Home / Workout Gear / Choosing the Best Gym Shoes for Men – Beginners Guide & Top 10 Considerations

Choosing the Best Gym Shoes for Men – Beginners Guide & Top 10 Considerations

Many guys have made countless resolutions to eat healthier and get in better shape, but a critical component of that is finding a good pair of workout shoes to carry you there.

With so many choices out there, it can be hard sifting through all of the models to find the best gym shoes for men available on the market today.

Need some guidance? Jump to: Beginners Guide to Men’s Gym Shoes

We reviewed the top men’s gym shoes choices for you:

One of, if not the most important, piece of workout gear you need for a successful fitness journey. Having the right pair of shoes for the gym can even help prevent injury. We tried and tested many over the years, we’ve taken other experiences, and scoured the market for the top ones for your consideration.

Another must read: Best Testosterone Boosters & How to Use Them

Top 10 Highest Rated Men’s Gym Shoes

Below is our comprehensive guide to some of the top training shoes available, so that you can find the right pair to meet your training and fitness needs.


#10 – Nike Men’s Flex 2015 Rn Running Shoe

Nike Men’s Flex 2015 Rn Running Shoe

Nike the company was founded by running enthusiasts, and the Flex 2015 Rn is another outstanding offering in this category.

With a wide variety of color choices available, the Flex 2015 Rn is equipped with a special internal bootie in the forefront for extra grip, while the midfoot has been reinforced for improved stability, making them a contender for the best gym shoes available today.

The Flex 2015 Rn also comes with an advanced Phylite articulated carrier throughout to provide form fitting cushioning for marathons and other long-distance jogs or runs.

Highlights:

  • All rubber sole
  • Designed for improved breathability
  • Midfoot has extra support
  • Front is equipped with special internal bootie for greater grip on running surfaces
  • Asymmetrical design provides a better anatomical fit
VendorPrice ComparisonLink
Amazon Retailer of Fitness Equipment$54.47 – $199.77 More Info

#9 – Nike Jordan Men’s Jordan Eclipse Running Shoe

Nike Jordan Men’s Jordan Eclipse Running Shoe

The Eclipse is a uniquely stylish model of running shoes from Nike, destined to become any guy’s favorite pair of shoes for working out.

The special thick all rubber sole adds durability and improved comfort on a wide variety of surfaces, while the patented Air-Sole in the heel adds vital protection during longer runs.

Unique laser-cut herringbone pattern on the outsole allows for greater responsiveness, while the camouflaged mesh throughout improves breathability and moisture control.

Highlights:

  • Available in a wide variety of colors
  • Patented Air-Sole in the heel for unparalleled cushioning
  • Special outsole design improves flexibility and responsiveness
  • Thick rubber sole for increased longevity
  • Very comfortable and lightweight
VendorPrice ComparisonLink
Amazon Retailer of Fitness Equipment$62.95 – $149.99 More Info

#8 – Nike Jordan Men’s Air Jordan Future Low

Nike Jordan Men’s Air Jordan Future Low

Available in a wide variety of eye-catching colors and designs, these Nike gym shoes come with a special lockdown lace design for a snug and firm fit.

The slick looking one-piece upper gives the Future Low a unique low while simultaneously improving comfort.

Durable rubber sole allows for outstanding traction, while the mesh design offers superior breathability.

Highlights:

  • Available in a wide variety of colors
  • One-piece upper gives these shoes a unique look
  • Special lockdown laces offer improved security during even the most strenuous workouts
  • Camouflaged mesh design for unparalleled breathability
  • Special outsole design for increased responsiveness and maneuverability
VendorPrice ComparisonLink
Amazon Retailer of Fitness Equipment$82.95 – $185.00 More Info

#7 – Nike Mens Jordan Flight Flex Trainer 2 Training Shoes

Nike Mens Jordan Flight Flex Trainer 2 Training Shoes

The Flight Flex Trainer 2 comes with a special midfoot strap to add enhanced support to these Jordan gym shoes, while a laser cut outsole adds improved maneuverability.

