These weightlifting shoes are great for weight training and bodybuilding to capitalize on all your gains.
For those who lift big, you know how much support you need to continue to thrive inside and out of the gym. We are quick to buy supplements and other products weightlifting belts as well as wrist wraps and straps, but what about weightlifting shoes? These are something that many people tend to forget about when purchasing their gear to throw in their gym bag.
What a good pair of weightlifting shoes can do is provide you with something that is comfortable and versatile that also offers great stability and support, especially when you’re under a fully loaded barbell.
Let’s dive in.
Weightlifting Shoes Overview
You want to give yourself the best chance at success when you’re at the gym, and a solid pair of weightlifting shoes can do just that. Weightlifting shoes are generally hard and flat soled shoes with an elevated heel and straps to allow for adjustability as you seek your desired fit. These bodybuilding shoes are designed to assist in your heavy powerlifts and other forms of training to ensure you remain stable and balanced in efforts to enhance safety and effectiveness of your lifts (1). Once you find a pair that works great for you, there’s no turning back and the gains you seek most will only start to increase.
We have gone ahead and compiled a list of the Best Weightlifting Shoes for 2023 as we seek to bring you the best when it comes to workout equipment. Don’t settle for anything less than great and this list will provide you with some stellar options from great brands as you look to enhance your training and performance with a great pair of bodybuilding shoes.
Best Weightlifting Shoes For 2023
- Best Weightlifting Shoes Overall: Reebok Legacy Lifter Li Cross Trainer
- Best Weightlifting Shoes For Men: Core Weightlifting Shoes
- Best Weightlifting Shoes For Squats: Adidas Powerlift 5 Sneaker
- Best Weightlifting Shoes For Powerlifting: Nordic Lifting Shoes
- Best Weightlifting Shoes For The Money: Adidas Men’s Powerlift 4 Cross Trainer
- Best Weightlifting Shoes For CrossFit: Reebok Men’s Legacylifter Cross Trainer
- Best Weightlifting Shoes for Flat Feet: Lara Star Deadlift Shoes Cross Trainer
- Best Weightlifting Shoes for Wide Feet: Reebok Men’s Lifter PR II Cross Trainer
Best Weightlifting Shoes Overall
The best weightlifting shoes overall will give you the best when it comes to comfort and versatility, all while still providing great support. A reputable company will produce only top tier products in terms of durability and quality to withstand any workouts.
Reebok Legacy Lifter Li Cross Trainer
Reebok Legacy Lifter Li Cross Trainer is a great overall weightlifting shoe for whatever workout comes your way. The bold new design includes a textile upper for consistent and comfortable air flow to avoid overheating and provide the best feel. The lockdown straps provide for a good all-around fit to match your desired adjustability and the raised heel offers maximum stability. With natural contours, this shoes fits you just right for support and max power with the best position.
- Comfortable with natural contours to fit your shape as athletes and lifters
- Lockdown straps are sturdy and the raised heel is great for stability
- This shoes works especially great with deadlifts
- A bit tight around the toe area for bodybuilding shoes
- Not the best for squatting
Price: $131.18 – $340.42
Best Weightlifting Shoes For Men
For those men looking for a quality lifting shoe, looking to those options may seem challenging. The best weightlifting shoes for men will provide the utmost support to protect any weightlifter from potential injuries when under so much weight.
Core Weightlifting Shoes
Core Weightlifting Shoes are designed specifically for weightlifting and strenuous exercise in the gym. Comfortable, lightweight, and breathable, the innovative design allows for serious ankle support while also being comfortable and versatile. By design, these lifting shoes have an elevated heel of 1.2” or 32 mm in height, and the raised heel provides a massive advantage for serious power lifters and weightlifters, as it allows for deeper squats. You are also able to engage the muscles more during your lifts.
- Designed specifically for weightlifting and hard exercise
- Snug lacing
- Elevated heel
- Premium priced option
Best Weightlifting Shoes For Squats
The squat exercise requires stellar form to avoid injury and with so much weight on the bar, it is important to have a quality shoe working on your behalf. The best shoes for squats as a weightlifter will allow you stay firm and stable in order to knock out any PRs with ease.
