We all admire the weightlifters who can perform at very high levels (whether that be in olympic or powerlifting competitions). It takes a certain skill set to be able to lift extraordinary amounts of weight, but top lifters will be the first to say that their gear makes a huge difference in their performance during their lifting routines. This gear even comes down to the shoes on their feet! Yes, their shoes! Having proper lifting shoes is essential to performing at your absolute best when doing routine lifts such as cleans, deadlifts, squats, etc.
Best Weightlifting Shoes 2018
Table of Contents
- 1 Best Weightlifting Shoes 2018
- 2 Best Lifting Shoes for Squats
- 3 Best Lifting Shoes for Men
- 4 Best Lifting Shoes for CrossFit Training
- 5 Best Weightlifting Shoes
- 6 Best Lifting Shoes for Women
- 7 Best Lifting Shoes for Flat Feet
- 8 Best Lifting Shoes for Wide Feet
- 9 Best Lifting Shoes for the Money
- 10 How to Pick the Ideal Shoe
Here we will present to you some of the best models under the different categories of weightlifting shoes. Starting from shoes for squats to shoes for powerlifting- you will have a good knowledge about the different kinds of shoes once you go through our breakdown, and can make your own decision on which exact pair will suit your needs best.
Best Lifting Shoes for Squats
Weighing around 20.6 ounces, this pair of shoes is comparatively heavier than the others and is thus ideal for squatting loads and jerk footwork. It will keep you anchored to the floor while squatting. This is a TPU (hard thermoplastic polyurethane)-base shoe which makes it sturdy and resilient to abrasions. It has a little higher (.75”) heels and is thus not appropriate for low-bar squats.
The wide base with heel cup helps the ankle and feet to remain in position during the lifts involving maximum power and strength. Also, the perforated leather upper sole and mesh near the ankle make your heels and ankle comfortable. This proved to be beneficial for longer training sessions. The foot straps help in providing maximum lateral support.
- Comfortable and breathable
- Heavy on weight and hence ideal for squatting, cleaning and jerking
- Ankle remains at place during lifts
- Not very suitable for low-bar squats.
This pair of shoes is ideal for high-bar squatting, contrary to the previous one which was meant for low-bar squatting. There is a strap at the middle of the shoe unlike its previous model where there were two straps.
The signature Flyware material of Nike makes the shoes flexible and light-weight. They are thus comfortable on your feet and can be worn throughout the day for various activities. There are two (soft and firm) soles.
- TPU plate for abrasion resilience and durability
- Firm yet flexible
- Can be used in a number of strength sports including high bar squats.
- The heel cup is thin
The uniqueness of these shoes lies in their low heels which help the weight-lifters to go through a transition to a heeled shoe. Also, being a single-strap shoe, it offers an added security to the lifter. Weighing 15 oz, they are comparatively lighter and can be easily transported around and allow for lightweight explosive lift usage. They also prevent the slowing of foot turnover.
- Low heels
- Light weight
- It is ideal for changing movements
- The heel being constructed using a lightweight material is prone to abrasion.
Best Lifting Shoes for Men
The first shoe to be discussed for men is the Position USA Weightlifting shoes. This shoe proves to be the best for men who are looking for platform type elevation. For a thick footed athlete, this can be a good choice because it has a mid-foot strap. It has a flexible toe box which is slightly wider, thus making it more comfortable. The height of its heel is 1”.
- Wooden heel
- Secure mid-foot strap
- Requires upkeep
- A bit heavy overall
The second one for men are the Nike Romaloes 3. It is one of the best lifting shoe with many features. A mid foot strap is present to make your feet more secure and its heel height is just perfect for most of the male athletes. The TPU heel of the shoe is very durable and will not wear out easily under heavy weight. Its heel height is 0.79”.
- Light weight construction
- Flexible Flywire Material
- Thin heel cup
The next shoe which makes its position is the Adidas AdiPower. Having a number of features, it is also preferred by a large number of men. This shoe has a narrow to medium foot profile. The best thing about this shoe is its TPU heel which is shaped like a pyramid, the height of which is 0.75”, making it a shoe which can be used for various activities.
- Helps to complete deeper squat
- Heavy duty performance
Best Lifting Shoes for CrossFit Training
Adidas PowerLift 3 is one of the best lifting shoes for CrossFit style training. One of its great features is EVA heel which is much softer than TPU heels. The height of its heel is 0.65”, thus making it more comfortable for multiple types of activities. It is also comparatively light in weight, which is an added advantage.
- Hybrid design
- Cost efficient
- EVA heel is of high density.
