Want to find the best shoes to squat and deadlift in?
The right footwear for squats isn’t easy to find. You will have to consider each option, compare the features, and find a fit that’s ideal for your feet.
Each person is different when it comes to what works for them.
This detailed guide will offer insight into the best shoes to squat and deadlift in. These shoes are fully vetted, consistent, and will work well as soon as they are put on for a gym session.
Along with the top shoes for squatting, you will also learn about what to look for and why buying good squat shoes is essential.
Best Shoes to Squat and Deadlift In
1. INOV-8 FastLift 335
- Rubber Sole
- Raised Heel
- Wide and Flat Sole
- Built-in Flex Technology
- Spacious Toe Box
The INOV-8 FastLift 335 shoes are impressively designed and offer a long list of advantages.
With the comfortable rubber sole and well-built raised heel, this is a pair of shoes with incredible qualities. The average person looking to squat and deadlift in the gym will want to have these shoes on. They are easy on the eyes, offer tremendous control, and deliver the kind of flexibility needed to remain consistent.
As the weights start to increase, it’s shoes like these that make all the difference!
The company behind these shoes has managed to impress every step of the way, which is why it’s right at the top of the list. These shoes deliver everything a lifter needs when it is time to head over to the power rack for a bit of lifting. Whether you are squatting or deadlifting, these shoes are going to be your best friend during the movement.
One of the underrated qualities with these shoes is the wonderful toe box. Your feet will have ample space to move around during the heavier lifts. This makes it easier to control the weight and feel safe while lifting.
If you want to find the best shoes to squat and deadlift in then it’s time to look at this pair.
The quality is second to none and will ensure you have a smile on your face during the session.
2. Adidas Power Perfect III
- Synthetic Sole
- Air Mesh Collar
- Low-Top Arch
- Comprehensive Derby Construction
The Adidas Power Perfect III shoes have everything a person requires when it comes to efficiency, usability, and overall quality.
Adidas has made a name for itself when it comes to fitness gear and the same applies here. These shoes are some of the best on the market and remain the brand’s top lifting product.
You are getting top of the line quality with these shoes and it’s noticeable right away.
Whether it’s the derby construction or the refined air mesh collar, you will fall in love with these squat shoes immediately.
It’s one of those leading squat shoes that get the job done as soon as you start lifting.
3. Reebok LegacyLifter
- Rubber Sole
- Synthetic Finish
- Multiple Colors to Choose From
The Reebok LegacyLifter shoes deliver a power-packed selection of features making them a no-brainer for those wanting a functional pair for squatting and deadlifting.
With these shoes, you are getting a beautifully balanced option with an aesthetically pleasing design. Everything about this shoe is immaculate whether it’s the synthetic finish or the refined rubber sole.
The weight distribution is impressive whether it’s the raised heel or the tremendous midsole.
Once these shoes are on, you are going to realize the charm of great footwear for squats.
4. Adidas Leistung
- Removable Sole
- Synthetic Finish
- Woven Upper
- Micro-Adjusting Closure System
The Adidas Leistung shoes are one-of-a-kind when it comes to the refreshing closure system for complete control and comfort.
Adidas has come up with a long list of world-class shoes and this is right up there with the best of them. When it comes to the best shoes to squat and deadlift in, you are getting a power-packed option here.
This pair of shoes has a quality removable sole and comes with a breathable woven upper that’s ideal for lifting.
When you start to go deeper into a session, the woven upper will make all the difference in the world.
It’s this attention to detail and overall quality that makes it such a delightful addition to your gear.
5. Nike Romoleos 3
- Synthetic Leather
- Built-in Flywire Technology
- 22 mm Offset
- Wide Array of Colors
The Nike Romoleos 3 shoes are all about quality, precision, and comfort wrapped into one beautiful package.
Nike has always been among the best when it comes to producing high-grade footwear. When it is time to invest in refined squat shoes, you will want to put the Romoleos 3 on your list.
The Flywire technology is impressive along with its synthetic leather. This sleek pair of shoes has it all making it a no-brainer for those wanting to squat and deadlift at the gym.
The raised heel has been perfectly designed making it easy to use throughout the session.
If you want a pain-free experience when it comes to squatting, this is a pair of shoes that is a tremendous buy.
Tips for Buying the Best Shoes for Squatting
1. Start with the Fit
The fit has to be picture-perfect.
Whether you are getting squat shoes from Adidas or Nike, there’s nothing worse than ill-fitted shoes.
