Best Crossfit Shoes Reviewed & Rated

Crossfit is a particular practice. Unlike other activities, it combines a wide variety of specific motions, lifts, and exercises. Exercises which, of course, are not as effective if performed wearing generic shoes. Not only is wearing shoes not specifically designed less efficient, but doing so may also become hazardous with particular crossfit exercises.

Last Updated: February 2, 2018
By Tenby Lloyd:

With crossfit still an incredibly popular workout regime, we have updated this list to help reflect some of the newer shoes that are now available. Brining in new additions from Reebok, Puma, and even some lesser known brands like NOBULL, this list really showcases the best of the best when it comes to the shoes you need for crossfit.

On the other hand, shoes made specifically for crossfit provide the adequate features required for optimal performance. They provide essential features such as grip, flexibility, comfort, and shock absorption. These aspects are important in practical training and should be present in every respectable crossfit shoe. There are multiple types of cross training shoes as it’s an activity that involves a wide variety of exercises, but the practical features remain consistent through all.

Featured Recommendations

Reebok Crossfit Nano 6.0
  • Reebok Crossfit Nano 6.0
  • 5 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Kevlar-Infused Upper
  • Price: See Here
Nike Free Trainer 5.0 v6
  • Nike Free Trainer 5.0 v6
  • 4.2 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Flywire Ultra-Light Support
  • Price: See Here
Asics Met Conviction
  • Asics Met Conviction
  • 4.5 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Speva Bounce-Back Midsole
  • Price: See Here

First, you need to identify the level of crossfit training you will be partaking in. Different practices in this particular discipline need specific shoes for their individual levels. Cross training shoes will provide the general support required if chosen wisely, for more precise, better results. All-in-one cross training shoes are acceptable for lifting; however, powerlifting cross-trainers will come in way more handy and efficient, as they’re specially designed for such an activity. Below we cover all types of cross training shoes and everything you need to know about them to make a perfect choice.

In a general view, crossfit requires shoes that can endure high-intensity aerobic activities and heavy lifts.

Wearing the wrong shoes for High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT), for example, will result of poor performance or can lead to soreness, irritation, and even easily avoidable injuries. Just like wearing crossfit shoes for outdoor activities. Thus, the right footwear is just as important as proper training equipment.



15 Best Crossfit Shoes



1. Reebok Nano 6.0

The Reebok Nano series come in its best presentation so far. The Nano 6.0 features a new design adapted to the anatomical shape of the feet. It maintains the Kevlar-infused upper from the previous Nano models for lightweight efficiency. A compression-molded midsole provides both cushioning and shock absorption for aerobic variety. The Nano 6.0 delivers a multi-functional build in general, and it’s one of the lightest crossfit shoes in the market. Lastly, the removeable insole allows a quick switch to a customized insole.
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New anatomical design
Thanks to its new anatomical build, the shoe now resembles more the natural shape of feet. This feature delivers greater stability and firmness with a very natural fit.

Compression-molded midsole
Compression in the midsole makes this design fit for a wider variety of exercises. By optimizing both cushioning and shock absorption, they’re firm enough to perform squats yet aerobic enough to perform box jumps.

Cost and Value
This model offers a very functional design with the features needed in every cross training shoe. It’s pretty accessible for what it delivers in comparison to other brands and definitely worth the investment.
  • Optimized cushioning and shock absorption
  • Affordable price
  • Multi-use shoes
  • Very lightweight (9.8oz)
  • Best nano product yet
  • Small toe box
  • Some users complained about padding

2. Nike Free Trainer 5.0 v6

The Free Trainer 5.0 v6 delivers a barefoot experience to the most intense crossfit training sessions. Its design is based on a lightweight approach with enough support and breathability. This shoe allows effectiveness in multiple exercises, as waffle pistons cover the outsole for shock absorption. A Phylite midsole gives this shoe the adequate efficiency and durability needed for repetitive, extensive crossfit training.
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Waffle Piston Outsole
The piston technology on the outsole makes this shoe the right option for both professional cross-fitters and casual trainers. This outsole provides enough absorption to run comfortably yet enough stability to perform weight lifting.

Phylite Midsole
The injection molded unit used in the midsole equips this shoe with proper lightweight flexibility. Additionally, the midsole contains flexible hexagonal pods that deliver multi-directional flexibility to optimize each motion of a variety of exercises.

Cost and Value
The are much more affordable than other training products from Nike. Considering the amount of included technology, efficiency, and durability in this shoe, it’s worth every cent.
  • Superior flexibility
  • Superior flexibility
  • Very lightweight design (10oz)
  • Fashionable style
  • Durable
  • The black trim on the tip degrades quickly
  • Average arch support

3. Adidas Adipower Weightlifting

This shoe is specifically designed to deliver maximum weightlifting power in a lightweight manner. The build contains just the right amount of stability with support to enhance performance in powerlifting and circuit training. The lightweight chassis includes injected polymer for a stable build. VentFlow openings provide adequate ventilation and the rubber outsole covering will prevent the shoe from slipping under most reasonable circumstances. The adjustable instep strap provides a perfect foothold for lifting.
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This shoe goes hand in hand with weightlifting. They are definitely something cross-trainers and powerlifters should consider wearing for their sessions. Every little aspect of this shoe, from stability to the anti-slipping outsole was designed thinking with lifters in mind.

