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Reebok Floatride Energy 5 Adventure Review: Adventure Time
By Matthew Klein & David Salas

The category of all-terrain shoes has been growing over the last few years. The Floatride Energy Adventure series essentially covers this category for those who love the road running version but want some more versatility with footing. This neutral riding shoe has added a few trail specific components to give you confidence running on a little bit of everything from road-to-trail.

Reebok Floatride Energy 5 Adventure
Price: $120 at Reebok
Weight: 10.4 oz, 294 g (men's size 9), (Women's Weight Not Provided)
Stack Height: 27 mm / 19 mm
Drop: 8 mm drop
Classification: Trail Running / Multi-Terrain Shoe


Matt: The Reebok Floatride Energy 5 Adventure is a hybrid road/trail, all-terrain shoe that adds cushioning, traction and some weight from the prior version. A tough CORDURA upper adds a snug fit in the forefoot and midfoot while a slightly loose heel has to be locked down. The sole increases in stack height while maintaining a midfoot X-plate for protection. New mild sidewalls provide better midfoot guidance while deeper lugs grip the trails far better. While this is an all-terrain shoe and can certainly handle some road, the Energy 5 Adventure improves its versatility most significantly on trails 

David: The Reebok Floatride Energy 5 Adventure is an all-terrain training shoe that can tackle a little bit of everything from a footing standpoint. The shoe uses a similar platform as the popular Floatride Energy, though includes a plate in the midfoot, a multi-direction lug pattern outsole, and a CORDURA upper for security and environment protection. This is the definition of an all-terrain shoe. 

: Nike Pegasus Trail 4, Saucony Ride TR
PAST SHOE: Reebok Floatride Energy 4 Adventure


Matt: The Reebok Floatride Energy 5 Adventure fits me mostly true to size in my normal Men's US size 10. The fit overall is slightly long and narrow everywhere except the heel. The upper material is thinner up front with significant reinforcement. The forefoot is quite tapered, narrow, and fits just a little long. This ended up providing security up front and fortunately, I did not have any abnormal chaffing. The midfoot also fits snug and I did not have to tie the laces that tight. The tongue is well-gusseted and moderately thick with greater thickness on the top of the foot than the sides. The heel fits normally width wise with a flexible heel counter and a somewhat thin heel collar. Despite the great security at the front, the rearfoot security was not great and I experienced a large amount of heel slippage. Lace locking only helped slightly and I had to mostly deal with it and tighten down the midfoot a little more. After a few miles I stopped noticing this but it was a consistent feeling at the beginning of each run. This is definitely a shoe I would NOT try sockless as the internal mesh is quite scratchy. Overall, the upper will work best for those with narrow feet and wider heels.

David: The Reebok Floatride Energy Adventure 5 fits true to size in my Men's 9.5. The fit throughout is on the snug and slightly narrow side. The upper material is decently comfortable and certainly protective from any abrasion. There is little stretch it and the security when running in trails is pretty good. The tongue is light to moderately padded but has enough padding for decently tight lacing. The tongue is gusseted and keeps the tongue from sliding. The length of the shoe was a little long for me, though still worked. I did have to use the final eyelet to help with additional heel security to prevent heel slippage. The trail specific effort did feel like it held my foot pretty well when running in softer trails like bridle material. The upper does its job pretty well, though the slightly narrow fit may make some look for other shoes. If you don't mind a slightly narrow fit this could work pretty well.


Matt: The Reebok Floatride Energy 5 Adventure is now far more a trail than a road shoe (despite still technically being a hybrid). The lugs on the outsole are decently large, but are angled in a way that does not get in the way on the road. The outsole is also quite durable and has handle road/trail transitions without an issues over my 30 miles of use. However, the lugs and midsole feel best on trail. Unlike the softer Energy midsole from the prior model, this version runs cushioned but a tiny bit firm. There is actually more foam underfoot (28 mm compared to 26.5mm) however it feels more resilient than compliant. This is more noticeable on road but well-cushioned on trail, whereas version 4 was softer on all-terrain. The outsole also grips well on soft dirt, mild mud and steeper climbs. This is likely due to what looks and feels like deeper lugs, which makes me further feel this series has moved more onto the trial than the road.

