Traction – One of the best traction surfaces this year… one of the best I’ve ever used of all time.
The forefoot is the highlight of the shoe where traction is concerned so if you are in need of ultimate forefoot traction then the latest Zoom Soldier has you covered. Watch out for dusty floors as you will need to maintain consistent wiping at the heel… Dusty floors have almost no effect on the forefoot so that area will always keep you grounded.
Cushion – Some may have been disappointed with this years Hyperdunk since it featured Lunarlon. If thats true for you then the Zoom Soldier VI will make you forget all about the Hyperdunk altogether.
Forefoot Zoom Air is featured, Providing you with low profile responsiveness. The heel is said to have bottom loaded Zoom but upon inspection I found that they have a top loaded Zoom unit in place directly under foot… Unless i cut them apart I wont be able to confirm if the bottom loaded unit is there so i will assume it was mistake in their description.
Bottom line, everything you wished the Hyperdunk 2012 had wound up in the Zoom Soldier VI.
Material – Fuse is used throughout making the overall construction very similar to the LeBron 9 Elite… Minus the Carbon Fiber & Flywire. Durability & strength are present as they typically are in Fuse based models but they also offer plenty of flex where you’d need it so break-in time is minimal.
Fit – These fit true to size. They can also accommodate a variety of foot shapes so they’ll be a good option for almost anyone.
I mentioned this in a previous Performance Teaser but the tongues construction was an issue. The stitch work is sloppy and exposed… Knotted at each end which ends up pressing against your skin when fully laced, eventually leading to uncomfortable chaffing. Tape, doubling up on socks or wearing a level 1 ankle brace made of neoprene would be recommended to avoid the issue.
The lockdown is great from heel to toe… Heel especially. This strap locks the foot and heel in place the way a strap should.
Ventilation – These were pretty much on point with the LeBron 9 Elite as far as ventilation is concerned. Unrestricted ventilation holes are place along the medial and lateral side which work well with the open mesh. I was able to feel the air flow which is something I’ve only experienced one other time and that was with the adidas adiZero Crazy Light.
Support – Even though there isn’t a support plate in place, I personally didn’t notice its absence, they remained fairly supportive everywhere else. The overall fit is where most of your support comes from – that heel strap does a great job – along with the outrigger. If you are a player who needs a shank plate in place then this may not be the shoe for you.
Overall – This years Soldier is one of the best… Maybe even the best Soldier model ever. I’ll always hold the Soldier III in high regards but when directly comparing (non biased) the Soldier VI beats them out by a long shot.
These can easily suit most positions, from 1-4, depending on your needs or personal preferences. At $120, this is a great buy and my personal favorite this year – at least for the time being.