Instep Strap
An adjustable hook-and-loop instep strap provides a secure foothold throughout any intensive workouts. You can enjoy their "zero internal slipping" design, which is something anyone will appreciate when performing heavy lifts. The rearfoot integrity is on point.

Cost and Value
The Adipower Weightlifting is costly. However, it’s much more affordable now online and at a few retail stores with it's current markdown. These are very, very functional and won’t need a replacement for a long time. We’d say it’s a smart investment for cross-trainers and powerlifters if they can make an effort. Just take a look at the positive user feedback. Cross trainers love these.
  • Sturdy platform
  • Superb stability and comfort
  • Lightweight build (15,8 oz)
  • Perfect lifters
  • No women’s sizes (order 1.5 smaller)
  • Costly

4. Inov-8 FastLift 325

4. Inov-8 FastLift 325
Inov-8 has an excellent reputation for their previous crossfit models, and the FastLift 325 was no exception. This model is ideal for weightlifting and cross training, having everything necessary for it. From stability, forefoot flexibility and versatility to solid grip. The lightweight build (11.72oz) allows maximum performance with reduced efforts and is one of the lightest Inov-8 models available.
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Top-Notch Stability
An external heel cage along with power-truss technology provide bilateral stability and a sound basis for each lift. This technology allows users to access a greater variety of exercises within the optimal performance.

Enhanced Flexibility
Meta-flex technology placed in the forefoot makes the shoe extremely comfortable. It also improves range of motion, allowing users to transition from competitive powerlifting to other exercises during the same session.

Cost and Value
The quality of this model undoubtedly matches its price. They might not be accessible for everyone, but pro equipment simply isn’t cheap. It is, however, cheaper than many other brands of similar quality.
  • Amazingly stable
  • Multiple trainings
  • Lightweight (11,72oz)
  • Superior flex
  • Some sizes are a tight fit
  • Laces are stretchy

5. Adidas Powerlift 3

5. Adidas Powerlift 3
The Powerlift 3 includes some of the features from the previous Powerlift version and some new technologies as well. This model features anti-slip protection with a rubber outsole for a firm and secure grip. The synthetic leather upper is not only lightweight, but it also provides extra support for the ankles. The forefoot structure is open, and the toe box is flexible for optimal performance.
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Weightlifting Midsole
The midsole on the Powerlift 3’s is carefully crafted to support full lifts. The high-density die-cut midsole wedge makes stability high while dealing with heavy weights, all of this without adding bulk to the build.

Improved Fit
After hearing some complaints about the fit on the Powerlift 2’s, Adidas went for and extra-wide fit on the 3’s. The improved structure now resembles the anatomic shape of feet and leaves enough space for comfortability around the toe box.

Cost and Value
Very accessible price, a must get for powerlifting shoes. Not the perfect shoe, but the price tag is very hard to beat. Price is way more affordable than the rest of the brands, considering the quality of these shoes. Good performance to cost ratio.
  • Powerlifting specific
  • Removable insole
  • Great stability
  • Comfortable
  • Durable
  • Some sizes are gith for wide feet

6. Puma Fierce

6. Puma Fierce
The women’s fierce serve multiple purposes. It’s a very comfortable piece for cross-training and aerobic exercise, and arguably the best-looking women's sneaker in this list. This designed counts with extra bilateral sole thickness for increased stability during workouts. Pivot points on the outsole allow rotational movements to be totally smooth. These shoes are perfect for dancing sessions and other wide variety of cardio training.
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Ultra Breathable
The Women’s Fierce are designed with multiple lightweight and breathable materials to keep comfort at a maximum. The Ariaprene upper meets high standards of comfortability and breathability. The shoe allows the air to flow stopping the heat from accumulating at the inner sole.

This model includes enough stability to support each move. An internal flatlock stitching will reduce friction and make sure everything stays in place. The bilateral extra thickness makes sure to keep your shoes in the right place.

Cost and Value
This pair is not only efficient, but it’s also very fashionable. These shoes will meet users expectations, at an affordable price. Not as complete as other cross-trainers but it does the trick, but considerably cheaper.
  • Design is stylish
  • Multifunctional shoe       
  • Breathable materials      
  • Stability is on point           
  • Fair price             
  • Light materials, but not too durable
  • Not that good for heavy lifting

7. Vibram KMD EVO

7. Vibram KMD EVO
The FiveFinger Vibram is an asphalt specialist when it comes to sprinting, running, and jumping. It has a total sole thickness of 11.8mm, which is pretty thick for a FiveFinger. The barefoot-like experience makes them the ideal choice for aerobic exercise in crossfit training. The grip is firm, and it meets high standards of responsiveness.
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The FiveFinger KMD Evo is very agile. Flexibility, shock absorption, and balance make up for a dynamic combination for this design.The sole is thick enough to deal with the impact and sufficiently flexible to maximize each gait and jump. Its design makes it even a good parkour shoe.

