It’s time to ditch your running shoes and sneakers if you’re involved in a CrossFit training program. There’s nothing wrong with those shoes, mind you, but they don’t fit the task.
Invest in a pair of CrossFit shoes, instead, and you’ll not only enjoy a more comfortable workout but also elevate your performance.
We’re here to review the best crossfit shoes for men – including Reebok’s Crossfit Nano 7.0 – and to also discuss how to wear crossfit shoes, and their different types.
Let’s begin by discussing some CrossFit shoes buying tips.
Table of Contents
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|Reebok Crossfit Nano 7.0 Cross Trainer||Check on Amazon →|
|NOBULL Men's High-Top Trainer||Check on Amazon →|
|Nike Metcon 5 Cross-Training Shoe||Check on Amazon →|
|Puma Tazon 5 Cross-Training Shoe||Check on Amazon →|
|Inov-8 F-lite 290 Cross-Training Shoe||Check on Amazon →|
|Vibram V-Train Cross-Trainer Shoe||Check on Amazon →|
|Adidas Pureboost Trainer||Check on Amazon →|
|Asics Conviction X Cross-Trainer Shoe||Check on Amazon →|
|New Balance Mx20v3 Minimus Cross-Training Shoe||Check on Amazon →|
|Nike Free Breathe 5.0 Running Shoe||Check on Amazon →|
|Under Armour Men's Commit Tr Ex Cross Trainer Sneaker||Check on Amazon →|
Before you buy: 7 Things to consider when purchasing CrossFit shoes
CrossFit shoes come with a plethora of features but certain categories are always important for your buying choice:
Never sacrifice comfort no matter how much you like a pair of CrossFit shoes, or how they look. The key is to find a fit that’s not too tight or so loose that your feet move around because of all the extra space.
It’s always important to remember that a shoe that fits comfortably for someone else might not fit well for you, even if you share the same shoe size. Comfort is often a matter of personal preference.
Shoes with wider toe boxes usually make for better CrossFit shoes because they won’t hinder the many types of movements you often need to make during a workout. The shoe’s sole, meanwhile, should strike a nice balance between flexibility and rigidity.
CrossFit workouts require many challenges and movements and you need a shoe that can handle the routine. Can the shoe handle lifting and quick movement? What’s the maximum pressure you’ll place on each shoe during your workout?
While some shoes may work best for certain workouts and exercises, it’s best to have a pair that can meet all the challenges.
The ability to absorb shock is an important feature for any CrossFit shoe. CrossFit routines place plenty of demands on your feet and you need a shoe to lessen impact that may lead to strain and injuries.
Your feet will get hot during a CrossFit workout and the heat can lead to excessive sweating, rubbing, and overall discomfort. Sweat can also lead to foot odor, an issue that may not impact your workout negatively but one that’s unpleasant nonetheless.
Many CrossFit shoe designs offer technology that makes the shoe breathable and keeps your feet cool during your workout.
While a shoe’s looks don’t indicate its overall quality, most men choose one that looks good to them. A shoe may have more important qualities – such as breathability, durability, cushioning, etc. – but most people prefer a shoe that fits their sense of style.
Support and cushioning may go together, but you want a shoe that provides enough support for your feet and ankles. Again, CrossFit workouts are often of high-intensity and you want a shoe that protects you from injury.
A CrossFit shoe that feels too heavy on your feet takes away from the efficiency of your movements as you exercise. Just because a shoe as plenty of cushioning and support doesn’t mean that it has to be noticeably heavier.
A quality, well-designed CrossFit shoe should provide the comfort and structure you need without being excessively heavy.
The 11 best CrossFit shoes for men 2020
The best CrossFit shoes for:
Men looking for a stable, versatile shoe
Reebok’s Nano 7.0 Cross Trainer is a shoe built for a variety of workout routines, whether they involve rope climbing or burpees. They also look good, which never hurts either.
It all starts with a NanoWeave upper that breathable but also solid enough to provide plenty of support. There’s a reinforced heel cup, a power launch toe box, and a 360-degree heel wrap which helps keep your foot locked into place.
Additionally, the 4mm heel-to-toe drop helps make these shoes suitable for a variety of activities, from running to weightlifting and more. And traction comes from a crystalized rubber sole that provides excellent support while maintaining flexibility.
The traction and support also make the Nano 7.0 suitable for a variety of surfaces, both indoor and outdoor. You can push yourself to your limits no matter where you’re working out.
- The NanoWeave upper helps to keep your feet cool and dry during intense workouts.
- It offers all the flexibility you need from a shoe used for cross-training activities.
- The external heel counter helps distribute your weight evenly.
