Have you ever found yourself at the gym looking over the weightlifting section, debating between wearing boots or sneakers? There is a lot of conflicting information and advice on this topic. Which one is better for your lifting?
Weightlifting is a very popular sport, but not many people are aware of the fact that lifting in weightlifting shoes can be beneficial. If you’re not careful, you can end up with a back problem because of poor lifting posture and the incorrect footwear can cause injury.
In this article we will talk about what weightlifting shoes are, their pros and cons, how to choose the right one for you and tips on how to use them.
What is a weightlifting shoe?
A weightlifting shoe is a special type of shoe used during the actual lifting of weights. Weightlifting shoes have various unique qualities that make them different from other types of athletic or casual shoes.
In weightlifting shoes, the heel is positioned much lower than in regular shoes or running shoes. This allows you to achieve better balance, better positioning of your legs and proper ankle and knee alignment. This posture also protects your tendons from injury when you’re lifting heavy. A study showed that improper weightlifting posture (slouched back during squatting) has a direct correlation with injuries in the lower back and knees.
Weightlifting shoe designs also vary a lot: some have a more traditional look while others are very interesting and unusual. Some are even made to look like sneakers.
Why should you wear weightlifting shoes?
Weightlifting shoes are not only for people who lift weights in a serious manner, but also for everyone who wants to improve his/her lifting technique. If your weightlifting shoes are wrong, you can end up hurting yourself badly, but if your weightlifting shoes are correct (and they are necessary), you can lift much more weight and get much faster results with your training.
Weightlifting shoes offer a lot of advantages for people who lift weights at the gym. In weightlifting shoes, you’ll be able to:
– stand on your feet for long periods of time without feeling tired;
– squat or perform other exercises correctly;
– keep your back in correct position. A study showed that improper weightlifting posture (slouched back during squatting) has a direct correlation with injuries in the lower back and knees;
– use heavier weights and gain new personal records.
– increase your speed and explosiveness.
– better posture, which protects ligaments and tendons;
– better stability and support;
– much more efficient posture;
– stronger grip.
The disadvantages of weightlifting shoes are quite the opposite:
– increased risk of injuries.
– inadequate support and poor support for the weight lifter’s knees. Proper wear of weightlifting shoes is not only beneficial to the weight lifters’ knee, but also to their spine, ankles and legs. Even a small imbalance can cause serious problems in the lower back and knees.
– you can’t shuffle around the house or in the street. If you are used to wearing regular sneakers, you will have to get used to new shoes and their special design. Weightlifting shoes are much heavier than regular sneakers and they don’t look like them, either.
How to choose the right pair of weightlifting shoes?
Choosing a pair of weightlifting shoes is somewhat complicated, since there are so many types of lifting shoes on the market today. The best way to choose a good lifting shoe is to find out what you want from your weightlifting shoes and to find out what other people like about their weightlifting shoes.
Are you looking for comfort? If so, look for lifting shoes with padded insoles and heel straps. But make sure the padding is thick enough – you don’t want your weightlifting shoes to be too soft.
The downside of the soft padding is that it will wear out quickly and it isn’t very breathable. Lifting shoes with hard insoles and heel straps, on the other hand, may be more uncomfortable to wear for a long time.
What do you want from your weightlifting shoes? Is it just for the gym? Or do you plan on using them for other sports? If you’re not sure whether your weightlifting shoes will be used in other sports, choose ones that have a single-layer sole. Single-layer soles are more durable and they’re also better suited for other activities.
Are you going to use your weightlifting shoes mostly during the warm seasons? If so, choose rubber or synthetic materials. They are much more breathable than leather shoes and they also dry faster, too.
What size do you need? When choosing a weightlifting shoe, make sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully. To measure yourself for an accurate size, make sure that you are wearing the type of socks that you will wear when you lift weights. If your weightlifting shoe is too narrow or too wide, it will be uncomfortable to wear and can hurt your feet.
To Sum Up!
Weightlifting shoes offer a lot of benefits that can help you to lift weights in a more efficient and safer manner. In the end, your goal should be to improve your lifting technique, not to hurt yourself while training.
– choose durable models that will last you a long time;
– make sure they fit your feet and ankles correctly;
– do not buy weightlifting shoes just because they look cool;
– consider using them for other sports as well.
Good luck! Happy lifting! And remember – weightlifting shoes are not only for strong people. Everyone who wants to be stronger can benefit from them!