The Best Squat Shoes for Powerlifting Of 2021

Best squat shoes for powerliftingIt is one of the more important decisions for a weightlifter or strength trainer. Which best squat shoes do I choose for my important exercises such as the barbell squat?

In the world of strength training, using the right shoes has become increasingly important. This is because the right shoes can provide a significant performance boost.

Wearing squat shoes, also called power lift shoes or weightlifting shoes, during the squat offers many advantages. In the image, you can see the main benefits of using squat shoes.

Our top 5 best squat shoes for powerlifting

The best squat shoes right now:

  1. Nike Romaleos 4
  2. Adidas Power Perfect 3
  3. Adidas Powerlift 4
  4. Reebok Legacy Lifter II
  5. Nike Savaleos

We have tested and used several best squat shoes extensively. To compare the shoes, we mainly tested them on a number of different criteria. The criteria used in our test are:

  • Price
  • Material 
  • Flexibility
  • Stability
  • Fit / Shoe size
Best Squat Shoes - Standart Lifting Shoe

1. Nike Romaleos 4

The Nike Romaleos 4 squat shoe from Nike has been on the market since April 2020 and is the successor of the Nike Romaleos 3 and 3XD. The Romaleos series has been extremely popular since 2012 and it is not without reason that it is a favorite among many strength trainers and cross-fitters.

The shoe is made for Olympic weightlifters and strength trainers, so very suitable for exercises such as the clean, jerk, and snatch. In addition, the raised heel is ideal for strength exercises such as the squat.  

Best Squat Shoes - Nike Romaleos 4

Material

The fourth generation of the Nike Romaleos is completely different from what we've seen before. A number of new materials have been used in the top of the squat shoe, it mainly consists of a woven type of fabric.

The material feels very strong but also remains very flexible, there is a lot of bending in the shoe. The shoe feels a little stiff at first, but after using it once, it feels very stable.

The ankle collar of the shoe has a stiffer nylon fabric. This is done to ensure that the material in this area does not stretch too much. The shoe still feels very comfortable around the ankle because there is a cushion-like fabric on the inside of the shoe.

The material used on the tongue of the shoe is similar to that used on the 3XD version of the Romaleos. It is comfortable and feels good. 

Flexibility

As mentioned before, the Ramleos 4 feel quite stiff the first time. After a while, you will notice that there is a lot of flexibility in the material and the shoe will mold to your foot.

They remain of course squat shoes and are made to give as much support as possible to the foot and ankles. The shoes will therefore not feel comfortable when worn for a long time, they are not made for this. 

Stability

When it comes to stability, the Romaleos 4 are the best shoe of the moment. The tip of the outsole has a heptagonal shape. This ensures that you have a very strong foundation during your exercises. 

The outsole of the shoe extends slightly further into the back than the shoe itself, which provides an extra layer of stability. The extensive contact points of the Romaleos 4 make it possible to drill your feet into the ground. 

Fit/shoe size

Of course, everyone has their own personal preference when wearing a shoe. In general, we recommend sitting half a size below your actual shoe size with the Nike Romaleos 4. We recommend this with all the best squat shoes, not just the Nike Romaleos.

In general, squat shoes and weight lifting shoes are slightly larger. Do you like it better when your squat shoes are a bit looser? Then it is probably wise to choose your actual shoe size.

2. Adidas Power Perfect 3

At the beginning of 2019, the Adidas Power Perfect 3 was released on the market, without almost any announcement. The Power Perfect 3 is the successor to the popular Power Perfect 2, which appeared on the market in 2011.

The Power Perfect series is in the middle class when we look purely at the price. Regardless of the price, the Adidas Power Perfect 3 belongs to the best squat shoes in our opinion.

Best Squat Shoes - Adidas Power Perfect 3

Material

The upper of the squat shoe is made of two parts. It seems that the synthetic parts are made in the same way as the previous models. However, the upper of the squat shoe, from tongue to toe, is made of new mesh material for more breathability and flexibility.

The shoe sole runs slightly further than the shoe itself on both the front and back. This provides more toe protection and heel stability.

Small details such as the leather bit on the heel of the shoe, the leather strap, and the three well-known Adidas stripes give the squat shoe a high-quality look. 

Flexibility

Most squat shoes will feel uncomfortable after prolonged wear, this is absolutely not the case with the Adidas Power Perfect 3. The best squat shoes feel just like a standard sports sneaker does. By using the mesh front, the front is a lot more flexible than its predecessor. Even when wearing it for the first time, the Power Perfects 3 felt comfortable

Stability

Although the pattern of the outsole of the squat shoe is fairly basic, the sole is very sticky and stays in place well, even on rubber mats with a dust layer. The shoe is not the best in terms of stability if you want to use it for Olympic exercises. Do you use them purely for squats only? Then this squat shoe is ideal and gets the job done. 

Fit / Shoe size

As we said before, the shoe has a great fit. The shoe will certainly be very suitable for people who have relatively wide feet. We do recommend that you take a half to a whole size smaller than your own shoe size with the Power Perfect 3 squat shoe. The squat shoe is fairly long, as is often the case with squat shoes.

3. Adidas Powerlift 4

The Adidas Powerlift 4 best squat shoes are the latest version of the popular Powerlift squat shoe series. The Powerlift squat shoes have actually had a consistent reputation throughout the series. The squat shoes owe their great popularity mainly to the competitive price.

The Powerlift 4 is by far one of the most affordable squat shoes on the market. We have looked at the extent to which the shoe can compete with the absolute top, such as Nike Romaleos 4.

Best Squat Shoes - Adidas Powerlift 4

Material

The outer construction of the squat shoe is made entirely of canvas fabric. This is a significant change, as the Adidas Powerlift 3.1 squat shoes were made entirely of mesh and synthetic leather. Canvas fabric is a very durable material, products such as tents and backpacks are often made with canvas fabric.