The next shoe in this list is Inov-8 FastLift 325 and 370 BOA. They can be marked as some of the lightest shoes available on the market. These shoes provide you with a light weight TPU heel, which is lower to some extent. They are flexible for performing multiple types of activities because of the use of flexible mesh in their construction.
- Very versatile
- PowerTruss heel
- Option of BOA lacing system
- Lower heel
- It may have possible issues with its durability
- Varying prices.
The next shoe to be discussed under this section are the NOBULL lifters. This shoe is very comfortable to wear. The most attractive thing about this shoe is its great overall look. The shoe is very light-weight and thus easy to use. It is very flexible and durable too. The leather used in this shoe is hand selected, embedded with natural oils and has top grain material. The stacked leather heel of the shoe consists of individually cut layers with beautiful contours. It also has a molded and removable sock liner.
- It has super fabric construction
- Individually handcrafted
- Very expensive
- Heels get somewhat depressed
Best Weightlifting Shoes
One of the best shoes under this category is Do-Win Weightlifting shoes. This shoe is designed in a manner to fit a little wider foot to enhance a lifter’s ability when catching weight. This helps a lifter to increase their stability on the platform by allowing them to fully grip the floor. It has a fairly versatile weight. The heel size of the shoe is 0.75”.
- Having double straps
- TPU heel
- Quite affordable price
- Having a wide profile
- Having low heel
- Breaking-in time
The next shoe to be discussed is Adidas Leistung 16.II. This shoe is the newest shoe in Adidas’s lifting shoe line. It has a high heel of 1”. The material of the shoe is a woven synthetic material. The shoe is very attractive and its BOA lacing system is re-vamped and is only present in the mid-foot. It is a little heavier when compared to other lifters. So athletes who prefer a solid base will most likely enjoy wearing this shoe.
- BOA lacing system
- Staple TPU heel
- Higher heel
Position USA Weightlifting shoes are another best shoe for weightlifting. The shoes are all handcrafted from scratch. The shoe has a wooden heel and it has a full leather suede finish with a large mid-foot strap. It is quite heavy and can be a better option for lifters who struggle with maintaining a stable base. It has a slightly higher heel than most of the modern lifters, thus allowing a lifter to keep their foot planted in multiple postures.
- Wooden heel
- Requires upkeep
- A bit heavy
Best Lifting Shoes for Women
These are the first weightlifting shoes in the Nobull range and are differently shaped from the rest. The features that are worth admiring include the materials used for making the upper shoe, namely SuperFabric, the heel made from stacked leather which gives it an oldish look, the flexibility of the shoe and its light weight. It is designed with great craftsmanship and is usually preferred by lighter women for the lesser breaking time.
- Breathability due to the use of SuperFabric
- Leather heels
- The unique design and light weight
- Somewhat expensive
These shoes are made from PU coated rubber and hence have increased flexibility, durability and ventilation. The strong TPU heel adds stability to the shoes. Also, the single strap that is present helps in providing more security to the lifter.
Weighing in at 16.2oz, they are perfect for different types of weightlifting. It is especially recommended for the ones interested in hybrid lifting. The leather mash construction makes the shoe rigid yet breathable.
- Single strap design makes it lightweight and non-compressible
- Appropriate for hybrid lifting
- Can be used for different types of activities apart from weightlifting
- Lack of security
This shoe is beneficial for women since it offers great mobility and it comes with a lower heel. It comes with an EVA heel which is light in weight and thus will not feel heavy on the feet.
- It feels light on the feet of women
- It offers great mobility
- The heel is adequately sized
- The EVA heel is a high-density heel
Best Lifting Shoes for Flat Feet
This is a unique pair of shoes, especially because of the double strap design which makes it entirely different from the others. This is of special help for the beginners as it helps in a better grip and offers more stability. Being of an average weight, it can be used for multiple purposes such as strength and power exercises and other activities. The heel size is also average at about 7.5 inches which helps in a smooth transition from a lower heeled to a higher heeled shoe.
- Double strap
- TPU heel
- Greater breaking-in time
These shoes are especially designed for Olympic weightlifting. The heels are designed using TPU which makes them ideal for resisting abrasions. Also, the double straps help in providing adequate lateral support. They are also featured with a snug fit which helps them to remain in position during heavier lifts. Straps also come with a non-Velcro gap which ensures that the shoelaces remain properly tied up.
- Elegant leather finish
- Secure fit with dual strap
- Feels heavier
These shoes have a comparatively wider profile and a lower heel. The single strap offers a lot of security. They are also light in weight and slowing the foot turnover. They are a good option if you are looking for hybrid shoes. It adds depth in squat and stability in the lifts.