Adidas Powerlift 5 Cross Training Shoes
Adidas Men’s Powerlift 5 are made partly from recycled content and designed to increase durability and stability during exercises like squats. A grippy outer sole locks the foot in place for greater support and the canvas with upper mesh and ventilation leaves these shoes breathable. There is also a mid sole wedge for stability. With a strong, stable base and a sock liner for increased comfort, these lifting shoes from Adidas are the best for squatting as you work towards that new personal squat record.
- Great support and reinforcement in the heel for the squat exercise
- The lace enclosure offers a snug fit on the top of the foot
- Great for squats with the stability support for lifters
- Not much support in the arch and feels to be a tight fit
Best Weightlifting Shoes For Powerlifting
Powerlifters need the best in terms of quality for each lift requires the utmost care and attention. Those big powerlifts can seem intimidating, but with the right equipment, like a great pair of weightlifting shoes, you can get that weight up and see huge gains with your lifting.
Nordic Lifting Shoes
Nordic Lifting Shoes are great for improving powerlifting performance and heavy workouts. This premium shoe offers good foot support to ensure a powerful workout and greater gains and are built to last under any stress. For those powerlifters or athletes who regularly lift heavy, these can improve posture to promote longevity and keep you physically healthy overall. The smooth, anti-slip sole is designed for maximum stability during all movements to promote the best workout possible.
- Perfect for powerlifters and other lifters
- Great for working on posture and supporting gains by offering top notch stability
- Heel fit is rather loose and heel height is a bit awkward
- The single strap doesn’t provide the best fit across the top of the foot
Best Weightlifting Shoes For The Money
Fitness equipment and apparel can get expensive and it can be hard to find good products at affordable prices. The right weightlifting shoes for the money will not break the bank and still give you a quality pair for all your needs.
Adidas Men’s Powerlift 4 Cross Trainer
Adidas Men’s Powerlift 4 Cross Trainer are great for lifting and exercise needs offering a stable feel and great support. A regular fit with a synthetic sole, a strong canvas upper is reinforced with a heel counter. A good base allows for more stable lifts and a nice, flat bottom offers a stiff feel with versatility and comfort. For those looking for a quality shoe with nice support and a good price, this shoe from Adidas may certainly be the way to go for all you lifters.
- Good stable feel for support and enhanced lifts, like the squat
- A stiff feel, it still offers comfort and versatility
- Good style and design for performance and aesthetic for lifters
- Won’t work well for running or higher intensity work
Price: $59.99 – $124.99
Best Weightlifting Shoes For CrossFit
Those CrossFit athletes require certain needs given the strain of each exercise. It’s important to know just what you need as a CrossFit athlete because that will determine the type of shoe you buy to increase performance.
Reebok Men’s Legacylifter Cross Trainer
For those looking for a great CrossFit shoe, Reebok Men’s Legacylifter Cross Trainer combines quality construction with a firm foundation with a level of comfort that is hard to find. Overlapping straps offer a great fit along with the lockdown strap and the shoe’s breathability allows for comfort and less moisture build-up. With a versatility to move but also the comfort of a normal shoe, this weightlifting shoe from Reebok is a great one to get you competition ready.
- Firm foundation but provides great comfort and versatility for lifts, like the squat
- Breathability allows for comfort as well
- Tight in the toes and where the laces start to thread, it can dig into the foot
Price: $122.66 – $234.00
Best Weightlifting Shoes for Flat Feet
When it comes to the shape of your feet, sometimes you may have flat feet and shoes can be uncomfortable or not fit right. Do not worry, there are even weightlifting shoes for that!
Lara Star Fitness Shoes Cross Trainer
Equipped with a sock like upper for comfort, these weightlifting shoes are completely flat with no heel rise, making them a great option for someone with flat feet. They also have an aggressive rubber bottom for grip just about anywhere, and any lift.
- Good stable feel for support and enhanced lifts
- Extreme comfort
- Good grip
- Sizing can be slightly off
- Not the best for squatting
Price: $36.99 – $49.99
Best Weightlifting Shoes for Wide Feet
Sometimes you may have a wider foot, making shoes hard to find. With wider feet, shoes can feel too tight, especially around the sides of the toes, and can even wear down faster in those areas.
Reebok Men’s Lifter PR II Cross Trainer
While they may be for men, they are perfect for wide feet. Equipped with raised heel to give you stability on the platform, wider build to help people with wider feet, and the rubber outsole and textile upper add comfort and style. The EVA midsole provides lightweight cushioning, and a rubber outsole makes for good durability, so they will not wear down.
