Deadlifts are one of the most important strength training exercises you can do. Bending down and picking up a heavy weight, which is basically what deadlifting is, works virtually every muscle in your body. The deadlift is such a powerful exercise that Victorian doctors used to call it the “health lift.”
The deadlift and its close cousin the squat put a lot of extra weight on your feet, so it’s crucial to find the best shoes for squats and deadlifts. Soft, shock-absorbing running shoes will compress and deform under heavy weights, and that can lead to instability. That’s the last thing you need when doing serious strength training.
While they look quite similar, deadlifts and squats are actually very different movements. Deadlifts are more hip-dominant while squats are more knee-dominant. That doesn’t mean that one exercise is better than the other, and most people should include both these exercises in their workouts.
However, they are similar enough that the shoes you wear for deadlifts can also be worn for squats, and vice versa. However, there is an argument for wearing flat lifting shoes for deadlifts and ones with raised heels for squats. That said, unless you are lifting very heavy weights, the same shoes can be used for both exercises.
Best Deadlifting Shoes
- POWERLIFTING SHOES - Maximum Lifting Performance - by Premium Weightlifting Brand Nordic Lifting
- PROVIDES OLYMPIC STABILITY - Good foot support ensures a powerful workout & greater lifting gains
- LONG-LASTING QUALITY - Built to last, even under immense stress. Our warranty backs it up
- IMPROVE LIFTING POSTURE - Perfect for powerlifters & all other sportsmen working with heavy weights
- INCLUDED - 1 x Pair of MEGIN Powerlifting Shoes, 1 x Premium Box - 1 Year Manufacturer’s Warranty
Nordic Lifting Megin are a traditional-style weightlifting shoe. Made from leather and with a stable, raised heel, these shoes are ideal for squats, Olympic lifting, and serious strength training.
- Made from hardwearing leather
- Metatarsal strap for extra stability
- 1.4” heel for increased ankle mobility
- Available in black or blue
The Nordic Lifting Megin’s are sturdy shoes for serious workouts. Made from leather and with solid rubber soles, these are strong, stable, and should last many years. However, some exercisers may find that the heel is too high for heavy deadlifts. These deadlifting shoes are definitely better suited to squats and general strength training.
- Traditional, proven design
- Solid heel and sole
- Very supportive
- Not suitable for cardio
- Quite heavy
- No-frills design and only two shoe color options
- Will take some breaking in
The Nordic Lifting Megin are ideal for exercisers who want to lift heavy weights. They aren’t the prettiest-looking shoes, but if you value function over design, these are a good option.
Reebok Men's Lifter Pr Cross
- BREATHABLE AND DURABLE MATERIAL: These weightlifting sneakers feature a full-grain leather toe and an air mesh tongue on the upper for support and breathability
- EFFICIENT FOOT SUPPORT: These athletic trainers feature the Powerbax TPU plate and a dual rubber outsole which provides a stable and responsive ride; Hook-and-loop closures lock the foot
- STAY COOL AND DRY: This footwear features anti-friction lining that reduces moisture and heat build-up keeping you cool and dry
- COMFORTABLE AND STURDY DESIGN: This low-cut design footwear provide mobility at the ankles; The U-form and Thermo TPU midfoot wrap secures feet for a customizable fit
- HIGH-PERFORMANCE SPORT SHOES: Ideal for workouts and weightlifting
Reebok has a reputation for making high-quality sports footwear. Reebok Men’s Lifter PR is a traditionally-designed shoe but made with high-tech materials for increased flexibility and lightness.
- Stable, elevated heel for increased squat depth
- Stabilizing metatarsal strap
- Rubber, non-marking outsole
- Lightweight, breathable mesh and synthetic upper
- Leather toe box for increased durability
The Reebok Men’s Lifter PR’s manage to combine strength with lightness. The upper is mostly synthetic, which means they are lighter and more flexible than similar ones made from leather. They should require no breaking in but, on the downside, may not be as hardwearing or long-lasting.
- Good for increased stability during heavy workouts, and especially squats
- Very light, breathable, and comfortable
- Available in a range of colors
- Some exercisers may find that the heel is too high for deadlifts
Despite the name, Reebok Men’s Lifter PR’s are more of a weightlifting shoe than a cross-training shoe. They will be much more at home on a weightlifting platform than a treadmill! That said, if strength training is your thing, these shoes should provide plenty of stability and support.
