Best Yoga Shoes Reviewed & Rated
Yoga is becoming more and more popular these days and the need has come for a perfect shoe for yoga. There are yoga shoes for yoga and multiple purpose use. The importance of support and cushioning as well as flexibility are key to a good yoga shoe.
For those who are seasoned pros or those just getting started with yoga, we’ve brought together ten of the best yoga shoes to keep you centered.
- Sanuk Yoga Sling 2
- Non Slip Sandal
- Padded Footbed
- Great Soles Ombre
- Breathable Sock
- Non-Slip Heel
- Toe Sox Bellarina
- Non-Slip Sole
- Organic Cotton
With all the different brands, quality and price ranges of yoga shoes, choosing a pair that’s perfect, not only in terms of comfort but the quality and overall value can be a bit daunting. We understand. This carefully selected list of the best yoga shoes, however, will ensure that you make the best and smartest choice with all factors considered. We made sure the value, quality, and comfort cannot be beaten, and that the user feedback is extremely positive. Every shoe here is designed to be perfect for yoga, from the flexibility to the breathability that they provide; your feet will thank you later.
10 Best Yoga Shoes
1. Sanuk Yoga Sling 2
No need to lug your mat outside for your practice, as these shoes have the yoga mat built right into the footbed. The thick padding is insanely comfortable, and you can wear these for entire days without having any discomfort, fatigue, or aches. The footbed is also very durable, so you don't need to worry about these wearing down any time soon.
Soft Upper Wrap
There is no chance of your feet getting sweaty in these, as they are completely open and only have a soft fabric wrap to adhere them to your feet. Stretchy and secure, the fabric will keep these on during your most active poses, while the fresh air will hit your feet and toes keeping them cool and comfortable.
Cost and Value
These sandals are great for a variety of activities, and they are durable enough for heavy, everyday use. Perfect for yoga, days at the beach or even vacations - these shoes are great for everyone. The price is pretty low as well, so make sure you take a peek at these.
Yoga Mat Footbed
Happy U Rubber Sole
Stretch Fabric Wrap
Sizes Run Small
2. Great Soles Ombre
Perhaps you’ve already tried and tested out a pair of grippy socks for yoga, and now you’re in search of your next pair. The Ombre comes in a variety of color options, with a great ombre color fade to give more style to your practice. From darker hues to blues and pinks, you’re sure to find one you love.
Grip can be found on the textured bottom from toe to heel to help keep you in place and in great form. Quality from Great Soles is foremost in their brand, and with these products quickly selling out, it’s no wonder they make number two on our list! Backed up with a satisfaction guarantee, you get an entire YEAR to return or replace this no matter why.
Cost and Value
For a single pair of socks, these are by no means expensive but do run higher than your average pair of regular ankle socks. For the great styling and colors, plus a satisfaction guarantee of one full year, these not only are a smart buy, but you’ll not be disappointed with their functional ability to keep you grounded in the studio!
- Machine Washable
- Non-Slip Heel
- Not Very Durable
3. ToeSox Bellarina
The additional heel tab on these socks is designed to give your Achilles the extra protection and security it needs, ensuring you don't have any injuries that could ruin your practice. There is also an arch band that's been implemented which gives your foot that bit of lift and support to make your yoga class more comfortable and easy on your feet.
Using their own patented grip design, these socks do an amazing job of securing themselves to the floor beneath them. These are anti-slip, and regardless of the flooring, you should notice that your foot feels secure and balanced. The extra toe spacing also helps with grip, so you can bend and balance peacefully.
Cost and Value
Since these are socks they are on the cheaper side of this list. But due to the name brand and the fact that they have such great grip, the price is reasonable, especially when compared to similar sock styles and brand. If you are looking for an option that isn’t technically a shoe, this one’s for you!
Five Toe Design
5. Vibram VI-B Fitness
Vibram's shoes provide great support, even for the toughest poses advanced yoga has to offer. They're also extremely comfortable and do not pinch while bending the foot. With these, you can enjoy every minute of your sessions, even on hard floors without worrying about discomfort.
Having ventilated shoes is a must when performing yoga and other similar exercises. Being able to reduce the amount of sweat build up inside the shoes will substantially increase comfort and the quality of your sessions. Having an effectively breathable shoe will reduce rubbing and chafing as well.
Cost and Value
Their price is somewhat higher than other options on this list but can always be expected of well-known brands. They provide a high-quality shoe for a higher price. This makes purchasing the shoe for the cost worth it according to the value of the shoes. You get what you pay for, right?
XS Trek Sole
Sizes Run Large
6. CIOR Barefoot
They fit much like a water shoe and can even be used for that as they are multi-purpose. The shoes excel in providing the breathable comfort that is needed for moisture wicking and prevention of sweat build-up. Every bend and fold of the foot can be naturally executed when wearing the shoes, as they are made of soft, accommodating material. They certainly provide the comfort one would need for basic to intermediate yoga sessions.
