Zoot minimalist running shoes (March 2017)



From the very start, Zoot has somehow managed to produce shoes that are not only great in performance and quality but are also fantastically designed. Aesthetic appeal and function are obviously major goals of Zoot that they have unfailingly kept through the years. If there is one aspect aside from the performance that is common in the more than 100,000 reviews is the undeniable stylistic appeal that every pair of Zoot shoes brings to the table.

What does Zoot offer in their best minimalist shoes?

  • The main objective of minimalist running is to allow the foot its natural range of movements to replicate the feel of true barefoot running. Zoot has produced shoes that have stayed true to the ideals of this type of running. The best Zoot minimalist shoes allow the runner to develop his tendons, metatarsals, ligaments due to a more natural articulation.
  • The foot’s natural cushioning and protection methods are also emphasized with the best Zoot minimalist shoes. Since there is less interference between the foot and the ground, the runner would have to analyze data and allow himself to adapt to his running environment and conditions. Again, these minimalist shoes would allow the foot to develop strength and adapt his technique to various situations.
  • Data analysis will only succeed if there is data to be analyzed. Collection of data is made possible by the low heel to toe differential. When the foot sits closer to the ground, the more data it gathers and the quicker the data is analyzed by the runner. It creates for a more confident and faster run.
  • Short but efficient strides are other goals of minimalist running. Minimal cushioning found in these minimalist shoes would force the runner for shorter strides. Core and leg strength is developed with a shorter stride.
  • Zoot also offers minimalist shoes that are built for the trail. These trail shoes are a bit heavier due to some stability features though. A more muscled midsole is a requisite for trail shoes as this is badly needed for protection underfoot from trail elements. A relatively thick shank is also utilized by Zoot to allow some stability in the run. A structured heel and toe guard completes the stability feature package for these trail shoes.
  • Despite these protection features, they are ultra light and would be perfect for trail racing.

 What are the deciding features of the best Zoot minimalist shoes?

  • Structure. Unless it is a minimalist shoe that is built for the trail, Zoot minimalist shoes offer bare as bone structure. Basically the only meat found in the best Zoot minimalist shoes would be the ultra responsive midsole foam. The skeletal structure of these minimalist shoes makes them incredibly light and flexible.
  • Weight. The best Zoot minimalist shoes weigh no more than 6oz. The fewer features the shoe carries the less weight it entails. Stability and support features are down to a minimum and consequently brings down weight to a minimum.
  • Heel-to-toe drop. Like most shoe brands, Zoot has varied the heel to toe differential. The reason behind the variation is to give some leeway for runners who are beginners of the minimalist type of running.