Special asymmetrical stitching improves flexibility, while the synthetic mesh wicks away moisture.

Patented EVA foam liner makes the Flex Trainer 2 one of the most comfortable shoes on the market, with a hyperfused upper for outstanding breathability.

Highlights:

  • Available in black, white or gym red
  • Special EVA foam liner makes the shoes extra comfortable
  • Interior midfoot strap adds extra stability and support
  • Custom outsole allows for more natural feeling maneuverability
  • Synthetic design with mesh for moisture control
VendorPrice ComparisonLink
Amazon Retailer of Fitness Equipment$62.00 – $110.00 More Info

#6 – Gucci Men’s Lace Up Trainer with Interlocking G & Web Detail

Gucci Men’s Lace Up Trainer

From one of the premiere brands in men’s fashions, the Lace Up Trainers by Gucci, these gym shoes will add style and panache to your daily workout.

Made entirely from high-quality leather, the Gucci Trainers come with a durable rubber sole for improved traction.

Made in Italy, these are definitely not cheap gym shoes but a premium model designed for long-lasting durability as well as an unbeatable aesthetic.

Highlights:

  • Made from black patent leather and real leather throughout
  • Come with an interlocking G design in one of three colors
  • Fashionable to wear even outside of the gym
  • Quality rubber sole for improved traction
  • Reinforced grommets for secure fit
VendorPrice ComparisonLink
Amazon Retailer of Fitness Equipment$488.00 More Info

#5- Adidas Performance Men’s Speed Trainer

Adidas Performance Men’s Speed Trainer

With a patented Ortholite sockliner to wick away sweat, the Speed Trainer from Adidas are some of the best shoes for the gym available today.

A special upper mesh and synthetic design also helps keep feet dry during strenuous workouts, while the responsive cushioning protects the midsole and heel from discomfort and injury.

With a unique multi-surface traction outsole, the Speed Trainers will never lose their grip on grass and other outdoor surfaces.

Highlights:

  • Available in a wide variety of styles and colors
  • Designed to minimize moisture even during strenuous workouts
  • Lightweight design for improved responsiveness
  • Patented sprintweb flexible interior cage for added support
  • Lightweight design
VendorPrice ComparisonLink
Amazon Retailer of Fitness Equipment$38.14 – $189.95 More Info

#4 – Otomix Weightlifting MMA & Grappling Shoe

Otomix Weightlifting Mma & Grappling Shoe

Looking akin to boots worn by paratroopers or members of the SWAT team, the Otomix MMA & Grappling are some of the best shoes for gym workouts.

Extremely lightweight, the Otomix MMA is made from both real leather and synthetic materials for an ideal mix of durability and comfort.

Extra ankle support is critical for martial arts and MMA workouts, while the rubber sole offers maximum traction on a variety of surfaces.

Highlights:

  • Comes in a number of styles and colors
  • Thin rubber sole allows for improved grip
  • Special ankle support for extra protection
  • Extremely lightweight design
  • Polyester and leather design for durability and comfort
VendorPrice ComparisonLink
Amazon Retailer of Fitness Equipment$94.39 – $129.95 More Info

#3 – Adidas Powerlift.2 Trainer Shoe

Adidas Powerlift.2 Trainer Shoe

The three stripes on the side of the Powerlift 2 Trainer don’t just represent the company’s logo, they also add increased support for the entire foot.

A special weight distribution plate in the sole makes the Powerlift 2 ideal shoes for the gym for men serious about weightlifting. Additional stability and balance is provided by a special die-cut wedge in the midsole.