The heel transition is fairly smooth thanks to the presence of a large, albeit centered heel bevel. This transitions quickly through the midfoot into a moderately flexible forefoot (a rarity now with the number of plated shoes). Despite the large bevel, the 8mm drop feels substantial, perhaps even slightly higher. This is not a bad thing for those wanting a little higher heel given how low most trail shoes are and I found the drop and rockered heel a decent way to offload my Achilles. Purpose-wise, this shoe works best for easy and moderate distance runs. It does a great job getting through daily miles. However, it does run lighter than its listed weight. On flat and uphill it is able to keep a good consistent pace. On downhills I have had a hard time not picking up the pace, likely due to the bevel and slightly resilient midsole. The midsole is not anything majorly special and is certainly not a super foam. However, it provides the right amount of firmness provided with rearfoot geometry that makes it fun to bomb down hills. Outside of that, this is a fairly standard all-terrain shoe that reminded me quite a bit of shoes like the Nike Pegasus Trail 4 and Saucony Ride TR.

David: The Reebok Floatride Energy 5 performed pretty well for me. It certainly runs neutral and doesn't come off as all that stable, but does well across all terrains. The shoe does a few things for me that make it work. The plate in the midfoot does seem to help with giving some slight guidance, but also seems to help with torsional rigidity of the shoe. The outsole is also decently grippy and I had no issues with runnable trails finding traction. The upper security is pretty good and did help my experience on runs when I was in trail specific situations. Does this shoe outright outperform trail specific shoes? Not really... but as a road-to-trail shoe I do have confidence in my ability to cover multiple footings without issue. The shoe feels pretty normal from a transitions point. There is a slight rounding to the heel and forefoot without an overly aggressive rocker. The transitions feel decently natural. This feels consistent with a shoes like the Forever Floatride Energy, Nike Pegasus, Saucony Ride. There is nothing overly special from the ride standpoint, but for $120 this is a decent offering if you know you are going to find yourself in a lot of road/trail hybrid runs. 


Matt: The Reebok Floatride Energy 5 Adventure is a neutral shoe. However, there are a few methods that add a touch of guidance in this version over the prior one. The X-plate does seem to add some rigidity to the midfoot that I did not feel previously. There are also larger sidewalls in the heel and midfoot that I noticed immediately. I was initially worried about blisters, but had no trouble and found this to improve my tolerance to these over longer distances. The sole is on the narrow side for a trail shoe and the midfoot does narrow. The heel features sole flare in the rearfoot, which combined with the large centered bevel and sidewalls does keep the ride centered in the rearfoot. Overall this is a neutral shoe that does have some guidance in the rearfoot and a balanced ride in the midfoot, but those needing more stability will find this to still be a neutral shoe. 

David:  Despite the trail specific measures, the Floatride Energy 5 Adventure is very much a neutral shoe. The platform is normal width to slightly narrow. The Floatride Energy midsole does have some give to it. The upper security, midfoot plate, and the grippy outsole do help with stabilizing the platform. The shoe works for its intended purpose, though stability would not be what I would write home about for this model. 

Thoughts as a DPT: Optimizing Fit in Trail Shoes
By Matthew Klein

While the Energy 5 Adventure may be a hybrid shoe, it leans far more toward the trail running side of things. Inevitably with trail running comes longer time on feet, greater variety of terrain and footing and greater elevation loss and gain. This requires a unique combination of features in the upper of trail shoes that can sometimes conflict. Given the variation in foot and terrain, upper security is key. You will land in a variety of mid to end range foot positions and may deal with sliding on unstable terrain (rocks, gravel, mud, etc). This requires an upper that not only locks the foot down but also keeps it on the platform. An upper that allows excessive translation not only risks blisters but also rolled ankles if things translate far enough. Therefore, upper security throughout the length of the shoe is extremely important.

On the other end, having enough room to allow for mild foot swelling and relative anatomic position is also important. Despite being on a softer surface, trail runners often spend more time on the trails due to slower speeds relative to the difficult terrain. Add to the additional pounding that comes from much greater elevation gain and loss and you have an increase in foot swelling. Blood will naturally pool slightly in the extremities for a variety of factors during longer efforts. Mild muscle damage, gravity, continued high blood flow and other factors can lead to this extremely normal occurrence. If there is not enough room in a trail shoe to accommodate this, discomfort, pressure sores and other irritations are quite common. Additional, with the variations in shock absorption and foot adaptability needed with the varying terrain, it is important that a trail shoe allow for for natural foot motion to occur within the shoe. Some of the more important shock absorption methods include mild midfoot movement and especially the ability to move and spread the toes to allow adequate force dispersion at the forefoot. If these are prevented, there may be a risk for irritation or even bone stress irritations (extreme).

For the above reasons, I cannot emphasize enough that most trail shoes should have a somewhat snug/secure heel, a secure, locked-in midfoot and a secure but slightly more anatomic forefoot. It may be helpful to have a little more volume to accommodate swelling with an adjustable midfoot that easily be tailored to the unique foot of the individual. People's feet are extremely different in shape and size. However, most people will have a wider forefoot than their heel. It would help to have shoes designed in a similar manner. 