With these on, it's much like wearing little to nothing at all. These lightweight shoes provide the essential barefoot feeling needed to move and transition positions of your feet naturally. With being able to move the feet in a natural way, poses are inherently easier.
Cost and Value
These are yet another affordable yoga shoe that is easily found at a worthy price range. For the cost, the value of them is worth checking out. However, for the price of being more affordable, they are not as durable as other options available here. The soles may not last extremely long. For the price tag, this could be an excellent temporary solution for a yoga shoe, or you can justify investing in a few pairs of different colors.
Sizes Run Large
7. L-Run Barefoot
For a lasting comfortable feel, the breathable soft lining keeps the feet fresh and padded. Even through prolonged usage, the shoes will provide the ventilation necessary to keep your feet dry, cool and blister free.
The shoes fit easily and comfortably over your feet, contouring effectively, even for those extremely tricky motions that tend to cause a toll on the foot's flexion. With the flexibility that they provide, each motion can be made in harmony with them without feeling the compromise that footwear usually causes.
Cost and Value
For an affordable price and an adequately performing product, these shoes do the trick. These are set at a lower price compared to other similar shoes available that are made specifically for yoga. They are certainly worth the purchase if you don't need anything special, and don't want to pay extra.
8. Vibram Alitza Loop
Having a lightweight, flexible shoe requires a minimal heel to toe drop. The Vibram Alitza Loop has a zero drop offset to render an effective, natural feeling experience. Its minimal build allows the flexibility and a feel that's perfect for every-day yoga sessions.
Comfort and Flexibility
With a glove-like fit, you will feel like you're wearing virtually nothing on your feet. They are made of an extremely breathable fabric that stretches naturally with the foot. With this, poses are easy to execute without limitations. Additionally, the comfort level is up there with the best. It's almost like being barefoot, but you are provided with an ample amount of grip, protection, and support.
Cost and Value
As compared to other yoga shoes, these provide great value at an affordable price. Along with the zero drop for a natural feel and flexibility, they also provide support with the necessary grip needed for any and all types of yoga poses. These aspects render them high in value, affordable in cost and one of the best buys for yoga shoes.
XS Trek Outsole
9. LA Active Grip
With extra padding featured in the heels of these socks, you should find a noticeable difference in comfort between these and other socks on the market. During yoga, your heel endures a lot of pressure, so that extra touch of padding can help reduce any pain or strain you would otherwise feel.
PVC Patterned Sole
The bottom of these socks features a unique and cute pattern made of PVC. Extremely grippy, these socks do an amazing job at preventing you from slipping and sliding off your mat or hardwood floors.
Cost and Value
You are getting two pairs of socks for around $10, so the value on this purchase is fantastic. Inexpensive, durable, and great for yoga, these are easily rolled up and thrown into your gym bag so that you always have them on hand for your next class.
Open Air Vent Top
10. Ahnu Yoga Flex
Ahnu has combined their love of outdoor fitness with the love of yoga when they designed the Yoga Flex shoe. It’s designed for those who are looking for versatility in and out of the studio. With great arch support and cushioning, these will keep you walking for hours on hikes, and with their grippy sole, and breathable mesh upper, they are perfect for in studio use as well.
The Yoga Flex is a show stopper for sure! With a plethora of bright vibrant color choices, you can pair for a statement-making outfit during your workout. These shoes are perfect for classes which combine yoga with other sport or fitness activities such as Pilates or HIIT but giving you support and flexibility all in one shoe. Lace-up design keeps you snug in and planted with minimal slippage.
Cost and Value
More expensive when compared to some of the sock options on our list, but comparable to many of the sneaker shoe options on our list, these are a solid investment if you’re looking for a yoga shoe that you can take outside the studio. Breathable and lightweight, they are great for gentle hiking or activities that combine yoga with other fitness activities where more support may be needed from a shoe.
- EVA Rubber Outsole
- Dual Density Foam Footbed
- Narrow Footbed
4. FitKicks Active
These super soft shoes will comfortably conform to your foot and have you feeling barefoot while giving all-around support. They provide the perfect wrap-around support that enables a pleasant experience for your feet. The extra cushioning and padding will ensure yoga poses on hard floors are not a problem at all.
The flexibility that these shoes provide grab and conform to the feet for a perfect fit. When they're slipped on, you can enjoy all that comes with each of your yoga session with each and every pose, no matter how much you need to bend and flex.
Cost and Value
The cost varies depending on the size and style that you prefer. It fluctuates from high to low, but for the average cost; the value of the shoe maintains affordability for everyone. They provide the highest quality for those that prefer comfort over everything else.