Highlights:

  • Available in a wide variety of colors
  • Unique heel support design
  • All rubber sole for maximum stability on flat surfaces
  • Synthetic leather design for increased durability
  • Specially designed for weightlifting
VendorPrice ComparisonLink
Amazon Retailer of Fitness Equipment$49.22 – $279.77 More Info

#2 – Adidas Adipower Weightlifting Shoes

Adidas Adipower Weightlifting Shoes

With a patented Torsion System for improved stability, these Adidas gym shoes are designed for maximum balance control.

The heel is reinforced with a polymer wedge for unparalleled cushioning and support, while the PU-coated leather upper is equipped with mesh for breatheability.

A unique single instep strap adds even more stability to the heel and midsole, while the textile design offers improved durability.

Highlights:

  • Available only in gym red
  • 24mm polymer wedge in heel for maximum stability
  • Unique inset strap adds improved balance control
  • 4mm wedge in the forefoot for superior anchoring power
  • Engineered for serious weightlifters
VendorPrice ComparisonLink
Amazon Retailer of Fitness Equipment$244.77 – $487.77 More Info

 #1 – PUMA Men’s Cell Surin Cross-Training Shoe

Puma Men’s Cell Surin Cross Training Shoe

The Cell Surin, the latest offering from one of the leading manufacturers of sports apparel is a fantastic cross-training shoe with a special breathable mesh in front at the toe as well as at the heel.

The soles are rubber, with a special outsole for increased traction. The overall body of the shoe is synthetic for lasting durability and minimal weight, with extra cushioning at the heel for high-impact sports.

Highlights:

  • Cushioned heel
  • Patented TPU shank for improved stability
  • Traction outsole for maximum grip on a variety of surfaces
  • Breathable mesh front and back for comfort
  • Stylish design
VendorPrice ComparisonLink
Amazon Retailer of Fitness Equipment$43.99 – $99.99 More Info

+ Best Socks for Men’s Gym Shoes

A little bonus to go along with your shoes, below are three of the top socks choices we came across in our search for the best gym shoes.

Low Cut:

Thirty48 Light Running Socks

Thirty48

Quarter Length:

Balega Enduro V Tech Quarter

Enduro V-Tech Quarter

Beginners Guide to Choosing Gym Shoes

The pounding your feet take in the gym is no laughing matter; shielding them with some of the best gym shoes for men manifests itself as a must after you’ve become a regular gym rat.

As you’re about to learn by navigating our guide to men’s workout shoes below, our feet play a significant role in our exercise regimes.

A comfy pair of gym shoes can not only ensure that you feel good, but prevent injuries, gather compliments, and even help you with that last deadlift rep!

 Click on text below to jump to that section.

Jump To: #1 Gym Shoes for Men

Why Is Investing in Good Gym Shoes Important?

It’s always good practice to question anything, before investing your pesos in it. It should then be no different when it comes to choosing the best pair of gym shoes for men.

After all, those resilient and durable shoes you’ve been wearing since your freshman year of college still seem to do the job! But is it really that simple? Does anything else come into play when buying shoes for working out?

Yes. Whatever your workout routine may be, whether you’re out running, playing sports, or in the gym pumping iron, having a quality pair of workout shoes is a must!

Our Feet Are Biologically Complex

Our Feet Are Biologically Complex

Look at it this way, each one of your feet has 33 joints, 100 tendons, ligaments, and muscles; as well as a total of 26 bones. It’s not hard, therefore, to imagine the amount of things that can and do go wrong.

A big culprit when it comes to foot injuries are improper shoes! Along with old age and being obese/overweight. However, the most controllable of the three, is wearing the right gym shoes for working out.

Increase Form and Decrease Injury

Increase Form and Decrease Injury

By investing in a quality pair of gym shoes for men, you’ll decrease your chances of suffering from annoying foot related problems, such as: bunions, plantar warts, ankle sprain, corns and calluses.

As you can see, unless those college days gym shoes are still holding their own, and were designed for working out; it’s probably a good idea to give one of the shoes on our list a look.

The Different Types of Gym Shoes for Men

If you’ve ever visited your friendly neighborhood Foot Locker, taken a stroll through a Nike Store, or hung around Zappos.com’s shoe selection; you probably understand the extent and variety of the shoe styles out there.

