running experience.

And their latest adaptation is no exception.

The Adrenaline GTS 18 promises a great balance of support and cushioning; making it an excellent option for athletes looking for more stability in their performance without sacrificing comfort or response.

Brooks is extremely focused on running, and the GTS 18 definitely proves it.

-Redesigned trendy and stylish uppers
-Incredibly light and flexible construction
-Durable sole unit

-Small stones get stuck in the grooves

Brooks Men's Ravenna 8 Anthracite/Silver/Black 10 D US

Following the previous 7th version of the Ravenna line, the Ravenna 8 maintains the infamous lightweight cushioning that runners have come to love. These bad boys come complete with most of the technology that keeps Brook customers coming back again.

In both price and feel, this shoe closely resembles the GTS 18 except for a few subtle differences.

All in all, the Ravenna 8 still falls in the category of stability running shoes with considerable amounts of cushioning for the moderate overpronator.

We compare and contrast the popular Ghost vs Ravenna here. This comparison provides another perspective on why you may want to choose Ravenna over the GTS 18. 

-Light support without the excess bulk
-Smoother heel to toe transition
-Offers a springy bounce back

-Toe box may not be as snug as one would like

Uppers: Adrenaline Gts 18 Vs Brooks Ravenna 8

You know what they say about first impressions and all that. The very first thing I noticed with the Adrenaline GTS 18 was the sleek and improved color scheme. With more shades and a larger amount of colors, this shoe is definitely more vibrant, stylish, and overall impressive. Out of all the features, the uppers have to be the most notable updates in the GTS 18.

They’ve been completely redone with a new, engineered, streamlined mesh that not only offers more breathability, but an enhanced fit as well. This material feels more like one single unit as opposed to several overlays across your foot. I have to admit; this is some of the most comfortable material I’ve seen in uppers in quite a while.

As for the Brooks Ravenna 8, the first thing that immediately grabs your attention is the square pattern design and silver indigo color scheme. I swear, most men will call it pink, but it’s indigo. Still, I feel that’s why many women prefer the shoe; because of the feminine color scheme.

Brooks Ravenna 8 Review

Much like the Adrenaline 18, the Ravenna also makes use of streamlined mesh that not only offers more breathability, but an enhanced fit as well. However, Ravenna comes with zero overlays and an open sew design. This makes it far more comfortable in the forefoot for a kind of loose feel. Funny enough, the upper still offers a narrow fit even with the roomy toe box and extra height.

Still keeping with the uppers, the Adrenaline GTS 18 still maintains its plush tongue that gives users a great balance between comfort and foot security. Much like the previous adaptation, the 18th version makes use of flat and semi-elastic laces with extra eyelets on the side for much better heel lockdown. Brooks finished off the sleek, modern look with reflective strips of the heel area and their logo on the sides.

Sole Unit: Adrenaline GTS 18 Vs Brooks Ravenna 8

For the midsole, the Adrenaline GTS 18 makes use of a lot of Brooks advanced sole technology. This includes the BioMoGo DNA midsole that not only adapts itself to your feet, but is entirely biodegradable and unpatented so that any willing manufacturer can help save the planet.

Brooks also incorporated the Progressive Diagonal Rollbar that is specially designed to cut down overpronation and make running far less painful and significantly more effective. Likewise, the shoe also comes with a removable sock liner for additional cushioning, contoured support, and the option of custom orthotics.

Brooks Adrenaline GTS 18 vs Ravenna 8

The Ravenna 8 also hasn’t been left behind in terms of a pretty mean midsole. Like the GTS, it too incorporates the BioMoGo DNA foam cushioning that dynamically adapts with each foot strike no matter the age, weight, gait, gender you are. But they didn’t stop there.

Brooks combined the DNA foam in the Ravenna 8 with quick Midfoot Transition Zone tech to bring together a smoother stride with an incredibly lightweight feel. I also noticed the forefoot kind of banks outward to give runners anti-excess pronation. For mild pronators, Brooks included an adjustable saddle for a more appropriate fit in each foot.

Brooks Adrenaline GTS vs Ravenna

The outsole is where the Adrenaline GTS 18 literally stands above the competition. This running shoe makes use of a softer blown rubber in the forefoot and a harder carbon rubber around the heel for slightly more durability. But wait till you hear about the improvements.

Brooks redesigned the treads on the outsole for even more traction without compromising on the flexibility and performance. So not only do we get reliable grip on different roads, but they also promise impressive traction even when running on wet surfaces. Alongside this improvement, the manufacturer also added Flextra tech that enhances the Adrenaline GTS 18’s flexibility. But on the downside, small stones tend to get stuck in between the grooves.

With the Ravenna 8, the outsole has been segmented into tiny squares kind of like Nike’s waffle design for durability and high traction action. However, the R8 differs from the GTS in that the outsole provides full ground contact under the midfoot.

I also noticed that the Ravenna 8 makes use of Brooks’ OmegaFlex Grooves that allow for substantially natural motion and fluidity in the forefoot area. So not only do runners get a more stable and confident run, but they also enjoy the multidirectional slip resistance offered. That’s what I call seamless heel to toe transition.

The Verdict: Adrenaline GTS 18 Vs Brooks Ravenna 8

As explained above, the Adrenaline GTS 18 promises a great balance of support and cushioning; making it an excellent option for athletes looking for more stability levels in their performance without sacrificing comfort.

Not only does the shoe promise a much smoother ride, but the overhauled uppers and interiors make it the go-to shoe for over pronators worldwide. And the darker, settled colors make it an all-time favorite for men too.

On the other hand, the Ravenna 8 offers a decent amount of cushioning without sacrificing the weight or comfort. This means that runners can look forward to more stability without extra bulk in the heel or the usual stiffness that comes with stability footwear.

Overall, the Ravenna 8 performs well on any length of runs without being too cumbersome on faster runs. So if you’re looking for a shoe that brings some stability, excellent cushioning, a responsive ride and smooth transition, then look no further than the Ravenna 8.

Last update on 2021-01-18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API