Whether its Olympic Weightlifting, Powerlifting, CrossFit, or any other Strength Sport or form of Weight Training, a good pair of Weightlifting Shoes can add that extra dimension to your lifting performance and ultimately be the difference between success and failure.
It wasn’t always the case, but nowadays Weight Training has become much more accessible for women and many Weightlifting Shoe brands now cater specifically to ladies by offering Women’s Weightlifting Shoes alongside their men’s ranges.
As great as it is that there are now so many Weightlifting Shoes for Women to choose from, this in itself presents a problem. Sometimes too much choice can be almost as bad as having no choice!
In this article, I will summarize the best Women’s Weightlifting Shoes for several scenarios and situations to make choosing the best pair for you that little bit easier!
In a hurry? Here’s the cliff notes:
- The Best Weightlifting Shoes for Women – Reebok Legacy Lifter 2
- The Best Women’s Weightlifting Shoes for Squats – Nike Romaleos 4
- The Best Weightlifting Shoes for Women with Flat Feet – Adidas Adipower 2
- Cheap Women’s Weightlifting Shoes – Adidas Powerlift 4
- Honorable Mention – Inov-8 Fastlift 335
- Alternative to Weightlifting Shoes – Converse All Star Chuck Taylors
The Best Weightlifting Shoes for Women | Reebok Legacy Lifter 2
The Reebok Legacy Lifter 2 are my number one choice overall when it comes to Weightlifting Shoes for Women as well as for men. The Legacy Lifters do so much so well and its hard to find another weightlifting shoe that will tick so many boxes.
Fit & Feel
The Reebok Legacy Lifter 2 is a very comfortable shoe. The upper provides a snug fit around the heel through to the midfoot whilst still leaving plenty of space around the toe, which is important to create a good toe spread and base to push from when lifting heavy.
The Legacy Lifters are a noticeably heavy weightlifting shoe to hold, in fact, they are the heaviest weightlifting shoes I have personally come across, however, this is surprisingly less noticeable when wearing them, which speaks volumes for just how comfortable Reebok has made them.
Walking around in the Legacy Lifters is a relatively easy affair (taking into consideration that they are still weightlifting shoes). There is a degree of stiffness at the toe joint, which is common in weightlifting shoes, however, this should not cause any real problems for most.
One con to note that some may find annoying is that the toe box is quite long and as a result, there is a lot of space in front of the toes. Some may be ok with this, some may not, it will really come down to your individual tolerance and what you are looking for.
Another potential negative to bear in mind is that the Legacy Lifters have quite a prominent arch support. Women with medium to high arches should be perfectly comfortable with this but if you have particularly flat feet, this could be a very uncomfortable Weightlifting Shoe for you.
Performance is where the Reebok Legacy Lifter 2 shines. It is an excellent all-round performer on all the major lifts and should suit the vast majority of women, be it Olympic Weightlifting, Powerlifting, CrossFit, or just general Weight Training, the Reebok Legacy Lifter 2 has you covered.
Squatting in the Legacy Lifter 2 is a great experience. The Legacy Lifter has the standard 0.75″ heel and the sole is made from TPU (thermoplastic polyurethane), which provides all the support and stability you will need.
The strapping system holds your feet firmly in place without being overly tight whilst the flared base keeps you well balanced and rooted to the spot. The addition of the ‘egg cup’ heel provides excellent lateral support to your heel joint too.
When it comes to the Olympic Lifts; the Clean & Jerk and the Snatch, it’s a similar story. The stability and support are more than a match for these complex, dynamic lifts and there are no signs of heel slip, even in the split jerk where it tends to be most common for men’s and women’s weightlifting shoes alike.
By now, it should be fairly obvious that I rate the Reebok Legacy Lifter 2 very highly. Unfortunately, the price reflects this great performance so expect to pay a reasonable sum of money for it.
If money is not an issue, though, I do firmly believe the Reebok Legacy Lifter 2 is worth paying for, as it is a high-quality Weightlifting Shoe and will be well worth the investment!
You can check the latest pricing of the Reebok Legacy Lifter 2 here.
Of course, if the price is just too steep, then there are a couple of options below that are well worth considering.
For a more in-depth look at the Reebok Legacy Lifter 2, you can read my review.
The Best Women’s Weightlifting Shoes for Squats | Nike Romaleos 4
The Nike Romaleos 4 is an excellent choice if you’re looking for Women’s Weightlifting Shoes specifically for squatting. They provide one of the most strong and stable bases of any weightlifting shoe, making them the ideal choice if you are looking to improve your squat performance.
Fit and Feel
As good as the Romaleos are in the Squat, the reason I don’t recommend them for any other purpose is primarily down to the way they fit.
Firstly, they run narrow. If you have wide feet then the Romaleos will be pretty uncomfortable for you. The toe box is also a touch on the narrow side but not uncomfortably so.
Walking around in the Romaleos is quite an uncomfortable affair, there is very little flex at the toe joint and a lot of heel slip. Although not the heaviest weightlifting shoe, they do feel very noticeably heavy, which can be offputting.