Non-Slip Rubber Tread
Sizes Run Small
Yoga shoes can come in many shapes, sizes and colors and each one different than the last in one way or another, so every yoga enthusiast will need to choose carefully depending on specific preferences.
Personal preferences are an important factor to consider but also look at each shoes features, pros and cons. These aspects are what will make each really stand out from others and determine if or which is right for you. As yourself these questions. What type of yoga will you be participating in, are you doing advanced yoga, or casual and are you going to be doing it indoors or outdoors? We know, the price can sometimes be a factor too, so we’ve included this in our criteria, and give a rundown of each shoes’ value.
All of the shoes listed provide numerous benefits for particular instances. However, which one is best for your purpose is entirely up to how you will be using each, and the level of yoga you will be participating in. Each one varies in price, as well.
Compare features, pros and prices of these highly rated yoga shoes, choose which one fits you, and you will be performing on the mat to the best of your ability!
Criteria Used to Evaluate the Best Shoes for Yoga
The stretches in yoga can put a lot of weight on the feet that can be unequally distributed on one part of the foot over the other. It’s because of this it’s critical you’re wearing yoga shoes that will give you maximum foot support. Failure to have adequate foot support in your shoe to ease the stress you put on them doing the poses can risk injury. One feature great to look for in a yoga shoe is one that has a zero drop. It’s when the heel of the shoe is the same height as the ball, much like your feet naturally do when you’re on a flat surface barefoot. This natural feel and fit will give adequate support to your feet during all your poses.
Benefits to Zero Drop Shoes:
- Most Natural Foot Position
- Significantly More Stability
- Reduces the Likelihood of Suffering From an Injury
- Can Be Beneficial for Those Who Have Pain in Their Back, Hips, Knees, or Feet
- Minimizes Strain and Pressure on Knees
A shock absorption polyurethane cushion sole can also be a helpful feature to look out for. It’ll reduce the impact of the weight from each step you take to start your positioning and give you a comfortable feeling when you plant your foot down. This is great if you ever plan on taking your yoga outside of class and doing poses on outdoor surfaces without a mat. You might also want to consider shoes with thick foam arch support inserts to better protect your feet if you happen to step on any rocks outside.
It’s important your yoga shoes get a good grip on the ground while you’re doing your poses. A shoe that doesn’t get the best grip can end up causing you to have an awkward fall that could injure you badly. One of the things that will be your best friend in helping prevent this for you is rubber. Pay attention to see if the particular yoga footwear you’re considering has rubber soles. This feature on these shoes will give you maximum traction for all of your stretches and keep you safely on your feet during your yoga session.
Another feature you might keep your eye out for is if you see a yoga shoe that has an XS trek outsole. XS trek is specifically designed to give traction on anything, even if it’s a really wet surface. So this will definitely give you traction on those mats that won’t be wet at all when you use them thankfully. In addition, XS trek soles give your yoga shoes a durability that will keep them lasting for many of yoga sessions where you make full use of its slip resistant powers.
Ensure that whatever sole you choose is non-skid and non-marking. If you are practicing yoga without a mat, you do not want your sole to cause damage to the flooring or ground that you are on. Even with a mat, you don’t want the sole of your shoe to wear out the material, so opting for a sole that is less coarse and more smooth should give you grip while also reducing tears or wear through.
Whether you’re doing regular yoga or hot yoga, your feet can build up a lot of sweat on them quickly during your poses. It’s best to prevent that so you’re not adding weight to your shoe which might make your stretches more difficult to do. Probably one of the best defenses you can find to combat this is a shoe that has a polyester upper mesh, or a shoe that is made with polyamide. Polyester and Polyamide are both very water resistant. So they can help to transport the moisture from your sweat away from your body.
Mesh, of course, is an open material like a net. So the combination of polyester and mesh as one material will give you all of the airflow that your feet need for keeping them cool and dry throughout the majority of your yoga time. Fortunately, a lot of yoga shoes tend to be made similar to water shoes and also have a dual purpose in being able to be used as a water shoe. They can also tend to have a wide open upper like flats. With those common similarities, you won’t have a hard time getting the necessary breathability in your choice of yoga footwear.
Most Breathable Types of Fabric:
- Knit Uppers: This material is great because the knit design leaves holes throughout the top of the shoe, allowing air to get in and heat to escape. More and more shoes are leaning towards knit nowadays because of its comfort as well as it’s breathability.
- Mesh Upper: Mesh uppers are similar to knit, in that they have many holes to allow for air to flow in and hot air to escape. Breathable, lightweight, and generally less expensive, mesh is a great choice for indoor yoga. Outdoor, mesh will allow sand, dirt, and other debris to enter the shoe, so it may not be the ultimate choice.