Individual toe boxes make the fit very comfortable. The overall design is lightweight and thin, providing a barefoot experience during each training. No more tight toes. Cushioning and shock absorption reduce any possible pain.

Cost and Value
This shoe isn’t the most expensive or the cheapest. One thing is for sure; it’s the best option out there for multi-sports practitioners. The grip on these make them a good option for climbing shoes; it makes sure users stay on the mountain. These will replace multiple pairs of shoes.
  • Wide variety of uses        
  • Superb comfortability      
  • Supports multiple terrains             
  • Flexible and resistant      
  • Not recommended for massive weights

8. Asics Met Conviction

8. Asics Met Conviction
Arguably the lightest cross-training shoe found in the market. This shoe delivers excellent flexibility, cushioning, shock absorption, and durability while weighing 8.8oz. SpEVA® midsole technology maximizes any aerobic and lifting activity, making it a great crossfit shoe. The build is not only lightweight but also very slim with a 7mm heel and 4mm forefoot height. SPEVAFOAM™ technology supports responsiveness.
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This new technology is distributed strategically across the critical points of the outsole to increase durability like never before. The AHAR® compound is 50% more durable than the usual ASICS High Abrasion Rubber.

Versatile Design
Multiple technologies work together to make this shoe stand out from the crowd. SPEVAFOAM™ enhances midsole durability and supports bounce back. COMFORDRY™ sock liner provides cushioning, comfort and moisture-wicking features for a dryer environment and odor prevention.

Cost and Value
More expensive than some other cross-trainers, but very efficient performance to cost ratio. The shoe isn’t that costly taking into consideration the multiple advanced technologies included. We recommend this purchase for crossfit training.
  • Outstanding technology 
  • Feather-like weight (8.8oz)           
  • More durable than ever before    
  • Minimalist build
  • The fit runs half a size tight

9. New Balance Minimus 40

9. New Balance Minimus 40
The Minimus 40 is a multi-purpose cross-training shoe. It supports aerobic and anaerobic training and is properly equipped to fit runners. This minimalist shoe counts with a Rapid Rebound midsole that cushions and energizes each gait. REVlite heel technology, on the other hand, offers the adequate stability required to perform steady lifts. Made to wear with or without socks, providing a barefoot experience in both cases.
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REVlite Heel Technology
REVlite consists of a foam compound applied to the heel to maximize cushioning and shock absorption. By delivering responsiveness and durability, this shoe can endure intense mixed training that involves running, jumping, and climbing.

Rapid Rebound
This technology minimizes impact and helps maintain stability after each movement. Additionally, it uses shock from the previous motion to impulse the next one quickly. In combination with a Vibram® outsole, the shoe provides optimized surface contact and multi-directional traction.

Cost and Value
Not the cheapest cross-trainer out there, but a very efficient one. For those who can afford to spend a buck or two, this shoe is a good option. Its lightweight, yet durable materials will make it last long enough.
  • Multi-purpose technology            
  • Lightweight structure (10.2oz)    
  • Durable
  • Supports running              
  • Comfortable fit  
  • Some users complained about toe box space
  • Narrower than previous products

10. Nike Metcon 3

10. Nike Metcon 3
Nike’s Metcon 3 is a pretty complete cross-trainer. The design enhances performance during lifts, box jumps, rope climbs, and wall exercises. The midsole is softer than ever, delivering enough flexibility for sprints and cardio. The midfoot section is covered by textured rubber to support rope climbing and durability. The combination of a robust platform and rubber heel make it stable enough for lifting sessions.
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Superb Grip
This piece is equipped to hold on to any exercise. Flywire cables deliver a secure lockdown while clips on the heel prevent slipping in wall activities. The forefoot is equipped with sticky rubber to maximize traction.

Stable Platform
The revamped platform supports steady exercises better than ever. The platform provides a flat foot experience while performing squats with enhanced stability. The adjusted fit makes sure nothing wiggles inside the shoe.