By using this fabric, the Adidas Powerlift 4 is very lightweight and feels flexible. This ensured that the squat shoes were completely broken in after a few lifts. You don't have to be afraid of getting blisters on your feet when wearing the shoe for the first time with the Adidas Powerlift 4, this is due to the flexible canvas fabric.

The only drawback we could find is the breathability of the squat shoes. Because no mesh is used and there are no holes in the fabric, there is little air in the shoe. However, the use of mesh and other synthetic materials can cause the shoe to give less stability in certain places, so it is what you value most.

Flexibility

Due to the use of canvas fabric, the shoe feels reasonably flexible without compromising stability and support. This also depends on your personal preference. Some strength trainers like squat shoes with a lot of flexibility. Personally, we think the Adidas Powerlift 4 squat shoes strike the perfect balance between support and flexibility

Stability

Due to the canvas fabric of the Adidas Powerlift 4, you hardly have to break in the squat shoes. The shoe molds to your foot almost immediately. When choosing a size, we recommend that you sit half a size below your actual shoe size. Do you like a shoe that is very tight around the foot? Then you are probably better off choosing your own shoe size.

Fit / Shoe size

Due to the canvas fabric of the Adidas Powerlift 4, you hardly have to break in the squat shoes. The shoe molds to your foot almost immediately. When choosing a size, we recommend that you sit half a size below your actual shoe size. Do you like a shoe that is very tight around the foot? Then you are probably better off choosing your own shoe size.

4. Reebok Legacy Lifter II

The Reebok Legacy Lifter II is the second version of the Olympic squat shoe line. We have tested the shoe, we can already tell you that the shoe is even better than its predecessor 

The big question we asked ourselves: Does the shoe come close to the Nike Romaleos 4 squat shoes? The shoes compete directly with each other when we look at the price, we have checked whether they also do this on the basis of quality.

Best Squat Shoes - Reebok Legacy Lifter II

Material

The heel of the Legacy Lifter II is made of TPU. Now you ask yourself, what is TPU? TPU is a strong material made of hard plastic – it enhances the density and stiffness of the shoe. The sole of the shoe is completely flat and made of rubber.

With the rubber sole, you have a lot of grip on the ground. We also felt this during the squats, the shoe gives you the feeling that you are glued to the floor during the exercise.

The top of the shoe is made entirely of textile. The material feels super sturdy, while the shoe remains remarkably comfortable and flexible. There are small holes in the textile, this is done so that the shoe can breathe better.

Flexibility

By using textile on the top of the squat shoe, the shoe remains remarkably flexible. We often see that sturdy and rigid materials are used to create extra stability, which is often at the expense of flexibility. Reebok's Legacy Lifter II has found the perfect balance between stability and flexibility.

The squat shoe such as the Nike Romaleos 4 also has a strap with which you can make the squat shoe tighter or looser. The strap of the Legacy Lifter II is wider than with other squat shoes. 

Stability

Of course, the Legacy Lifter II has a raised heel, just like we saw with the Nike Romaleos 4. The heel clip is reinforced with TPU, you can definitely feel this while wearing the shoe. The raised heel is 22mm, so it is 2mm higher than the heel of the Nike Romaleos 4.

Fit / Shoe size

As with almost all squat shoes, the Legacy Lifters II is slightly larger. In this case, we would also recommend taking the shoe half a size larger. If you like tight-fitting shoes, choose your own size. 

#Legacy Lifter II vs. Nike Romaleos 4

Since the two squat shoes are exactly in the same price range, this is a logical trade-off. We have worn and tried both squat shoes, looking at a number of aspects.

The Nike Romaleos 4 use a double strap system, the Reebok Legacy Lifter II uses an extra-wide strap. The shoes from Nike gave a more stable feeling over the entire shoe by using two straps.

The height difference within the heel of the two squat shoes was barely noticeable. However, the heel reinforced with TPU from Reebok felt stronger and more stable.

All in all, both shoes are of impressive quality. They are also certainly worthy of the highest price range of €200. When making a choice between the two, we think it mostly depends on personal taste. A preference for the brand, but also the look and color selection of the two shoes.

5. Nike Savaleos

The Nike Saveleos is a relatively new squat shoe that came on the market in the spring of 2021. For example, Nike now has a second squat shoe in addition to the Romaleos 4 with which they focus on a different market segment. The Savaleos are available for €119.99, just over half the price you pay for the popular Romaleos 4.

Best Squat Shoes - Nike Savaleos

Material

The Savaleos shoe consists of durable leather, the material feels very strong and premium. On the top of the shoe, there are several ventilation holes through which the shoe breathes well and air can circulate well. The tongue and entire top of the shoe are padded and soft. The shoe, therefore, feels very comfortable, especially against the ankles. At the top is a Velcro strap closure and a pull tab on the tongue for easy on and off.

Flexibility

The durable leather feels very flexible. After having worn the shoe a number of times, the shoe becomes increasingly flexible and molds to the foot. The flexible forefoot of the shoe allows you to move naturally. This improves the ground feeling and therefore also provides the necessary flexibility.

Stability

The sturdy outsole made of rubber ensures that you are glued to the floor. The rubber outsole provides excellent grip and you really feel like you won't slide or move when you lock yourself into the ground.

The raised heel is slightly lower than that of the Nike Romaleos 4. At 15mm, the raised heel is lower than most squat shoes. With the Nike Savaleos, it is a lot more pleasant to just walk around the gym.

Fit / Shoe size

As with almost all squat shoes, the Savaleos from Nike are slightly larger. In this, We recommend taking the shoe half a size larger. If you like tight-fitting shoes, choose your own size. 

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