Inov-8 Mens Fastlift 335
- OUTSTANDING GRIP - Outsole rubber holds secure on the box/gym floor, especially when lifting heavy weights
- ENHANCED STABILITY - External Heel Cage and POWER-TRUSS technology gives lateral stability and a stable base for lifting
- MID-FOOT HOLD - A Velcro strap over the top of the shoe adds a second layer of mid-foot hold after the laces have been tied
- FLEXIBILITY - META-FLEX technology in the forefoot provides more comfortable movements, allowing transition from Olympic weightlifting to other functional movements in the same workout. lower heel height works perfectly for a solid beginner lifting shoe
- WIDE TOE BOX - The toe box is roomier than the rest of the shoe, allowing plenty of wiggle room to spread the toes out naturally during heavy lifts. The toe splay promotes a stable base for lifting without having to take off your shoes
Inov-8 Fastlift 335 are a lightweight, flexible exercise shoe with an elevated heel. Ideal for Olympic weightlifting and squats, these shoes can also be used for deadlifts.
- Modern design
- Meta-flex sole for better lightness and flexibility
- Non-marking rubber outsole
- Velcro metatarsal strap for increased stability
- Raised heel for deeper, more comfortable squats
The Inov-8 Fastlift 335’s are engineered for lightness but still provide all the support you need for serious workouts. The Inov-8 Fastlift 335 Shoe combines style with functionality.
- Good-looking shoe
- Plenty of support
- Light and flexible
- Comfortable straight out the box
- The heel may be too high for deadlifts
Made for serious strength training, these light but stable workout shoes look good and perform well. They are a little on the expensive side, but, in return, you get a shoe that is loaded with technological innovations.
Nike Romaleos 3
|EAN List||EAN List Element: 0886551021226|
|Item Dimensions||Height: 400; Length: 1300; Weight: 200; Width: 900|
|Package Dimensions||Height: 476; Length: 1362; Weight: 299; Width: 933|
|Product Type Name||SPORTING_GOODS|
|Size||11.5 M US|
|Title||Nike Romaleos 3 852933-700 Volt/Black Leather CrossFit Mens Weightlifting Shoes (11.5)|
|UPC List||UPC List Element: 886551021226|
Nike Romaleos are famous in weightlifting circles. Worn by elite athletes as well as recreational exercisers, they are amongst the best weightlifting and strength training shoes you can buy.
- Raised heel for increased squat depth
- Metatarsal strap for increased stability
- Light, breathable synthetic upper
- Interchangeable insoles for a customized fit
- Stylish, modern design
A lot of weightlifting shoes look like they were designed back in the days of the Cold War. While they are functional, they lack style. Nike Romaleos buck that trend and look as good as they perform. If you want to train hard and look good doing it, these shoes are for you!
- Attractive design
- Very stable
- Light and flexible
- Customizable fit
- Ideal for squats, and general strength training
- The raised heel could make deadlifts more difficult
Nike Romaleos are light, stable, and look good too. If you want a shoe that looks as good, feels good, and boosts workout performance, and you don’t mind paying for the privilege, these shoes are an excellent choice.
- Removable Insole
This is the third incarnation of Adidas’s very popular Powerlift weightlifting shoe. Light but stable, this is a nice shoe that is suitable for all strength training and weightlifting workouts.
- Elevated heel for deeper squats
- Metatarsal strap for increased stability and a secure fit
- Solid but lightweight sole and heel
- Synthetic, breathable upper
If you want a light but stable shoe for squats and other strength training exercises, Adidas Performance Men’s Powerlift.3 Cross-trainer shoes are a good choice. They are flexible enough to be comfortable and versatile, but solid enough to withstand tough workouts. However, contrary to the name, these are not cross-training shoes and are not suitable for cardio.
- Light and flexible
- Solid and supportive
- Ideal for squats and other Olympic lifting and strength training exercises
- Quite a narrow fit
- Some users report that these shoes come up a little small
Discussions about how these shoes fit aside, Adidas Performance Men’s Powerlift.3 are light, flexible, and suitable for even the heaviest workouts. But, to ensure they fit correctly, make sure you try before you buy.
Otomix Men's Carbonite
- Designed for weightlifting
- Extra comfort and support for ankles
The Otomix Carbonite’s are synonymous with bodybuilding and strength training. The Otomix Men’s Carbonite Shoe has high ankles and a flat sole making them very stable, supportive, and ideal for deadlifts.
