Reebok’s biggest release of 2020 so far is the exciting Zig Kinetica shoe.
The statement product from the American sportswear giant made its debut on the feet of MMA legend Conor McGregor and hi- hop star Cardi B. for its online unveiled in later February. Our in-house influencers at Football Fashion have also been donning the Zig Kinetica since its release. This is our World Exclusive up-close look and in-person review of the shoe!
Before we delve into our look at the Zig Kinetica here are the technical specifications of the shoe courtesy of Reebok.
Zig Kinetica is built around a distinct zigzag-shaped, energy-return sole that channels and returns kinetic energy using a three-part system:
- Floatride Fuel: Energized bouncy foam helps deliver cushioning feel for everyday needs
- Zig Energy Shell: Channels and returns kinetic energy, while providing a bold aesthetic
- Zig Energy Bands: A unique outsole that expands and contracts like a rubber band to provide spring-like response
- Breathable mesh upper with strategic support zones; Molded neoprene collar for comfort
- Stable, supportive and breathable feel
- Engineered seamless design reduces abrasion
With classic kicks (including a full arsenal from Reebok dating back to the 1980s) always in style, the designers at Reebok may have looked toward the silhouette of the 2010’s Zig Pulse as the basis of the Zig Kinetica. The shoes definitely have a touch of recent retro about them. However, that is where the old school ends. Everything else about the Zig Kinetica is completely modern from its upper to its standout sole.
The upper of the shoe is a lightweight, extremely comfortable mesh with material with a series of cleverly placed indented support zones throughout. While these are functional, they provide nice details on the Kinetica that catch the eye.
The tongue area of the Reebok Zig Kinetica is unlike anything that we’ve seen before on trainers and our favorite element of the upper. It is ostentatiously wide with two stripes that the laces run under them. The flat laces of the Kinetica work wonderfully with the rest of the tongue for a very novel look and feel. They can also be readily swapped to laces of a contrasting color to add even more bling to these kicks.
With question, the standout feature of the Reebok Zig Kinetica is its sole unit. As you can see in our pictures it is aesthetically brilliant thanks to its combination of solid orange with a transition to a translucent area towards the upper. The Kinetica’s channels on the sole sides and thin energy bands on the bottom add to its world class look. The sole’s effect on the shoe is completed with a bold grill in the heel counter area.
Reebok’s updated logo is applied at the front tip, outside, upper tongue and back of the Zig Kinetica in a very much understated manner. We found the placement and sizing of the logos to work well with the rest of the Kinetica’s design as they did not take attention away from the rest of the shoe’s details.
The Reebok Zig Kinetica was released in several colorways ranging from mainly black to mainly white to radiant red. The black / sunbaked orange / vivid orange colorway of our pairs is used for the Kinetica’s Conor McGregor-led launch campaign. This is unsurprising as it is the best-looking of the lot and magnificently highlights the shoe’s design and functional elements.
The Reebok Zig Kinetica has a true to size fit that we suggest getting in in your usual athletic shoe size. Reebok is spot on in terms of sizing for the Kinetica with none of the “runs small” or “runs big” fine print or concerns that we’ve seen from other major kicks manufacturers in recent times.
Once on the foot the Zig Kinetica offers a very comfortable and snug feel with no unwanted space, slippage, hotspots or rubbing. The feel remains the same even after weeks of wear given the low stretch nature of the mesh upper.
A neoprene collar at the top of the Reebok Zig Kinetica enhances its fit but providing a soft transition from the foot to the ankle area. It also helps to keep the shoe locked onto the foot regardless of your activity in them.
Sliding on the Zig Kinetica is quite straightforward with no lace loosening or adjustments required. Lace them up afterwards and you’re ready to move. Our only recommendation would be for Reebok to include pull tabs at the back of the shoe to make putting them on even easier and faster.
The ride of the Reebok Zig Kinetica is obviously built around its ultramodern and highly innovative sole. The world class feel provided can be felt from the time the shoe is first worn and improves after a short break in period of walking around in it.
The ride provided by the Reebok Zig Kinetica is extremely bouncy and enjoyable. It makes the shoe one that you never want to take off even when you’re indoors lounging. Walking or standing in the Kinetica is effortless thanks to its combination Reebok’s Floatride running shoe technology and the very perceptible Zig Energy mechanism that cleverly seems to return kinetic energy in an upwards direction.
One of our testers was so happy with the feel of the Zig Kinetica upon trying it on for the first time that she headed straight for the gym in it. Our team consensus was that the shoe’s sole does mold to the shape of the underside of your fit within a day or two however. You really enjoy its full cushioning and energy return effects after that.
Reebok touts the Zig Kinetica as a lifestyle shoe that you can take from the street to the gym. We did try it out for running as well however given how impressed we were with its support. Unsurprisingly we were quite enthused with it during a 3-mile run that included a local rubberized track and asphalt surroundings.
The Kinetica provided the cushioning, stability, and low heel to toe drop expected of a good running shoe. The shoe’s energy return is a must to experience when running because it provides a bit of assistance on fatigued legs.
The Reebok Zig Kinetica is a bit on the heavier side compared to today’s elite running shoes however. Nevertheless, it is fine for shorter runs and speed training or for casual runners.
The mesh upper of the Reebok Zig Kinetica provides ample ventilation to keep your feet cool during short runs, when working out and for casual use. The ventilation is not the same as you would find in shoes specifically designed for running however. This is the on characteristic of the shoe that doesn’t make it suited for runs beyond 5K. For anything else it is has enough of a cooling effect to avoid the dreaded sweaty feet and wet socks that most of us dread.
In the Gym
The Zig Kinetica makes a flawless transition from the street to the gym. We used it for a variety of gym activities in style thanks to its brilliant look. This included weightlifting for the upper body, TRX suspension training and calisthenic moves such as box jumps, burpees and wall sites. The shoe provided excellent support in all instances and was never uncomfortable in any way while working out. We did enjoy its energy return during any exercise involving jumping moves because of the extra push off provided.
The thickness of the sole of the Reebok Zig Kinetica prevents it from being a good shoe for leg weightlifting exercises such as squats and legs presses though. This is because flatter, closer to the ground soles are best for such moves.
After three weeks of constant use the Reebok Zig Kinetica still looks as good as the day we unboxed it. We’ve worn the shoe almost around the clock at work, while commuting in an urban environment, at the gym and during running. Amazingly, it shows virtually no signs of wear. There is no creasing at the upper, scuffs anywhere or signs of wear at the bottom of the sole. The Zig Kinetica is clearly well-constructed and designed to last. We expect them to have a lifespan of at least three years of everyday use
Fully modern with a dab of retro thrown it, the Reebok Zig Kinetica is arguably the most exciting sneaker drop of 2020 thus far. It is wonderfully comfortable and functional while bearing a superb design that will have you feeling like an influencer when wearing it because of the shoe’s admirers. The Kinetica’s introductory price point of $120 makes its very affordable and bordering on a steal because of all of its features.