Buying Guide: Best CrossFit Shoes for Beginners (2018)

By Dimi | Men's

crossfit shoes

If you are training every day to improve your strength, endurance, stamina and speed, striving to be among the world’s finest athletes, then finding the right CrossFit shoes to fit your training regimen should be a high priority. On the other hand, if you have been training in ordinary sneakers or running shoes, you have likely found them to be wrong for your workouts in several important ways, including:

  • too much padding to get good contact with the floor
  • constructed too heavily for rapid and repeated movements
  • far too bulky and cumbersome when jumping
  • not stable enough for lifting

CrossFit is a unique athletic experience which requires incredibly versatile foot wear. Ordinary athletic shoes and running shoes may have too much cushioning or structural support to be flexible enough for the intense repeated movements involved with CrossFit training. In a CrossFit workout, the ideal shoe will allow you to feel intimate contact with the floor. For this reason, if you are going to take your Crossfit training seriously it is important that you find training shoes that are designed with the demands of CrossFit in mind. No ordinary athletic shoes or running shoes are designed to stand up to the unique demands of a CrossFit workout. In fact, training in the wrong kind of shoes will not only be difficult, but could actually lead to injury. This is why it is so important to find proper CrossFit training shoes.

Top 10 Best Crossfit Shoes for Men and Women in 2018

Reebok Women's Crossfit Nano 7.0 Training Shoe
Reebok Women's Crossfit Nano 5.0 Training Shoe
adidas Performance Women's Powerlift.3 W Weightlifting Trainer Shoe
adidas Performance Women's Powerlift.3 W Weightlifting Trainer Shoe
Reebok Women's Crossfit Lite TR 2 Training Shoe
Reebok Women's Crossfit Lite TR 2 Training Shoe
Nike Womens TR Fit 5 Cross Training Shoes Print
Nike Womens TR Fit 5 Cross Training Shoes Print
Reebok Women's Crossfit Lifter 2.0 plus Training Shoe
Reebok Women's Crossfit Lifter 2.0 plus Training Shoe
Reebok Men's R Crossfit Nano 5 Training Shoe
Reebok Men's R Crossfit Nano 7 Training Shoe
adidas Performance Men's Powerlift.3 Trainer Shoe
adidas Performance Men's Powerlift.3 Trainer Shoe
Reebok Men's Crossfit Lite TR Training Shoe
Reebok Men's Crossfit Lite TR Training Shoe
Reebok Men's R CrossFit Lifter 2.0 Training Shoe
Reebok Men's R CrossFit Lifter 2.0 Training Shoe
Inov-8 F-lite 195 v2 Cross-Training Shoe
Inov-8 F-lite 195 v2 Cross-Training Shoe
*our rating is based on comfort, value and performance

Common Features of CrossFit Shoes

CrossFit training requires you to think from the ground up. Your feet are literally the foundation of your workout. If your shoes do not provide you with the proper support, the rest of your body will not benefit and you could even suffer an injury as a result. When you do your WOD’s you will be taking part in a variety of exercises including weightlifting, jumping, cardio and running. For this reason, CrossFit shoes generally have unique design features that are suited to each type of exercise.

  •  Lifting – CrossFit training uses weightlifting to increase strength and muscle tone. But when squatting or dead-lifting heavy weights and heavy objects like workout balls, kettlebells and tractor tires, you need to have your feet firmly planted on the ground. For this reason CrossFit training shoes generally have flat bottoms so you can get the stability you need to lift effectively.
  •  Cardio Training – Cardio exercises like running sprints or distance running can take a heavy toll on your feet, ankles and knees if you do not have the proper support. For this reason CrossFit training shoes are designed with the type of arch support and shock absorbing characteristics of running shoes, while still being appropriate for weight training and lifting.
  •  Jumps – Jumps are an important component of CrossFit training, increasing your strength and power while toning your legs and core. But to jump effectively you need shoes that are neither cumbersome nor bulky. Many athletic shoes are so heavily padded that they make jumping difficult and often unsafe. CrossFit shoes are minimally constructed to allow you to jump freely, but still contain enough padding and shock absorption to make jumping safe.
  •  Strength Exercises – Exercises like push-ups, lunges and squats are designed to improve strength and muscle tone and are a major component of many different CrossFit training programs. While many athletes like to do lunges and squats basically barefooted, on a mat, many gyms have strict rules on footwear. For these exercises, the preferred CrossFit shoes need to be extremely lightweight and as minimal as possible.

Types of CrossFit Shoes

CrossFit shoes are designed to be versatile enough to stand up to repeated intense movements while providing the support needed for running, jumping and other cardio exercises. CrossFit shoes also have to provide you with a firm foundation for weightlifting while also being comfortable enough to get you through your WOD’s. CrossFit shoes generally range from around $50 – $200, depending on where you buy them the price will vary but this is a good benchmark range. The amount that you spend on your CrossFit shoes should reflect your level of dedication. The recent surge in CrossFit popularity, shoe manufacturers are coming out with new styles of CrossFit shoes on an almost monthly basis.

