Reebok’s radically different running shoes
Though the Nike Epic React Flyknit remains the best high-performance running shoe, it now has close competition from the 2018 collection of the Reebok Floatride Run Ultraknit
The running shoe space is so closely contested that even the slightest improvements tend to stand out. Reebok’s Floatride Run Ultraknit, however, is much more—it is radically different.
It has, in fact, thrown the footwear design rulebook out of the window. Reebok has been brave, with a 3D design heel cradle and a cage that wraps around your mid-foot and heel. This makes the shoe more robust, structured, and your foot feels securely locked in. On the flip side, the hard plastic cradle does sacrifice some suppleness. But, the Ultraknit upper offers great breathability, which will be useful in summer.
The midsole is made from what Reebok calls Floatride foam. Your feet sit in great comfort, with consistent cushioning. The shoe has an 8mm heel-to-toe drop. The response to each foot landing and feedback from the running surface filter through, without the feet feeling any harshness. The Floatride foam comes very close to the present cushioning benchmark for running shoes set by the React foam cushioning in Nike’s Epic React Flyknit (Rs15,995 onwards) shoe.
The Ultraknit comes in elegant black/coal/white and navy/blue/grey combinations. It tips the scales at just 233g (this is on a par with the Epic React Flyknit, which weighs 239g).
So, though the Nike Epic React Flyknit remains the best high-performance running shoe—it is all about conventionality, top notch materials, construction and great colour combinations—it now has close competition from the 2018 collection of the Reebok Floatride Run Ultraknit. The radical cage element, however, could polarize opinion.
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