Cost and Value
Cheaper than some of their products, and more expensive than some others. Pretty average price for a cross-training shoe, but not the cheapest one out there. It does maintain a nice performance to cost ratio.
  •  Lightweight (11.2oz)      
  • Great style         
  • Extra grip for wall exercises and climbs    
  • Soft and flexible midsole
  • Comfortable fit  
  • Doesn’t support long runs
  • Slides slightly to the sides sometimes

11. NOBULL Trainer

11. NOBULL Trainer
This simple shoe has become quite popular in the crossfit community, and it has to do with the fact that they really do live up to their name. This shoe is designed for a multitude of exercises, in whatever environment you choose to do them in. Outdoor, indoor, rain, shine - this shoe is going to hold up and keep you going.
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Seamless SuperFabric
The upper is crafted from their trademarked SuperFabric, a stretchy, flexible material that is lightweight and breathable. The material is also resistant to abrasion, so your shoes aren't going to break down on you any time soon. There are guard plates added in to ensure that there is no damage when you climb ropes, or other wear and tear activities.

Any Environment Lugs
The tread on this shoe is fantastic, and it's going to serve you well in both wet and dry conditions. Go straight from the inside of a gym to running outdoors without any issue. Great traction and support are the key points here, exactly what any crossfit trainer needs.

Cost and Value
Given how well rounded these shoes are, and how long they should last you, the price is very understandable. Yes, they are a bit more expensive than others on our list, but these are shoes that perform great and look great as well.

SuperFabric Upper

SuperFabric Guard Plates

Flexible and Supportive

Abrasion Resistant

Durable Lug Patters

Reflective Logo

100% Vegan


Sizing Runs Small

May Not be Ideal for Those With Knee Problems

12. 361 Degrees Bio Speed 2

12. 361 Degrees Bio Speed 2
When it comes to crossfit you need a shoe that's going to be as well rounded as your workout. This trainer from 361 Degrees is an all around great shoe, designed for running, jumping, and even lifting. Extremely lightweight, these won't weigh you down and you should find you have ample speed and less weight when you complete your workout.
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Qu!k Spine
Shoes that are too lightweight or too flexible will generally lack the support needed to truly protect your foot and support it enough while working out. These shoes feature their signature Qu!k Spine technology that implements a carbon fiber plate in to the midsole for added support and to ensure it is a solid base.

Sticky Undersole
When it comes to crossfit, you need good grip and traction so that you don't slip or injure yourself when tackling some of your toughest challenges. The Bio Speed 2 has a stick outsole made of durable rubber that will keep your feet planted exactly where you want them to be.

Cost and Value
While these are more expensive than some other running shoes on the market, given that they are cross trainers that are extremely worth the money. You can do a lot in the shoes, and they are also low profile enough that you can wear them outside of the gym as well.

Fitz Rite Webbed Midfoot

Tongue Has Zero Pressure

Qu!k Spine

Qu!k Foam

QDP System


Not A Lot of Padding

13. Reebok Crossfit Transition

13. Reebok Crossfit Transition
With Crossfit right in the name, it's no surprise that these shoes would show up on our list of best shoes for crossfit. While we have already looked at another model by Reebok, this model offers up so unique features which make it noteworthy. For those that like a tight, custom fit there is a hook and loop closure that will help secure this shoe to your foot shape and size.
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Midsole and Outsole
You need a shoe that you can run in, jump in, and lift in - which is a tall order. Luckily, the midsole and outsole on this shoe has been made to withstand all activities, and has the stability and support required to keep you safe and comfortable. Heavy traction keeps you stable while you lift, and the light upper makes jumping and running a breeze.

Breathable Mesh
The last thing you want is hot, sweaty feet at the end of your workout, especially since crossfit is going to make you dripping with sweat by the end. The upper on these shoes is extremely breathable, using well ventilated mesh to ensure heat can escape while you move.

Cost and Value
One of the great things about these shoes is they aren't even that expensive, and you can easily get a pair for under $100. Given how durable it is, and how great the traction, stability, and support are - this is a great deal.


Hook and Loop Closure

Multi Lugged Outsole

Roomier Toe Box

Breathable Mesh


Has a Break In Period

14. Hoka One One Bondi Five

14. Hoka One One Bondi Five
As one of Hoka One One's most cushioned shoes, this is a running shoe we see time and time again on lists. The reason is, it's a great shoe, and offers supreme comfort for nearly any foot. The 5th model in this line has taken a lot of wearer feedback, and used that to upgrade the shoe in to one of the best models they have released yet.
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EVA Midsole
A lot of Hoka One One's comfort comes from their well designed midsole. Comprised of full length EVA, it makes the shoe well cushioned, and keeps it responsive with just enough bounce. Even with the midsole size, this shoe remains very lightweight, perfect for runners, jumpers, and crossfitters alike.

Wider Options
A feature new to the Bondi Five is that it is now available in wider sizes. Prior models were more limited in width, making the shoe uncomfortable for individuals who needed the extra space. Now, even the standard width has a bit of a roomier toe box, given your toes enough space to splay naturally.

Cost and Value
Since this is their newest model, it is significantly more expensive than their previous releases. Coming in as one of the more pricier shoes on our list, this is going to be an option for those who have a higher budget, or who really value comfort and cushioning. Over time the price will more than likely decrease, and you can also look at prior models to save some money.

