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April 21, 2022

Best Training Shoes For Lifting Weights [Updated]

I did a reel on this over on Instagram too – there’s also a training inside Movement 101 on training shoes for lifting and what to look for. In general, for lifting we want. Swipe + learn. (see list below):


1️⃣ flat even surface (best for floor contact and force transfer)

2️⃣ wide toe box (let the toes spread and grip)

3️⃣ zero or close to zero drop (no lifted heel or squishy marshmallow bottoms)

Caveat to 3️⃣ – Olympic lifting, squatting or doing anything you want a lifted heel for. I used to be very against using a raised heel because it was “cheating” ankle dorsiflexion. While it gives you MORE dorsiflexion, they definitely serve a purpose. So, know what you need for your training, choose shoes accordingly. And as always, be working on limited ranges of motions within your mobility.

For most general lifting you want SOME give. Think about lunges or even push ups, when you need that big toe flexion and/or extension. That’s where @vivobarefoot wins. Vivo training shoes move with your foot like a sock. And while they’re a solid shoe for being so mobile, they’re not quite as solid as Nike metcons or @nobull.

@nobull trainers are flexible enough and near zero drop but I do miss that “foot to floor” feeling you get with @vivobarefoot. If I had to choose ONE shoe it would be No Bulls. And if and when I really want that foot to floor feeling, I’d just remove my shoes. Which I do often anyway.

Really, that’s it. I also love an old school @reebok nano – won’t even lie. Regardless of the brand, look for those three things.

On a budget?

▪️Vans

▪️Chucks

▪️Keds

Remember – Anything that fits the criteria. Less about the brand, more about the construction and fit.

What are your fav lifting shoes!?

P.S. Yes, I am wearing nine year old Nike Prestos in the image at the top of this blog. I love them, but they have a pretty aggressive heel lift.

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I'm an adventurous introvert from Vancouver, Washington who lives on sleep + "me time." I'm a lover of lifting weights, dinosaurs, real talk and traveling with my husband. I am here to help you move better, lift more, bust the myths of the fitness industry, and inspire you to love the process.

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