The last thing you ever want to encounter is lifting a couple hundred-pound barbell over your head and suddenly feeling unbalanced and unstable. That could easily lead to a catastrophic nightmare that neither you, or I, want to be a part of.
Thus, in order to protect and prevent you from squishing yourself or anyone else, it is recommended to always lift in the correct weightlifting footwear. Luckily, there are many options to choose from. So many, in fact, that you might find yourself overwhelmed with the number of powerlifting shoes that you have to choose from.
In this article, we are going to talk about the best (AND most affordable) powerlifting shoes out there for the year 2018. The sport of powerlifting has grown immensely in popularity over the years, so now it’s time to talk about the sport that has produced some of the strongest athletes of our time.
This strength sport falls into the Olympic category of weightlifting, where strong as hell individuals are given three attempts at maximal weight on three different lifts: the squat, bench press and deadlift. Competitions take place all around as fitness-driven individuals around the world push themselves to their limits.
You guys put the power in powerlifting, which is why it’s so important to properly protect yourself from your head to your toe.
A Deeper Look At Lifting Accessories
No, you don’t need to have a purse and jewelry for your workout, but you do need proper shoes. I can’t preach this enough. There are many different types of shoes to choose from, so it’s important to know what you need to look for.
Lifting shoes fall into 3 general categories (which was surprising to me). The first category are shoes designed for Olympic lifts, think snatch, clean and jerk. These shoes have thick soles and solid high heels, allowing for a much deeper and fuller squat.
Flat-soled shoes fall on the opposite side of the spectrum, as these flat shoes are best for low-bar back squats because they reduce the range of motion in deadlifts. These types of shoes are known to help improve balance while also maximizing the lifters contact to the ground.
The third category of shoes falls somewhere in between the first two, as it was designed for powerlifts such as the low-bar back squat and the bench press. The raised heels on these types of shoes help to perfect those low squat stances for peak powerlifting performance.
Alright, so now that we’ve given the run-down on the different types of powerlifting shoes it’s time to look at specific pairs and find that perfect match for you!
How We Chose Our Ratings
Before we dive in, it’s important that our readers understand where these options come from that we are recommending to everyone. The top picked affordable powerlifting shoes from 2018 listed below stem from serious research, extensive feedback analysis along with scouring over countless customer verified reviews.
Each shoe and brand talked about feature excellent ratings, satisfaction and personal performance scores, which we have compared to some of their unlisted competitors. These powerlifting shoes have each across the board scored higher than the average shoe, creating for a more reputable and satisfactory experience. These powerlifting shoes are each uniquely spectacular, containing special little custom differential features that will help to take your lifting game to the next level.
One cool thing that I did notice also, is that it seems that all the major athletic shoe brands have come out with a powerlifting shoe. This is pretty awesome in my opinion, because specific brand lovers can keep on trucking with their favorite brand bandwagon swag. Not to say this is always the most cost efficient option, but it is readily available for those who prefer it.
5 Best Affordable Powerlifting Shoes For Every Lifting Need
All of the most significant powerlifting shoes have been listed below and you may be surprised on which companies are the most affordable and helpful. Check out the list, as it should help you better determine which powerlifting set of shoes will be the right fit for all your fitness needs.
No one can go wrong with a good ol’ pair of Chucks. The original All-Stars with their hard rubber soles and classic canvas construction are coming in clutch again, providing a reliable, affordable and fashionable fix for any powerlifters problems. I had to rate these shoes at the top for a multitude of reasons, with the first un-ashamedly being that Chuck Taylors have been a favorite necessity in my closet since I was in grade school. They’ve been there for me through my ups and downs and have stayed well-put together through many seasons of my life. My Chucks are a champion, and yours can be too.
These shoes are the Bomb.com. They are cheap and versatile, offering the perfect solution to dedicated powerlifters who are stunted by a budget. They have a flat, thin bottom sole that allows the lifters feet to be extremely close to the ground, thus reducing the bar’s total range of motion. For non-weightlifters, this means that these shoes are perfect for both competitions, post-workout gym cool-downs and even a night out on the town with your friends. I said it once, and I’ll say it again. You can never go wrong with some Chuck Taylors.