It’s not all doom and gloom though, the lacing and strapping system is excellent on the Romaleos. They feature a double strap, which very few women’s weightlifting shoes do. this double strap allows for a lot more control and flexibility over how you would like the fit of the shoe.
Like the Reebok Legacy Lifters, the Nike Romaleos have a lot of arch support. Great for women with high arches, but women with flat feet should read on for a much better recommendation below.
Overall, this probably paints a bit of a bad picture in your mind, right? Well, it’s important to remember that a lot of these negatives don’t necessarily factor into squat performance. So if you can live with these issues and are looking specifically at squatting performance, read on.
The Nike Romaleos 4 is an excellent weightlifting shoe for women who are looking to improve their Squat above all else. The design of the sole is second to none when it comes to stability, support, and grip.
The Romaleos have one of the widest bases of any women’s weightlifting shoe and is made from TPU with an effective heel height of 0.75″. This translates into a solid, stable platform to push from when squatting that very few should be able to find fault with.
The large contact area of the outsole also provides supreme grip, allowing you to really twist and screw your feet into the ground, further allowing for a great transfer of power into the lift.
As the squat generally doesn’t require any movement of the foot once in position, this means the issues highlighted in the fit and feel don’t really factor during squatting, only the positive features of the shoe matter, making the Romaleos excellent Women’s weightlifting shoes for squats.
The Nike Romaleos 4 is one of the most expensive women’s weightlifting shoes going currently.
Given their lack of versatility, it can be hard to justify the expense and I completely understand that. For this reason, I stand by the Reebok Legacy Lifter 2 as the best choice overall.
You can check the latest price for the Nike Romaleos 4 here.
That said, if squats are your game and you will stop at nothing to squeeze out every last bit of performance you can with them, then the Nike Romaleos 4 is for you.
For more info, be sure to read my review on the Nike Romaleos 4.
The Best Weightlifting Shoes for Women with Flat Feet | Adidas Adipower 2
The Adidas Adipower 2 are by far the most comfortable Weightlifting Shoes ever made. When you directly compare them to almost any other Women’s weightlifting shoe, it’s not even a close contest.
This comfort, alongside their insole design, also makes them a great weightlifting shoe for women with flat feet.
Fit & Feel
As mentioned above, the Adidas Adipower 2 are incredibly comfortable. The design is extremely lightweight and the canvas upper conforms snuggly to your foot without any uncomfortably tight spots.
Walking around in the Adipowers is a breeze, they feel just like any other trainer or sneaker and have plenty of flexibility.
The design is also very low profile, and arch support is almost nonexistent, making these ideal weightlifting shoes for women with flat feet. Even if you don’t have flat feet, the Adipowers are still super comfortable!
There are some negatives though unfortunately. The first being that the laces feel very flimsy and seem very likely to break every time you lace up. Its a relatively inexpensive fix though, just buy a new set of laces!
The canvas material also seems to retain heat quite a bit so if you sweat a lot through your feet, you may find the Adidas Adipower 2s to be a bit on the warm side, especially if worn for long periods.
The Adidas Adipower 2 performs admirably in all the major lifts. They’re by no means the best, but they’re very far away from being the worst.
Like with the Reebok Legacy Lifters and the Nike Romaleos, they feature the standard TPU base with a 0.75″ heel. The outsole does run a bit narrower than their counterparts, this coupled with their flexibility, does make the Adipowers feel a little less stable but they still provide a solid platform to push from. There was always going to be some trade-off to attain all that comfort.
Their lightweight design makes them a lot more geared towards Olympic Lifts and CrossFit WODs. As much as this provides a lot more freedom to move and jump around, again be aware that catching the weight can sometimes feel a touch unstable.
The Adidas Adipower 2 is another pretty expensive weightlifting shoe and are right up there with the Reebok Legacy Lifters and the Nike Romaleos.
For flat footed women, this price is well worth it as there are very few other weightlifting shoes on the market that cater to flat feet so well.
Their lightweight and comfortable design also justifies their price if you’re someone who is fed up with the usual heavy bulky style that weightlifting shoes tend to come in.
Prices are of course always changing so it’s worth checking regularly.
Please also feel free to read my in-depth article on the Adidas Adipower 2.
On A Budget? | Cheap Women’s Weightlifting Shoes | Adidas Powerlift 4
Our budget option is the Adidas Powerlift 4 and despite their price, they are more than capable of competing with the more premium women’s weightlifting shoes!
Fit & Feel
The Powerlift 4s features a lower effective heel height than the standard weightlifting shoe, coming in at 0.6″. Its a tiny difference in reality, and the majority probably won’t notice it but it does allow for an easier transition into the world of weightlifting shoes for women who perhaps aren’t used to lifting with a raised heel.
Overall, the Adidas Powerlift 4s could be considered the Adipower 2’s younger cousin. A lot of the design and materials are the same as the Adipower so you will find the same comfort here for a fraction of the price.
They do run a little heavier than the Adipower 2s though and are a bit stiffer through the toe joint so depending on your needs, this is something to bear in mind.
The base is made from EVA (ethylene-vinyl acetate) and this is, in part, how Adidas was able to manufacture the Powerlifts at a fraction of the cost of the Adipowers.
