25 Best CrossFit Shoes for Women Reviewed [May 2021]

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TOP 25 Best CrossFit Shoes for Women Reviewed & Field Tested 2024

In this post I am going to show you the 25 best CrossFit shoes for women.

As a woman who has been doing CrossFit for over 4 years, I know what you gals need when it comes to CrossFit gear, especially the best CrossFit shoes for women.

I know that not just any old sneaker will bring out your best performance, and some shoe styles will make you more prone to injury. CrossFit specific shoes will make a difference in your workout and I will tell you why.

After I show you the 25 best CrossFit shoes for women 2024 I will go into the how’s and why of choosing the right CrossFit shoe for you.

Let’s dive right in!


TOP 25 Best CrossFit Shoes for Women 2024

Reebok Women's Nano 9 Cross Trainer

Reebok Women's Nano 9 Cross Trainer, White/Sunglow, 8
  • Unleash the Athlete Within: Workout the way you want - these versatile women's athletic sneakers enable you to jump, climb, and workout with complete confidence
  • Superior Comfort & Support: Designed to help you optimize your workouts, these comfortable gym shoes for women provide the lightweight, responsive cushioning of running shoes, while maintaining the performance and stability of training shoes
  • Signature Style: With the sleek shape and ultra-stylish design of these workout shoes for women, you'll crush your workout goals and look good doing it
  • Next-Level Performance: Our women's athletic shoes are designed to help you conquer your fitness goals; Slip on a pair of our training sneakers for women and enjoy enhanced agility, speed, and endurance
  • Move with Confidence: The perfect crossfit shoes for women, these training shoes are designed to handle cross-training sessions and intense workouts, from cardio and lifting to climbing and running

Review: These shoes do it all, when it comes to CrossFit. They help your feet get a good grip on the floor and have a stable base built to support Olympic lifts included in your WOD.

They have a wide roomy toebox and are suitable for wide feet. They are very sturdy and the weave fabric stands up to the abuses of your workout, including the rope climb.


  • Wide Stable base.
  • RopePro tech grip on sole.
  • Hard TPU overlay that adds stability and durability – new for the Nano 9’s.
  • Flexweave upper for greater flexibility than other Nano models.


  • They feel a little stiff when you run.


Comfortable for running, lifting, and whatever else your CrossFit WOD throws at you. A shoe-in for the best CrossFit shoes for women in 2024.

Nike Women's Metcon 5 X Training Shoes

Review: The Nike Metcon 5 x CrossFit shoes are all about stability and durability. They have a breathable upper that is built to withstand wear and tear.

They have a rigid plastic TPU heel clip for handstand pushups, and rubber sidewall wraps add to the durability of the shoe and resist abrasion during the rope climb.


  • Wide stable heel for lifting.
  • Removable Hyperlift insert.
  • Flywire keeps your foot locked in.


  • Metcons run small.


One of the best women’s CrossFit shoes released in 2019 for lifting.

Reebok Women's ROS Workout Tr 2-0 Cross-Trainer

Reebok Women's ROS Workout TR 2.0 Sneaker, Black/Alloy/White, 8.5
  • Unleash the Athlete Within: Workout the way you want - these versatile women's athletic sneakers enable you to jump, climb, and workout with complete confidence
  • Superior Comfort & Support: Designed to help you optimize your workouts, these comfortable gym shoes for women provide the lightweight, responsive cushioning of running shoes, while maintaining the performance and stability of training shoes
  • Signature Style: With the sleek shape and ultra-stylish design of these workout shoes for women, you'll crush your workout goals and look good doing it
  • Next-Level Performance: Our women's athletic shoes are designed to help you conquer your fitness goals; Slip on a pair of our training sneakers for women and enjoy enhanced agility, speed, and endurance
  • Move with Confidence: The perfect crossfit shoes for women, these training shoes are designed to handle cross-training sessions and intense workouts, from cardio and lifting to climbing and running

Review: This shoe is designed to support your foot and give stability during the multi-directional movements you do in CrossFit.

It is light and breathable, without sacrificing toughness. They are durable, with carbon rubber rope pro and toe cap, and the rubber outsole really grips the floor well.


  • Rubber toe cap and rope pro.
  • A stable shoe that withstands impact of lateral movement.
  • Grippy rubber outsole.


  • Runs narrow, get the Nano 9 if you need a wider shoe.


A well designed CrossFit specific shoe with grip, lateral stability and superior durability.