This high-rise shoe has a unique rubber outer pattern that helps to give the shoes a large amount of traction during heavy lifts. These shoes have a slick –look, almost similar to the above Chucks (which could be what their design was based off of). This pair has a lace locking system, cushioning around the ankles, a TPU heel clip for enhanced stability and a DuraGrip toe cap helping to create a solid lifting base and overall enhanced performance. The waxy sly looking canvas paired with foot cradling interior, guarantee to give any lifters wearing them a sense of rugged stability.
Make sure to check out Adidas powerlifting series, cleverly titled Powerlift. As the name implies, these shoes have been specifically designed with powerlifters needs in mind. An extra-wide sole helps to provide stability for those doing benching and doing big squats. The instep strap creates a customizable and secure fit while the flexible toe box and open forefoot ensure breathability. The 15mm heel is a little lower than the Olympic standard of 19mm so that powerlifters can achieve better leverage of their hamstrings on their powerlifting style.
These fabric-and-leather shoes remind me of being on a bowling league, but in a good way! These retro looking shoes, make putting on and adjusting your shoes as simple as a snap of the fingers. These shoes come with a simple hook-and-loop straps and have an extremely heavy-duty rubber shoe sole designed for Olympic lifting. Although they don’t have the brand name recognition as some other items on this list this is a very affordable, handy and smart buy to make for all those powerlifters on a budget. Each purchase comes with a free VS shoe bag, which is actually a kind of useful bonus if you ask me.
Here is the known and beloved name brand that we have all grown up loving, and gravitating towards. Nike is a solid brand, backed by years of credibility (not to mention celebrity endorsements) and this powerlifting shoe is just as reliable as the rest of their brands products. This modern style incorporates classic techniques with modern style, as the shoes is made of a multitude of fabrics. Like some of the above-mentioned shoes there is only a singular nylon strap (which is different from the earlier Romaleos versions) coupled with Flywire technology to keep your foot locked down into the position that it needs to be in. The heel is made of a heat wrapped fabric, breathable mesh on the top along with a stylish synthetic leather looking toe. This hybrid weightlifting shoe is much pricier than the others, which is why it made it to the bottom of this specific list. However, these light, stable and comfortable shoes seem like a great option to consider when hitting the weight room.
Bonus Option: Deadlifting Slippers are a great way to protect your feet from the nasty gunk on the gym floor without having to burden your feet with the clunky heavy gym shoes. The deadlifting slippers have a hard rubber bottom paired with terrycloth on top and are meant to reduce your range of motion as much as possible. These are great shoes for lifters with smaller feet, because the slippers maximize them foots contact area with the floor. And the best part is that you can get a pair for well-under $20, Whoopee!
Buyers Guide: What To Consider When Purchasing Powerlifting Shoes
There are many different things to keep in mind when purchasing the perfect pair of powerlifting shoes for you. It’s important to keep your fitness goals in mind, your workout preferences and your budget high on your list of priorities.
Yes, having badass workout shoes in a plus, but come on now, you’re already insanely awesome as it is. Do you really need expensive powerlifting shoes to prove it?
Trumping the outer design of the footwear, is the inner structuring and feel. Make sure to try on multiple pairs when looking for powerlifting shoes. And don’t be afraid to take those bad boys out for a spin around the store a few times, even move in different positions testing out the flexibility and mold to your foot. You want something that is comfy, sturdy and stable.
This is your time to make a decision that will seriously impact your lifting success, make sure to choose wisely. Although you can’t actually take the barbells into the shoe store with you, just take your time and be patient with the process. These shoes are going to be with you for the long-haul, so you want to make sure you pick out the right workout “partner”.
Disclaimer: Please remember to keep in mind that weightlifting shoes are ONLY for weightlifting. These shoes are not to be worn for other types of working out and should not be worn at home (except for those versatile Chucks) because they will wear down faster and you won’t be able to reap all of the powerlifting shoe benefits.
Perfect Powerlifting Shoes For Peak Performance
We hope this guide has provided you with some handy insight for when you decide to begin your search for the perfect powerlifting shoes for your athletic journey.
Unfortunately, because there are so many different types of shoes out there and preferences it just wouldn’t be fair of us to determine a one-size-fits-all best all-around powerlifting shoe. Every person is different and so is their fitness journey so it’s important to take the time to find that perfect shoe specifically for you.
Powerlifting shoes really can make a world of a difference, and if you don’t believe me then try it out for yourself!
Which powerlifting shoes stuck out to you the most? Let us know, as we would love to hear from you!