Matt: The Reebok Floatride Energy 5 Adventure nails the sole for me but misses on the upper. I found the sidewalls to improve the stability and the slightly firmer midsole worked extremely well with my mechanics. The upper was the exact opposite of what I wanted, particularly over long distances. I would encourage Reebok to consider improving the volume of the upper, particularly at the forefoot where a significant amount of swelling can occur over longer distances. I would also suggest some external reinforcement to better lockdown the heel, The sole to me has improved, but if this shoe is to lean more toward the trail, I would like to see the midfoot widened just for a little more guidance. 

David: The Floatride Energy 5 Adventure was a pleasant surprise. I do think the upper security and integration was pretty good, but I would like to see a tad more volume and a less narrow delivery. I would also like to see better heel lockdown, as I did have to use the final eyelet to avoid heel slippage in the heel region.


Matt: The Reebok Floatride Energy 5 Adventure is for someone wanting an all-terrain shoe with a great trail edge to it with a narrow forefoot and a well-rockered heel. The shoe can handle roads but the lugs do extremely well on a variety of trail surfaces. The slightly firmer Energy foam will get you through the road but feels better on trails. The fit is best for those with narrow feet and wider heels, an odd combination that may fit a unique population or those who want less restriction in the heel and good forefoot security. While it improves its guidance with more noticeable sidewalls, it remains a neutral shoe that runs in a similar vein to the Saucony Ride TR and the Nike Pegasus Trail. This trio of road-turned-trail shoes continues to have an important place for the majority of us who traverse the pavement to get to soft surfaces, although they all consistently need more forefoot room for some reason.

David: The Reebok Floatride Energy 5 is a training shoe for someone that wants a neutral ride that can do a little bit of everything from a footing standpoint. The shoe is an all-terrain shoe that feels decent on both road and trail. The fit throughout is a little on the narrow side. For those that have feet that respond well to narrow fits like that may like this shoe. Its a neutral daily trainer for those that find themselves frequently in road/trail hybrid runs.


Fit: B- (Narrow forefoot/midfoot with slightly loose heel with slippage)
B+ (Well-rockered heel with moderately flexible forefoot. Consistent ride for daily miles on a variety of terrain)
Stability: B+ [Neutral] (Neutral ride with heel/midfoot sidewalls slightly offset by narrowed midfoot)
DPT/Footwear Science: B (Integration of sidewalls makes for better guided ride. Odd fit with heel slippage not optimal for trail running)
Personal: B (Average shoe that would be better for me with improved heel security. Oddly I keep reaching for this shoe for the consistent ride)

Fit: B (Good security from a material and torsional standpoint, a little long, heel slippage, narrow fit throughout)
B+/A- (Neutral training shoe that does its job pretty well. Not overly amazing in any specific footing category, but can do a little bit of everything. Best at daily paces.)
Stability: B (Very neutral throughout, normal to slightly narrow last, upper, midfoot plate, and outsole do help)
DPT/Footwear Science: B (Decent integration of trail components for a really neutral offering)
Personal: B (Good not great, but if I only had this shoe for training I wouldn't complain. It does its all terrain job pretty well.)
Overall: B 


Reebok Floatride Energy 5 Adventure
Price: $120 at Reebok

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Editor's Note: As always, the views presented on this website belong to myself or the selected few who contribute to these posts. This website should not and does not serve as a replacement for seeking medical care. If you are currently injured or concerned about an injury, please see your local running physical therapist. If you are in the Los Angeles area, I am currently taking clients for running evaluations.

***Disclaimer: These shoes were provided free of charge in exchange for a review.  We thank the people at Reebok for sending us pairs.  This in no way affected the honesty of this review. We systematically put each type of shoe through certain runs prior to review. For trainers and performance trainers, we take them on daily runs, workouts, recovery runs and a long run prior to review (often accumulating anywhere from 20-50 miles in the process). For racing flats we ensure that we have completed intervals, a tempo or steady state run as well as a warm-up and cool down in each pair prior to review. This systematic process is to ensure that we have experience with each shoe in a large variety of conditions to provide expansive and thorough reviews for the public and for companies. Our views are based on our extensive history in the footwear industry and years testing and developing footwear. If you are a footwear rep looking for footwear reviews or consultations on development, we are currently looking to partner with companies to assist, discuss and promote footwear models. Partnership will not affect the honesty of our reviews.

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