Lifestyle

Is the Reebok FloatZig 1 the Best Everyday Running Shoe Out There?

Comfortable, bouncy, lightweight miles.

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When I find a running shoe I like, I become forever loyal to that shoe until proven otherwise. Why mess with a good thing, right? So when a fresh pair of Reebok FloatZig 1’s appeared on my doorstep, I didn’t have high (or really any) expectations. My holy grail was already complete: lightweight Hoka Machs for everyday runs, cushioned Hoka Clifton for longer runs, and the Nike Vaporfly for speed work.  

The FloatZig’s midsole—which involves a combo of Reebok’s classic Floatride Energy Foam in a new zig-zag pattern—promises lightweight miles with impressive energy return. It sounds good and looks sweet. But how would it stack up to the other shoes in my regular rotation? 

Here’s why the FloatZig 1 scored a permanent spot in my shoe rack (next to the popular running shoes listed above) after two months’ worth of everyday easy runs, long runs, speed work, recovery jogs, and dog walks around the neighborhood.

Our Experience

Hone Health is a team of health-obsessed journalists, editors, fitness junkies, medical reviewers, and product testers. As an editor, I have spent years testing, researching, and reviewing products in the fitness space, including running shoes. I was also a competitive track & field athlete throughout college, which means I’ve been running for a little over 18 years. I also have my B.S. in Exercise Science and I’m a C.S.C.S. and NASM-C.P.T.—which is a fancy way of saying I know my stuff when it comes to human movement and running technique. 

Reebok FloatZig 1

Pros
  • Great for most runs
  • Super smooth ride
  • Looks great
  • Impressive value for the money
Cons
  • Not ideal for speed, trail, or stability needs
  • High-cut upper

What Is the Reebok FloatZig 1? 

The Reebok FloatZig 1 is the brand’s answer to a throwback classic daily trainer—with some important upgrades. It’s cushioned, but not ultra-cushioned like most long-run shoes, and lacks the aggressive rocker and carbon plate tech of most speed shoes. Both of these have a time and place but aren’t necessarily ideal for everyday running. 

The midsole technology sets the FloatZig apart from Reebok’s other runners. It’s built with beaded TPE-based Floatride Energy Foam in a “zig” shape, intended to keep the shoes responsive but light. TPE foam is known for being durable and toes the line between cushion and responsiveness—making the Reebok FloatZig 1 a solid match for a comfortable daily running shoe you plan to stack miles on. 

Close up of reebok shoes
I dig the FloatZig’s flashy, retro color pairings, but the shoe also comes in neutral colorways like black and white if that’s your thing.

TPE foam tends to be on the heavier side, so this shoe isn’t designed for the zippy speed you’ll feel with more expensive PEBA foam-based shoes like the Nike Alphafly. But, I found it felt much lighter on foot than expected and easily stood up to whatever pace I wanted (more on this later). 

While you’ll come to read that the baseline neutral FloatZig isn’t made for everything, the shoe is also available in the FloatZig Symmetros for those with stability needs. And the brand is launching two more this year: FloatZig X1 (race day shoe) and FloatZig Adventure (trail).

RUN FASTER

What’s Good About the Reebok FloatZig 1? 

Great for most runs 

Reebok positioned the FloatZig 1 as a do-it-all shoe, but I had a feeling it would land somewhere specific in my regular rotation rather than everywhere. I tried it during several different runs and decided it was great for daily runs. The rubber outsole provided plenty of traction through inclement weather and the rocky/sandy trails in my neighborhood but felt the best on the road. 

I also enjoyed it for speed work more than I expected. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a fan of carbon-plated running shoes for feeling speedy, but they aren’t the most comfortable. I felt zippy enough in my FloatZig’s while still feeling comfortable which is a trade-off I would take in nearly all scenarios aside from an actual race day. I’m just not running seriously enough right now to need carbon-plated shoes all the time—which is a hard thing to admit to the World Wide Web. The FloatZig feels like the next best thing, and for a casual runner, it’s really all you need. 

