If you only had $100 to spend on fitness gear before hitting the gym, we recommend you get the best training shoes before anything else.

Why? Unless you’re a swimmer, when you workout, you spend most of the time on your feet: walking, jogging, running, sprinting, jumping, lunging, squatting, lifting weights.

Your feet are the point where the force produced by your muscles transform into speed, power or just plain movement. You can’t fail here. 

For our sport-specific rankings, look here:
Best CrossFit Shoes | Best Weightlifting Shoes | Best Running Shoes

Fortunately, when looking for best training shoes these days,  we have a wider choice than ever. Major sports companies release new shoes every season. Training footwear gets more durable, comfortable and technologically advanced.

Let’s focus on finding the best training shoes that:

  1. suit your needs and fitness level
  2. give you the most value for money

Okay, let’s get to the point. Here are our top5 picks for the best training shoes:

1. Rebook CrossFit Speed TR

Best training shoes overall.

Training shoes - Rebook CrossFit Speed TR

Although originally labelled as CrossFit shoes, Reebok Speed TR are well-suited for any gym activity.

In our review, we rated them high in most of the categories, including traction, stability and breathability.

Read our full Reebok CrossFit Speed TR review


2. Inov-8 F-Lite 235 v2

Best value.

Training shoes - Inov-8 F-Lite 235 v2

Although a bit old-school compared to our other picks, the Inov-8 235s are still one of the most comfortable and lightweight training shoes available.

They allow for unrestricted movement in any direction and provide great traction both indoors and outdoors.

What’s important though, is that they are offered at a very budget-friendly price point.

Read our full Inov-8 F-Lite 235 v2 review


3. NOBULL trainers

Most comfortable.

Training shoes - NOBULL trainers
The Nobull trainers come in a super stylish and highly functional design. They feature a seamless upper fabric which offers super flexibility with multilateral movements. Unlike many other training shoes, these are not too tight around the toes.

With the waterproof lining underneath the fabric and the dense sole, you can take them outdoors for hiking and trekking.

Read our full NOBULL Trainers review


4. Reebok Speed Her TR

Best for women.

Speed Her TR are versatile training shoes designed for a better fit to women’s foot. Perfect for high intensity intervals and cardio training.

Lightweight construction with a flexible sole will withstand everything you throw at them and at the same time provide stability and comfort.


5. Nike Metcon 4

Best stability.

Training shoes - Nike Metcon 4
The Nike Metcon are undoubtedly the best training shoes in the lot for stability. Their forefoot design together with stable platform makes them irreplaceable for explosive movements.

We recommend them for all types of activities – from sprints to rope climbs or box jumps.


How we select the best training shoes?

Training, or cross-training, is a combination of movements and activities that aim to improve our general fitness.

It differs from the sport-specific training by the degree of specificity. For example, a runner may decide to incorporate swimming, cycling or strength training into his training routine to not only get faster but also fitter, less injury-prone and healthier.

By diverting from the usual single-sport training program and getting involved in a mix of different fitness workouts, we build greater strength, stamina and increase the flexibility of muscles.

Cross training prepares our bodies right from the core and supports a better muscular coordination.

What are cross-training shoes?

Cross training shoes are meant to stay functional for a number of different uses. Since cross training involves a number of different exercises including stretching, weight lifting, dancing, and basketball or using the elliptical machine, the workout shoes should be able to take the stress and also provide greater flexibility at the same time.

Most importantly, the cross training shoes should be able to provide a stable platform and comfortable cushioning so as to enhance performance and minimize injuries. They should be able to protect your feet and joints from direct impact with the ground.

What to look for in a cross training shoe?

Cross training shoes should be able to provide the support and protection to your feet during the workout sessions and while switching from one exercise to the other. Given below are the things to keep in mind while selecting a pair of cross-training shoes.

Arch support

Your foot shape matters when it comes to the best training shoes buying process.

If you have a highly arched sole, flat soled workout shoes are definitely not going to help and vice versa. Experiencing pain and sore feet after a workout session is indicative of the fact that the shoe design may not be right for you.

Upper construction

The upper part of the shoes should also be flexible and breathable. This will allow you to have effortless movements during the workout session.

Remember that stiff uppers may put constraints especially while performing brisk and flexible movements.

Good grip

The workout shoes should offer good traction so that you do not lose balance and slip in the middle of a workout.

This becomes more important when you are doing speed training or dealing with heavy weights.

Comfortable fit

This hardly needs mention, but it is also important to consider the fit around different parts of the feet and make sure that they are not too tight or have unnecessary room in certain areas.

Brand

Last but not the least; you should always make it a point to go for good brands. Although they may be costly, they provide the assurance of quality, have a more appealing design and also last longer than the cheaper ones.

Cross training vs. running shoes

The major difference between running shoes and cross training shoes is in the heel drop and sole flexibility.

While the running shoes place the focus on the heel to toe movement, training shoes should allow for movements in all the lateral directions.

Running shoes have a higher heel drop so as to propel forth the runner during the course of action while training shoes are comparatively flattering and provide a firm and stable platform.