- Check the sizing – the shoe may run a little tight.
Reebok’s athletic shoes earn plenty of high marks and their Nano 7.0 Cross Trainer follows in the same tradition for quality.
- Excellent support
- Nice design
The best CrossFit shoes for:
Men who prefer high top CrossFit shoes
While No Bull may fall into the “trendy” category, that doesn’t mean their athletic shoes don’t have long-lasting appeal. And they’re fully functional, as many men can attest after wearing the company’s High-Top trainer.
The No Bull high-tops are built for workouts that call for intensive hard work. They have many features we think you’ll love, including:
- High-carbon lateral and medial guard for added protection
- A high-cut collar that offers a secure fit and plenty of padding
- A flexible mesh base layer with SuperFabric guard plates that create 360-degree shield
- An outsole lug pattern designed for use on a variety of surfaces, both indoor and outdoor
The No Bull high-top trainers also feature a SuperFabric upper that’s breathable, durable, and abrasion-resistant. Meanwhile, they have a cool design and style that looks good outside the gym, as well.
- The high-top design and sturdy sole make them good for other activities, such as powerlifting.
- It blends flexibility, traction, and support nicely.
- They have a hip and trendy look that’s attractive in or out of the gym.
- Maybe not as cushiony as some other workout shoes.
If you’re in the market for a high-top CrossFit shoe, look no further than No Bull’s High-Top Trainer. It offers everything you need – comfort, protection, stability, and more.
- Updated technology
- Firmer heel
The best CrossFit shoes for:
Men whose workout routine includes heavy weight-lifting
While the Nike Metcon 5 isn’t, technically, a weight-lifting shoe, it earns high marks for cushioning and stability that makes it great for hefting barbells.
But there’s a lot to love about the Metcon series, which moves forward with its fifth version. The cushioning is upgraded, for starters, and now includes a split insole with firm and soft halves. The forefoot is soft, while the heel is firmer and offers more stability than previous Metcon versions.
Other features, including a mesh upper and a removable insole make this shoe comfortable and breathable, while its overall construction helps make it a good shoe for a variety of workout routines and not just lifting.
- The new insole is a significant change from previous Metcon versions.
- The rubber sidewall securely wraps the mid-foot and is abrasion-resistant.
- Stable enough to handle heavy weightlifting sessions.
- The forefoot is soft but can make push-offs lazier.
Nike pushes technology forward with the latest version in the Metcon line. It’s a solid, stable, and comfortable cross-trainer that will help you get the most from your workouts.
- Breaks in quickly
- Ample cushioning
The best CrossFit shoes:
For men who want a CrossFit shoe they can also use for running
Puma always does a nice job of combining function with fashion, i.e., their athletic shoes look good but also hold up to the demands of their wearers.
CrossFit routines certainly put a lot of stress on shoes but Puma steps to the plate with its Tazon 5 Cross-Training Shoe. It’s a shoe that’s tough enough for hard workouts but stylish enough to wear away from the gym.
You can even use them as running shoes, so if your workout routine includes a lot of roadwork, the Tazon 5 is a good option. They easily rank among the best crossfit shoes for running.
It has plenty of nice features, as well, including a 100% synthetic leather upper that breaks in quickly and has a comfortable feel. A cushioned midsole contributes to its overall comfort, while Puma’s signature Formstrip on the outside of the shoe, along with perforated detailing, enhances breathability.
Other features include an EcoOrtholite sockliner, a TPU shank for extra stability, and a rubber sole for overall support and traction.
- They’re good for roadwork and aerobic workouts so you won’t have to change into running shoes.
- The synthetic leather exterior is tough and durable.
- The cushioned inner sole provides a bouncy feel that’s ideal for many CrossFit exercises.
- The fit is a little narrow.
The Puma Tazon 5 is a versatile cross-training shoe that can hold up under the pounding of hard workouts without sacrificing comfort.
- Flexible and lightweight feel
The best CrossFit shoe for:
Men looking for a shoe that can handle any workout
Inov-8 pushes the envelope when it comes to technology and it’s one reason why their F-Lite 290 cross-trainers earn high marks.
A relatively new company, at least when compared to some of the other brands on our list, Inov-8 is making its presence known with shoes such as the F-Lite 290. They break new ground through the use of Graphene in their designs; Graphene is a thin, metal-like material that decreases the weight of the shoe without sacrificing strength needed for hard workouts.
Durability is one of the F-Lite 290’s main attractions, but Inov-8 doesn’t compromise comfort or flexibility in a shoe that’s tougher than tough.