Stability Running Shoe

Plush Cushioning

Full Length EVA Midsole

Wider Sizing Options

3D Puff Print


Midsole Can Feel Stiff


15. Puma Cell Riaze Heather

15. Puma Cell Riaze Heather
This shoe looks fantastic on, and is great for people who are going from the gym to dinner, or to meet up with friends after. But looks aren't the only thing that Cell Riaze Heather has going for it, as this is a well cushioned and very breathable shoe that is perfect for taking to your next crossfit workout.
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Bubble Midsole
The bubble styled midsole offers up a great level of cushioning for your foot, and it also focuses a lot of attention on the heel. If you happen to suffer from pronation, or heel pain, this is the shoe that is going to give you great stability and comfort while you work out.

EcoOrthoLite Sockliner
Keeping your foot cool, sweat free, and comfortable is the EcoOrthoLite sockliner that is featured in this shoe. The softness and style give a great fit and ensure that your foot feels snug and comfortable all day long.

Cost and Value
These shoes are actually really inexpensive, and you can grab yourself a pair for under $50 easily. Given how comfortable they are, this is an amazing pair of shoes to keep in your gym bag, and you can use them as every day shoes as well since they are so stylish.

Heathered Textile Upper

Sturdy Rubber Gripped Outsole

Bubble Midsole

EcoOrthoLite Sockliner

Added Heel Cushioning


Not the Longest Lasting Running Shoe

Cross-trainers will make a massive difference in your workouts. Standard sneakers just can’t beat tailor-made technology that was exclusively designed for the purpose. But at the same time, this technology is more costly than standard footwear, of course. At the end of the day, professional quality is never cheap but you do get what you pay in performance.


Those looking to optimize each aspect of their crossfit training, and are willing to make an investment, will find unique benefits in cross-trainers that can’t be found in other footwear. Whether it’s optimized stability for heavy lifting, or explosive responsiveness for jumping, cross-trainers will help you dominate diverse workout regimens. Of course, you don’t want to spend the money on crossfit shoes if you’re using them for walking.

Keep in mind that crossfit shoes are for, well, crossfit. Crossfit-specific shoes are NOT efficient at work or running over 5 miles (even though some of them do support running and walking). The target of this kind of shoe is to enhance the aspects of crossfit training. Don’t expect them to be efficient at practices unrelated to weightlifting, crossfit, or some aerobic exercises. Crossfit is a specific practice, and so are cross-trainers; hell, even standing all day in these is uncomfortable.



Criteria Used to Evaluate the Best Crossfit Shoes

Grip & Stability

Crossfit shoes need to be firm and stable to deliver an acceptable lifting experience. It’s crucial to maintain a steady grip on the floor’s surface at all times. Otherwise, lifters are susceptible to slipping, which is not only annoying but also extremely hazardous. The last thing you want while carrying a heavy-loaded barbell is to slip.

The grip of a shoe depends on multiple factors. For instance, your training surface has a direct impact on the effectiveness of the grip. The materials of which the outsole of the shoe is made of also plays a crucial role. The best crossfit shoes have a grip which supports lifting, rope climbing, and jumping. Crossfit shoes that slip during any of these exercises are unacceptable. Your shoes must maintain a grip on any dry or plain surface, excluding grass and dirt.

  • Your training surface will largely affect the effectiveness of the shoe’s grip
  • The material of your shoe’s outsole is a large factor in its ability to grip
  • The outsole’s tread profile will affect  it’s grip on different surfaces as well

Stability is important to optimize the range of motion in each exercise. The lack of stability in a shoe will cause undesired lateral and frontal swings. This is another huge no for weightlifters. Stability is essential during lifts; the shoes should act as a steady platform on the way up, and a firm cushion on the way down. Thus, crossfit shoes must be able to maintain a stable stance during every stage of a training session.

During intensity workouts, such as box jumps, the shoes must be able to deliver a stable landing as well. A cross-trainer that can’t adequately support jumps defeats the purpose of cross-training. We know how important this is for each workout. Thus we have included these parameters in our search for the best.


Shock Absorption

Anyone who has done crossfit (or any aerobic activity for that matter) knows how important shock absorption is in their footwear. The only protection we have from receiving the full impact of when our feet hit the ground is the shock absorption system a proper shoe incorporates. A cross-trainer that fails to diminish impact during workouts is as good as a pair of sandals, and certainly not adequate. This is specially important for those suffering from plantar fasciosis.

The best crossfit shoes must be able to absorb shock from the basic to the most intense of exercises. Those doing High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT), for example, rely on adequately performing shoes. If their footwear lacks impact absorption, their feet will take a toll after the first 10 minutes. Not to mention, soreness the day after working out will be intensified from the unnecessary beating. The same goes for runners, sprinters, jumpers, and even weightlifters.