New Balance Women's 20v7 Minimus Cross Trainer

New Balance Women's Minimus 20 V7 Training Shoe, Black/Phantom/Champagne Metallic, 9 M
  • Supportive and Flexible Upper: These gym shoes have an engineered knit upper made from nylon-infused yarn to provide lateral support without compromising on flexibility for natural foot movement
  • Natural Feel: The one-piece Vibram outsole provides superior grip to help you maintain a natural stance during strength training. Vibram is a registered trademark of Vibram S.p.A. All rights reserved
  • Lightweight Cushioning: The REVlite midsole delivers incredibly lightweight cushioning for a comfortable underfoot feeling that also provides a better ground feel
  • Comfortable Fit: These workout shoes also include a molded foam asymmetrical collar to provide a more natural fit, plus mono mesh windows for ventilation and added comfort
  • Contemporary Design: With a low-to-the-ground 4 mm drop and a minimalist design, these New Balance training shoes raise the bar when it comes to both performance and style

Review: The Minimus cross trainers are designed to withstand the lateral stress of CrossFit movements thanks to stronger nylon infused knit upper.

The grippy rubber Vibram sole makes sure your feet stay planted firmly on the ground, and the minimal style and 0 lift keep your feet flat, making these great shoes to lift in.


  • High traction rubber Vibram sole.
  • Flat, 0 drop shoes.
  • Nylon infused upper for better support during lateral movements.


  • Run small.
  • Not cushioned – these are minimalist shoes.


Awesome minimalist CrossFit shoes with decent lateral support and great traction.

Under Armour Women's Micro G Pursuit

Under Armour Women's Threadborne Push, Black (001)/Steel, 8
  • Threadborne embroidered upper provides breathability, structure, support & directional strength
  • Dynamic webbing loops hug the foot to enhance fit & support during multi-directional movement
  • Lateral rubber forefoot wrap provides traction & stability
  • Die-cut, full-length EVA sockliner for added comfort & a custom fit
  • Charged Cushioning midsole absorbs impact & converts it into a responsive burst of power

Review: Under Armour Micro G pursuit cross training shoes are a good fit when the WOD calls for agility exercises and running. They are moderately cushioned and have excellent energy return and shock absorption.

They have good lateral support and support the ankle well. The rubber tire tread inspired sole has excellent traction too.



  • Runs a bit small, consider ordering a 1-2 size up if you are between sizes.


A supportive cross trainer for WODs that include running and jumping.

Adidas Women's Crazypower TR Cross-Trainer

Review: The Adidas Performance Crazypower shoes are excellent CrossFit shoes. They are great for lifting because they have a low to the ground feel and are wide, creating stability you need to lift with confidence.

The upper is extra durable and grippy thanks to the polyurethane overlay. The sole is flexible and has superior traction which is great for plyometrics and running. Overall, these shoes are a winner.


  • Available in wide widths.
  • Polyurethane overlay upper is hard-wearing.
  • Wide, flat, low to the ground feel.


  • The tongue is flat and has edges that can irritate.


Excellent women’s CrossFit shoe for those with wide feet. This shoe does everything from lifting to plyometrics comfortably.

Nike Women's Free Metcon 2 Training Shoe

Review: This absolutely beautiful CrossFit shoe is as aesthetically pleasing as it is functional. It is super light, breathes well, and has a cozy sock-like feel and a back strap that integrates with the laces to tighten and keep your feet firmly in place.

The traction from the rubber sole is flexible, so you can run, jump and do agility movements with ease.


  • Durable upper.
  • Backstrap integrates with laces for a locked-in fit.
  • Great for WODs with running, plyo and agility.


  • Runs a tad small.


One of the best Nike shoes for women for CrossFit metcon workouts.

Inov-8 Women's Fastlift 335 Cross-Training Shoe

Inov-8 Women's Fastlift 335 Cross-Training Shoe,Pink/Purple/Blue,10.5 E US
  • OUTSTANDING GRIP - Outsole rubber holds secure on the box/gym floor, especially when lifting heavy weights
  • ENHANCED STABILITY - External Heel Cage and POWER-TRUSS technology gives lateral stability and a stable base for lifting
  • MID-FOOT HOLD - A Velcro strap over the top of the shoe adds a second layer of mid-foot hold after the laces have been tied
  • FLEXIBILITY - META-FLEX technology in the forefoot provides more comfortable movements. Lower heel height perfectly works for a solid beginner lifting shoe
  • WIDE TOE BOX - The toe box is roomier than the rest of the shoe, allowing plenty of wiggle room to spread the toes out naturally during heavy lifts. The toe splay promotes a stable base for lifting

Review: Low to the ground and flexible, these Inov-8 Fastlift 335 training shoes will give you the confidence and feedback to hit a new PR.

