Shoe Type for Squats

Best shoe besides oly shoes that cost 200$

Anything with a hard-sole. This is the reason many people turn to using chucks for DL’s and squats. The less give the bottom of the shoe has, the more stability you’ll have. Tight-fitting, hard-soled shoes. Ankle support is a plus.
Weight-lifting shoes are designed just that way, with an addition of a cupped-heel (inside) where your heel can rest for extra support and stability.


Tried Chucks, too slim for my fat feet, I feel the most comfortable squatting and deadlifting in stocking feet. Also, much more affordable, bonus gains for cool socks.

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If you’ve got good arches, bare feet should be just fine, although that doesn’t offer any ankle-support. Try shopping around and find something that fits your needs. If you go to a shoe store the employees should be able to help you find something good (if they know what they’re talking about). If not, look around for a nice hard-soled pair by a reputable sports brand. Something to keep in mind is having as little material between your heel and the ground as possible, as well as proper arch and ankle support.


I like wearing wrestling shoes. Anything with a flat sole (little to no heel to toe rise) would be fine.

Maybe you can try deadlift slippers, they’re pretty cheap.

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“Don’t have a 100 dollar shoe with a 10 cent squat” - Louie Simmons

Certain shoes are going to do next to nothing for you until you focus on getting the technique and form down, and then build from there. $200 dollar shoe as a beginner (saying that cause you wrote this in the beginner section) translates to literally zero.

Buy a pair of knock off chuck taylors for 20 bucks and spend the other 180 on ground beef and pasta. Best way to increase your squat on that budget.


Yes, but I do think getting the right shoes is helpful for newbies that are really struggling with squat form.

Shoes are not going to turn someone with a shitty squat into a great squatter, but they can provide an appropriate foundation for people who struggle to get their technique right.

The adidas powerlift 3 is relatively cheap ($85) but has a good solid platform to support squatting. I bought those for my wife, and she’s noticed some immediate improvement vs. squatting in a beat-up pair of running shoes.


This is a good point actually, i do agree with you. I was more coming from an angle given that this is the beginner section, and the OP didn’t provide much info about the training background, I just assumed (perhaps incorrectly) that this is a young guy with $200 he’s ready to blow on shoes to squat with, when like you said you could grab some adidas lifting shoes or chuck taylors for under 90 bucks, and be just fine because form is more important.

I definitely agree that shoes could help in a way, just not as the main focus.

Yeah, I think we’re all pretty much in agreement, just wanted to clarify for the OP.

For squatting, I think shoes actually are an important piece of the puzzle. They will not make you an 800 pound squatter by themselves, but if you’re just getting started and struggling some with your form, getting a nice beginner-level shoe like the $85 adidas powerlift can make a big difference. My wife, squatting about 170 pounds these days, feels a lot more comfortable squatting in those than she did in the old running shoes she used for her first couple months under the bar.

Old guy novice

this is such an easy question. There are only 2 real options. you have the oly shoe, and you have the high top flat soled shoe. whether it be chucks or something similar. I think the mark bell shoe is awesome. i think it’s called the crossfit lite tr? something like that. basically a chuck but better quality. made by reebok.

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I’ve got wide feet (EE, I think). I struggled with finding comfortable shoes to squat in. I’ve tried a Chuck Taylors, some kind of Reebok Crossfit shoe, Nike Romaleos and even just plain cotton socks. None but the socks were remotely comfortable for me, so I’ve used the ugliest shoes on the planet for the last four years.

Vibram Five Fingers.

My only real complaint with them is heavy squats in the summer. Once I get something north of 450 on my back AND my feet are sweaty, my feet slowly slide outwards in the Vibrams. This hasn’t caused any problems, but it is a bit unnerving.

At some point I want to find a better shoe that gives me something to crank out against for more tension. That’s going to be a process I’m sure, but for now I’m getting by fine with the fashion-forward Vibrams.

Why not just bare foot`?

For a decent priced shoe ($85) that you can wear outside of just squatting are the nike metcons, I have a pair of metcon 2s that my wife bought me for a decent looking pair of shoes to wear out and about, but i squatted in em once and they have just a sliver of heel, liked it, they’re now gym shoes. But they wouldn’t compare to the powerlift, I wouldn’t think.

X2 powerlift 3. I have a pair myself and that shit is the bomb

because that’s fucking disgusting. There’s no way in hell I’m walking around barefoot in a gym. Great way to get sick.

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No thanks… Ive dropped a 45 plate on my foot once unloading a bar. damage would have been worst barefooted.

I wear wrestling shoes.

I’m a beginner and started in high top Chucks. I like the shoes a lot, but for me there were some deal breakers after lifting in them for 3+ months.

First, I simply could not get a tight secure fit. Specifically, when squatting and attempting to crank my feet into position, and push my knees out, my feet would slip in the shoe especially in the heel area.

Second, I have flat feet and there is zero arch support. For me, no arch support translates to immediate back pain. Not just lifting, but walking around barefoot, running in non fitted shoes, wearing plain flip flops etc. Could just be unique to me, but it’s an issue Chucks don’t address.

Last, I wish I would have gotten the low tops. I assumed the high tops would provide more ankle support, but they don’t. Also, when trying to get the shoes tight due to the slippage, the shoes gave me a rug burn on my shins where I laced them up.

After a few months I picked up a pair of Addias Addipowers, which you can find for not much more than the Powerlifts if you look around. Immediate improvement across the board. Super secure fit, I feel completely anchored to the floor, foot is fully supported etc, and I no longer have back pain, which is a huge plus for me.

Also, I feel much tighter in all my lifts, and I believe they helped me achieve better form. Squat depth is consistent, overhead press is much more stable, bench is secure with no slipping and more glute engagement. This goes against conventional wisdom, and advice from many respected experienced lifters on these forums, but I also prefer them when deadlifting and rowing. I feel my heel much better and it provides me with an instant cue to drive through the ground. Maybe at heavier weights it could be an issue as the ROM is a fraction of an inch longer, one could be pulled forward if not tight, but as of yet I’ve experienced no downside yet.

Remember, I’m a beginner so take what I say with a grain of salt. This is just my current perspective, and I’m sure like most things in life, my perspective will change as I gain more knowledge and experience.

Hope this helps.