Skate shoes are often held as the benchmark for comparisons when it comes to styling and comfort for mountain bike shoes, especially models designed for use with platform pedals. When it came to developing a shoe for mountain biking, Zoic avoided reinventing the wheel and teamed up with Osiris, a manufacturer well known in the BMX community. The collaboration resulted in the Prophet flat pedal shoes, with a clean aesthetic and so comfortable they’ve become my default everyday shoe.
The outsole features a rubber compound for optimal pedal contact, while the cupsole construction and EVA midsole add support, durability and impact protection. Toe and heel reinforcements in the synthetic leather upper are designed for durability, comfort and support.
On the trail
Skate shoes are often similar to BMX shoes in terms of the upper, and like skaters, bike riders put a lot of abuse on their shoes. Shoes designed for pedals though need to offer grip and a connection to the pedals.
That said, the Zoic shoes take a bit of break in time before they hit their stride in terms of gripping pedals. I wore them around for a few weeks and eased them into my rotation based on previous experiences with skate/BMX shoes. While riders accustomed to “DH Sticky Rubber” may find the necessary break-in time frustrating, it wasn’t out of line with shoes I’ve owned using similar rubber compounds.
In comparison to the soft sticky rubber popularized by down hill shoe manufacturers the Zoic shoes provide grip, but not to the level of other models, making them ideal for skills based riding on less technical terrain.
With their subdued aesthetic and comfort, I found myself slipping into them and wearing them daily. They’ve become my go-to shoes for any urban, pump track or bike park riding. Combined with the right pedals they’d also perform well for riding feature-packed flow trails.
Once the Prophets were broken in, they became an instant favorite for the bike park. (in addition to everywhere else) Being able to easily reposition my feet on the pedals makes maneuvers like manuals and dirt jumping easier. I’ve also been wearing them for digging at the local pump track, so they get dirty a lot, but the synthetic leather cleans up well with just water and a brush.
For big mountain riding where slipping a pedal could prove disastrous, I’d still defer to my sticky rubber shoes… but at the end of the day, I’d want to slip back into these babies.
Size wise, they fit great. I’m generally a size 42.5-43 depending on the manufacturer, ended up in a Zoic 9.5 and the fit is spot on. The only downside to wearing them all the time is accelerated wear and tear. The upper has wear marks where they contact my cranks; the tread is holding up extremely well though, especially considering I have over 6 month of regular use in to date.
At $85.00, they’re priced reasonably and well worth checking out. Check them out at Zoic.com