Not all crossfit shoes support running. Those that do not only minimize the impact from each gait but use the same impact to impulse the next motion as well. Because of this process, running requires less effort and energy. Thus, performance is optimized. During jump exercises, such as box jumps, crossfit sneakers utilize shock absorption technology to make landings softer. If jumps are consecutive and quick enough, users can also turn impact into impulse with the proper shoes.

Shock absorption primarily consists of cushioning and specific technologies that, well, have the ability absorb shock and hard impacts. One example is the Reebok crossfit shoes that have a compression-molded midsole to enhance impact reduction.

But, shock absorption isn’t necessarily limited to direct shock (gaits from running, landing from jumps, etc.). In the case of weightlifters, the cushioning is used to reduce tension in the heel area when performing heavy lifts. Additionally, the compression generated by the weight against the specially designed midsole acts as an impulse. Squats are an example of this when most of the tension from the exercise builds at the midsole. When going back up, the same pressure is released, assisting the user through the motion.

Depending on the shoe design, the heel and outsole might also assist shock absorption. If no such capabilities were present in the footwear, our heels would be responsible for absorbing any and all impact or pressure. Think of your heels absorbing 300lbs+ of squat tension; sounds painful doesn’t it?



Crossfit involves a wide variety of physical motions and exercises. Thus, the best crossfit shoes must allow users to move around freely and perform these movements adequately. This is where traction comes in.

Traction is generated by an object being pulled off or moved across a surface. In this case, we’re talking about the surface of our cross-trainers and the floor. The surface must be dry to optimize friction. Think of it as a tire on the road; if the road is wet, traction won’t be as efficient, and thus the wheel won’t grip properly. In cross-training shoes, if there’s no traction, chances of slipping during training increase by 100%.

The amount of traction generated between two surfaces is basically the quality of the grip they have in conjunction with one another. Many factors determine adhesion, such as the exercising surface and its state (wet, dry, moist, etc.). The outsole of your footwear is in charge of generating traction when performing your exercises as well. Even though crossfit shoes for men are designed differently than crossfit shoes for women, they often share the same outsole design.

The outsoles of the best cross-training shoes include carefully designed patterns that grip and grab the texture on the floor’s surface. Believe it or not, there’s a whole science going on behind the blueprint of these outsole patterns. Even those shoes with stylish outsole designs were crafted to maintain a steady balance between style and function.

To distribute traction correctly, the outsoles are designed based on three parameters: impact, biomechanics, and multidirectional movement. These factors help calculate the surface ratio of a shoe during training (the amount of time each part of the outsole is in contact with the surface). When running, for example, only the third quarter of the shoe is in contact with the surface. Thus, such part of the shoe must be designed to generate traction on its own.

While traction might not stand out visually, it still has an enormous impact on the performance while training.

Flexibility & Comfort

Comfortability may seem secondary to a necessity when it comes to performance, but it’s just as important as flexibility. Imagine trying to work out with a pair of shoes that are constantly smashing your toes. Or, a pair of shoes with excess space causing your feet to dance around every time you take a step. Your performance would be greatly hindered. At the end of the day, if you don’t take care for your feet, you don’t care for your workout.

Cross-trainers must be comfortable to provide the most optimal performance. Some people think of comfortability as a not-so-necessary feat. They’re plain wrong. Multiple factors determine the comfortability of a crossfit shoe. Each of these factors must be on point, as the lack of a single one will considerably reduce performance.

The toe box should be wide enough. Compressed toes will obstruct running and jumping, as well as irritation from friction. Aim for the right size, and the right fit. Avoid shoes that let your feet wiggle around; it’s hazardous when dealing with weights. Last but not least, flexibility is necessary when performing various aerobic exercises.

True, the platform of cross-trainers must be rigid for lifting. But this doesn’t mean the shoes must be completely stiff. Cross-trainers are not intended exclusively for weightlifting, not all of them are powerlifting shoes. Without flexibility, users wouldn’t be able to perform box jumps, rope jumps, and sprints. Look for a shoe that bends into the exercise.

When we talk about flexibility, we don’t mean just the vertical running flex. The best cross-training shoes must support lateral flexibility as well (when engaging laterally). We don’t want our shoes to flex to the sides with each step. Crossfit shoes that imitate the ankle flexion allow users to have a wider range of motion.



Breathability is another factor that affects the comfortability of a crossfit sneaker. However, it is an entirely independent factor that affects crossfit training overall. A completely closed crossfit shoe just can’t be called a quality shoe. Not only will it decrease comfortability, but also many other aspects of training.

The accumulation of heat in the inner sole can produce excessive sweating. This triggers a list of side effects that will decrease performance. To start off, it makes feet more susceptible to irritation (and becoming an irritating factor on its own). In some cases, it may also disturb the grip between the feet and the inner sole. This brings place to the annoying “wiggling” effect. Additionally, it generates unwanted odors later on.