When it comes to choosing the best shoes for workout purposes, the selection is narrowed down somewhat, but is still pretty extensive. We tried to consolidate the types of best workout shoes for men into the seven categories below.

Weightlifting Shoes

Weightlifting Shoes

These type of shoes can take a beating in the gym, and are happily designed to do so. Deadlifts are their best friend, lifting shoes welcome this and other weight demanding exercise and are properly equipped with ankle stability design.

Running Shoes

Running Shoes

Joggers, long distance runners, and lightweight walking types will appreciate this workout shoe for its built in shock absorbents. Running very short distances here and there can be achieved even in dress shoes, but doing so regularly and for prolonged periods requires a quality pair of running shoes.

Jumping/Basketball Shoes

Jumping/Basketball Shoes

Who knows what would happen to the NBA players who choose not to wear basketball shoes when in-game or while practicing, someone should do a study on that.

Basketball and other workouts that demand jumping (such as box jumping in Crossfit), require a high top thick-soled workout shoe.

The extra thickness of the sole and the high top give us extra protection and help prevent ankle and other foot injuries that are easily caused by jumping barefoot or with the wrong pair of gym shoes.

Aerobic Shoes

Aerobic Shoes

Another lightweight, shock absorbing type of workout shoes for men are aerobic shoes. They help cushion the ball of our foot, and serve us well when it comes to preventing foot fatigue.

Tennis Shoes

Tennis Shoes

Ever watch Novak Djokovic (world’s #1 tennis player) serve his opponents a loss? During the match he twists and turns from side-to-side, generating countless quick foot movements.

Novak has not suffered any serious foot injurious as of yet, and aside from his brilliance, it’s probably due to a good pair of Tennis shoes. Which are designed with flexible soles to handle and protect the feet during swift side-to-side foot action.

Cross Training Shoes

Cross Training Shoes

The best cross training shoes are designed to bring it all together. The purpose of these shoes is to serve you workout routine via their versatility.

They’ll allow you to hit the free weights, do some jumping jacks or jump rope, and finish it all off with a run around the gym track. If your exercise routine is versatile, or you play a few sports simultaneously, consider adding some cross training shoes for men to your gym bag.

How to Tell if You’re in Need of a New Pair

how-to-tell-if-you-need-new-gym-shoes

Examining a Workout Shoe to See if it’s Time Is Up

Running shoes should be replaced after roughly 350-500 miles
Don’t rely on wear and tear from the bottom treads of your shoes
Examine mid-sole of your workout shoe for excessive creasing
Look closely at the areas that absorb the most shock
Perform a compression test by pressing the shoe bottom

You know the old saying, “try and try again, until you succeed!” We in the world of bodybuilding embrace failures on our journey through fitness. It gives us motivation to push ourselves and overcome any obstacles in our way.

But when our gym shoes are in question, however, the last thing we want to experience is failure. When we break down our muscles by pushing them their last rep, we expect them to recover bigger and stronger; but such is not the case with men’s gym shoes.

When our shoes for working out fail us, that’s either the end of them, or a an injury for us; in which case it should also be the end of them.

So to answer the question of typically how long the best men’s gym shoes last, is to understand the durability and lifespan of workout shoes themselves, and how to subsequently realize when your fitness regimen has pushed them to their expiration.

In summary, the life of your fitness shoes depends on the intensity of your workouts. The amount of force you exert on your shoes material, the quality of the shoe to begin with, and the amounts you use them for at a time, are all relative to how long they will last you.

How to Properly Wash Your Workout Shoes

You’re probably just like us and wouldn’t dare to place your shoes for working out among the everyday shoes on the shoe rack.

You most likely toss them in the garage, leave them in the car trunk (just don’t!), or let them air dry on the balcony.

