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Which powerlifting shoes [Article]

Posted by Pascal Landshoeft

May 17, 2019 6:55:20 AM

Which powerlifting shoes

Which powerlifting shoes

 
There are many options out there which you can choose from. Beginners are well of with an Adidas powerlift shoe. If you have more money to spend go for a weightlifting shoe for your squats combined with slippers or a boxing shoe for your deadlifts
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Why should you wear powerlifting shoes

 
Powerlifting shoes or at least a pair of shoes are mandatory in powerlifting meets. If you want to compete you need shoes and can not just show up bare feet even though some professional powerlifters might even prefer that. 
 
Weightlifting and powerlifting shoes provide you with a solid sole. This is the main difference to normal runners which you can get in the shop. If you use normal joggers you will either have air cushioning or springs in the shoe. Shock absorption is great when you want to fast or for a long time but is unhelpful for transition strength from your body into the floor. For this to happen it is better to have a solid body below your feet. 
 
All weightlifting and powerlifting shoes apply this principle. You do not have to go for the expensive ones though. A pair of converse will also do the trick. 
 

Powerlifting vs weightlifting shoes 

 
What both of these shoes have in common is their solid sole. What sets them apart is the higher heel. Weightlifting shoes put your feet at an angle so that your shins can move out of the way of the squat quicker. This enables easier squatting and higher loads. 
 
The disadvantage of these heels is that they put more distance between you and the ground. For the deadlift, you do not want to add unnecessary extra inches. 
 

Adidas Leistung 16 

Price $140 to $224

 

Overview

 
The Adidas Leistung 16 for first introduced at the Rio Olympic games. Their special feature is the Boa closing system which tightens the shoe around our midfoot. The German word Leistung translates into performance. The effective heel height comes to 24.8mm with a total of 38mm. Following sizes and colors and sizes are available for the Adidas Leistung 16:
 
Sizes
 
  • 7.0
  • 7.5
  • 8.0
  • 8.5
  • 9.0
  • 9.5
  • 10.0
  • 10.5
  • 11.0
  • 11.5
  • 12.0
  • 12.5
  • 13.0

Color

 
  • Gray/White
  • Black/Carbon
  • Silver/Amber/Cargo
 
This is one of the most expensive and spacey weightlifting shoes you can get due to the Boa System. 
 

Pros

 
If you like the Boa System, this shoe is a great addition to your arsenal to quickly get in and out of and provide extra stability to your midfoot. The shoe is also not too heavy which can be helpful when used in CrossFit.
 

Cons

 
The high price and gimmicky closing mechanism might put some people off. If you want something more traditional you might want to go with the Nike Romaleos or Adidas Adipower instead. 
 

Alternatives

 
Alternatives to the Adidas Leistung 16 are
 
 
The Nike Romaleos are available in more popping colors than the Leistung 16 and have a traditional lacing system to close. They are also a little lighter as the heel has been hollowed out to save weight.
 
The Reebok legacy lifters are one of the heaviest pair of weightlifting shoes. This makes it a good option for powerlifters who gladly trade speed for stability. 
 
If you want to stick with Adidas, but want to ditch the Boa lacing system, the Adidas Adipower shoes are the tool of choice. You will get one of the weightlifting shoes which has been around the longest with this option.
 

Reebok legacy lifter

Price $169 - $199

 

Overview

 
Since the surge of CrossFit Reebok has also heavily entered the weightlifting and Crossfit Shoe market. The Reebok legacy lifter is their answer to Nike's and Adidas's longer-standing range of weightlifting shoe lines. Co-designed with Rogue athlete CJ Cummings these shoes are heavy and will make you stick to the ground. They come with an effective heel height and come in a wide range of sizes and colors.
 

