Do Reebok make the best CrossFit shoe?

I’m late to the party, but keen to see if Reebok’s latest ‘CrossFit’ shoe is up to the mark against strong competition from the inov-8 F-LITE and the Nike Metcon 2.

This is my first pair of Nanos since August 2015. The Reebok Nano 4.0’s were my first pair of fitness shoes and I loved them. They were so comfortable. However, when it came to running they seemed a little bit flat and didn’t provide much support to my feet. The Reebok Nano 5.0 and the Nike Metcon’s came out around the same time, so I bought both pairs to see which ones I liked. Although the Nike Metcon 2’s are also a little flat when running and less cushioned than the Nano 5.0, these fitted my wider feet a lot better. The Nike Metcon’s also look the part, I think everyone will agree with that. I have had Nike Metcon 1’s and 2’s until recently before trying inov-8 F-LITE 250s (see my review). 

Reebok have suggested that the Nano 6.0 ‘looks like the Nano 2.0, fits like the Nano 4.0 and performs like the Nano 5.0’. Let’s see if this is true.

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Putting the Nano 6.0’s through their paces

Looks

The addition of the delta pattern on the side of the shoe is the first thing I noticed. It makes the shoe look slicker. The ‘05’writing and CrossFit branding on the Nano 5.0 made it look cheap and tacky and everyone knew you did CrossFit. The delta logo is more subtle.

Reebok has introduced Kevlar on the inner shoe to protect the shoe from abrasion after coming into contact with climbing ropes. The Kevlar is in delta patterns on the side of the shoe and also appear on the inside of the shoe to give more of a cushioned feel.

As previously mentioned I didn’t like the way the Nano 5.0’s looked and so currently wear Nike and inov-8s. The performance of the Nano 5.0 for me was more consistent, which is also the case with the Nano 6.0. You can do anything in them, whereas running in the flatter Metcon 2s can be painful.

This Nano 6.0 fits the foot much better as they’ve taken measures to make it more ‘anatomical and natural’. This translates even more so than the Nano 5.0 into running and feels very comfortable. Much better than the Metcon 2.

I like this shoe more than my previous Nano’s and I prefer them in some workouts longer workouts to my inov-8’s and Nike Metcon’s. In my opinion, Nike will always produce a better-looking shoe than Reebok. For me, Reebok never help themselves by plastering CrossFit everywhere on their shoes and clothing. I don’t want to be a walking billboard for a sport. However, as we all know looks mean nothing to a loaded barbell.

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Performance

I put the reebok Nano 6.0’s through a week of my programming to see how they coped. My training programme included your typical weightlifting movements, rope climbs, handstand push-ups, running, rowing and burpees to name a few testing movements.

The first thing which became apparent was the 4mm heel to toe drop. This doesn’t sound like much, but I feel definitely makes a difference when lifting. Maybe it’s psychological or maybe it gives a fraction more depth? Weightlifting with the 4mm heel rise feels definitely better than previous Nano editions. It feels as though the heels have been padded out to add stability to keep your heel position in a safe and neutral position to ensure good lifts.

The Nano 6.0’s are a lot snugger around the foot than previous editions but wide enough for my feet. The new Kevlar and toe protection almost make you feel indestructible and give me more confidence going into rope climbs. Although the rope climb traction is shaped differently, rope friction was no problem after a few attempts to get used to the shoe’s grip. Keeping on the subject of gymnastics, the handstand press ups were a little sticky. I found my feet not gliding up the wall like in the Nike Metcon 2’s.

Moving in the shoe was a different story. Running in comparison to Metcon’s was a breeze. I felt comfort and the shoes neutral and secure fit ensured that my running stayed efficient and comfortable on my feet. This also translated through into rowing and other fitness movements like burpees. The shoes snug fit and flexibility to move with your foot allows you to move that little bit better than the Metcon 2’s.

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Are Reebok nano 6.0’s the best CrossFit shoe?

I would say that there’s not much difference in shoes of this modern era. Luckily for us consumers, there is more than just one ‘CrossFit’ fitness shoe available to us to choose from (unlike a few years ago). If you’re in the market for a new shoe for CrossFit-style training, I would definitely recommend giving the new Nano 6.0’s a shot if you like the way they look. At this present moment, I like the way the Nike Metcon 2’s look and so would go with them based on that factor alone. However, if you do more endurance type metabolic conditioning sessions, then I would choose an inov-8 or the Reebok Nano 6.0 shoes.

 

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