  •  Minimalist Shoes – It may seem almost impossible and even contradictory, but CrossFitters often say that the best CrossFit shoes feel like no shoes at all. With this in mind, Vibram pioneered a unique 5-toed design called the Vibram Five Fingers that literally fit your foot like a glove. Other shoe manufacturers have followed suit, offering their own take on minimalist designs.
  •  Running Shoes – Many CrossFitters use more than one pair of shoes. They will use minimalist shoes in the gym and running shoes when they are doing sprints and distance running.
  •  Premium CrossFit Shoes – Most brands offer shoe models in all of the different price ranges. If you are dedicated to CrossFit training it is probably a good idea to invest in a pair of premium CrossFit shoes. A few good examples that fall into this category include the Reebok Nano 2.0, Reebok Nano 3.0 and the Inov-8 XF-210.

Three Things to Consider When Buying CrossFit Shoes

1) Activity Level – If you are in the gym six days a week you are going to need a much more durable pair of Crossfit shoes than someone who is only working out a few times a week. In fact, many CrossFitters use multiple pairs of shoes for different uses, such as minimalist shoes for power lifting, strength exercises and jumping and shoes designed for running during their cardio workout.

2) Style – Style is a personal consideration that you must make on your own. No matter what you are looking for, whether it is something unique like Vibram Five Fingers, or something more traditional, any of the Crossfit shoes produced by Reebok, Inov-8, Nike and New Balance, among others, may be just what you are looking for.

3) Fit and Comfort – In CrossFit the best shoes feel like no shoes. Therefore, fit and comfort are extremely important. This means shopping for lightweight, flat-bottomed Crossfit shoes is probably your best option.

Our Top Rated Picks: Crossfit Shoe Reviews

Need help narrowing down your choices from our top 10 shoes for CrossFit listed up above? We’ve taken our favorite picks for both men and women and give you a little more information about them below.

Reebok Women’s Crossfit Nano 7.0 Training Shoe Review

Reebok Women's Crossfit Nano 5.0 Training Shoe ReviewThe Reebok Women’s Crossfit Nano 7.0 Training Shoes are designed with Kevlar material, a very durable material, that provides comfort and support to the foot. They come in a variety of colors and designs. The low cut design enhances flexibility and comfort during workouts. The open weave mesh let’s your feet breathe. The high abrasions rubber outsole is made to be used on many surfaces. These shoes feature a unique comfortable anatomical design for your feet. They are used for running, lifting, climbing ropes, cross training, combat classes, and walking. The midsole provides extra cushioning and stability. A well designed shoe for athletes and women that exercise regularly. The versatility of these makes them our top pick for the best crossfit shoes for women in 2018.

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adidas Performance Women’s Powerlift.3 W Weightlifting Trainer Shoe Review

adidas Performance Women's Powerlift.2 W Weightlifting Trainer Shoe ReviewThis Adidas Performance are ideal for women looking for dedicated cross-training sneakers for their workout. They are designed for maximum breathability and air flow. The high density midsole offers the wearer lightweight stability while a single instep strap helps with rear foot integrity which is essential for those serious about their workouts. This shoe also offers a lower height for the heel which is important for various workouts which include weightlifting. Many of those that have experimented with this shoe has stated that it changes your entire workout and how well you perform. Your workout becomes a true full body workout and challenges you the way that is normally expected for the workouts such as weightlifting.

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Reebok Men’s Crossfit R Nano 7 Training Shoe Review

Reebok Men's Crossfit Nano 5 Training Shoe ReviewThe Nano 7.0 is an athletic specialty, designed perfectly for weightlifting and low impact movement. It’s unique formation allows for a perfect anatomical fit, and supports vigorous movement with extreme durability. This Reebok re-invention has an upgraded midsole with precise delineation for style, as well as a polyurethane “NanoShell” exterior, and an all new embroidered Kevlar mesh for breathability and comfort. Some of the positives of this shoe include: 3mm heel drop platform for great comfort and stability, polyurethane NanoShell for protection while letting heavy weights, light design for easier movement, and stiff feel for optimal performance and overall support. Overall, these offer great performance for the money, which makes them our pick for the best crossfit shoes for men.

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adidas Performance Men’s Powerlift.3.1 Trainer Shoe Review

adidas Performance Men's Powerlift.2 Trainer Shoe ReviewThe adidas Performance Men’s Powerlift.3.1 Trainer Shoe are designed for weightlifting and rigorous training routines. They are made of mesh, synthetic materials and leather for lightweight upper support to the foot. Its wedge heels are engineered for weightlifting to provide stability and grip. It has a strap over the laces to provide added support. These shoes are great for power lifting, squats, and high bar lifting. They come in several colors with the three leather stripes on the side. Overall, these make a great pair trainer shoes for competitive and non competitive weight lifting for men who are into CrossFit training.

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Tips on the Use and Maintenance of CrossFit Shoes

The most important thing to consider during your CrossFit workout is safety. Doing whatever you can to promote a safe and effective workout should be your top priority. With that in mind, here are some general suggestions:

  • Men and women often have slightly different requirements in terms of CrossFit footwear. If you are new to CrossFit, ask your trainer or friends at the gym for advice about which Crossfit shoes are best for you.
  • Purchase your CrossFit shoes based on your present needs, not your future aspirations. While you may get into heavy weightlifting in the future, right now you may be doing more cardio including jumping and sprints.
  • Make an investment in your Crossfit shoes. Remember that your feet are the foundation of your workout. If you protect them, they will support you.

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