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Speedo Zanpa AM review: a warm and affordable water shoe

In there, swim wear – these Speedo Zanpa AM aquatic shoes will protect your feet on wild swimming escapades

Speedo Zanpa AM water shoe
(Image: © Speedo)

Our Verdict

If you are a keen swimmer in all seasons and conditions, Speedo’s Zanpa AM is a great water-only shoe that offers warmth as well as extra protection from the elements, and it is available for a bargain price.

For

  • Trap heat
  • Cheap

Against

  • Only offer light grip
  • Can be a pain to pull on and off

Speedo Zanpa AM: First impressions

If you’re a dedicated swimmer on a budget, the Speedo Zanpa AM is one of our best water shoes choices if you need a water-only shoe to wear for training sessions rather than a hybrid sandal for general use (see what are water shoes? for more about the advantages these specialist shoes offer).

These close-fitting rubber booties are specifically designed to protect feet once you are in the water, with a thick rubber outer material and light soles that are springy, but still tough enough to stop you feeling any sharp protrusions on the ground beneath your feet.

Specifications

RRP: $29 (US) / £21 (UK)
Weight: 300g  / 10.5oz
Sizes: Women’s 3–8 Men’s 6–12
Colors: Black
Compatibility: Great for year-round wild swimming

Speedo Zanpa AM: in action in and around the water

While they are excellent in the water, we didn’t find that the Zanpas gripped the ground well enough to work very well for activities such as coasteering, where you’re clambering over rocks and need sticky grip.

They are much better suited for swimming in lakes and rivers where you aren’t sure what’s underfoot, when you want added protection for getting in and out of the water on a beach or lake shore, or just for tackling slippery poolside tiles at your local lido.

The Zanpas also trap in heat nicely, rather like wetsuit boots, adding a bit of warmth and comfort in cold water year-round. While there are tabs on the heels to help pull the snug Zanpas on and off, they can take a minute or two to get on properly (and getting them off again can also be a bit of a saga). These water shoes are very good value for money, too.