ASICS is a Japanese athletic gear company that is mainly known for their top of the line running shoes. They have also made weightlifting shoes, such as the 727 TOW (Pictured above), that is not available outside of Japan.
They have gained a reputation over the years being used by world-renowned lifters, but are very expensive. One site I found listed them as $275, and sold out. The next site I found them on did not list the price was only $215 and was also sold out!
This model is primarily used by olympic lifters in eastern countries.
It seems like the only option to get a pair is to import them, from a site like Rakuten. (Disclaimer: I have not used this site to purchase from before, so be cautious)
The defining feature of the 727s would probably have to be the high quality of materials used, and the wooden heel. The design has remained relatively unchanged for many years which says a lot about the quality of it. The wooden heel isn’t the deciding factor that it can seem like, with top of the line shoes by Nike and Adidas performing just as well if not better.
Don’t worry though, if you aren’t wild about importing there is ONE other option. Yes, only one. ASICS also makes the Lift Trainer, which is more globally available.
You can tell from the pictures on this page alone that these two shoes are VERY different in terms of what they are looking to achieve, with one being a dedicated weightlifting shoe and the other being a cross trainer. So it’s not a fair comparison in that regard. Click here to see my review of them
It’s a shame that it gets overlooked so much. While it’s not a weightlifting specific shoe like the 727 TOW, it performs better than a lot of cross trainers that I’ve reviewed, making it a great choice for CrossFit and other general gym use.
I would highly recommend them for someone who isn’t only focusing on weightlifting exclusively.
My best guess is that ASICS do not see the market for an expensive weightlifting shoe for people in the West and may be testing the market with the cross trainer.
It’s pretty hard to deny that a cross-trainer should reach a wider market than a shoe strictly meant for lifting weights. Maybe we will see them selling them directly in the future, with weightlifting shoes having an overall upward trend in interest as shown in Google Trends.
The bottom line is that if you are a serious lifter, you can import the 727 TOWs (Also referred to as the 727 Tiger) from various online sites. I’d advise using caution when choosing a site, as I have seen some with middlemen trying to charge a much higher price than the shoe’s actual cost to make a profit. If you are going that route, here is a sizing chart to convert your shoe size:
There are so many good shoes for weightlifting out there these days. Amazon has a ton of great shoes that you can check out to get an idea of what is on the market, as well as my reviews here. I only see importing as an option if you are highly determined to get a pair of these shoes, because you’re going to have to pay extra to get them.
If you’re not stuck on having a wooden heel, you can find shoes with similar heel profiles that are great for olympic lifts such as the Nike Romaleo 2 or the Adidas Adipower. Being perfectly honest, I see no reason to pay the premium for the 727s when there other great weightlifting shoes out there.
I have no doubt they are great, but the wooden heel really doesn’t have any advantages compared to the TPU used by modern weightlifting shoes. If anything it’s unnecessarily heavy and even if it just adds a fraction of a second to moving your feet, that can make a difference when you’re attempting a PR
When it comes to ASICS lifting shoes
While ASICS weightlifting shoes might be hard to find, if you do a lot of CrossFit I highly recommend the Lift cross trainers. While not being meant for strictly weightlifting, they have received a ton of great press that ASICS of all types are known for.
Unfortunately, it seems like getting the strictly weightlifting shoes by ASICS will remain a difficult task for a while!
If you’re determined enough though you DO have options to import the 727. Just be careful and don’t get ripped off.