I recently received a pair of the Reebok Z Pump Fusion from Reebok Canada. A promotional card included in the box touted a shoe that would adapt to me and what I particularly might need in a performance shoe.
A little information on my current athletics situation, I am what you call a weekend sports warrior. I do not train regularly, but I exercise for purpose. In other words, If I need to play basketball or go running, I will prep my body in accordance. Some more specifics on my body makeup, I wear a true size 9.5 and have an extremely wide foot. Years of playing basketball, have made my feet tired and prone to easy aches if the shoes are not completely set up properly. With this all said, here goes my reactions to this Reebok re-entry endeavor.
Fit: As stated above, my foot is extremely wide in the forefoot. The Reebok Z Pump Fusion’s upper is set up as a solid neoprene sock liner. Slightly tricky to slip the foot into, but once the foot is in, the upper wraps around the foot and applies proper pressure around the top of the foot with no discomfort, since there are no inner stitchings. The use of the Pump to ameliorate the fit was tested and I did feel the wrap around my foot get tighter. This was useful after I actually ran a bit in the shoe, after my foot had warmed itself up and need extra support as I went along. True-to-size is the way to go.
Comfort: My first wear of the Reebok Z Pump Fusion lasted approximately 3 hours where I went about my neighborhood and undertook some running and then some walking about. Initially, I found the shoe to be tight-ish, due to its one piece sock liner construct, but as the wear went on, I found the upper to take on the shape of my foot and apply no discomforting pressure. In other words, no pinching of any sort.
Traction: Since I am not a hardcore athlete anymore (hah!), my testing of this model’s traction system was a basic run around and with sudden changes of directions and take offs from stand still positions on concrete. I had no issues taking off and felt hardly any foot-to-floor slippage when I would change directions. The upper really holds well in terms of keeping my foot at the top of the sole. The track pattern at the bottom of the shoe seems to provide multiple points of contact with the floor at any given flex point of the foot, in other words, you stay connected to the ground and there aren’t any scares of the shoe slipping out from under me.
Cushioning: For what I had intended for the Reebok Z Pump Fusion, a couple of hops and some pseudo parkour type leaps off local buildings (Hah once again!), this shoe’s cushioning provided some good impact protection for my heavier self during these bounds of fury. I am very particular about cushioning systems, because I carry a lot of weight and my legs power downwards when I run. I usually end up crushing the outsole after several serious wears on the lesser robust outsoles. This Z Pump seemed to hold up well and I didn’t notice any change in its structure after use. I also played around with the Pump option to see if I would feel a difference. The Pump inflates the portion of the upper above the foot and provides some cushioning around the top of the upper. All in all providing better fit and protection.
Aesthetics: Seeing as how it’s a lot about image these days, my thoughts on the looks of the Reebok Z Pump Fusion seemed like a must for the purposes of our blog. In my opinion, the best part of this shoe was the use of the ‘The Pump’ logo on the upper and on the actual Pump button. The ‘The Pump’ logo holds so much weight to me. The font used, the contrast of white on black make on the button as bold of a statement as the phonetic impact of the word itself. I’ve seen colorways use contrast to better showcase the possibilities of more avant-garde designs that can be applied to the Z Pump Fusion. My thoughts remain that a stark white fonted logo on a solid black background is all you really need to make a lasting and striking impression. The Pump, in the end, is iconic.
In a world of function over fashion, the Reebok Z Pump would be on a list of battle worthy sneaker options. In a more image driven community, I see the riskier designs making some nice noise and the high contrast color schemes doing really well in the sleeker more ninja type sneaker arenas. I appreciate the opportunity from Reebok Canada to express my views on this aggressive new offering. Stay with us for any new product reviews to come.