T Nation

Squat and Deadlift Shoes


I am looking to buy a pair of shoes to squat in and a pair to dead lift in

Nike Romaleo 2 have been suggested for squats and SABO for deadlifts.

Anyone tried either one of those or have other suggestions.



I’ve been using a pair of Adidas Sambas for years. I also have a pair of Adidas weightlifting shoes but probably haven’t worn them more than 5 times in the years I’ve owned them.


Romaleo 2s are a solid shoe. They are extremely stable and well built, they’re as good today as when I first bought them yeas ago. Make sure you only wear them in the gym as the sticky sole will go away very quickly if you walk around the streets with them (eg. to the gym and back) and will completely eat the rubber away in 6ish months.

The only issue I found is that they are a wide shoe, if you have thin feet as I do, then the Adipowers are probably a better option for you.

If you do low bar squatting, I would just go with a flat shoe. The demand on your ankle mobility shouldn’t be such that you can’t reach depth with a tiny bit of work.


I squat high bar and have narrow, low volume feet so I went with the lower model Adidas. I’m flexible enough to squat high bar in Chucks but the Adidas give a much more stable base since the soles are stiffer and completely flat. Like tsantos said, only wear them at the gym. They are not made to walk around the street. For deadlifting I just wear socks. I keep my shoes next to me on the floor and put them back on between sets so I don’t catch crap from the staffers. If I ever do a comp I’ll get a pair of those cheap deadlift slippers and high socks.


I squat high bar and do the olympic lifts as well.
I use the Adidas Power Perfect 2 for these lifts.
Would love the 2008 AdiStars but not willing to shell out 500+ !
The Adidas do run narrower than the nikes, figure about a C/d width.
Deadlift in the Adidas except when I pull for Pr’s, in which case I am in stocking feet.


I use hi-top Chucks. Wrestling shoes might work for you as well.


I’ve been squatting, deadlifting and front squatting in Vibram Five Fingers for years (go ahead, flame away). Before that I’ve used Chuck’s and even Adidas Sambas for a while (didn’t like the Sambas, the soles weren’t stiff enough when squatting - spreading the floor would result in my feet rolling out slightly), and before that would just take my shoes off. I’ve considered getting some squat shoes for front squatting (I’m approaching 400 - again <didn’t quite make it there before, life got in the way>), but my ankle mobility has greatly improved, mostly from doing banded stretches a la ‘Supple Leopard’.


boatguy, I actually WONT flame you for the five-fingers because it puts you in a more leveraged adventageous position for the deadlift.

I get about 15# more from my dead when I go barefoot than when I am in my adidas Power Perfects.


Oly shoes effectively put you at a 1" deficit. That’s not insignificant