You are going to find it almost impossible to lift properly when the shoes are too loose or too tight. This is why knowing your measurements is important before spending time looking for a good pair of squat shoes.
Most people think about various features such as the woven upper or the raised heel but forget about the size! This is a major issue and it’s something that could ruin your investment as soon as you put it on.
The shoes should fit snugly as that is a must when it comes to squatting and deadlifting.
The right shoes for squats will always have to fit well or you are going to increase the likelihood of injury.
There’s nothing wrong about researching different features, comparing shoes, and looking for a good pair of shoes but the size is important. You cannot go with shoes that fit poorly.
To learn about the right fit, it’s best to take a regular pair of shoes at home and determine how well they fit. This can give you an idea about what’s required when it’s time to buy new squat shoes.
2. Find the Right Heel
The heel is critical when it comes to squats.
If you want to get more leverage out of the movement, the raised heel can go a long way, It will help push upwards after squatting down. Otherwise, a lot of people get stuck in this position leading to injuries.
The raised heel is an important requirement for any squat shoe.
Focus on how the raised heel is designed, what materials are used, and how high it is off the ground. Each detail can help determine whether or not the squat shoes are right for you.
In general, the best squat shoes will have a raised heel. However, if you want something that is “flat,” you can find shoes like that on the open market (read our guide on the best flat squat shoes). It’s all about acknowledging what works best for you.
For the average person, it’s highly recommended to invest in a pair of squat shoes with raised heels.
As you start to increase the weight, you will notice how difficult it is to push upward. It’s not easy to get enough power out of your heels when the shoes are flat. This is why the raised heel becomes a game-changer and often helps people break their personal records.
3. Look for Breathable Fabric
The fabric can often get ignored by lifters as they look to find the right fit.
While the shoe’s balance, quality, and efficiency matter, it’s also important to think about the actual fabric. It needs to be breathable for your feet to stay comfortable throughout the workout session.
In most cases, a person won’t care about how breathable their squat shoes are at the beginning of a workout. However, when the work starts pushing past an hour, it’s always nice to have some air flowing through to the toes.
Otherwise, it becomes quite uncomfortable to lift and that takes away from your performance.
The right pair of shoes should feel good on your feet. This is a must and it’s something far too many people ignore until the investment is made. Be smart and make sure the fabric is breathable. Your feet should never feel like they’re locked in a cage with nowhere to go!
The beauty of going with the leading footwear brands for squat shoes has to do with their emphasis on breathability. These brands understand the necessity of breathable fabric and use it for their products. This includes breathable uppers to allow the entire foot enough air throughout a workout session.
4. Check for Built-in Shock Absorption
Is the shoe offering enough shock absorption during the exercise?
Whether you are squatting or deadlifting, it’s important to focus on shoes that offer a bit of shock absorption throughout the movement. This means having a pair of shoes that will bounce up as soon as a bit of pressure is applied to them.
For example, a person that is wearing rigid shoes will notice unnecessary pressure on their feet while squatting. This becomes increasingly worse as more and more repetitions are completed.
You may try to ignore this pain at first but it will become a major hurdle after a while.
This is why it’s important to buy squat shoes that are absorption-friendly. This means they will allow the feet to cushion against the sole as they press down. It almost acts like a soft spring to ensure your feet are cozy throughout the movement.
Yes, squats and deadlifts are tough but that doesn’t mean you need to accept undue pressure on the feet!
Take the time to invest in comfortable squat shoes to feel good about your workout sessions.
5. Focus on Durability
How durable are your squat shoes?
It’s one thing to look at the shoe’s performance and another to make sure they will last as time goes on.
Too many shoes look good for the first few days and then start to break down. This is a horrible situation to be in due to the amount you’re spending on buying new squat shoes. As a result, it’s best to focus on the materials being used and how well they’re going to age with time.
The best materials tend to be rubber and leather for these shoes.
Anything other than this going to start to break down quickly. This is why the leading brands concentrate on using durable materials due to the amount of pressure put on a shoe during squats and/or deadlifts.
Remember, there are different parts to a shoe.
This means you want to not only think about the uppers but the outsole too. Each component plays a role in whether or not a squat shoe lasts. It’s easy to think one part will last but it’s the whole shoe that matters. You want something designed to last from top to bottom.
By keeping durability in mind, you will end up with a better pair of squat shoes.
6. Set a Budget
Setting a budget is the bare minimum.
You shouldn’t assume the finest squat shoes on the market will work with your budget. It’s not always the case and there are times when certain shoes are going to be too expensive.