Well, we’re certainly glad you found your way to our neck of the woods, because we’ve got some secrets to cleaning you gym shoes we’d like to share.

Let’s take a look at how to make the gym shoes for men sparkle, shall we?

Prepping them for cleaning:

Prepping them for cleaning:

Remove the laces
If insole is removable, take it our as well
Pull the tongue outward to make room for insole removal, if needed
Wash laces in soapy and warm water, hang dry

Cleaning the insole of the shoes:

Cleaning the insole of the shoes:

Check what the manufacturer suggests first, otherwise:
Use a heatproof bowl, fill it with 1/3 hot water and 2/3 vinegar
Soak the insoles and let them sit for a couple of hours
Separately, boil 4 cups of water in a pot

  • then, to ensure that the stinky odor is subdued
  • add some salt (1/8 of a cup) and baking soda (1/2 of a cup)
  • add some drops of either lavender oil or tea tree
  • soak the men’s gym shoe insoles for about 1 hour in this
Hang dry, but in a relatively sunless warm area (away from sunlight)
Insoles are now ready to be placed back in the workout shoes, but first

Cleaning the inside via a homemade paste:

Cleaning the inside via a homemade paste:

Easy to make paste will kill that nasty unbearable shoe odor
Mix into paste: water, liquid detergent, and a splash of baking soda
Arts and crafts time: cover the inside of the shoe with the paste
Let the workout shoes sit for approximately 15 minutes
Hand wash the shoes, thoroughly (put some elbow grease into it!)
Don’t let any paste linger on as you’re washing them
Let the shoes air dry and take a sip of your favorite beverage

Pro Tip: Spraying the inside of the shoe with a fabric deodorizer will probably remove the stinky smell; but it be as effective at removing the potentially skin harming bacteria residing inside that causes the smell in the first place. Scrub your shoes instead!

Cleaning the outside of your shoes:

Cleaning the outside of your shoes:

Check the label and make sure that the material is washable to begin with

  • leather gym shoes for example need some extra loving and different washing
Prepare a mixture of water and soap, and a clean towel or cloth
Wash the outside of the gym shoes with the solution thoroughly
Devote extra attention to the most dirty and stubborn areas
If WHITE shoes are persistently dirty and just won’t budge

  • pour a little bleach, enough to dampen a clean towel or cloth
  • wipe the white workout shoes with dampened cloth
  • let sit for a few minutes, then carefully wash off
Finally, air dry the shoes in a warm area with no direct sunlight
Put the insoles and laces back in, check for anything you may have missed
Put on “So Fresh and So Clean by Outkast. Hit the gym!

Pro Tip: In order for your fabric gym shoes for men to maintain their shape as you put them through this rigorous washing, stuff them with some paper after you’ve washed them; prior to putting them out to dry.

How to Tie Your Gym Shoes the Right Way

We promise we’re not being facetious! Think back for a second on the amount of times you’ve had to pause your workout, bend down and tie your shoe.

Improperly tied workout shoes can be as annoying and sometimes dangerous as well. Luckily, there’s a lifehack for that!

Take a look at the video below by Dr. Jenny Sanders of the Financial District Foot and Ankle Center, in which she explains the proper gym shoe tying technique.

No need for double knots, there’s a more effective way. It’s as simple as changing the way you loop your bunny ear when tying your shoes!

Take a look at the proper shoe lacing technique:

Properly lacing your workout shoes will ensure optimal performance and minimize the occurrence of common foot injuries and irritations.

Can I Wear Them Outside the Gym?

You may think that with all the benefits of wearing gym shoes out there, this would be a no-brainer.

But we’re here to tell you that, generally speaking, shoes for working out should be used for just that, working out.

Now, can you wear your mens gym shoes out and about as you please? Absolutely! Should you? Only if you must.

Especially if you haven’t properly washed them recently for a good while; it is socially not ok to bring that stench along with you to any occasion but the gym or when working out.

This can be a tough one for most people, heck even us here at GymVentures!

