The foundation of any building is important, so is having a proper pair of shoes when you hit the gym. Anyone can just grab their pair of SAF Adidas shoes or putting on running shoes. While they’re still shoes, they might not be the best option when it comes to lifting weights.
Proper footwear will protect you from future injury, and you can perform at your best level. Take it as a form of insurance, technology and a fashion statement put into one.
Here is a list of awesome pairs of training/gym shoes that you might like
There are others out there so do let us know what your favourite is.
Why You Should Get a Pair of Proper Shoes For The Gym
One word, safety. Most people overlook this incredibly simple fact that your foundation is important. Before you go into the specifics of technique, perhaps the reason why you’re swaying or not being able to get a good grip of the floor is that you’re wearing the wrong type of shoe.
Gym shoes help stabilize you; they help give you added support and above all, at least you look the part, eh.
Let’s take a look at the factors that make them unique to other types of shoes.
As long as the soles of your feet are flat, it will do well. The reason why flats are recommended is that you want to have full ‘grip’ of the ground during your lifts.
Running shoes have heels which help propel you further forward and has a fair amount of cushion that absorbs impacts during each stride.
Gym/training shoes require flat soles to give the user more stability during a lift i.e. (squats, deadlifts) This added stability allows you to lift safer and more comfortably.
Unlike running shoes, gym shoes tend to be heavier in general. This extra weight on your feet makes it more rooted to the ground. It also acts as a feedback system to the user to reinforce the concept of being more stable during each exercise.
A heavier sole keeps your feet flatter to the ground and doesn’t allow too much range of motion for your ankles which might cause sprains and imbalance during training.
One caveat would be crossfit training. Their type of shoes are a good mix of flat wide toebox as well as being light.
Some pairs like deadlift shoes have ankle support that protects your ankles. Unlike a run, you want to be more grounded during a lift rather than increased mobility.
Taut Material Weave
There are many instances where we put immense weight onto the shoe itself. Some users might put a dumbbell in-between the shoes during a pull-up or using your feet as hooks whilst doing a Nordic hamstring curl.
Your shoes become anchors that support you during your lift. By having a tighter, less flexible material, you have a more durable shoe as well as a better grip when you need it. Not to mention to not purchase a new pair every other month.
Reeboks latest Nano X series is just that. They have incorporated their flex weave technology to ensure better durability of the shoe.
There are shoes especially for certain movements or sports in the gym. Weightlifting shoes, for example, are heavier, flatter on the soles and an incline. This incline, by the way, increases one’s ankle mobility, to avoid knee, hip or lower back injuries.
Deadlift shoes/slippers (yes slippers) have way more ankle support than a standard training shoe.
You can check them out here:
Unless you want to improve your squats/deadlifts or training for a specific sport, then I’d suggest getting these specialized shoes to take the edge of a little.
A pair of gym shoes must be able to support you during your lifts. This means its sole has to be flat, better ankle support, slightly heavier at the sole and at times a wider toe box to allow more room to grip for your toes.
Gym shoes are fundamentally the most overlooked piece of equipment in the gym. This should be the first and foremost thing to get when your lifting in the gym.
Heck, they look darn good too and serve other purposes other than lifting. What shoes do you use during a lifting session, let us know.
Student, Strength fanatic, value investor and the guy who Tourettes all too often. I’m just another lad who is happy to share my experiences, opinions and research skills to bring more facts and perspective into the world of fitness.