If this is the case, it’s okay to look at other options.
As shown above, there are at least five wonderful squat shoes on the market and each one brings something potent to your workout regimen. It’s all about finding something that works well for you physically and financially.
The best shoes to squat and deadlift in will only work out when you set a proper budget.
Once the budget is set, you will find it easier to filter out expensive options. This makes the search ten times easier on your end.
A lot of people go into this process blindly and that is what hurts them during the research phase. You have to realize the prices can vary and it’s all about finding something in line with your budgetary needs.
By setting a budget, you are going to be well on your way to making a great investment that doesn’t put a dent in your wallet.
7. Traction is a Must
Imagine holding a 300 lb barbell over your shoulders and having your feet slip right from under you!
Isn’t that a frightening thought?
Well, it happens all the time and leads to some of the worst gym accidents a person can imagine. Whether it’s a blown knee or a busted ankle, the pain can be excruciating and it can impact your quality of life over the long-term. This is why it’s important to think about traction as you buy a new pair of squat shoes.
With well-tested squat shoes, you will notice the emphasis put on traction. There’s a reason for this.
Traction is a must because of how much weight is carried during squats or deadlifts. It’s important to feel safe as soon as the barbell is resting on your shoulders. You don’t want a situation where the feet begin wobbling because they can’t seem to grip the floor.
Modern squat shoes are designed to have a textured outsole. This allows them to remain firmly in line with the floor even as the barbell is lifted.
This type of comfort is necessary if you are thinking about breaking personal records without breaking bones.
8. Easy to Wear
Are the squat shoes easy to put on?
This is one of those underrated tips you should think about right away. Sometimes, a pair of shoes will look great until you realize how difficult they are to put on. This happens when the clasp is impossible to manage or doesn’t work well with your fitness needs.
If you are going to be changing shoes all the time, why not get something that’s easy to wear?
It will save quite a bit of time and you will enjoy wearing the shoes.
So, what should you look for when it is time to purchase new squat shoes? You will want something that is easy to wear and will remain secure as soon as it is fastened.
This means you want to go with something that has a straightforward setup and takes no more than a few seconds to put on. This is the only way to feel confident in what you are wearing.
A lot of people will ignore this part of the buying process. They often assume all squat shoes are the same when that is not the case at all. In fact, many shoes aren’t easy to put on and require too much work.
9. Don’t Forget the Aesthetics
Do the shoes look good once they are on your feet?
No one wants to go to the gym and look like they are wearing the worst pair of shoes on the planet!
If you are going to be spending hard-earned money on a new pair of squat shoes, they might as well look great too. This is why the best squat shoes are the ones designed with one eye on aesthetics.
Whether it is a sleek design or a well-sized heel, each aspect of the shoe has to be in line with your aesthetic requirements. Don’t ignore this part of the purchasing process because it is important.
Don’t assume the shoes need to look ugly!
They can look great and work well at the same time. There is nothing worse with emphasizing the looks of a shoe as long as you don’t discount everything else.
The beauty of going with the shoes mentioned above has to do with their appearance. Each shoe offers a unique, sleek design that’s easy on the eyes and is going to be a perfect fit with the rest of your attire.
Most brands are offering a wide array of colors when it comes to their squat shoes. Feel free to take a look and see which one suits your personality.
Aesthetics do matter when it comes to the best shoes to squat and deadlift in.
10. Always Compare Options
The final tip is to compare options as you think about making a new purchase. You are going to be inundated with options and it’s not easy to make a choice. This is why it’s recommended to take your time and compare different shoes.
You want to think about price, features, and aesthetics while doing the comparison.
Having as much information during the process can be a game-changer. It can alleviate any of the concerns you may have going into the buying phase. Otherwise, you may second-guess everything and assume the wrong choice has been made.
To keep things simple, create a checklist of needs and then compare it to the various options on the market.
You will start to find one that works well with your checklist and passes the comparison test too.
Considering the options available on the market right now, there’s more than enough to choose from.
As you begin to compare different shoes, you will begin to appreciate the pros and cons of each option. This level of depth to your research can ensure you find the best shoes to squat and deadlift in.
Benefits of Good Squat Shoes
1. Consistent Weight Distribution
There are several advantages to finding wonderful squat shoes and it all starts with consistent weight distribution.
When you are lifting a heavy barbell, you will realize how simple inconsistencies in your balance can ruin the lift. Instead, you want to buy shoes that will offset these imbalances and make sure the weight is distributed evenly throughout your feet.