- Good grip and durability
- Great comfort
- Wider build
- Only for men
Price: $77.82 – $100
Benefits Of Weightlifting Shoes For Bodybuilding & Olympic Lifting
The benefits of weightlifting shoes will make you consider investing in a pair, or even upgrading your current pair, so you get the most out of your workouts.
- Increased support: These can increase support by providing better traction for your grip to the floor, as well as supporting the foot and the ankle during those big lifts and Olympic lifting (2).
- Ankle support: Provide a secure, snug fit around your ankle so you can develop mobility and power without putting it in a vulnerable position.
- Ensure safety of lifts: Work to protect against injury that can keep you out of the gym and hitting PRs during your Olympic lifting and barbell training.
- Raised heel: Helps with things like flexibility and mobility while also giving you a more comfortable posture with some of these lifts.
- Boost confidence & style: Looking good is half the battle and a great pair of lifting shoes can increase your confidence as you look like a pro with a stylish pair.
What Else To Know About Weightlifting Shoes
Ideal Heel Height
The standard heel height for a lifting shoe is about .75” but many shoes also go up to an inch (ideal for Olympia lifting) and even down to .6”-.65”, which are more beneficial for deadlifts. But .75” is a good height for weightlifting in general (especially squat type movements) and is versatile for most lifting activities. So, you could say it’s like a hybrid since the heel isn’t low or particularly high either. Now, certain physical attributes, goals, movement, and lifting technique will ultimately determine which height you decide to go with. So, there’s no perfect one-size-fits-all shoe option for every individual. But, chances are, most people would benefit from using a standard weightlifting shoe with a .75” lift.
Different Heel Types
There are weightlifting shoes with wooden, stacked leather, plastic, EVA (ethylene vinyl acetate) and TPU (thermoplastic polyurethane). These materials are very durable and provide a very stable and solid base which you need in a weightlifting shoe which athletic shoes do not provide.
Most weightlifting shoes have laces by default but straps (one or two) are often included for additional security. When lifting heavy, you want your ankles and feet to be as secure and stable as possible since they are the base. The choice to have one or two straps really comes down to how secure you prefer your lifting footwear to be. Two will result in maximum secureness but it’s not always necessary. And some shoes have a BOA tightening system which allow you to turn a dial to get a tighter fit.
How We Choose
Our list is comprised of weightlifting shoes we believe will give you the best when it comes to quality, support, longevity, and price. These brands are great and take pride in their products and care of the consumer. While some of these brands are more expensive than others, we believe the quality and longevity of these shoes are matched by comfort and versatility they provide to your lifts. The support these shoes have will enhance your comfort in the gym and allow you to focus on other things aside from your safety.
What is the best weightlifting shoe?
Reebok Legacy Lifter Li Cross Trainer. This shoe is a bold new design that is comfortable to provide for the best feel. The straps ensure a good fit and the natural contours will match your foot perfectly. These are designed for and will improve support and maximum power.
What are the benefits if I use a weightlifting shoe versus a normal shoe?
What you’ll get out of a weightlifting shoe is something designed for and geared towards weightlifting. When it comes to support, comfort, durability, and use, these shoes are created to help with those big lifts from an elevated heel to provide better traction on the sole. You are working to give yourself better support when under the bar.
How do I decide which shoe is right for me?
This may take some trial and error because each fit is unique to the individual but look for a shoe that fits nicely without being too tight. It is possible to have a snug fit that still allows for movement. Also, look for what you want to use it for. If you’re into CrossFit, look into something geared towards that. Same with powerlifting and bodybuilding. With so many options, it is possible to match one that will work for you perfectly.
Weightlifting shoes are great to use in the gym to ensure comfort, versatility, support, and longevity as you seek to pack on muscle and work towards that shredded aesthetic. Looking into a pair of lifting shoes will only improve your training and performance and is a great idea if you don’t own a pair. This list contains high-quality and amazing weightlifting shoes to help you towards your goals so check it out today and see which one’s will work best for you.
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- Legg, Hayley S.; Glaister, Mark; Cleather, Daniel J.; Goodwin, Jon E. (2017). “The effect of weightlifting shoes on the kinetics and kinematics of the back squat”. (source)
- Sato, Kimitake; Fortenbaugh, Dave; Hydock, David S. (2012). “Kinematic changes using weightlifting shoes on barbell back squat”. (source)