Professional weightlifters and workout enthusiasts alike have long said that having a good pair of shoes is one of the most important pieces of any exercise regime. In fact, weightlifting shoes feature such a unique design that lifting without a pair is significantly less effective.
That being said, what makes for a good pair of lifting shoes? While the answer to that question is hotly debated, certain lifting shoes have an awesome reputation in the athletic community.
This article will cover the best weightlifting shoes available on the market, including the pros and cons of each, as well as answer some FAQs about lifting shoes!
Using this guide, you should be able to find a pair of lifting shoes that look great and keep you and your body healthy and safe!
1. Reebok Legacy Lifter Sneaker
- Fantastic Exoframe heel technology
- Flexcage technology provides excellent support
- Breathable fabric lining
- Great color options
- High price point
- The high heel might take some getting used to.
Reebok's lifting shoe is a great sneaker that features a synthetic sole, an anatomical shape that provides a fantastic fit, and Flexcage technology that provides lightweight, structural support.
This shoe comes in eight different color variations, giving consumers a wide variety of style options. And, made with supportive and durable materials, you'll never have to worry about this pair of shoes falling apart.
More specifically, this Reebok sneaker features two adjustable hook-and-loop straps, which will help lock your foot into place while lifting. Plus, this shoe also boasts Exoframe heel technology to add additional support, ensuring the ankles' safety and supporting muscles.
For anyone who worries about their feet slipping around in their shoes due to sweat, this Reebok lifting shoe comes standard with a breathable fabric lining that helps dry feet and feels comfortable.
With a TPU heelpiece, a molded foam insole, and a grippy rubber outsole, this shoe is a high-quality production, but the price is a bit on the expensive side. That being said, the health and performance benefits more than make up for it. Buy it here
2. Inov-8 Men's Fastlift 335 Weightlifting Shoe
- Meta-Flex system & Power-Truss heel
- Nylon ripstop and lace-up closure
- Removable molded footbed
- Only one color option
- Out of stock, with no idea of when they'll be back
This lifting shoe is a great option with a wide variety of distinguished specifications, including a Power-Truss heel and a Meta-Flex system that add both support and flexibility to any workout.
The INOV-8 FastLift shoe is 100% synthetic and even features a rubber sole that adds additional support.
Fit is an important part of any lifting shoe. This particular shoe has lace-up closure with an adjustable hook-and-loop instep strap, giving the consumer the ability to make sure that the shoe fits perfectly. And, with a padded tongue and collar, rest assured that this shoe takes ankle safety seriously!
Unfortunately, unlike some of the other shoes on this list, there is only one color option for the INOV-8 weightlifting shoe. Therefore, if you're a weightlifter who likes to customize their shoe color, you might need to look for another option.
If you have medical insoles, this shoe's molded footbed is removable, making room for any insoles that might need to be added. And, according to some reviews, this shoe's sizing is a bit off and runs small. Therefore, you might need to purchase a slightly larger size than normal. Buy it here
3. Nike Men's Metcon 5
- Very durable
- Many color options
- Stable where you need it
- Great for other activities too
- Too expensive if you are on a budget
If you're in or around the lifting community, there's a good chance you've heard of this shoe. The Metcon 5 is a great lifting shoe by Nike that comes in 15 different color options!
Individuals looking for a quality shoe that is also stylish; this might be the perfect option for you. And, with 4.6/5 stars on Amazon, many other consumers agree that this shoe rocks.
This shoe features a low, flat, and wide heel that assures strategic stability while lifting. And, with a removable Hyperlift insert to improve stability while performing lifts like squats, wall balls, or thrusts, this shoe is an excellent option for any athletes.
Although this Nike product runs consumers a pretty penny, it's an incredibly durable shoe. It boasts a textured print on top of the shoe that adds durability without sacrificing the shoe's lightweight feel.
Finally, this shoe also features directional traction on the outsoles that helps when climbing or sliding down ropes. Clearly, this shoe is a great allrounder. Buy it here
4. NOBULL Men's Training Shoes
- One-piece SuperFabric construction
- Abrasion shielding
- Great design with a multitude of colors
- Flexible and breathable
- Very reasonably priced
- Doesn't fit wide feet that well
NOBULL is another reputable brand around the athletic community, and this shoe is one of their best products. According to the product description, you can run, climb, grind, or lift in these sneakers without issue.
This shoe is lightweight and breathable and provides the flexibility necessary to perform all sorts of athletic feats. As a relatively reasonable price, this shoe could be a great option for many different weightlifters.
Luckily, this shoe comes in 11 different great colors and can double as a fashion accessory, as well as it can a workout aide. Plus, with SuperFabric guard plates applied on the mesh base layer, you never have to shy away from rope climbs or other rough activities.
The upper of this shoe also boasts one-piece construction of the highly durable SuperFabric, which is not only great for keeping your shoes safe from wear-and-tear but also super breathable!
Just to note, this shoe runs very true to size. That being said, if you're between two sizes, it's recommended that you order up half a size. Buy it here
5. Inov-8 Women's Fastlift 335 Training Shoes
- Great floor grip
- Flexible and comfortable
- A wide toe box that allows for natural toe playing during lifts
- Only three color options
- The tongue is not as durable as the rest of the shoe
The second Inov-8 shoe on our list, this particular lifting shoe is recommended for women. Although, with only three color options, it might not have enough options for any workout enthusiast.
