Brooks Levitate vs Ghost: Key Points [2023 Guide]

We had them both and would like to review Brooks Levitate vs Ghost side by side. Basically, the key difference between the Brooks Levitate 5 and Ghost 14 is their design intent. Indeed, the difference between them is the trade-off between cushioning and energy-return (springy & bouncy feel). Long story short, the Brooks Ghost is a cushioned trainer, which is soft and protective. On the other hand, the Brooks Levitate is an energized trainer which is designed for responsiveness and its springy structure adds extra lift to your stride.

Brooks Levitate vs Ghost: The Full List of Main Differences

Therefore, the first question you need to answer is how you would like each step to feel?

If you seek a soft and protective running shoe, the Brooks Ghost 14 is your go-to shoe. If you want springy feel to propel you forward, then Brooks Levitate 5 is the top-notch and highly recommended.

You can consider Brooks’ Own Shoe Finder Tool in the to see how Brooks shoes differs than each other.

Here is the links that you can check them on Amazon and see Latest Prices and Color options:

Brooks Levitate 5

Brooks Levitate 5 Score

Brooks Ghost 14

Ghost 14: Best for Slow Paced Long Distance
Brooks Ghost 14 Score

Brooks Levitate vs Ghost: Comparison Chart

Here is a chart that we have put together to help you understand Levitate 5 vs Ghost 14 comparison better:

Review of #Levitate 5Ghost 14
Our Score85/10092/100
Our Selection forBest Energy-ReturnBest for Average Runner
FeelEnergize 3/3 & Balanced Cushioning (2/3)Balanced Cushioning (2/3)
FlexibilityFlexible (4/5)Flexible (4/5)
Drop-mm (M/W)812
Weight-gr (M/W)292/260280/255
Width OptionsNormalNarrow/Normal/Wide/XWide
Camparest Expert ReviewIn-depth ReviewIn-depth Review
Deals & Discounts Rates Men’s / Women’sRates Men’s / Women’s

Based on these facts, we use Brooks Levitate 5 for long distance running, it is designed for marathons or ultra-marathons. However, the Brooks Ghost 14 is designed for long distance but slow paced running.

For choosing an activity-specific (running experience type) running shoe, check out our Best Brooks Running Shoes guide.

Brooks Levitate vs Ghost: Pros & Cons Comparison

Brooks Levitate 5


  • Great Flexibility
  • Very Springy & Tons of Responsiveness
  • Perfect Fit
  • Fast Heel to Toe Transition


  • Not so breathable
  • The thin outsole is not forgiving
  • Heavy a bit

Brooks Ghost 14


  • Super flexible
  • Exceptionally comfortable
  • Breathable upper
  • Good grip on dry and wet surfaces


  • Lacks Responsiveness
  • Non-Gusseted Tongue
  • Heavy a bit

Upper Comparison for Levitate 5 vs Ghost 14

Both the Ghost 13 and the Levitate 5 have highly comfortable upper. In this case, the Ghost 14 upper is engineered mesh. It is highly reliable and more breathable than the Levitate 5. On the other hand, the Levitate 5 Upper is Fit Knit. It is lighter than its competitors and has a sock-like fit. Frankly, it can easily conform to any foot shape and offers a wider and custom fit. Yet, it feels so unstable especially on uneven surfaces. Therefore, the upper of Ghost 14 is more supportive compared to the Levitate 5.

The lacing system for both of them are fine, but not the same. The Ghost 14 has plusher laces, but the Levitate 5 has flatter which makes it lighter and sleeker feeling shoe.

Sole Unit Comparison for Brooks Levitate 5 vs Ghost 14

This is the main difference between Brooks Ghost and Levitate line. The sole unit of Brooks Ghost 14 offers soft, protective, plush feeling and provides more supportive landing compared to the Brooks Levitate 5. However, the Brooks Levitate 5 is more bouncy, and provides great energy return in each stride.

The Brooks Ghost 14 uses DNA Loft in the midsole, it is the softest material that Brooks company uses in their running shoes.

The Brooks Levitate 5 uses DNA AMP which is highly propulsive (the most responsive). It is highly cushioned as well, but not as much as the cushioned trainer Ghost.

Bottom-line for Brooks Levitate 5 vs Ghost 14 Comparison

As a final statement for Brooks Levitate vs Ghost comparison, we do recommend both of them, they are well above the average of the running shoes we tested so far. Before deciding which one to pick, consider how you would like each step to feel. Do you expect cushioning or a responsive and springy feel from a running shoe? Generally speaking, we chose Ghost 14 for recovery runs, it is highly cushioned, protective and soft. It is the best choice for slow paced long distance runs. However, the Levitate 5 fits the best for marathons or ultra-marathons. It is highly responsive and very springy which propels you forward in every stride.

Here is a useful video of Brooks Running Company which highlights the key points of Brooks Levitate Shoe:

Here is a useful video of Brooks Ghost running shoe that you might be interested in:

We also recommend checking out our “Best Running Shoes for Men & Women” post, where you might find very useful details about Brooks and ASICs running shoes.