How to build an award-winning shoe

Most runners have to make compromises when it comes to choosing a running shoe; light and responsive for PB-seeking race days or cushioned and heavier for longer runs. Reebok wanted to change that. With the brand-new Floatride Run, winner of the 2017 Best Debut Award in the RW US shoe guide, Reebok has eliminated compromises in your runs thanks to the development of Floatride Foam. 

When NASA requested an extremely lightweight space boot for use in the CTS-100 starliner space capsule, Reebok created Floatride Foam – and quickly realised that they were on to something special. Coming back down to Earth, Reebok applied the space-ready Floatride Foam technology, which is 50% lighter than EVA materials used in most shoes, to running footwear. 

In the lab when tested against standard EVA found in most running shoes, the Floatride Run delivered incredible energy return scores, on a par with some of the most cushioned shoes we’ve measured at RW. On the road, that translates into a well-cushioned, responsive ride that makes you want to run fast – a feeling backed by more than 300 runners who clocked more than 15,000 miles (24,000km) of rigorous road testing. 

Of course, it takes more than some extra-smart foam to make an award winner, and the Floatride Run has maximised its potential with the latest seamless knit technology to bring a high-performing upper that hugs the foot whilst providing a sock-like feel. Around the back of the foot, a 3D moulded heel cup provides stability. Midfoot, a compression-molded EVA support rim keeps the foot centred over the Floatride Foam throughout the gait cycle.

Reebok have also used a cushioned lace to relieve pressure on top of the foot, while lacing eyelets feature multiple criss-cross points that allow for more secure, in-and-out lacing so you don’t have to worry about laces coming loose or untied.

Dan Hobson, Reebok’s Vice President of Innovation, sums up the mission to make this shoe. “On the best days, running feels like floating. We wanted to create a highly-responsive shoe that provides a smooth, float-like ride. We wanted runners to feel like they are mentally floating too, and free them to focus or unplug. So we eliminated seams and other features that can create irritating distractions. The Floatride Run is designed so that once runners are on the road, they can forget about their shoes, and just enjoy their time on the road.”

After testing the shoe extensively – and garlanding it with the Best Debut award in the Runner's World US Shoe Guide – we're sold. Lace up, and you will be, too.

Get your pair here.