CrossFit Discussion Board  

Go Back   CrossFit Discussion Board > CrossFit Forum > Equipment
CrossFit Home Forum Site Rules CrossFit FAQ Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Equipment Outfitting a serious gym. Vendors & suppliers. Devices & equipment

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 11-20-2013, 10:54 AM   #1
Jeff Enge
Banned Jeff Enge is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Collinsville  IL
Posts: 5,542
The Comprehensive FAQ On Buying Weightlifting Shoes

Lots of threads on this recently. I think we need a primer.

Let's start with the basics -
What are weightlifting shoes and how are they different from my Nanos/Inov8s/Merrills/Chucks, etc?
In a word, lifting shoes are platforms. They serve two purposes above and beyond that of regular shoes. First of all, they are made to be solid, rigid bases from which to lift from. They usually are made of stiff material from at least the balls of the feet back in order to minimize shifting of the feet. Velcro straps over the top of the shoe help secure the feet even more. The soles are made of hard material (either wood or hard plastic) to minimize compression, allowing a higher percentage of the force you exert to be transferred directly to the ground.

Secondly, they adjust your positioning. The heels of lifting shoes are raised in order to facilitate proper pulling and catching position. If you have ever dropped a clean in front of you as you drop under it, you know how important it is to get into a deep, vertical torso squat on the catch. Lifting shoes make it easier to do that.

So, let's cut to the chase: Should I buy a pair of these babies?
There is one very important prerequisite that you need before you should use or buy lifting shoes: Can you do all the movements you will be doing with the shoes, without them? This means squats of all kinds. Can you get into a proper vertical torso, butt to ankles, balanced on the feet, flat back bottom of the squat position? Can you do this with a bar back and front racked? Can you do this with an overhead squat? If all of these positions are reachable and comfortable with any other kind of shoes or even barefoot, you have my permission to start shopping. Otherwise, you will be using the shoes as a crutch to hide your mobility or stability problems. Be able to do the movements, and then buy the equipment to make those movements easier.

OK, which ones should I get?
Now that's the $64,000 question. Here goes.

I love weightlifting and/or I am rich and/or I need the best equipment no matter what.
The best lifting shoes in the world are Adidas AdiPowers or Nike Romaleos II. These will run you between $190 and $200, but they are the cream of the crop and will last a long time.

I don't have that much spending money! I'm a pretty good lifter and I want to be outfitted as such, but I need something more mid-range.
There are options for you too! In the $130 range, there are two good options that I know of, both made by Do-Win but sold under other companies. Rogue has their version, and Pendlay (sold at MuscleDriver) has theirs. Both are good shoes, Rogue's is a wood sole and Pendlay's plastic as the main difference. These are the shoes I have worn and I can say they both work well.

I'm thinking even cheaper. I'm a beginner and want entry-level, or I can't imagine spending $130 on a pair of specialty shoes!
Also options for you! Adidas Powerlifts are their entry-level option. There are also less-expensive varieties from "off-brands" like Wei-Rui, VS Athletics and others. These do the same thing, just more minimal, and may not last as long. All of the ones I mentioned are under $100.

I absolutely need something I can do my WODs with! Think box jumps, double unders, burpees, anything like that!
These kind of things are not what the aforementioned lifting shoes are made for. There's a very good chance you will do damage to the soles of these shoes if you do these movements regularly. However, if you MUST have a lifting shoe to do things like this in, you can get "hybrid" shoes like the Reebok Lifters for $180, or the Inov8 FastLifts for $150. These are not as effective for lifting as pure lifting shoes just because they are made to be a little less rigid, but as a trade-off they allow you to do other things in them.

I want to run in my lifting shoes!
No. Just no. Would you want to lift in track spikes? Running in lifting shoes isn't good for the shoes, and it is not good for your body, simply because you by neccessity have to change your mechanics.

Anything to add?
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-20-2013, 11:46 AM   #2
Rob Carrillo
Member Rob Carrillo is offline
 
Rob Carrillo's Avatar
 
Profile:
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Columbia  SC
Posts: 134
Re: The Comprehensive FAQ On Buying Weightlifting Shoes

very helpful and right on time (for me) as I've been trying to narrow down a pair. thanks!

what about some guidance on heel size?
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-20-2013, 11:54 AM   #3
Andrew Daggon
Member Andrew Daggon is offline
 
Andrew Daggon's Avatar
 
Profile:
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Monterey  CA
Posts: 192
Re: The Comprehensive FAQ On Buying Weightlifting Shoes

How do you think the do win or Adidas powerlifts compare to reebok lifters, if they were the same price. And I mean just for lifting, not as a hybrid.