Sizes

 
  • 7.0
  • 7.5
  • 8.0
  • 8.5
  • 9.0
  • 9.5
  • 10.0
  • 10.5
  • 11.0
  • 11.5
  • 12.0
  • 12.5
  • 13.0

Colors

 
  • Light Sand / Black / Gum
  • Black / Gold
  • White / Black / Pewter
  • White / Solar Yellow / Black
  • White / Crushed Cobalt / Collegiate Navy
These are great shoes if you need that extra stability and weight as you otherwise feel not grounded enough. They also give you a wider range of colors and look a little more modern than their Nike and Adidas counterparts.
 

Pros

 
The extra weight of these shoes is a bonus for everyone who feels to light on their feet when lifting heavy. If you have a tendency to lean over or get on your toes while lifting, these shoes might help to fix these issues.
 

Cons

 
If you tend to drag your feet, this is not the right shoe for you as they will make you even sower. Also, not all color options are available in all sizes.
 

Alternatives

 
Alternatives to the Reebok Legacy lifter are:
 
The Adidas Leistung 16 shoes are the current high end in price when it comes to weightlifting shoes. This is mainly due to the added extra mechanics of the Boa closing system. The Boa locking system helps you to tighten up the shoe around your midfoot without having to work too hard on the lacing.
 
The Nike Romaleos have gone in the lightweight direction with their newest models. If you prefer the swoosh on your shoe and want them to be as light as possible, this is the shoe for you to get.
 
The Adidas Adipower shoes are the old school version of the weightlifting world. They have been around for a long time and their classic design still holds strong. This was the first weightlifting shoe I ever owned and I loved them. 
 

Nike Romaleos 3 XD

Price $199.95

 

Overview

 
The Nike Romaleos 3 XD shoes are available in four different colors with an effective heel of 20mm. ONe of the biggest strengths of this model is its lightweight design. The Honeycomb design of the heel saves weight by using less material and still providing stability. This is a great option if you want to do CrossFit WODs which ask for very heavy lifting combined with switching stations quickly. 
 

Sizes

  • 6.0
  • 6.5
  • 7.0
  • 7.5
  • 8.0
  • 8.5
  • 9.0
  • 9.5
  • 10.0
  • 10.5
  • 11.0
  • 11.5
  • 12.0
  • 12.5
  • 13.0

Colors

 
  • Atmosphere Gray
  • Black / Black / Metallic Bomber Gray
  • White / Metallic Platinum
  • Wolf Gray / Black / Cool Gray
 
The Nike Romaleos make use of Nikes Flywire patented lightweight architecture. They also have only one strap which some people might prefer instead of the two straps of some other models. To my personal regret, Nike seems to steer away from the more popping colors of the post in the newest iteration of the line. I liked the neon colors of the earlier Romaleos.
 

Pros

 
Lightweight construction makes it easy to switch between exercises in different WODs. Single strap easier to get in and out of as with other models. 
 

Cons

 
Some report that the Nike Romaleos feel and look cheap compared to other models. Also, the lip is very thin and feels like it could come off when you pull too hard. The toe box also seems to be too small for some lifters. This is the price you pay for a lightweight shoe.
 

Alternatives

 
Alternatives to the Nike Romaleos are
 
 
The Adidas Leistung 16 shoes are slightly more expensive and come with a BOA lacing system. This system allows you to tighten the shoe around your midfoot without having to lace them every single time. If you like gadgets and something different this might be the shoe for you.
 
The Adidas Adipower is the classic weightlifting shoes which have been around for years. If you want one strap, but more room in the toebox this might be for you. They are a little heavier and you, therefore, might move slower with them.
 
The Reebok legacy shoes are the model which feels the heaviest and comes with two straps. Some Crossfit athletes might prefer Reebok generally as a brand. If you want to feel rotted to the ground this might be the right fit for you. 
 

Adidas power perfect 

Price $104

 

Overview

 
The Adidas power perfect is a variation on the Adidas powerlift shoe at a slightly lower cost. This shoe has a less elevated heel and is, therefore, more suited to the need of powerlifting than weightlifting. If you only want to buy one shoe for powerlifting this is a good option compared to having to buy two different pairs of shoes.
 