Midsole technology enhances the shoe’s comfort and minimizes shock impact, while an enhanced toe bumper and heel slider offer plenty of protection.
The rubber outsole is thicker than on many other CrossFit shoes and provides excellent traction on a variety of indoor and outdoor surfaces.
- These shoes have exceptional durability and are built to last.
- The sole is flexible and responsive while adapting to the foot’s natural movements.
- A memory foam inner lining keeps the foot secure while enhancing comfort.
- Some say the collar padding becomes tight during long workouts.
The Inov-8 F-Lite 290 offers everything you’d expect from a superior CrossFit shoe, and more. It’s a strong shoe that can handle intense workouts.
- Good traction
The best CrossFit shoes for:
Men who like a barefoot shoe with more structure
Vibram’s V-Train Cross-Trainer is a barefoot shoe in that it feels like wearing no shoes at all. As you’d expect, that means it’s lightweight but that doesn’t mean it can’t hold up to the pounding a cross-training routine.
Instead, the Vibram V-Train has a barefoot shoe look and feel with a bit more structure. It features individual toe slots that allow you to spread your toes widely while lifting heavy weights.
It also has a strong rubber sole that offers needed support and traction and includes traction lugs in the arch designed specifically for climbing exercises. There’s also a unique tread pattern for added grip and stability during lateral movements.
The Vibram V-Train is very flexible, as well, and some wearers say they’re comfortable and sturdy enough to run in, although we wouldn’t recommend wearing them for daily long-distance training.
We also appreciate the shoe’s interior, which features an anti-microbial poly-fabric sock liner that keeps your foot dry and comfortable, and also odor-free.
- The Vibram V-Train is a very stable shoe with excellent traction on every surface.
- Its flexibility – especially in the front of the shoe – and superior outsoles help make them comfortable enough to run in.
- It feels like working out with no shoes at all.
- Check sizing carefully; it’s not necessarily standard sizing.
The Vibram V-Train Cross-Trainer is one of the best “barefoot” shoes around. It’s lightweight, flexible, and stable enough for intense workout routines.
- Comfortable midsole
- Secure fit
- Bouncy feel
The best CrossFit shoe for:
Athletes who make explosive movements during their workout routine.
It seems that no list of training shoes – or athletic shoes, for that matter – would be complete without something from Adidas. It’s an iconic company with a well-earned reputation for creating innovative athletic footwear.
Adidas earns our respect for its men’s Pureboost Trainer, which is an excellent CrossFit shoe with a lot of features wearers love. Those features include Adidas’s Boost technology in the shoe’s midsole.
Boost technology involves taking compressible pieces of thermoplastic polyurethane – a very durable material made of soft silicone and hard plastic – and combining them. The result is an overall feel that’s both reactive and comfortable.
“Reactive” means, in part, that the shoes provide plenty of bounce, which makes them ideal for anyone whose workouts including explosive movements and transitioning from one exercise to the next quickly.
Another quality feature is the shoe’s lightweight Traxion outsole that features a micro-tread design that adapts to each surface for excellent stability.
The Pureboost’s outer construction features a lightweight knit material that offers plenty of stretch while leaving room for smooth maneuverability.
- The shoe’s overall design is very comfortable and suitable for many types of workouts and exercises.
- Reinforced stitching in the midfoot and forefoot enhances durability.
- A smooth fabric lining helps create an excellent in-shoe feel.
- Sizing may run large depending on your feet.
The Pureboost Trainer incorporates the best of Adidas’s innovation and technology and delivers the comfort and responsiveness you need in a CrossFit shoe.
- Lightweight durable design
- Breathable sock liner
- Tear and abrasion-resistant
The best CrossFit shoes for:
Anyone involved with high-intensity training
Asics is another big-name, popular brand that’s moved to the forefront of CrossFit shoe design. They have a lot to offer, but their Conviction X cross-trainer moves to the front thanks to its many excellent features.
And what’s not to like? The Conviction X has everything you could ask for in a cross-trainer, from a firm, flat heel structure that evenly spreads weight across your feet to a 4mm heel drop that allows you to handle any activity.
They’re designed with Asics’ unique RhynoSkin synthetic leather that’s abrasion and tear-resistant, as well as lightweight. The Conviction X ranks among the most durable CrossFit shoes available.
They also come with a perforated sock liner that improves breathability while optimizing moisture drainage and evaporation. There’s even an integrated lace “garage” that prevents laces from coming loose and creating a tripping hazard.
- These shoes have excellent stability thanks to a firm, flat heel.
- The perforated sock liner keeps your feet cool, dry, and comfortable.
- They come at an affordable price considering their overall quality.
- Not many, although it’s not a great shoe for running.