When training under the sun, breathability becomes a critical factor. Some circumstances, such as wearing non-breathable black shoes, will stop users from continuing their training. Cross-training sneakers must include breathable materials that allow enough air to flow through the structure.

The best cross-training shoes strategically place their breathable zones. Quality manufacturers, such as Reebok, Nike, and Adidas know where heat is more likely to accumulate in shoes. Thus, they apply breathable technology where feet need it the most. Look for shoes that contain breathable materials, preferably mesh. Usually, heat accumulates the most on the upper side of feet and the heel.

The best options are those shoes that count with openings around the top, heel, and lace area. Lightweight materials are usually much more breathable and comfortable than heavy ones. Aim for a light design with that allows air to flow. If buying them from a store, feel free to step in front of the ventilation systems or air conditioners. Assume a pose that lets the ventilation hit the shoe, and evaluate the amount of air that goes in.



The best crossfit shoes are far from cheap. We know no one wants to have to buy a second pair of $100+ after just two months. That’s why we made sure to feature only those shoes that are durable enough on this list. One would expect that a product with a big price tag is durable, but that’s not always the case, unfortunately.

The durability of a shoe will depend on multiple factors. For instance, the materials that compose the cross-trainers must be able to endure high-intensity training. While we didn’t look for bulky, heavy materials, we didn’t select short-life materials either. The technologies incorporated into the shoe should also be durable. If these appliances deplete their usage time before the shoe as a whole, it will defeat their purpose. Keep in mind that not all shoes are protected against water damage.

We kept in mind that the durability depends on the use every individual gives to the shoes. Powerlifting shoes won’t last if not given the proper use. We know this. Thus we clarified the particular purpose of each shoe in this list. We searched for shoes that are not affected by quality performance. If a shoe shows signs of degrading after heavy workouts, they’re not good shoes. The best cross-training shoes can keep up with the most intense and heaviest of workouts.

Each part of the shoe meets a function. For example, in a powerlifting shoe, the midsole and the heel take the most pressure from a heavy squat. Hence, a durable powerlifting shoe must endure massive lifts without the midsole and heel degrading quickly.


Nowadays all types of training shoes are lightweight. Despite having different builds, crossfit shoes for men use the same materials as women’s. However, crossfit shoes for women tend to be lighter, because they’re often given a more minimalist approach. This goes for running shoes, cross-training shoes, cycling shoes, and even football shoes.

There’s a list of reasons why shoes, in general, have adopted a lightweight approach. We kept in mind these reasons to make sure our list is composed strictly by minimalist, lightweight shoes.

Lightweight shoes improve multiple aspects of training. To being with, lightweight materials are much more comfortable than big ones. We looked for shoes that offer the best performance through the most suitable materials. Only shoes that include low-weight upper materials, such as synthetic mesh and Kevlar were selected.

However, a lightweight approach isn’t limited to just the upper build of a cross-trainer. True minimalist shoes look to reduce weight on every spot of the build. For instance, the conventional rubber has been replaced by most manufacturers with polyurethane. This synthetic substance is not only lighter, but also stronger and more durable than rubber. It’s arguably the best mid-sole material available, coming in the form of gel or foam, making it almost weightless.

Other the thinnest composite materials, such as leather/canvas, are used to increase support without adding bulk. In most shoes, conventional plastic has been replaced with thermoplastic polyurethane instead. Not only is it more resistant, but also much more light.

The best crossfit shoes feature these lightweight materials to reduce the effort required to train. A cross-trainer that weights 10oz is way easier to move around than a 50oz one. The most important part is that these materials still maintain a firm shoe structure. At first sight, a 40oz difference may not look like much. However, after an hour of performance or more, the difference is easily notable.

Frequently Asked Questions


Q: How do crossfit shoes compare to those made for lifting?
A: Lifting-specific shoes are pretty stiff, bulky, and high; they are limited to a solid platform for lifting. Trying to run, jog, or jump with those will result in sore feet and calves.

Q: Are these shoes adequate for general sports?
A: As long as we’re talking about sprinting, lifting, climbing, or jumping, they’re adequate. Surfaces like concrete and hard wood shouldn’t be obstacles. They endure boxing and dodgeball for example. For anything else, you might want to try tennis shoes instead.

Q: Is it okay to run with crossfit shoes?
A: Generally, they don’t have enough cushioning for long distance running. Some brands do support running though, pay attention to each product. Lifting-oriented ones are a huge no for runners.

Q: How should crossfit shoes fit?
A: They shouldn’t be loose at all. Go for a fit that is tight enough to keep your feet in place while still being comfortable. If they’re a little uncomfortable, keep in mind they might stretch out a bit after the first uses.

Q: How often should I replace my crossfit shoes?
A: Once the factors listed above start failing, it’s time for new shoes. Don’t take things such as grip and stability to the limit, replace the shoes if performance or safety is compromised. Slipping and squeaking are clear signs of degrading.

