The Reebok Nano 2 isn’t your run of the mill athletic shoe. It’s equal parts…
- Barefoot/Minimalist shoe
- Running shoe
- Gym workout shoe
And unlike most of the hybrid shoes I have beta-tested in the past few years, it does a great job at blending the best parts of these three very different styles of athletic shoe.
- It provides better stability than a pure barefoot shoe. This is important if you’re participating in activities that require rapid changes of direction – soccer, tennis, sprinting, fitness classes, football, Zumba dance fitness, ultimate frisbee, interval training workouts, etc.
Your foot stays in place when you’re moving from side to side or exploding from a dead-start into a full-out sprint.
- Unlike most running shoes that have a built-up heel and force you into an unhealthy heel-toe running form, the almost completely flat profile of the Nano 2.0 allows you to adopt a natural “barefoot” running style.
- But before you go thinking that the Nano is a true minimalist/barefoot shoe, we need to look at the sole of the shoe. Because, unlike most barefoot shoes, the Nano has a thicker sole & midsole designed to…
- Provide more cushioning for runners, and
- Provide a flat, stable base for weightlifting
As this shoe was designer for Crossfitters who do all manner of exercise, this was the most necessary design feature of the shoe. And in my humble opinion, Reebok has done a fine job of engineering.
I have been running in barefoot/minimalist shoes for years, and while I did notice the loss of “ground-feel” caused by the thickness of the sole/midsole, I had no problems going for a 30 minute jog prior to hitting the gym for a resistance training workout.
[box type=”note”]This rigid sole would be a drawback for trail runners who want to “feel” the ground conditions and run “naturally”. Due to this, I wouldn’t recommend the Nano 2.0 for trail running or for runners who require high levels of proprioception.[/box]
- While the Nano doesn’t provide optimal proprioceptive feedback, it does provide one of the most important features of a barefoot shoe – natural foot movement
The wide toe box and “natural” foot shape allows your foot to move as it was designed to move. Unlike most fitness shoes with a narrow toe box and all manner of corrective technology, the Nano 2.0 doesn’t force your foot into any un-natural positions. And this is a very very good thing.
All in all, I am a big fan of this shoe. I have used them over the past month for a wide variety of workouts and I wasn’t disappointed by them once.
And I don’t think you will be either.