Why Weightlifting Shoes?


In the many years that I have being going to the gym, I can probably count on one hand the number of times I have seen lifters working out in proper  weightlifting  shoes. It seems that while other athletes will wear specialty shoes for whatever sport they participate in, most weightlifters do not consider the benefits that proper shoes can make to their performance and strength.

Your bed’s mattress is for sleeping, not squatting. But when you squat in sneakers it is as if you are performing the lift while standing on your bed. The shock absorption provided by sneakers is great when you are jogging, but the compressibility of the sole hampers the squat (and other lifts) in multiple ways. Primarily, the absorption in sneakers is actually absorbing part of the energy you are forcing between the floor and the barbell. This in effect reduces the efficiency of the lift and causes you to lose strength you could be putting into lifting more weight. Second, lifting in sneakers makes the foundation of your squat and other lifts unstable.


This instability makes every lift seem as if you are performing the movement for the very first time. Good technique is developed by reproducing the correct movement over and over; however this is simply not possible when done on a surface that is unsteady. Finally, lifting in sneakers can be considered somewhat dangerous, especially when performing Olympic styles lifts. Landing from a jump on a surface that is unstable can cause balance and technique problems which can easily result in injury, especially when using heavier weights.

Proper  weightlifting  shoes resolve these issues by providing a stable, non-compressible sole that improves the efficiency of the lift and helps you keep good form, reducing the risk of injury. The heel on a  weightlifting  shoe also makes it easier to keep your torso upright, knees in the right position-slightly in front of the toes, and to get into a deeper squat. You will not only notice that you have a better sense of the weight, allowing you to push with greater force, but you will also be able to sit back better and keep your heels on the floor. Many lifters find that after trying  weightlifting  shoes, they can’t believe that they ever were able to lift without them. Indeed, famed author and strength coach, Mark Rippetoe, states in his book, Starting Strength, that  weightlifting  shoes are the only real piece of personal equipment you need when performing a squat.

When you consider the price you can pay for a good pair of sneakers or other sports shoes, it really make sense to invest in a pair of shoes that can make such a difference to the lifting experience. You do not need to spend a lot of money to get  weightlifting  shoes.

Source by Joseph Parrinello


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