The FloatZig was solid enough for easy, long runs, too. I personally don’t plan to use them for longer runs though—the high-cut upper digs into my ankle, which is still somehow still inflamed after a year’s old sprain (I should probably get that checked out). That said, the FloatZig 1 has enough cushion to stand in as a decent long-run shoe for basically everyone else who doesn’t share my exact same woes. 

Super smooth ride 

By my standards, the highest compliment you can give a shoe is that it disappears on the foot—in other words, it’s a super smooth ride. You step into the shoe, take your first few steps, and all that comes to mind is “hm, this is nice.” 

That was my initial reaction to the FloatZig. The geometry of the shoe provides a nice stable base without feeling too heavy or soft. Each step feels seamless from landing to toe-off, and dare I say bouncy—which is rare for a cushioned shoe. 

I also found the upper hugged my foot perfectly and was super comfortable and breathable. Aside from my ankle woes, I didn’t notice any clunkiness or irritation. This shoe is super responsive and does a great job of just getting out of the way. 

Look great  

I’ve gotten over the need for my running shoes to look cool. For some reason, the running shoes that feel the best on foot always end out being the ugliest. As soon as I unboxed the FloatZig 1 I felt my heart sinking because I just knew a shoe that looked this cool was not going to stand up to the gnarly Hoka’s I have in my closet. Turns out the Zig tech works just as good as it looks. The fact that it’s available in a range of bright colors and bold patterns (and some plain ones, too—don’t worry) is a huge bonus.

Close up of reebok shoes
The “Zig” shape provides a ton of cushion and bounce while remaining light, while that green stripe of rubber on the bottom is good for traction.

Impressive value for the money 

Reebok has always been slightly cheaper than other brands. For instance, the Reebok Floatride Energy (which has less tech than the FloatZig) is $110 compared to most daily trainers which range from $120 to $140. The carbon-plated Energy X is $180 compared to other brands which start around $250. And the FloatZig1 is $130 compared to most other cushioned shoes which average $140 to $160. 

Considering some people will spend $350 just for a carbon-plated speed shoe they can’t use on everyday runs or long trail runs—you can’t go wrong with $130 for a shoe that can decently manage all three.

What’s Not So Good About the Reebok FloatZig 1? 

Not ideal for speed, trail, or stability needs

I thought this shoe was fine for speed work and trail runs (at least the trails by my house). Still, if you have specific needs—like you’re looking to slash milliseconds off your race time, run frequently on rocky, slippery trails, or simply need a stability shoe—the Reebok FloatZig 1 is not your guy. 

The Reebok FloatZig 1 doesn’t have an aggressive rocker or carbon plate like most speed shoes on the market. It’s also a neutral shoe (that’s why Reebok offers a stability option for those who need it). The combo of cushion and support in the midsole and rubber outsole is better for managing tricky terrain than my Mach 5’s (which I use for a similar range of runs). Still, anyone who plans to run trails often would be better served getting a trail shoe, or waiting for the FloatZig Adventures to drop later this year. 

High-cut upper 

The high-cut upper was my singular hold-up with the FloatZig. Because the shoe fits a bit higher around the ankle, I found it to rub uncomfortably on my perpetually swollen right ankle even just walking around the neighborhood. In fact, it probably bothers me most when walking because I really feel it digging in with each step. Whereas, during a run, I don’t feel a thing, but I come home with a small bloody spot under my ankle where the skin has been rubbed raw. 

Close up of reebok shoes
Proof that my ankle woes were way less traumatic than I’m making them sound. Still, it’s always the littlest spots like these that drive you crazy miles into a run.

That said, unless higher fitting shoes have bothered you in the past, or you’re rocking cankles (no judgment, apparently I’m right there with you), you should be fine. Even if you do have these problems, wearing higher-cut socks solved the problem for me. 

The Bottom Line 

The Reebok FloatZig 1 is a solid everyday running shoe for runners with minimal to no stability needs. It stands up to everyday runs, long runs, and even speed work; and, thanks to the durable rubber outsole it should last longer than the other daily trainers in my closet. For $130, you’ll struggle to find an everyday running shoe that stacks up in performance and durability for the price, since most daily trainers compare at $140 to $160.