Best Fitness Shoes for Lifting & More with Push Fitness

What’s on Your Feet? Best Fitness Shoes for Lifting, Running, Sports and More

Hey there! It’s Trainer Laila here from Push Fitness – ready to guide you through an essential aspect of your gym toolkit that often gets overlooked—your footwear. 

Whether you’re lifting heavy, sprinting fast, or just going for a casual stroll, the right shoes can significantly enhance your performance and prevent injuries. Let’s explore what makes the best fitness shoes for different activities, especially focusing on those of you hitting the weights. So let’s start there! 

Best Fitness Shoes for Lifting with Push Fitness

The Best Fitness Shoes for Lifting

In lifting weights, especially with barbells, the correct footwear is not just important—it’s crucial for ensuring proper form, stability, and safety. Here’s what you need to look for in lifting shoes:

Flat Sole

Essential for stability. You want as much of your foot on the ground as possible to maximize force and balance.

Non-Compressible Sole

Opt for a hard material like wood or hard plastic that provides a solid foundation, allowing for more powerful lifts without the risk of compression that you get from softer soles.

Heel Support

A slight heel (about .75 inches) can enhance squat depth by improving ankle mobility, beneficial for front squats and Olympic lifts. However, for deadlifts and similar lifts, a flat sole is often preferred to maintain a closer and more stable stance to the ground.


A Velcro strap across the top of the shoe can help lock your foot in place, preventing any sliding and providing additional support.

Going Barefoot: Yes or No?

While some lifters prefer the tactile feel of barefoot lifting for exercises like deadlifts, using shoes specifically designed for lifting or deadlift slippers can offer a good balance of protection, feel, friction against the floor, and performance.

Deadlifts are where some lifters prefer the barefoot feel, to maximize their connection to the floor. If going completely barefoot for deadlifts isn’t your style, consider deadlift slippers as a happy medium. They offer protection without adding unnecessary height or compression.

Don’t Forget About Your Shins!

Just like baseball players wear pants to protect their legs, consider covering your shins during deadlifts. The bar should be close enough to graze your shins, which can be rough. Socks or pants can save you from scrapes and bruises, ensuring your focus stays on lifting, not on avoiding injury.

Best Fitness Shoes for Walking, Running & Sports with Push Fitness

Best Fitness Shoes for Other Activities

While lifting shoes are perfect for the weights area, let’s briefly touch upon what you should wear for other popular activities:

Walking Shoes

Look for walking shoes with a cushioned, compressible sole for comfort and a design that promotes natural foot movement. Features like breathable material and good arch support will make long walks enjoyable and safe.

Running Shoes

Your running shoes should be lightweight yet supportive, with enough cushioning to absorb impact. Consider your foot type and gait when choosing running shoes, as these can greatly influence your comfort and injury risk.

Sports Shoes

Each sport has specific requirements, but generally, look for shoes for sports activities that offer: good traction, flexibility, and sufficient cushioning. Shoes designed for the specific movements and surfaces of the sport can improve your game and reduce the chance of injury.

The Summary on Fitness Shoe Success

Choosing the best fitness shoes for your exercise type or activity not only improves your performance, but it also plays a pretty big role in injury prevention. Whether you’re a seasoned weightlifter or just starting your fitness journey, investing in the correct footwear is a step toward achieving your health and fitness goals. 

Remember, I’m here at Push Fitness to help guide you in your fitness training as a journey–because it is your fitness journey! This includes advice on right gear to maximize your results safely and effectively. Join me in the gym in Sunnyvale, CA, and let’s make sure you’re set up for success.

This targeted and specialized footwear advice should ensure your feet are as prepared as you are when you next hit the gym or the track. The right shoes and the right preparation can positively impact your workout regimen in a very noticeable way. The difference can not only prevent injury and enhance performance, but the best fitness shoes will also enhance confidence, enjoyment and your motivation to lace up and get moving!