Does the minimal cross-trainer make the cut for a squatting shoe?
The New Balance Men’s MX20v3 Minimus Cross-Training shoe has rave reviews on Amazon for being a great lightweight shoe that is not only a good shoe for weight training, but also faster paced cardio activities.
But how does it hold up for squats and deadlifts? I mean, that IS why you’re here, right!?
The heel is low, which is good for weight lifting. But the material looks like the kind that will compress under heavy loads, which to me is less than ideal.
If it had a higher heel that would be a deal breaker for me as that would be too unstable to depend on for a heavy lift (because of that material). That said, I’m sure they are fine to squat in, but for a dedicated squatting shoe? I would give it a 3 out of 5 stars based on that specific purpose.
To be fair though, it is a cross-training shoe. It isn’t trying to be a power lifter’s shoe by its design. And for that I think it makes for a great all around gym shoe. Whether you are playing basketball or doing CrossFit, it provides a little more support than a dedicated weightlifting shoe will.
The way the shoe is shaped with the wider toe, and the sole not being STRICTLY flat is a good thing for cross training purposes.
What are your gym goals
So as with any shoe, it really depends on your goals. I don’t mean to be too harsh on it for deadlifting and squats because they WILL get the job done. It’s just that a shoe meant for those lifts will perform better than this one.
Kind of hard to judge a cross-training shoe harshly for being diverse, right? And for a diverse activity at the gym like CrossFit where there is a combination of running/jumping/lifting, I think these would be the perfect combination of a minimal shoe, but still enough support to be better than a single purpose shoe.
The only thing that I am not particularly wild about it when it comes to weight lifting is the shape of the sole. It’s got the curve in it as you can see above, which takes away from stability in squatting or deadlifting.
It’s shaped that way to handle running / absorb impact from those kinds of movements. So as far as weight lifting goes that’s my main knock against the Minimus.
Final thoughts on the Minimus
The New Balance Men’s MX20v3 Minimus Cross-Training shoes are definitely high quality. They may not be the number one pair for squats, but it is hard to go wrong with New Balance, and a lot of people swear by them for their running and walking shoes.
And if my other reviews are anything to go by, I definitely put a lot of value in a brand’s reputation even if it isn’t my first choice. These are also very inexpensive for a quality cross training shoe. So if you’re looking for a pair of shoes that can do everything, I would go with this one.