This means if you are pressing back on the heel (often the case with a raised heel), you will want the weight to be evenly distributed rather than leaning to one side or the other.
It should feel like the weight is in the middle of your heel. This is when you end up doing well with your squats and deadlifts.
By going with great squat shoes, you are always going to enjoy how the weight is distributed.
Along with weight distribution for your performance, it’s also a great way to prevent injuries while squatting. You never want a situation where the uneven weight distribution leads to the foot breaking. This happens all the time and it’s not a pleasant situation to deal with at all.
Keep things simple and go with shoes that deliver in this regard.
2. Additional Leverage
Top-quality shoes offer a lot of benefits but sometimes it’s the additional leverage that wins you over.
Lifters want any advantage they can get when it comes time to squat or deadlift. Whether it is increasing your PR or cranking out powerful repetitions, it all starts with leverage.
If you are not getting enough power throughout your movement, the weight isn’t going to move the way you want it to. This is an issue many professionals deal with as well and it’s not a good spot to be in.
However, the right squat shoes are going to help immediately.
You are going to notice and appreciate the difference as soon as you put them to use. The shoes are going to provide you with a sudden burst during the toughest parts of your lift.
It’s not easy to find that kind of leverage during a lift but good shoes do make a difference.
It’s almost like a spring that pushes you up as you squat down. For a lot of people, this adds to their peace of mind and makes it easier to lift. If that’s important for you then a good pair of squat shoes are essential.
3. Complete Grip on the Floor
The grip you’re going to have is an essential advantage.
Just like the additional leverage, you are also going to appreciate the added traction. It will feel like your foot is stuck in the floor and isn’t going to move around as soon as the barbell rests on your shoulders.
You never want a situation where the barbell slips out of your hands. For a lot of people, it doesn’t slip out because of their hands. Instead, it has to do with their feet shaking and slipping all over the place!
You want to nip this problem in the bud before you try to break a PR.
You want to make sure there’s enough traction and that’s what the best pair of squat shoes offer.
Sometimes, the grip isn’t going to be good with the floor and that’s when your shoes kick into action. The right outsole can make a noteworthy difference in how you feel about a lift.
Don’t be afraid to look for great squat shoes because they will do a little bit of everything! You will fall in love with them due to the added grip and it will go a long way in helping you become a stronger, better lifter.
The best shoes to squat and deadlift in will always have an amazing grip.
4. Peace of Mind
Your peace of mind is such an underrated plus point.
Don’t you want to feel secure throughout the workout session? There is nothing worse than fearing for your safety because the shoes are poorly designed. This is why the best squat shoes can be a game-changer and a life-saver too.
Everyone wants to lift but the right footwear for squatting is a must.
As soon as you put on the workout shoes, you will realize the added control and comfort. This is what lifters crave when it is time to lift. They don’t want a situation where the footwear becomes the only thought in their mind.
You should lift in peace and that only happens when everything else is safe.
For example, imagine trying to bench press with a broken bench. Is that a situation you would feel comfortable in? Wouldn’t your mind only think about the wobbly bench underneath you? Well, the same applies to your footwear while squatting and/or deadlifting.
Only put on shoes that are in line with your needs. If not, you should continue to look for the right pair before lifting heavy. Otherwise, you are putting your safety on the line and that’s not worth it!
World-class squat shoes are all about specialization.
Just like you wear winter boots during snowstorms or skates at an ice rink, you will want to wear squat shoes for squatting. This is all about making sure you are wearing the right footwear for the situation in front of you.
Don’t lift without the right pair of shoes!
You need a specialized solution to feel good about the lift and workout session.
Remember, these shoes have been designed by professionals and are launched after years of qualified testing. Whether it’s Adidas or Nike, these brands spend a lot of time pouring over how their squat shoes work. You want to take advantage of their research and make the most of it as you lift heavier.
Why go with shoes that aren’t going to work out as well as you want them to?
It’s easier to choose the top squat shoes on the market and end up with something worthwhile.
This specialized design whether it’s the raised heel or breathable upper will go a long way in making you a stronger lifter. It’s never a bad idea to invest in good shoes before heading to the gym.
When it comes to the best shoes to squat and deadlift in, you will want to look for something that’s ideal for your needs.
The shoes mentioned in this guide are some of the best on the market right now. These are well-tested, proven, and consistent options.
If you are hoping to find a good fit, it’s time to start with one of these shoes. These are the best shoes to squat and deadlift in for a reason!