Because the best gym shoes for men are often so darn comfy and stylish; we often have to remind ourselves of what we put them through, and opt instead to carry a pair of just as comfy pair of sneakers or loafers as backup.

What to Look for in a Good Pair of Men’s Gym Shoes?

what-to-look-for-in-the-best-gym-shoes-for-men

Because our shoes have a significant impact on our fitness goals, such as strength training, force output, and bio mechanics; it’s safe to say they carry a lot of weight when we workout, literally!

There’s more to choosing good gym shoes than making sure they match with your favorite gym clothes.

Let’s take a look at some of the more important things to keep in mind when choosing one of the top gym shoes for men.

General Tips for Choosing the Best Gym Shoes for Men:

General Tips for Choosing the Best Gym Shoes for Men:

Use the shoe for what it was designed for and not everything
Know your feet inside out, examine your foot shape
Adult foot size changes too, measure your feet frequently
Feet expand and swell, try on shoes when your feet are swollen
Try the shoes on with the socks you plan to wear, if you can
No such thing as breaking shoes in, it’s a common workout myth!
Big toe and top of shoe should be about a “thumbs width” apart
Understand the type of shoes you are looking at and its intent
Don’t pay too much for a luxury brand, choose quality and value

Mens Weightlifting Shoes

Mens Weightlifting Shoes

When it comes to hitting the weights, our feet prefer to have shoes with a flat and firm grip on the ground.

Extremely important when doing heavy strength training exercises like deadlifting, proper Olympic weightlifting shoes will ensure good form and a stance with a safe grip.

Flat-soled gym shoes for men or barefoot running types are superior to the thick-soled, high-tech running shoes when it comes to pumping iron in a safe and effective way.

Strength Training and Cardio

Strength Training and Cardio

Both strength training exercises and the dreaded (by many) cardio routine require some good gym shoes to complement the effort you’re putting in.

These exercise routines typically involve a good amount of jumping, quick side-to-side foot action, twisting and turning. Thus, investing in a pair of workout shoes that have a good amount of cushioning in their design is key.

Shoes that have a ample room in the toe box area will also serve you well in strength and cardio training as it will give your feet the freedom to adjust as you’re doing all those sharp moves.

A good choice for this category would be a minimalist cross-trainer type of shoes for working out; one with ample arch and ankle support, but not bulky and not too heavy, so your feet can be light and cool.

Treadmill and Running Shoes

Treadmill and Running Shoes

“And I ran, I ran so far away!” So goes the classic song by a band called A Flock of Seagulls, which is a great song to listen to while running or working out.

Speaking of music, check out our list of the Best Headphones for the Gym where you’re bound to find some quality wireless gym headphones, and learn about the benefits of music in the gym.

Back on topic, right! If you’re an avid runner or put your time in on the treadmill every gym visit, then investing in some good running shoes for working out should be on your agenda.

Running, whether on the treadmill, on the track, or out in the open; requires a lot of shock absorption as you are constantly landing on one foot or the other.

Finding a running shoe is a little more involved, however, than finding gym shoes for the previous two categories.

The best workout shoes for running purposes should take into account the following: feet type, running distance, previous and/or current injuries, foot size, pronation, and instep height; among other parameters.

Because of their involved nature, keep this in mind when deciding on the best running shoes:
Overall feel and fit on YOUR feet
Your feet change in size during the day
Your feet change in size during long distance running
There is no such thing as “breaking them in”
Choose based on how they feel, not who recommended them

Running Off

We hope your knowledge on the gym shoes for men available to you has increase by the time you got to this portion of this workout shoe guide.

Keep in mind that choosing the best gym shoes for you is the key, shoes can be marketed and sold in many different ways to many different people, but if they don’t feel right on YOUR feet, than something just ain’t right.

Invest the time and money into a quality pair of shoes for working out and you’ll reap dividends by putting them to a test and watching them continuously take the beating without so much as of a complaint!

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