- High ankles for increased lateral support
- Flat soles for stability
- Hardwearing leather uppers
- Non-marking rubber outsoles
- Speed-lacing system for easy fitting and quick removal
If you want a workout shoe that provides lots of ankle support but is also flexible enough for squats, deadlifts, and all other gym-based exercises, Otomix Men’s Carbonite Ultimate Trainer Bodybuilding Weightlifting Shoes are a good choice. They are not subtle, and wearing them makes a real statement of intent, but these classic shoes perform very well.
- Strong base for all strength training exercises
- Great ankle support
- Available in four different colorways
- Could cause your feet to overheat
- High ankles could limit mobility for some exercises
Otomix Men’s Carbonite’s look a little like wrestling boots, but that’s no bad thing. A lot of serious strength trainers wear wrestling shoes for their workouts, especially deadlifts. These flat lifting shoes are an excellent alternative to weightlifting shoes.
Otomix Men's Stingray
- Lightweight yet extremely durable
- Made of leather and synthetic
- Extra ankle support
- Thin sole that grips great
- Perfect for wrestling, mma, martial arts, weightlifting, and bodybuilding
Otomix Stingray Escape bodybuilding and weightlifting shoes are iconic. The high ankle design and flat soles make them stable and ideal for a range of strength training exercises, and that includes squats and deadlifts.
- Ultra-light design
- Flexible suede uppers and rubber soles
- Zero drop from heel to toe
- Supportive ankles
- Available in a wide range of eye-catching designs
Otomix Stingray Escape bodybuilding and weightlifting shoes have flat soles and no elevated heel. This makes them perfect for deadlifts, where a raised heel is not always the best option. The extra ankle support increases stability without affecting the range of motion. These shoes feature a glued-and-sewn construction to make them even more hardwearing.
- Lightweight and hardwearing materials
- Suitable for a wide range of exercises and workouts
- Flat lifting shoes that are ideal for deadlifts
- Iconic design
- High ankles could limit mobility for some exercises
- Could make your feet feel hot
Light, flexible, and supportive, Otomix Stingray Escape bodybuilding and weightlifting shoes are tailor-made for serious strength training. Not everyone likes to wear high-ankle shoes for deadlifts and squats but, if you want some extra support, these dramatic-looking shoes could be a good option. They are amongst the best shoes for deadlifting.
adidas Men's Powerlift 4
- Heel height (shoe plus insole height): 28 mm (size 9)
- Narrow, snug fit; Lace closure with a hook-and-loop strap
- Canvas upper for soft comfort and durability; Open forefoot and flexible toe design
- Adiwear outsole offers the ultimate in high-wear durability
- Lightweight, locked-down feel
The Adidas Men’s Powerlift 4 are the newest incarnation of this very popular strength training shoe. With their traditional but good-looking design, these shoes will make your workouts more comfortable and productive.
- Raised, solid heels for deeper, more stable squats
- Velcro metatarsal strap
- Lightweight, flexible, breathable synthetic uppers
- Non-marking rubber sole
Where a lot of traditionally-designed weightlifting shoes are made of leather, the Adidas Men’s Powerlift 4 shoe has 100% synthetic uppers for reduced weight, more comfort, and increased flexibility. They might not be as hardwearing as leather weightlifting shoes, but they should be comfortable right out of the box.
- Supportive but comfortable
- Suitable for a wide range of strength training activities
- Available in five colorways
- Not suitable for cardio activities
Adidas makes great weightlifting shoes, and their Men’s Powerlift 4 are no exception. If you want a traditional-looking shoe made with modern materials, these shoes are an excellent choice.
Converse Chuck Taylor All Star
|EAN List||EAN List Element: 0749357286001|
|Package Dimensions||Height: 410; Length: 1230; Weight: 155; Width: 470|
|Product Type Name||SHOES|
|Size||7.5 Women/5.5 Men|
|Title||Converse Chuck Taylor All Star Classic High Top Sneakers - Black US Men 5.5 / US Women 7.5|
|UPC List||UPC List Element: 749357286001|
The Converse Chuck Taylor All Star are very popular in powerlifting circles, especially for deadlifting. They are flat, supportive, and well-priced. Best of all, their classic design means they look cool too!