Much like the Inov-8 men's lifting shoe, this product features an outstanding grip, enhanced stability, a mid-foot hold, great flexibility, and a wide toe box.
More specifically, this shoe's outsole rubber holds to my flooring securely, especially during heavy lifting sessions. And, utilizing POWER-TRUSS technology and an external heel cage, this shoe provides an incredibly stable base for lifting.
A velcro strap over the top of the middle of the shoe adds extra security for your shoe, foot, and ankle.
Featuring a wide toe box allows for wiggle room to spread out your toes while lifting heavy. In fact, your toes will naturally splay out while lifting, and the extra-wide toe box promotes this behavior.
And, of course, flexibility is an essential aspect of a lifting shoe, and this shoe utilizes META-FLEX technology, providing not only flexibility but comfort as well. Buy it here
6. Adidas Men's Powerlift 3.1 Cross Trainer
- Great color options
- Reasonable price point
- Adiwear outsole to price extra durability
- Lightweight and breathable
- Some of the colors look different in real life than the images online
- Doesn't always fit true to size. Try them before you buy.
This Adidas shoe is a great option for a weightlifting shoe and is priced very reasonably for such a large brand. With ten color choices, rest assured that you will find one that you like, and that works well with the rest of your workout gear.
As far as fit is concerned, this shoe reportedly fits "true to size", so you should order your usual size. That being said, Adidas offers free returns on the same sizes and colors.
This shoe features a lightweight, synthetic leather upper that provides great ankle support for lifting and fantastic durability.
Speaking of durability, this sneaker also boasts Aidwear outsoles that provide the highest level of wear-and-tear resistance. With an air mesh color, tongue, and lining, the durability does not sacrifice any level of breathability.
This shoe's wedge is engineered specifically for weight lifting, providing lightweight stability with a high-density, die-cut midsole wedge. With a wide strap and lace closure, this shoe wraps snugly around the wearer's foot for a tight fit. Buy it here
7. Nordic Lifting Megin Powerlifting Shoes
- Great stability
- Low price
- Heel shape improves lifting posture
- Limited color selection
- Great for lifting, not for walking around
This shoe is another really good option for weightlifters of any ability or age. Unfortunately, this shoe only comes in two colors, meaning it won't be the right product for the fashion-savvy weightlifter.
That being said, this is the most price-friendly option on this list and is a great purchase nonetheless.
This weightlifting shoe is built to last, even under intense wear-and-tear, and the warranty will back that up. Plus, by design, this product provides "Olympic stability" and great support that will ensure powerful and dynamic workouts.
If you're an athlete looking to improve their posture, this shoe could also be a great option for you, as the design improves lifting posture and helps you lift more!
From the sturdy velcro strap to raised heel, this shoe can seriously improve lifting performance. Buy it here
Frequently Asked Questions:
Why Do Weightlifting Shoes Have A Heel?
A heel helps place the ankle on an elevated surface, which increases the range of motion in the joint. Therefore, you can achieve greater depth in your squat when your shoe has a heel and maintain an upright torso. In general, the heel allows the user to lift more weight more efficiently.
Are Weightlifting Shoes Worth It?
The answer to this question depends on how serious you are about lifting. Wearing a pair of sneakers or running shoes is fine for lighter lifting, but once you get into heavy deadlifting, heavy squatting, or heavy pressing, you'll need more stability than those shoes can provide. If you're lifting weights regularly, then a pair of running shoes is probably an investment you're going to want to make.
Are CrossFit Shoes Good For Lifting?
CrossFit shoes are different from traditional weightlifting shoes in that they are more flexible and comfortable. That being said, are they good enough to lift heavy weights in? The answer, surprisingly, is yes. Even if they lack some of the firmness that you'll find in a traditional lifting shoe, they are built to withstand the demands of heavy squats, power cleans, and deadlifts.
Can You Lift Weights Barefoot?
Training barefoot offers several pros and cons. Those who favor it claim that while you're not wearing shoes, you can grip and feel the ground much more easily. If you lift heavy weights barefoot, you run the risk of damaging your feet' bones, particularly the fragile second metatarsal. Therefore, if you're considering lifting weights barefoot, be cautious, and consider the possibility of injury.
Do WeightLifting Shoes Make A Difference?
The answer is yes, weightlifting shoes do make a difference. Between the additional stability, flexibility, and breathability lifting shoes offer, you will find that lifting in these shoes will lead you to lift more weight more efficiently.
What Shoes Do Olympic Weightlifters Wear?
The answer to this question depends on the Olympic weightlifter you ask. Any of the shoes listed above are great for Olympic lifting and will keep your feet safe and secure as you're moving weight.
Weightlifting shoes are a great investment for anyone looking to improve their lifts. That being said, obviously, between all the options available, it can be hard to pick the best shoe for you.
Our top choice for a weightlifting shoe is the Reebok Legacy Lifter Flexweave. Between the great color options, the lace-up closure, and the durable textile upper materials, this shoe won't let you down.
All of the shoes on this list are great options. As long as you keep your specific preferences in mind, you should find a great lifting shoe that will improve the amount of weight you can move drastically!