Sizes

 
  • 6.5
  • 7.0
  • 7.5
  • 8.0
  • 8.5
  • 9.0
  • 9.5
  • 10.0
  • 10.5
  • 11.0
  • 11.5
  • 12.0

Colors

 
  • Black / White / Matte Gold
  • Pink / Chalk Pearl / Ash
 
This is a solid shoe which does not put you back $200. This makes it a great option for beginners who are just testing things out but do not want to lift in runners.
 

Pros

 
The low price is very enticing to start out with lifting. For the price, you still get a very solid lifting shoe.
 

Cons

 
The heel is only slightly elevated compared to other weightlifting specific shoes. They, therefore, might not be the ideal solution for squatting.
 

Alternatives

 
Alternatives to the Adidas power perfect are:
 
The Adidas powerlift come in at a slightly lower price and are now going into their fourth iteration. These were the first lifting specific shoes I have ever owned and they ever let me down. In addition, they are also now available in multiple different colors. This shoe does the same as the power perfect with a slightly thinner sole than the power perfect.
 
The Adidas Adipower is the first weightlifting shoe I have ever owned. In these shoes, I pulled 190kg for the first time. This is the classic shoe in the weightlifting scene and an icon. As it has been around for a while now you might even pick them up at a discount.
 
The Reebok legacy lifter is the top of the line weightlifting shoe from Reebok. This is a heavy shoe which will keep you rooted to the ground. I also like their designs.
 

Adidas powerlift

Price $90 - $100

 

Overview

 
This is the shoe that started it all for me, also I got one of the older versions back in the day. This shoe is one of the few lifting shoes that go over the counter for less than $100 depending on which color you are getting. In my opinion, it is the ultimate shoe for beginning lifters, if you do not want to repurpose your converse.
 

Sizes

 
  • 8.0
  • 8.5
  • 9.0
  • 9.5
  • 10.0
  • 10.5
  • 11.0
  • 11.5
  • 12.0

Colors

 
  • Core black / Carbon / Core black
  • Active Red / FTWR White / Active Red
  • Blue / White
  • Gray Five / FTWR White / Gray Five
 
This new design of a lifting classic will get you started and set up to obtain greatness in powerlifting. It also does not break the back by handing $200 over the counter as for other shoes.
 

Pros

 
The big pros are the newly available colors and the price.
 

Cons

 
No real elevated heel. You might need to get further shoes for squats.
 

Alternatives

 
 
The Adidas power perfect come in at a slightly higher price. For this, you get a higher heel and a different design without breaking the bank.
 
If you want to get as natural as possible while not being banned from the gym, deadlift slippers can also be an alternative for you. 
 
 

Do Win weightlifting shoes 

Price $76 - $95

 

Overview

 
The Do win weightlifting shoes are the budget option if you want to get weightlifting shoes with an elevated heel. They are one of the pairs which tailor below $100 for a new pair of shoes which meet these criteria. In addition, they also provide more space for wider feet when you might find the Romaleos to be too narrow for you.
 

Sizes

 
  • 4.5
  • 5.0
  • 5.5
  • 6.0
  • 6.5
  • 7.0
  • 7.5
  • 8.0
  • 8.5
  • 9.0
  • 9.5
  • 10.0
  • 10.5
  • 11.0
  • 11.5
  • 12.0
  • 12.5
  • 13.0
  • 14.0
 

Colors

 
  • Black / Red
  • Black / White
 
This is the budget version which comes in multiple sizes.
 

Pros

 
You will get solid weightlifting shoe for a low price.
 

Cons

 
The design might not be for everyone. Also, let's face it, some people just like to wear well-known brands.
 

Alternatives

 
 
If you still want some brand in your life for a lifting shoe and do not want to pay too much, go for the Adidas powerlift range.
 

Further reading

 

Topics: Powerlifting