Reebok and the UFC announced the launch of the UFC Fight Kit at a press event on Tuesday, showcasing the apparel the fighters will wear while in the octagon. There’s no sneaker in the kit, but Reebok said it has combat-training footwear on the way.
“Mixed martial arts is barefoot, they’re grappling, but there’s a big part of functional fitness within combat training. We’re creating product that doesn’t exist in the marketplace,” said Todd Krinsky, VP of Reebok Classic.
The brand’s combat-training footwear will be released in 2016. For now, Krinsky confirmed that UFC fighters will be walking into the octagon wearing the ZPump Fusion.
While UFC fighters don’t have their own shoes with Reebok yet, they have been training in them and offered praise for the ZPump Fusion.
“I’ve had arthritis since I was 19 years old, so the only running I can do is uphill or on an elliptical,” said Ronda Rousey, the women’s bantamweight champion. “I just did some mountain training — ran up a mountain in them, and it was the first time in a long time that my knee didn’t swell up terribly afterward.”
Conor McGregor, who is set to fight featherweight champion Jose Aldo on July 11, said the shoes have been vital to his training.
“I’ve been doing my runs in the Las Vegas heat, and they have been very good, very comfortable,” he said.
Krinsky believes working with the UFC gives the brand legitimacy in the world of combat training.
“UFC athletes are synonymous with training, and that’s what we’re all about,” Krinsky said. “It bolsters our authenticity in combat training, further bolsters our position in fitness and we have a chance to transform one of the biggest leagues in the world.”
The fight kits and fan gear are available now via the Reebok website and will be available at Sports Authority locations starting on July 7 and Reebok FitHubs on July 10.