Last year, sports brand Reebok took inspiration from history, brought back the pump shoe technology in its ZPump line-up of sports-centric footwear and came out with an impressive running shoe. Now, it’s building on the same concept.
The successor to last year’s very competent ZPump Fusion shoe is the ZPump Fusion 2.5, which is better in almost every respect.
What stands out immediately is the “pump” button on the side of each shoe. An air-filled cage inside the shoe sits around the ankle and the mid-foot. This creates a lock-in feel around the contours of the foot, ironing out within the shoe itself the foot roll that could lead to muscle stress, induced by the natural heel-to-toe movement while running. We noticed that after 10 pumps, there was a clear inflation of the cage, apparent on the outer sides of the shoe, which were bulging out slightly. After about 30 pumps, cushioning near the shoe’s tongue too will be noticeable. You can safely do as many as 60 pumps in the ZPump Fusion 2.5.
The sweet spot for most runners, across a variety of surfaces, would be around 40, because that is when the foot feels perfectly locked in, with no unnecessary wriggle room for movement.
The ZPump Fusion 2.5 is comfortable to wear all day, although it feels slightly heavier than its predecessor (approximately 278g).
The predecessor’s Fusion Sleeve single-piece design for the upper part has been replaced with a mesh and slightly stiffer material, which should be able to withstand much more rough use. There is enough ventilation too. The mid-sole is made of carbonated foam, and is gas-filled, which provides a sort of comforting softness, while also blocking out the feedback you would get while running on a slightly uneven surface.
The outsole, made of high abrasion rubber, now has a more pronounced tread design, and there is extra grip available under the toe and heel areas—this would be useful on surfaces such as a damp pavement, where the surface does not offer a good grip.
Reebok has taken last year’s ZPump Fusion running shoe and improved on it. While the predecessor focused more on softer materials, the ZPump Fusion 2.5 seems more durable, stronger and sturdier.
The Reebok ZPump Fusion 2.5 is a good running shoe to consider if you aren’t entirely comfortable with the ultra-light shoes that don’t always offer as much protection.