Last edited by Andrew Daggon : 11-20-2013 at 11:58 AM.
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-20-2013, 12:15 PM   #4
Jason Newland
Member Jason Newland is offline
 
Jason Newland's Avatar
 
Profile:
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Olathe  KS
Posts: 127
Re: The Comprehensive FAQ On Buying Weightlifting Shoes

Great post, Jeff. One of the moderators should make this a sticky for the Equipment section of the forum
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-20-2013, 12:24 PM   #5
Jeff Enge
Banned Jeff Enge is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Collinsville  IL
Posts: 5,542
Re: The Comprehensive FAQ On Buying Weightlifting Shoes

Thanks, Jason. Thought it was about time to get all this in one place. Anybody that has firsthand experience of other shoes besides the ones I've used (Rogue and Pendlay Do-Wins, tried out Reebok original lifters), feel free to chime in.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob Carrillo View Post
very helpful and right on time (for me) as I've been trying to narrow down a pair. thanks!

what about some guidance on heel size?
3/4" is pretty standard for the large majority of lifting shoes. Lower heel height could make sense for somebody with more of a powerlifting squat focus. In fact, some world-class weightlifters even add more lift to the heels of their shoes aftermarket.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Daggon View Post
How do you think the do win or Adidas powerlifts compare to reebok lifters, if they were the same price. And I mean just for lifting, not as a hybrid.
Powerlifts are definitely a beginner-level shoe. They have a shorter heel than the others and quality is otherwise made to match the price comparatively.

Rogue Do-Wins are bricks. This is good for lifting if you like feeling that mass.

The Reebok lifters (I've tried on the originals and haven't even seen the Plus firsthand for disclaimer) are very light compared to Rogue's. To me they just didn't feel as stable. A step above regular shoes to be sure, but I prefer more solid if I can.

Pendlay Do-Wins are in between. They give a really nice base but since they are plastic instead of wood soles, they are a bit more mobile than the Rogues. FWIW, from my firsthand experience I would recommend these for anybody up until advanced lifters (they are also the shoes I'm wearing in my avatar pic).

Last edited by Jeff Enge : 11-20-2013 at 12:26 PM.
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-20-2013, 12:36 PM   #6
Eric Montgomery
Member Eric Montgomery is offline
 
Eric Montgomery's Avatar
 
Profile:
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: San Diego  CA
Posts: 7,413
Re: The Comprehensive FAQ On Buying Weightlifting Shoes

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Enge View Post

Pendlay Do-Wins are in between. They give a really nice base but since they are plastic instead of wood soles, they are a bit more mobile than the Rogues. FWIW, from my firsthand experience I would recommend these for anybody up until advanced lifters (they are also the shoes I'm wearing in my avatar pic).
The 2011 Pendlays have wood soles--you may be able to find a pair on EBay or a closeout sale somewhere if you do some digging.
__________________
Training Log (WFS)
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-20-2013, 06:43 PM   #7
Keith Miller
Member Keith Miller is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Lewisville  TX
Posts: 691
Re: The Comprehensive FAQ On Buying Weightlifting Shoes

I don't know that I agree one should be able to hit all the positions that rigidly barefoot before purchasing shoes. Some people are not ever going to be able to hit those positions barefoot due to poor levers, no matter how much mobility work they do. So, you're saying they should never buy weightlifting shoes??

This doesn't mean that once someone gets a pair of shoes that they can stop trying to hit better positions, though.
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-20-2013, 08:21 PM   #8
Jeff Enge
Banned Jeff Enge is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Collinsville  IL
Posts: 5,542
Re: The Comprehensive FAQ On Buying Weightlifting Shoes

Ok... I will soften my stances there because obviously nobody has perfect positions. In essence you just have to be able to get down there in a reasonable facsimile.

My point is, shoes should not come before technique. If you cant do an overhead squat without heels on plates or torquing your shoulders back, you probably shouldnt start relyong on lifting shoes.
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-21-2013, 09:17 AM   #9
John Donovan
Member John Donovan is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Charlotte  MI
Posts: 328
Re: The Comprehensive FAQ On Buying Weightlifting Shoes

Another entry level/ multi use shoe would be the Asics lift trainer. Looks exactly like a regular Asics shoe with a raised cheek and Velcro strap. Got mine on Amazon for $80.
__________________
32/5'10"/233. 500m row-1:39/1000m row-3:53/2k row- 8:12/DL-495, FS-325, Back squat- 440, Press-205, Snatch-96kg, C&J-121Kg, 5k run- 27:30
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-21-2013, 11:26 AM   #10
Keith Miller
Member Keith Miller is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Lewisville  TX
Posts: 691
Re: The Comprehensive FAQ On Buying Weightlifting Shoes

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Enge View Post
Ok... I will soften my stances there because obviously nobody has perfect positions. In essence you just have to be able to get down there in a reasonable facsimile.

My point is, shoes should not come before technique. If you cant do an overhead squat without heels on plates or torquing your shoulders back, you probably shouldnt start relyong on lifting shoes.
I can agree with that!!
  Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Are Oly Shoes Worth Buying? Charlie Saunders Equipment 17 12-23-2011 05:05 AM
Wrestling shoes or weightlifting shoes John Poulos Equipment 3 01-30-2010 08:17 AM
Custom shoes - your logo on Olympic weightlifting shoes Mike Gin Equipment 11 04-30-2009 10:50 AM
Buying Expensive Running Shoes??? Luke Hitt Equipment 14 01-13-2009 01:05 AM
Need some buying advice: pullup bar/shoes Cory Niu Equipment 24 10-21-2007 10:21 PM


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 05:47 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.6.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
CrossFit is a registered trademark of CrossFit Inc.