These shoes are ideal for Olympic lifts, squats and lunges. They have a raised heel like most lifting shoes and allow for a much greater range of motion on these moves.


  • Raised heel of 1.25”.
  • Rubber outsole with excellent traction that keeps you firmly in place.
  • Hook and loop instep strap keeps your feet locked in.


  • They are less breathable than other Inov-8s.


An innovative dedicated lifting shoe from inov-8. Stable and steady, everything you need when you lift heavy.

Nike Women's Metcon 4 Training Shoes

Review: Nike hit a chord with the CrossFit community when they released the Metcon 4 CrossFit training shoe. This model is stable enough for weight lifting and flexible enough for plyo movements.

This model has a flat sole that gives you a stable base to lift heavy, and has a wide toe box and very little padding so you feel connected to the ground.


  • Flat sole, stable lifting base.
  • Wide toe box.
  • A good choice for ladies with narrow feet.


  • Not ideal to run in.


Awesome CrossFit shoes for lifting and Plyo, great shoes for women with narrow feet too!


Reebok Women's CrossFit Grace Tr Cross Trainer

Review: The Reebok CrossFit Grace is for female athletes that want a slimmer profile than other Reebok CrossFit shoes. This shoe still has all the protection, including toe Tection and rope pro, to cut down on wear.

This shoe is breathable and has a contoured fit and a cushy sock liner you will find as comfortable as it is stylish.


  • Low cut, allows you to move.
  • Toe Tection and rope pro for added durability.
  • Roomy toe box.


  • Runs large.


Reebok has graced us with a stylish, form-fitting and comfortable CrossFit shoe for ladies.

Reebok Women's CrossFit Nano 8.0 Flexweave

Reebok Women's Crossfit Nano 8.0 Flexweave Workout Joggers, Black/White/Twisted Pink, 8 M US
  • DURABLE AND LIGHTWEIGHT MATERIAL: These flex weave woven sneakers provide resilient stretch and support; Re-engineered Flexweave technology provides stability and flexibility
  • EFFICIENT FOOT SUPPORT: These stylish trainers with new heel bootie construction with added cushioning provides ultimate performance comfort
  • COMFORTABLE AND STURDY DESIGN: This footwear features Toe Tection that provides durability for high-intensity workouts; Low-cut design for an increased ankles mobility so you keep moving all day long
  • HIGH-PERFORMANCE SPORT SHOES: Ideal for workouts and weightlifting

Review: The New Nano 8s are nice and flexible in the toe, great for jumping and adequate for running if the WOD calls for it. The Dual density midsole allows for the more flexible front while maintaining a stiff stable supportive heel for lifting.

This is a big upgrade from the Nano 7s. The Nano 8s have decent cushioning, without being overly padded.


  • Works well for WODs that include running.
  • Very stable, great for Olympic lifting.
  • True to size.
  • Nice wide toe box.


  • Trivial complaint here, but, they are not very pretty.


Comfortable, flexible enough for short run’s and jumping, stable and flat enough for lifting. The Nano 8s are a well-rounded CrossFit shoes for women.

Reebok Women's CrossFit Nano 6.0

Reebok Women's CROSSFIT Nano 6.0 Cross Trainer, Black/Gum, 9 M US
  • Upper infused with Kevlar helps provide durability and lightweight strength
  • Anatomical shaped fit
  • Tri-blend FoamFusion technology midsole
  • RopePro+ with sandpaper-textured Kevlar
  • Piston technology lugged outsole

Review: The Reebok Nano 6.0 shoes are low to the ground, with little support and great flexibility that allows you to move. In fact, many athletes say they are more flexible than the previous model.

They are very grippy, and virtually bulletproof, thanks to the Kevlar outer, so they are long-wearing.


  • Textured Kevlar outer is very durable.
  • Excellent grip.
  • Roomy toe box.
  • Good heel lockdown.


  • Angled toe with wide base makes shoes an awkward fit for some.


These shoes run true to size with plenty of room at the toe. They are narrow at the heel and wider at the toe. More flexible than the Nano 5, these shoes are a winner.