Q: What kind of cross-trainers should I pick?
A: Depends on the use you’ll give them. Running needs cushioning and flexibility, climbing needs grip and traction, and lifting needs stability. “All-in-one” trainers are the way to go if you need all of it.

Q: Can the heels endure heavy weight?
A: Lifting cross-trainers support massive squats and deadlifts. Those shoes that are more on the aerobic side will degrade quicker from that though.

Q. Who does crossfit and who is it for exactly?
Crossfit is for anyone capable of lifting weights and participating in aerobic training. It’s practiced by people who are looking to build muscle and stay in shape at the same time. Think of it as going to the gym, only that there’s more endurance and aerobic training involved.

Q. Can I participate in crossfit when pregnant?
Yes. Just make sure to follow an appropriate routine for each stage of pregnancy (trimesters). It’s highly recommended to have professional assistance if training during pregnancy. Golden rule is, if something doesn’t feel right, stop.

Q. How often do crossfit athletes usually train?
Depends on the routine. Generally, they train twice every 3 days or once every 2 days. Very dedicated athletes train up to twice a day (not every day, though).

Q. How many crossfit workouts per week should I participate in?
It depends on the goal and availability. The ideal schedule is anything between 3 to 5 days a week. Leave at least 2 days per week to rest.

Q. How often should I perform in crossfit as a beginner?
Frequency is up to each individual’s availability and desire. We recommend not going over 4 days a week, and having at least one rest day between workouts. Regardless, the most important thing is the training intensity. Don’t kill your body the first 3 days.

Q. Why crossfit is good for you (and why does it work)?
A: CrossFit is the best option to get fit. It’s great for the body because it combines strength training, weight training, and aerobic training. The combination of these 3 is the formula for a healthy and balanced body, and Crossfit provides all of those.

Unlike gym training, crossfit involves high intensity aerobic activities, which helps the body get rid of those pesky calories. The goal of this discipline is to gain lean muscle, which is basically gaining muscle while gaining as less fat as possible. Keep in mind that nutrition plays a massive role in this whole lean muscle thing. Crossfit helps burn a load of calories, but if there are more of them consumed than burned, the purpose is defeated.

Even though high-intensity training hasn’t been linked to good health, it does lead to a slimmer shape. One thing is for sure, it’s healthier than not doing it. Not only do users build a better body, but they also increase their aerobic resistance considerably. Crossfit is an intensity sport, thus endurance becomes an increasing factor for those who practice it.

Q. Where to buy crossfit gear
Cross-training gear and equipment is very varied. The most searched items for crossfit are undoubtedly cross-training shoes. These, along with other great variety of crossfit products, can be found at multiple retail stores across multiple countries.

With the quickly increasing popularity of crossfit, it’s no surprise that the availability of crossfit products increases as well. Generally, any sports store has crossfit equipment, seeing as it’s one of the most widely practiced disciplines. However, those who have no crossfit products stores around them shouldn’t worry. Most of crossfit gear sales are done through the internet.

Sale platforms such as Amazon and eBay are some of the biggest retailers of crossfit products. Not only do they have a greater variety of gear, but also in most cases, much better prices. Many factors, along variety and price, make these platforms the consumers’ favorite. Return policies make sure users receive what they’re paying for. Plus, it arrives at the doorstep; it doesn’t really get better than that.

Q. How did crossfit start?
Most people think crossfit is just another athletic discipline like powerlifting or running. Little do they know, that crossfit is in fact a registered trademark of CrossFit, Inc.  That’s right, registered trademark.

Its origin dates back to the year 2000, when Gregg Glassman and Lauren Jenai founded the branded discipline. However, the idea was conceived in 1996 as Cross-Fit. Their goal was to create a sport never seen before, that mixed multiple techniques and trainings. They did so by incorporating the following disciplines:

  • High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)
  • Olympic weightlifting
  • Plyometrics
  • Powerlifting
  • Gymnastics
  • Girevoy sport
  • Calisthenics
  • Strongman

Thanks to this combination, crossfit managed to cover every aspect of fitness; from flexibility, to aerobic endurance, and weight training. Since then, Glassman and Jenai employed multiple marketing techniques to popularize the activity, and they were successful at it.

After opening their first box in Santa Cruz, California the discipline gained popularity fast. By 2005, there were already 13 boxes around the US. To this day, there exist over 13,000 crossfit centers around the world, being CrossFit® the biggest chain of all disciplines.


  1. CrossFitImpulse, How Often Should I train?, Online Publication, Feb 09, 2017
  2. NerdFitness, A Beginner's Guide to Crossfit, Online Publication,
  3. Wikipedia, CrossFit, Wiki Article,
  4. CrossFit, What Is Crossfit, Official CrossFit® Publication,
  5. HealthFitnessRevolution, Top 10 Health Benefits of Crossfit, Online Publication, Jul 10, 2015
  6. Draxe, Crossfit; Benefits, Risks & How to, Online Publication,

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