The Conviction X delivers all the quality and performance you’d expect from Asics.
- Streamlined design
- Comfortable midsole
- Anti-microbial treatment
The best CrossFit shoe for:
Men who prefer a more minimalist design
Some CrossFit and running shoes can feel a bit heavy, which can be uncomfortable for many wearers. Not so with the New Balance MX20v3 Minimus, however.
The latter features a lightweight, streamlined design that’s still durable enough to hold up under the demands of cross-training. One reviewer says they have an “intimate” feel like wrestling shoes which makes them good for quick speed movements and overall agility.
You can also use them for running, although some wearers say that they don’t work as well for heel-strikers.
The MX20v3 upper consists of 100% synthetic leather while the sole also consists of synthetic material. New Balance’s REVlite midsole enhances overall comfort, and includes an antimicrobial treatment that greatly reduces foot odor.
- You can wear them comfortably without socks if you so choose.
- They offer a good fit that’s neither too snug nor too loose.
- They feel like barefoot running shoes but you can also wear them for weight lifting.
- Not as good for people with low arches.
Don’t let the lightweight nature of these shoes fool you – they’re durable and versatile enough to handle CrossFit training routines.
- Synthetic mesh upper
- Enhances natural motion
The best CrossFit shoes for:
Men looking for an everyday cross trainer
Nike’s Free Breathe is advertised as a running shoe but also works perfectly well for cross-fit workouts, and for just bumming around when you’re not exerting yourself much at all.
No matter how you use it, however, you’ll appreciate everything it has to offer – not the least of which is comfort and stability. Regarding comfort, the Free Breathe 5.0 fits right out of the box, as if it’s already broken in, that is.
There’s a textured mesh inner sleeve that provides a sock-like fit, while the Nike Free Phylite midsole provides excellent cushioning without adding too much weight. The Free Breathe 5.0 also features Nike’s Flywire technology that helps to lock your foot in place while providing the support you need for lifting and lateral movements.
These shoes also encourage your natural motion thanks to diagonal cuts through the arch which also help to increase overall foot strength during strenuous activities such as running and CrossFit workouts.
- The shoe’s rubber sole provides plenty of traction on all kinds of surfaces.
- The come in a variety of color combinations and look stylish in our out of the gym.
- The shoe features an asymmetrical lacing system that reduces pressure on the top of the foot.
- Sizing may run narrow depending on your feet.
Nike earns another spot in our reviews with its Free Breathe 5.0 Running Shoe. It’s a versatile shoe that’s suitable for CrossFit workouts without sacrificing comfort.
- Great traction
The best CrossFit shoes for:
Anyone looking for a cross-training shoe with superior traction
The Under Armour name is big in athletic apparel, and with good reason. They have offices and outlets around the world and their 2018 sales reached $5.2 billion.
They also make a wide range of products, such as their Commit Tr Ex Cross-Trainer sneaker which represents a solid choice for men seeking a shoe designed for CrossFit.
The shoe consists of a blend of leather, textile and synthetic material, and has a lightweight mesh upper that makes it very breathable.
Lightweight is good, but a shoe that meets the demands of CrossFit routines must also provide plenty of support. The Commit Tr Ex delivers in that department with, among other features, a TPU heel counter that delivers a low platform lockdown.
A leather mid-foot saddle helps give the Tr Ex a comfortable, custom arch-fitting support, while the midsole provides responsive cushioning with every stride. There’s also a cushioned sockliner that molds to the shape of your foot to eliminate slippage while providing excellent underfoot comfort.
The Tr Ex sole, meanwhile, has strategically placed grooves and a unique rubber pattern that delivers multi-surface traction and superior flexibility.
- While they’re not made for long-distance running, they hold up well for short runs.
- Their solid, stable base makes them great for squats and lunges.
- You’ll appreciate the glove-like feel and snug fit that’s not too tight.
- Sizing tends to run small.
The Under Armour Commit Tr Ex delivers all the comfort, support, and performance you need for CrossFit routines.
6 Tips for wearing CrossFit shoes
We’ve talked about what to look for in CrossFit shoes as well as all the features that come with the highest-quality cross-trainers. But there are also some things to consider before you strap them on and head to the gym.
1. Use them for one purpose
No rule says you can’t wear your CrossFit shoes away from the gym, such as for bumming around with friends, hanging out at home, running errands, etc. But if you want to get the most from them – including longevity – wear them for CrossFit training only.