- Zero drop from heel to forefoot
- Mid-high for added ankle support
- Breathable, natural canvas upper
- Non-marking rubber sole
Because they are flat and have thin soles, Converse Chuck Taylor All Star Classic High-Top Sneakers are one of the best shoes for deadlifts. Unlike weightlifting shoes with raised heels, Chucks allow you to keep your weight on your heels for increased strength and stability.
They are also suitable for wide-stance squats. However, for narrower squats and Olympic lifting, weightlifting shoes may be a better choice.
- Flat and stable for deadlifting
- Widely available
- Good ankle support
- Not made for weightlifting
- No arch support
The Converse Chuck Taylor All Star are standard footwear in powerlifting gyms all around the world. That’s because lifters love to wear them for deadlifts. They aren’t fancy, and they aren’t high-tech, but they are great for heavy deadlifts and wide-stance squats.
ASICS Men's JB Elite V2.0
- Designed using specifications of two-time World and Olympic Champion Jordan Burroughs
- Single layer mesh upper offers superior breathability and locked down fit
- Newly designed ASICS Integrated Lace Garage meets all regulations for tournament competition
- Split sole outsole with rear and forefoot wrestling-specific (Serradial) traction pods which deliver the best combination of flexibility and traction to help take you from a great wrestler to a legendary one
The ASICS JB Elite V2.0’s are one of the best for deadlifting as they’re almost completely flat.
A lot of powerlifters use wrestling shoes for deadlifts. That’s because they are entirely flat. This allows for a more heels-down stance which is very advantageous during heavy deadlifts.
ASICS Men’s JB Elite V2.0’s are not deadlift-specific, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t well-suited to the job. Flat and supportive, these are good shoes for deadlifting.
- Flat soles
- Strong and supportive
- Light and flexible
- Non-slip sole
- Available in a wide range of colorways
- Mid-height for added ankle support
- Narrow fitting
- Less suitable for squats and other strength training exercises
If you want a dedicated deadlift shoe, ASICS Men’s JB Elite V2.0 are a good choice. Harder wearing and more supportive than Chuck Taylors, these shoes should help boost your deadlift performance. If you want shoes for squats, you may prefer an Olympic lifting shoe with raised heels.
Sabo Deadlift Shoes
- New anatomical last was created especially for deadlifting.
- New non-marking outsole is made of high density material with a special design for traction. Soles are ultra thin: 2mm-5mm.
- Two lateral straps allowing for an individual fit and precise tuning of tightness for the foot, ankle and heel.
- High cut upper and materials optimal for training.
- Side support on the outsole allows you to spread the floor without your feet rolling over, unlike slippers.
As their name implies, these shoes are designed specifically for deadlifting. If you are a powerlifter or simply like doing heavy deadlifts, Sabo Deadlift Shoes are the right shoes for the job.
- Very thin, flat soles
- Two lateral straps for increased stability
- Leather reinforced at common wear points
- Non-slip rubber sole
- Mid-height for added ankle support
Sabo Deadlift Shoes are specialist shoes designed to provide a stable base for heavy deadlifts. With their flat, thin soles, they make you feel connected to the ground and won’t distort or collapse under even the heaviest weights. If you are or want to be a deadlift specialist, these shoes will help.
- Suitable for all styles of deadlift
- Worn by competitive powerlifters
- Not suitable for running, jumping, or other types of training
These by Sabo are one of the best shoes for deadlifting. They are flat lifting shoes which allow you to distribute your weight correctly for deadlifts. If deadlifts are “your thing,” these shoes are for you!
If you are a casual exerciser, you can wear almost any kind of sports footwear for deadlifts and squats. But, as you get stronger and your weights increase, you could find your footwear ends up holding you back. But what are the best shoes for squats and deadlifts?
If you want to squat more than deadlift, weightlifting shoes with a raised heel are an excellent option. However, that heel will push you forward onto your toes which can cause problems for very heavy deadlifts.
Also, the thicker soles mean you’ll have to bend over more to grab the bar, and you’ll also have to lift the weight further to complete each lift. We’re only talking about an inch or two but, when you are lifting heavy weights, every little bit counts!
If you want to deadlift more seriously, flat lifting shoes are your best bet. With no heel lift, you’ll be able to sit back and use your powerful hips more effectively, translating into a bigger lift.
Still not sure? Consider buying different shoes for deadlifts and squats. All of the shoes reviewed will last for many years, and that way you won’t need to compromise your performance in either exercise.
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If you're having difficulties finding the best deadlifting shoes that will fit your needs, read through our reviews for ideas and suggestions.