EVA is a little less stiff than TPU, which means that the shoe will compress more during a lift, however for the vast, vast majority, it won’t be noticeable. I daresay even the strongest lifters won’t notice any tangible difference.
In the squat, the Powerlift performs perfectly well and is pretty comparable to the Adipower 2, both have an almost identical outsole design. However given that the Powerlift is a bit heavier, this translates into a bit more stability in the lift.
For Olympic Lifts, the Powerlift is again very similar to the Adipower in performance. There’s very minimal heel slip and again, the added weight does help a bit with balance and stability when ‘catching’ the bar.
Being a budget option, the Adidas Powerlift 4 should fit most people’s budgets. It’s relatively inexpensive, yet still manages to deliver a great deal of performance that will rival the premium weightlifting shoes.
If you’re looking for a women’s weightlifting shoe that won’t break the bank or this is just your first foray into weightlifting shoes then I highly recommend the Adidas Powerlift 4.
You can check the latest pricing for the Adidas Powerlift 4.
If you’re looking for a bit more in-depth information, I have also written a full review of the Adidas Powerlift 4.
Honorable Mention | Inov-8 Fastlift 335
Although they didn’t quite make it into the top spot for any one category, it is worth bringing to your attention specifically the Inov-8 Fastlift 335 but also the entire Inov-8 women’s weightlifting shoe range, as they are an excellent midrange alternative that deserves an honorable mention.
Fit & Feel
The Inov-8 Fastlift brings the best features of all the other shoes in this article without any of the negatives. They’re lightweight and comfortable while also having a nice, roomy toebox.
Walking around in them isn’t quite as good as the Adidas Adipower 2s or the Powerlift 4s, however, the Fastlifts aren’t that far behind.
The Fastlifts are ideal weightlifting shoes for women with wide feet, however, it’s worth noting that they do run a touch short, so you may want to consider going half a size up.
The Inov-8 Fastlift 335 benefit from a TPU base however, like the Adidas Powerlift 4, feature a reduced 0.6″ effective heel height.
They aren’t as good as the Reebok Legacy Lifters when it comes to performance in the main lifts but they perform very well overall and could be considered a close second.
The sole provides all the grip and stability you will need and the lacing and strap system is on par with the majority of women’s weightlifting shoes on the market.
As mentioned, these could be considered more of a midrange weightlifting shoe and the price is reflective of this.
For more detail on the Inov-8 Fastlift 335, check out my in-depth review.
Not Quite Ready for Weightlifting Shoes? | Converse All Star
If you’re not quite ready to commit to a dedicated weightlifting shoe, or maybe you prefer to lift in a flat-soled shoe, that’s ok! There are several options out there that will do the job very well!
The pick of the litter may come as a surprise! The Converse All Star Chuck Taylors.
The Converse All Star is a hugely popular shoe and I daresay many of you may already have a pair! Their lightweight and timeless design has been around for decades and will probably still be here for many decades to come.
Fit & Feel
Converse is well known as not being the most comfortable shoe around, this is primarily due to their stiff, flat sole, however, this is what also makes them ideal for lifting!
The canvas upper is extremely thin and lightweight, which also makes them super breathable and comfortable.
They do a better job when it comes to walking around than most other weightlifting shoes, except perhaps the Adipower 2s. this also makes them a lot more versatile, allowing you to wear them outside of the gym as well as during training (something that can’t be said for dedicated weightlifting shoes).
How the Converse All Stars will perform will largely depend on your ankle mobility and your preferred squat stance.
One of the advantages of weightlifting shoes is that the raised heel helps you squat deeper without requiring as much ankle flexion. As Converse has a flat sole, you need a bit more flexibility in your ankle joint to reach the same level of depth.
I cover this in more detail in my article on flats vs heeled shoes. it’s worth a read if you want to understand the mechanics behind shoe choice more.
I also have an article on improving your ankle mobility and strength, which is great for your performance whether you wear flats or heels.
Assuming you have the ankle flexion required, flat shoes such as Converse All Stars are a great choice for squatting in as the stiff sole provides a great amount of support to push from.
If you are more into Powerlifting, Converse is also advantageous in the Deadlift as they allow you to get closer to the floor than a weightlifting shoe would. this reduces the range of motion and ultimately makes the lift that little bit easier.
There are, of course, two variants of Converse; high tops and low tops. If you squat with a medium to narrow stance, I would recommend the low tops as they don’t restrict ankle movement as much.
The high tops are more advantageous if you squat with a wider stance or for deadlifting as the added ankle support they bring can help ever so slightly with balance.
Converse All Stars are dirt cheap! Making them an excellent option for women who are interested in lifting weights but aren’t ready to invest in a dedicated pair of weightlifting shoes.
Given that Converse are also great for everyday wear, their versatility makes them great value for money.
I have also written dedicated reviews on both which you can read below:
As mentioned at the beginning of this article, choosing the right pair of women’s Weightlifting Shoes can be a daunting choice with so many different options available.
Hopefully, this article has made the choice that little bit easier by narrowing it down to just 5 options with an alternative for those that aren’t looking for a dedicated weightlifting shoe at this time.