Brooks Adrenaline GTS 21 Running Shoe Review

Brooks Adrenaline GTS 21


  • Shoe Type: Stability/Supportive Road Running Shoe (anti-pronation)
  • Offset: 12mm
  • Stack Height: Forefoot -16.5mm, Heel – 28.5mm
  • Weight: 295g (Men’s), 258g (Women’s)
  • RRP: £120

So, what’s new?

Brooks Adrenaline GTS 21 Running Shoes at Alexandra Sports


Brooks has increased the levels of DNA Loft cushioning to the Adrenaline GTS 21. A finely calibrated mix of premium foam, air and rubber.

DNA Loft is the premium cushioning system that is engineered to provide a soft ride without losing responsiveness or durability.

The previous model, Adrenaline GTS 20, used this material through the lateral portion of the heel, this has now been extended through the entire length of the midsole. This should provide the runner with an even softer feel and smoother transition from heel to toe.

The Upper

The upper also gets a facelift. The new Engineered Air Mesh upper utilises 3D Fit Print to apply strategic stretch and structure. This gives a secure fit that hugs the foot and improves breathability.

The result of these subtle changes is that the new Brooks Adrenaline GTS 21 is around 5g lighter than its previous edition.

Who is this shoe for?

Originally the GTS part of this products name stood for ‘’Go-To Shoe’’. It’s superb cushioning and fit means that it is suitable for runners of all levels and abilities.

It is quite comfortable running a couple of miles on a treadmill or getting you round an ultra marathon on the hardest of surfaces.

There has been some rebranding within the Brooks range of running shoes for this spring 2021 season. GTS will now stand for ‘’Go To Support’’.

The term ‘support’ when applied to running footwear, indicates the shoe is designed for runners that have a degree of instability or overpronation when running.

Overpronation is one of the biggest factors in a large number of running-related injuries such as Plantar Fasciitis (heel or arch pain), Shin Splints and Runners Knee.

So, if you have been injury-prone whilst running there is a good chance that the Brooks Adrenaline GTS 21 is a running shoe that may well suit you and help overcome or reduce the injury issues you face.

But, as always we would recommend getting your feet and running style assessed with a gait analysis in-store to help determine the best range of running shoes for your individual needs.

GTS – Go To Support via Guiderails

The SS21 season will see three models adopt the GTS component to their title. The Brooks Adrenaline GTS has long been the best selling stability shoe within the run speciality market, and version 21 sticks to the tried and tested formula.

It will be joined by the Brooks Glycerin GTS 19 (replacing the Transcend) and the Brooks Launch GTS 8 (replacing the Ravenna). All three models are stability shoes that provide arch support with Brooks’ Guiderail technology.

Guiderails are formed from a firmer compound that sits around the top of the shoes midsole. The asymmetrical horseshoe shape encapsulates and cradles the rearfoot to provide stability on impact with the ground. The rails then extend forward through the shoe, helping to guide the runner along their unique motion corridor.

If the foot is deviating off course or overpronating, the Guiderails will help to keep the runner on a path of least resistance for as long as possible during the run.

A greater forefoot rocking action then see’s a smooth take-off and propulsion into the next stride.

By maintaining these habitual movement patterns, the runner should be moving more efficiently to reduce the onset of fatigue. We should also experience fewer injuries and as the foot, ankle and knee suffer less resistance.

With this form of arch support being more assistive, controlling the runner should be more comfortable as fluid motion is promoted in harmony with the body, rather than fighting against it.

This natural habitual joint motion theory forms the basis and concept of Brooks’ Stride Signature; that being that all runners are unique and shoes should work with the individuals’ motion paths and not focus on one parameter – overpronation.

Our thoughts

It is fair to say that when Guiderails were introduced into the Brooks Adrenaline GTS 19 shoe, it was met with a degree of trepidation in the running industry. We had 18 editions of a shoe that worked.

The Adrenaline GTS had always been a very stable and supportive shoe that has helped overcome injury patterns in thousands of overpronators season after season, so if it’s not broke, why try and fix it?

Two years into the Guiderail era and the Brooks Adrenaline GTS is still our best selling road running shoe. If anything I think it is more popular than before!

The feedback that we get every day from customers in-store is that the shoe feels very supportive and it feels very stable. I still hear of some negativity around the product and reviews that say it is not as supportive as it used to be, but I can’t see why.

Yes, on a video gait analysis some runners may look as though they overpronate a degree or two more in the newer designs than they did in the old ones. However, we know that overpronation isn’t the be-all and end-all of biomechanics.

Some runners will benefit from the flexibility of pronating further and as long as their running technique is efficient and works with their unique parameters all will be good!

Customers returning to store with reoccurring injuries that are associated with a lack of support have been reduced, so it is safe to assume that the redesigned Adrenaline GTS works!

The Guiderail design has resulted in a running shoe that is lighter, softer and therefore more comfortable for most runners. I wish I had a pound for every customer that had said the Brooks Adrenaline GTS felt like a pair of slippers!

At Alexandra Sports I have been lucky enough to receive some of the new Adrenaline GTS 21’s before the official launch date! As a runner that uses supportive shoes, I was keen to get myself a pair.

I have managed a couple of short runs in them already and here is my initial feedback…


  • The look – These are beautiful looking shoes. The engineered mesh not only looks good but also looks more supportive through the saddle than the previous version. The full-length DNA Loft cushioning gives the midsole a premium appearance too.
  • Colours and sizes. There will be a choice of colours to suit most people’s preferences. The later colours will be available in standard and wide width fittings.
  • Consistency – Brooks running shoes have always had a familiar fit and feel to them and this is no different. They feel great, straight out of the box. Therefore, should require little breaking in. I have always favoured a UK9 in Brooks running shoes, and a UK9 fits perfectly in this 21st edition.  The support given appears to sit in line with versions 19 and 20, so if you enjoyed the previous editions, I am confident you will love the GTS 21 also.
  • Price – There has been no price increase on the new model, hurrah! Brooks have increased the amount of cushioning but kept the RRP at £120. An uncommon concept among some running brands.


  • Honestly, none – The shoe behaves and feels exactly as it should. However, it is still very early to see how the materials hold up. (written 07/11/2021)

NB: One issue a lot of runners find is that their toe flexes and makes a hole in the top of their running trainers. It can be frustrating but is hard to avoid. We have a link here to help explain.

It is too early in the lifespan of the product to see if this model will be prone to the issue, but I feel there is good depth to the toe box.

In summary, the Brooks Adrenaline GTS 21 will be a big hit with both new and experienced runners alike.

I have found them to be extremely comfortable. The fit is slightly more snug through the midfoot compared to version 19, But a wider fit is available for those that need it.

It is supportive, responsive and the grip has been good on the damp early morning runs. 2k into my second run and I had forgotten that the shoes were new; they were feeling as though, if not more, comfortable than my more expensive Brooks Transcend 7’s. I would go as far to say that they almost feel like an old comfy pair of slippers… (Seriously, someone please give me a pound!)



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