- Light weight
- Hybrid design
- Cost effectiveness
- High density EVA heel
Best Lifting Shoes for Wide Feet
This will come in handy for people with flat or wide feet and offers a lot of space for full toe splay. They will also not be losing on security. You will feel comfortable while wearing these during your squats.
It establishes a balance between a heavy and a light shoe.
- Larger space for toe splay
- TPU heel
- Fits in your budget
- Lower heels
This is one of the many ‘Fastlift’ models that Inov brings us. The simple design of the shoes makes them a favorite among weightlifters. The heel size being .65 inches, the shoes are versatile enough to suit your requirements. At 11.7 ounces, they are also very light as compared to the other models and are thus lighter on your legs.
- It is a versatile shoe with a heel of 0.65 inches.
- It has a double BOA system.
- It is lightweight
- The prices may vary.
The width of the heel is 82 milimeter which offers enough space for people with wider feet and can rest their feet easily. A bit heavier than its competitors, these shoes are especially meant for wide feet and are clunky owing to the extra height and weight. The extra height can be found at the heel portion and help in activities like snatching, squatting and the likes. It is manufactured using TPU and is thus sturdy and stress-resilient.
- It has an added layer of padding and is breathable.
- It has a wider heel.
- It is resistant to scratches.
- It is heavier than most of the other shoes
Best Lifting Shoes for the Money
Available at around $180-190, the Adidas Adi Powers are a good pick for the money because they help in providing a good number of features at a reduced cost. The upper shoe is constructed of PU coated leather and there is a mixture of mesh near the tongue and the heel. The shoe is durable, breathable and flexible at the same time.
- Form fitting to feet
- Durable with PU leather
- Less secure
Available at a price as low as $90, Adidas Powerlift offers you a lot of color options and a number of great features like leather mesh construction and resilience to abrasion. The lightweight leather (synthetic) provides support to the ankle and increases durability.
Also, there is an air mesh collar, a lining for breathability, and a tongue making the shoes a great option among the buyers.
- Color options
- Specially engineered for weight-lifting
- It lacks durability somewhat
Priced at around $90 these rank as our pick for the best weightlifting shoes in 2018. These come with a lot of features and became popular in the 90’s. They come with a double strap design and have a wide space for splaying the toes. Priced at around $90, they are popular amongst sports athletes.
- Versatile to suit the needs of spots athletes
- Wider foot space
- Lacks variety in colors
How to Pick the Ideal Shoe
So far we have discussed the varieties of lifting shoes available today. These shoes are different from the regular sneakers and cross trainers and make lifting quite easy, a few reasons being:
- Elevated Heel: Elevation of heel is one of the reasons that make the lifting shoes special. They support mobility and offer a stable base to the users. The heel also provides a stable base which gives added confidence to the lifters an eventually helps them to lift the weights easily. The elevation of the heel may vary anywhere in the range 0.1 to 3 inches and the right elevation needs to be chosen depending on sport and anthropometrics.
- Straps: The lacing system of a shoe is important for determining its effectiveness. The number of straps and the way the laces are to be tied up is also important as it proves the security of the athlete. Straps help in providing lateral support. The shoes can come with one, two or no straps and you will be needed to choose the ideal one depending on this.
- Material of Heel: The type of heel also matters. The lifting shoes can have their heels designed in different manners and the material may also vary. The materials that are commonly used include leather, TPU, EVA and similar ones.
The EVA heels are lightweight and compressible and naturally quite durable. The TPU heels too are lightweight and they are resistant to compression and abrasion. The stacked leather heels, on the other hand, have an oldish look and are characterized by platform feedback.
- The Price: There can be different shoes of different price ranges but we prefer ones that are cost friendly. Lifting shoes are available at affordable prices and you can get them easily without pinching your wallet.
- The Purpose: It should serve your purpose and meet your requirements well. There can be different shoes. While some people concentrate on power-lifting, others focus on squatting and the shoe must be able to serve their purpose well.
- The Materials: The materials used for construction also play a great role in determining the type of weightlifting shoe that you should buy. The right kind of materials must be used for making the heel to provide adequate support to the feet of the users.
So as you can see, the perfect shoe for weightlifting will serve your purposes while fulfilling the other requirements. They are much different from the cross-trainers and the sneakers that are commonly available in the market today. You should first identify the right category and then go through the details of the different products under that category. Finally, you need to choose the right product considering all the different factors.
The best shoe is not the model that is trending or the one which has the highest price. It is rather the one which fulfills all criteria and is suitable for your needs. So first identify the category under which you can find the shoe of your choice and then pick the best model under that category.
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