- Canvas Upper: While most people would not think of canvas, there is a reason that so many summer shoes are made from this material. Canvas is actually very breathable, and its porous nature means you will have cool and sweat free feet.
Your feet bend and twist and turn in all types of directions whenever you’re doing most yoga stretches. When your footwear is constricted in your feet it can cause foot pain doing your poses. Your yoga shoe should be flexible so your feet can feel comfortable stretching out in your shoes. The best way to get that flexibility is the type of material your shoe is made with. You should find yoga footwear that’s noted to feature a fabric like polyamide. Polyamide is a very stretchy fabric that will allow your feet to move in all sorts of ways without feeling much resistance.
It can also be a good sign of flexibility if the shoe is described as having a sock-like fit. If you can move your feet in the yoga footwear with not much restriction stretching out your toes like socks, you’ve got a good yoga shoe. Pay attention particularly to whether the uppers are described as having stretch fabric, and for the soles if they happen to be XS trek, which is designed to be very flexible.
There are a good number of yoga stretches that can require a person to lift their feet in the air in some fashion. Examples of these include the crow pose, the half-moon pose, the boat pose, shoulder stand pose, and many others. In looking at images of these stretches, you can see their difficult enough just to even try to attempt to do. The last thing you want to do is make them even more difficult by having shoes that add weight on your feet.
It’s very helpful to have yoga shoes that are lightweight so they won’t weigh your feet down when you’re doing those specific types of poses. One of the ways you can find this shoe is if any of the options you’re looking over are stated to have a soft and elastic sole. Try to avoid footwear that appears to have a really thick sole. In general, most yoga shoes you look at will highlight if they’re lightweight if they are. It’s also a good sign that they’re lightweight if the gram weight of the footwear is highlighted and it is described as being easy to slip on.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Is it okay to wear shoes in a yoga class?
A: While there are some yoga teachers who prefer their students to be barefoot during their classes, there are many yoga teachers who are perfectly fine with you wearing shoes during their classes. The best thing you can do is to contact the yoga teacher or organization you’re looking to do classes with and ask if it’s okay for you to wear yoga shoes during the class. In general, all instructors just want you to be as comfortable as possible in whatever you choose to have on.
Q: Can yoga shoes be worn in the water?
A: Yes, in general, most yoga shoes can cross over well being used in water activities such as swimming or surfing given their similarity to water shoes. A good number of them are made of polyester, polyamide, or other materials that are designed to reduce moisture in the footwear. A lot of the yoga shoes slip on nice and tight to your feet so they won’t fall off in the water. Additionally some footwear feature mesh and other perforation like designs to where the water will flow out of them easily, and then after you get out of the water, air can flow inside to get your feet dry again.
Q: How do you wash yoga shoes?
A: You can very simply toss your yoga shoes in the washing machine and wash it with cold water. After washing them you can just let them out to dry. If it happens to be leather, you’re going to need to use a special leather cleaner so you don’t damage your shoe in any way.
Q: Can yoga shoes be worn casually?
A: You’ll have to see how they feel for you. Some find these comfortable to wear all the time given the amount of flexibility your feet have in them and also the softness of the material on your feet. Others prefer more arc support to walk around in casually, which with most of these they are zero drop shoes. You can decide for yourself by wearing them for a day and seeing how your feet are doing by the end of the day if there are any sores or aches you feel in them.
Q: Is it hard to find the right size?
A: Most yoga shoes are true to the size range given that you’re looking for. You’ll have some that’ll sell in small, medium, and large with a number range of what size feet would be best. It’s suggested that yoga shoes should fit somewhat tight on you initially. Gradually over time, it should mold to the size of your feet from all the stretching them out you do walking or doing your yoga poses.
Q: Can I go running in yoga shoes?
A: In general most yoga shoes have a thin sole that is designed to give you a lightweight feel and flexibility in your feet. Now some yoga shoes are described as being good enough to protect your feet from stepping on things such as rocks and other hard surfaces. However, this type of footwear does not tend to feature as much cushioning as running shoes have, and some yoga shoes don’t always have as much traction as well. For running, it might be better if you had shoes with thicker soles that can give you more shock absorption in your running steps, which won’t wear out as quickly as yoga shoes might through consistent running, and also have the increased cushioning that running shoes have to ensure adequate comfort.
Q: Are yoga shoes heat resistant?
A: Some people have worn these on the beach and not felt much heat from the sand. Certain yoga shoes do state they have enough protection to protect from hot sand, sharp rocks, and other potentially painful feet situations. You would have to carefully test the yoga shoes for yourself and see if they give enough protection for you. Otherwise, it may be best to opt for a more protective shoe for when you’re walking outside on hot days.
Make sure to check out our full guide on how to clean shoes.
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