Inov-8 Women's Bare-XF 210 Cross-Training Shoes

Inov-8 Women's Bare-XF 210 v2 (W) Cross Trainer, Grey/Black/Purple, 9.5 B US
  • For speed training.
  • Lightweight natural fit: Updated materials, now lighter with better breathability and more room for toe splay and a pure feel.
  • Flexibility: Meta-flex technology allows natural flexing in the forefoot and the new Adapter web cradle lacing system holds your foot secure in the shoe- both ensuring the shoe moves naturally with the foot.
  • Grip: The 3mm outsole composed of inov-8’s patented sticky rubber compound and designed with maximum surface area coverage provides minimal disjunction between foot and surface.
  • Durability and Protection: Updated 360 degree Rope-tec delivers traction and durability on rope climbs while the Italian blown rubber toe bumper provides protection.

Review: These Inov-8 bare XF 210 shoes are 0 drop shoes for a low to the ground feel. Their sticky soles offer good traction.

They are very flexible, making them great for CrossFit. The Rubber strips on the sides of these shoes make rope climbing easier.


  • Minimalist barefoot style.
  • Flexible.
  • Good grip, includes rope traction.


  • Snug fit, double check size chart for best fit.


This shoe is the shoe for those who like to be as close as possible to bare feet while still wearing a shoe. They are so light, you will hardly notice them.

Vibram Women's KMD LS Cross Training Shoe

Vibram Women's KMD Sport LS Cross Training Shoe (8 M US, Purple)
  • Polyester & nylon mesh upper
  • Circular lug patter for grip during lateral movement
  • Xs trek outsole
  • Zero drop

Review: For lifting these barefoot shoes are ideal, you get good connection with the ground and your foot is allowed to spread for stability.

They are extremely flexible, with individual toes, you are one with the floor. Their Grip is Excellent, they are like having rubber-coated feet.


  • 0 drop barefoot feel – good connection with the ground.
  • Excellent grip.
  • Ideal for lifting heavy.


  • Individual toe slots may not fit all toe lengths.


These shoes may look odd, but they work great for CrossFit. They offer flexibility, grip and stability needed for lifting and metcons.

New Balance Women's 811 Training Shoe

New Balance Women's 811 V1 Cross Trainer, Black/Black, 5 D US
  • 4 mm drop: due to variances created during the development and manufacturing processes, all references to 4 mm drop are approximate
  • CUSH+ is a revolutionarily plush foam compound that is at least 13% softer than lightweight performance foams. CUSH+ offers responsive cushioning and comfort without sacrificing durability or stability
  • Fantom tape
  • Rubber outsole
  • Stretch mesh upper

Review: These shoes are excellent for lifting, the sole is flat allowing the foot to spread. They are very flexible, this shoe is designed to allow the foot to move.

The tongue is sewn in to help the foot stay in place and these shoes stay in place as you climb.


  • Low profile and lightweight.
  • Sewn tongue and strategically placed tape keep the shoe secure.
  • Roomy toe box.


  • Run a bit small, consider ordering a half size up.


New Balance hit a home run with this shoe, it is perfect for CrossFit in every aspect, it’s flexible, low profile and designed with CrossFit moves in mind.


ASICS Women's GEL-190 TR Cross-Training Shoe

ASICS Women's Gel 190 TR Training Shoe, White/Periwinkle/Midnight Navy, 10 2E US
  • DuoMax Support System: A dual density midsole system positioned to enhance support and stability, positioned sport specifically
  • Rearfoot GEL Cushioning System: Attenuates shock during impact phase and allows for a smooth transition to midstance
  • SpEVA Midsole Material: Improves bounce back characteristics and decreases midsole breakdown.
  • Trusstic System Technology: Reduces the weight of the sole unit while retaining the structural integrity of the shoe
  • Width Specific: Designed and built on lasts and molds that are tooled specifically to designated widths.

Review: These shoes have good support and energy return, yet you are still able to get feedback from the floor and the shoe has room for your feet to spread while lifting.

They are somewhat flexible and have good traction and grip.


  • Good arch support.
  • Rearfoot gel absorbs shock.
  • The midsole has good return energy.
  • Roomy toe box.


  • The shoe runs small, order a half size up.


These are good for cross-training and have more support but less flexibility than most CrossFit shoes.

They are great for a training regimen with aerobic activity and lifting, but average on tasks like jumping. Consider these shoes if you must have CrossFit shoes with arch support.