2. Wear them with socks
Some men prefer to wear no socks at all with their CrossFit shoes, or athletic shoes in general for that matter. To each his own, but a quality pair of CrossFit socks, such as Reebok’s Men’s Performance Training Crew Socks, provides many benefits:
- CrossFit socks consist of compression material that helps aid in recovery and increases blood flow to your legs. You’ll recover more quickly from exercise-induced muscle damage.
- CrossFit socks reduce strain on your leg muscles while providing additional stability.
- Knee-high CrossFit socks protect your shins from barbell exercises and movements.
3. Wearing them for other sports
OK, our first tip talks about wearing your CrossFit shoes for CrossFit training only, but some feature designs – including some we mention in our reviews above – that make them suitable for running, weightlifting, etc.
But, keep in mind that true running shoes provide the optimal support and cushioning you need for long-distance running. Still, if you feel like running a quick 5K after your workout, your CrossFit shoes should hold up quite well.
If you’re in the market for a versatile CrossFit shoe, especially a pair you can also use for weightlifting, then look for one that provides a flatter surface, i.e., little to no drop from the forefoot to the heel, for exercises such as squats and deadlifts.
4. Dry them after working out
You’re going to sweat during your CrossFit workout, your feet included. It’s important to dry them after every use so that they don’t become moldy and smelly, and wear out too quickly. Take the insoles out after every use to let them dry and stuff newspaper in the shoe to soak up excess moisture.
5. Store them properly
It’s tempting just to toss your shoes in a corner, or leave them in your gym bag, after working out – we’ve all been there – but you’ll be doing your favorite CrossFit shoes a favor by storing them somewhere at room temperature that’s away from sunlight and excessive heat.
6. Buy two pairs
If you don’t mind spending some extra money, it’s not a bad idea to buy a second pair of CrossFit shoes. The demands of CrossFit training put a strain on your shoes, no matter how durable they may be, and having a second pair means less wear and tear on each.
8 Types of workout shoes
While CrossFit shoes serve multiple purposes you can also choose shoes specific to your workout and activity.
1. Weightlifting shoes
Weightlifting shoes feature a raised heel that allows you, for one, to squat into a deeper position as it increases your ankle’s range of motion. They also provide increased stability around the foot while providing and strong and consistent landing base.
2. Running shoes
Running shoes need plenty of cushioning to absorb shock and also feature a design built for forward motion. They also protect the foot and heel, and the best ones should help prevent injuries such as shin splints, tendinitis, and stress fractures.
3. Walking shoes
You can use your running shoes as walking shoes but shoes made for walking tend to be more rigid in the front. That way, you’ll roll off of your toes rather than bending them as you would in a running shoe. You’ll also want extra shock absorption in the heel and ball of your foot.
4. Basketball shoes
Basketball shoes generally feature a high-top design that supports the ankle as you make quick changes of direction and for when you jump and land. They also have thick soles for extra stability.
5. Minimalist shoes
Minimalist shoes make it seem as if you’re running barefoot because, well, you almost are. They’re very lightweight and flexible and have the fit of a (thin) glove. Be careful, however, because heavier people tend to suffer more injuries in minimalist shoes than they do with other types.
6. Hiking shoes
Hiking shoes, or boots, feature a thick sole and traction designed for the uneven and often rugged terrain of a trail. The larger tread design and patterns create greater stability, while a higher ankle cut helps prevent you from rolling your ankle on rocks, debris, etc.
7. Trail running shoes
Many runners prefer the variety of running on trails rather than pounding the pavement time after time. Trail running shoes have a heavier tread than traditional running shoes and offer more heel support to keep you safe on uneven surfaces.
8. Cycling shoes
Cycling shoes vary depending on the type of cycling. Competitive, or performance, cycling shoes have a stiff sole with cleats on the outside, while mountain and recreational cycling shoes have a flexible sole and sunken cleats.
How we chose these shoes for our review
Several factors, or attributes, come into play when evaluating the best CrossFit shoes for men. For us, it came down to versatility, breathability, durability, support, weight, and value.
CrossFit shoes must be versatile to handle the many parts of a CrossFit routine, whether that includes weight training, rope climbing, box jumping – you name it.
Breathability – and overall comfort – is another important factor, and you want a shoe that won’t break down a few months after you pull it from the box. And we always look for the best value: do you get a lot for what you pay for, or do certain shoes offer everything you need at an affordable price?
A shoe that didn’t combine all parts of our criteria had a hard time making our list.
Getting the performance from your CrossFit routine means having the right equipment. That includes your footwear, which is why you need shoes built for cross-training. The shoes listed in our reviews are built for the task and will help you to achieve your best.
As always, we’d love to hear from you. What type of CrossFit shoes do you wear? Why do you like them? We welcome your feedback and suggestions.
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