There are a lot of great CrossFit shoes out there – A lot of different brands offer their take on a lifting shoe for CrossFit, but what’s the difference between a shoe meant for it or strictly weightlifting?
The sole of the shoe makes all the difference! A shoe for weightlifting will have a more rigid sole which does not perform well for the movement that CrossFit workouts can demand.
They are very similiar though and it would be hard for you to go wrong with any of these as I consider them the best CrossFit shoes out there.
Reebok Crossfit Nano 5
This shoe by Reebok is what I’d consider to be the front runner of CrossFit shoes. It’s constructed out of great synthetic materials such as Kevlar for support, and TPU for the midsole.
The sole is flexible, but still has the considerable rigidness you would want out of a lifting shoe. They’re very lightweight because of the materials used and comfortable at the same time.
The only thing to be aware of when purchasing is that sometimes people have issues with the sizing.
In this case, the shoe runs small so you may want to order a size up if you aren’t familiar with Reebok sizing.
I don’t really consider that a bad thing, because a lifting shoe is meant to be a little snug.
Obviously it shouldn’t be so much that you’re uncomfortable though! So once you know the right size you’re good to go.
The Minimus is the only shoe on this list without a forefoot strap, but being made by New Balance gives it a pass for making the list. It’s a very minimal (see what I did there) shoe, and that’s a key reason it’s good for CrossFit.
That being said, if you need more support in a shoe I would go with one of the other three shoes on the list.
Minimal shoes can be a little unforgiving if you haven’t used one before. It is very lightweight and sure to perform well in intense workouts.
They’re a great looking shoe and have good ventilation. I haven’t reviewed this model in more depth yet, so I highly recommend checking them out on Amazon for more details.
There are other optional things, but these are what I consider to be the essential features. The most important one is that the sole is flexible.
Your footwear directly impacts your performance, and wearing improper shoes can be uncomfortable as well as lead to injuries.
The raised heel is also important though. There are some flat shoes out there, but I don’t feel like they provide the same level of support as their counterparts.
You also don’t get the same leverage as you would otherwise for lifts like squats, cleans etc. Unless you have experience with flat shoes, I highly recommend going with a raised heel.
And last but certainly not least is the forefoot strap. Any lifting shoe worth anything will have one of these to keep your foot in place, which is even more important for CrossFit. It provides a lot of stability, which is crucial to any kind of weightlifting activity.
Now I’m going to cover what I think are some of the best shoes for CrossFit. I’ll just be providing summaries, but if you are looking for more detail take a look at the review I’ve written for each one.
Why these are the Best CrossFit Shoes
I think this is a very solid list of the best CrossFit shoes. They all have the features like straps, raised heels and the required flexibility for intense workouts. Even if you don’t go with a shoe on this list, hopefully I’ve provided some good examples of what to look for to suit your needs. That’s what it really boils down to.
A common trend I’ve seen with these types of shoes is this: they don’t last forever. I think it’s just a reality of the more stress a shoe goes under, the less time it will last. And that’s why I highly recommend that you have separate pairs of shoes for CrossFit and weightlifting, (assuming you do both) if you have the budget to do so.
These shoes are going to go under some big stress during a work out!