Whenever you start a new workout or training program, one of the first things you should do is figure out the best workout shoes to wear. The right type of workout shoe can be crucial to your workout (and your feet, from heel to midsole to toe), even if you plan on weight lifting, cycling, or you need walking shoes.
Making the right choice with footwear like sneakers is even more critical if you want to run and need the right running shoe. Or if you do CrossFit workouts or a HIIT workout, you need breathable gym shoes, offer comfort, and support your weight and joints.
If you’re new to working out, chances are you’re a bit lost about which gym shoes will be the best workout shoes to support you and your feet as the right shoe choice for your new workout. And you don’t want just any pair of gym shoes or to pick the wrong shoe choice for your needs, especially if you’re going to be investing a lot of time (and potentially money) into your new training routine.
Do you need a breathable mesh, anti-slip rubber, or a rubber outsole for your workout shoe? Do you need women’s workout shoes or men’s workout sneakers? Or do you go for the big brands like Nike, Reebok, and Adidas when selecting your perfect shoe? The options are endless.
Sneakers can ultimately be a personal preference. So, no matter if you’re running, boxing, dancing, doing high-intensity interval training, or lifting weights and weight training — this guide to sneakers has you (and your feet) covered.
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Salomon XA Pro 3D V8 GTX
Best for trail running or hiking
For trails, I prefer Salomon XA Pro 3D V8 GTX. These are Gore-tex to keep your feet dry and have firm soles for added stability on the trails. They also have a reinforced toe to keep you from stubbing your toe.
As these shoes are sturdier, they are suitable for indoor cycling and some indoor exercise classes. With a firm sole, some activities (such as calf raises) might be challenging in these shoes.
Asics Gel Kayano 27
Best for running and strength training
The Asics Gel Kayano 27 provides additional ankle stability for people with muscle imbalances, which we all have. Once the ankle and knees are supported correctly, the proper shoe can relieve pain in the knees and ankles and help correct over-pronation, which is when your foot rolls inward, causing shin splints and can cause knee pain and swelling.
The right stability shoe will help minimize the rolling inward and help the heel-to-toe transition slowly, correcting your running form over time.
I like how light this model has become over the years. The shoe has transformed into fashionable and light footwear while helping correct the running form. Hence, relieving the pressure on our joints while we run with added cushioning. They also can be worn for strength training as well.
Best for CrossFit
There are two main things you look for in a CrossFit shoe: durability and versatility. The right CrossFit shoe takes you from squats to rope climbs to burpee box jumps all in one workout. A good pair of CrossFit shoes feel just as comfortable during an 800-meter run as it does during a couple of deadlifts and push-ups — and NoBull surpasses standards for all of the above.
NoBull shoes have a reputation for being heavy-duty yet comfortable, supportive, yet flexible. Plus, they’re sleek and simple, and you can choose from high-top, mid-rise and regular to find your perfect fit.
Asics Gel Nimbus 22
Best for high impact workouts (like dance cardio, plyometrics or HIIT)
My favorite sneaker for HIIT training is the Asics Gel Nimbus 22. I’ve tried a bunch of different brands and models, but I always come back to the Gel Nimbus. They have fantastic shock absorption for high-impact movements, but are light enough that they don’t feel like clunky moon shoes; the perfect balance for dance cardio.
Otomix Warrior Bodybuilding Boxing Weightlifting MMA Shoes
Best for Boxing
For boxing workouts, these are super-comfortable and feel like you’re walking on clouds! I also like that they can be slip-on and not tied with laces. Whenever I do boxing workouts, drills, or high-impact training, the Otomix Men’s/Women’s Warrior Bodybuilding Boxing Weightlifting MMA Shoes are my go-to shoes.
The best workout shoes for you are the ones that take both your sport and your feet into consideration. Please do your homework and be mindful of how your current training shoes make your feet feel and notice how they affect performance.
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