New Balance Women’s WX608V4 Training Shoe

New Balance Women's 608 V4 Casual Comfort Cross Trainer, Black, 7.5 B US
  • Lace-up running shoe featuring supportive internal shank and shock-absorbing Abzorb technology
  • IMEVA midsole; Dual-density Collar uses both a softer density foam against the foot for cushioning, and a firmer density foam for support
  • EVA (Ethyl Vinyl Acetate) foam footbed for cushioning
  • IMEVA (injection-molded EVA foam) midsole for firm yet flexible cushioning
  • Internal shank

Review: This New Balance cross-training shoe has a hard sole, with good stability and minimal cushion at the heel.

It’s not as flexible as other CrossFit Shoes but the sole has sufficient grip. This shoe is great for workouts that include running.


  • Good ankle and arch support.
  • Very durable shoe.
  • Good for running.


  • The shoes are on the stiff side.


These shoes are for those who have a running or walking as a heavy component of their workout. Not designed for climbing or jumping.

Puma Women’s Tazon 6 Cross-Training Shoe

PUMA Women's TAZON 6 FM Cross Training Sneaker, Puma Black-Puma Silver-Beetroot Purple, 9
  • Midfoot saddle for maximum fit and comfort
  • EVA in the heel absobs impact. TPU shank for increased stability
  • Breathable EcoOrthoLite sockliner for optimum fit and comfort

Review: The Puma Tazon has a wide stiff sole making them great for lifting, they have enough room to allow your toes to spread out, and they have a stable base.

The shoes are rigid and provide support, but not flexibility.


  • Comfortable.
  • Wide stable base – good for heavy lifting.
  • Roomy toe box.


  • They tend to be bulky.


These are surprisingly good shoes for lifting heavy and make a great CrossFit shoe when the WOD includes the barbell.

Asics Women’s GEL Fit Tempo 2 Shoe

ASICS Women's Gel Fit Tempo 2 Fitness Shoe, Frost/Pistachio/Turquoise, 8 M US
  • Lightweight running shoe featuring breathable upper with padded tongue and collar
  • Rearfoot GEL Cushioning System
  • Removable insole

Review: These shoes are flat and low profile making them adequate for lifting. They are also comfortable to run in and while they are not too flexible, they do OK with most CrossFit movements.


  • Versatile shoe.
  • Very lightweight.
  • Low profile – not overly cushioned.


  • They are slightly bulky.


These shoes are light and comfortable, good for lifting, and versatile shoes.

Ryka Women’s Dynamic 2 Cross-Training Shoe

Ryka Women's Dynamic 2 Cross-Training Shoe, Jet Ink Blue/Mint Ice/Hot Pink/Aqua Sky, 5.5 M US
  • Anatomical precise-return footbed
  • High abrasion outsole
  • All-purpose trainer
  • Breathable synthetic mesh upper designed to keep debris out
  • Removable precise-return footed provides comfort, energy return and retains shape

Review: This shoe is wider in the toe, allowing the foot to spread, the sole is moderately stiff and good for lifting.

The sole has a decent grip, but the upper was not designed to have traction, so they may not be great for the rope climb. They are pretty flexible so they can work for both WODs and Metcons alike.


  • Better arch support than other styles.
  • Good shock absorption.
  • Wide toe box – roomy.


  • This shoe is not as durable as others, especially the upper.


This shoe is good for lifting with a wide, flat base, and flexible enough for agility exercises.

Avia Women’s Avi-Tangent Training Shoe

AVIA Women's Tangent-W, White/Pink Scorch/Chrome Silver, 8.5 M US
  • Cantilever design outsole centers the heel over a concave sole creating a trampoline effect for impact absorption and comfort
  • Additional heel support in the midsole for stability
  • Removable molded ethylene vinyl acetate insole
  • Multi part outsole with external shank for additional support

Review: These shoes have a flat sole and a wide base making them a good candidate for lifting shoes. They have a roomy toe box so your feet have room to spread out.

These shoes, unlike some others in this list, are support and stability shoes, so for those athletes who have a podiatrist who recommends support, these are a good choice.


  • Comfortable shoe that accommodates wide feet.
  • Support and stability style shoe.
  • Plenty of arch support.
  • Shock absorbing.


  • Not as durable as other models.


The sole is flat and wide, making them good for lifting. These are cross trainers for those who need support and stability in a workout shoe.


Nobull Women's Training Shoes

Review: Nobulls are made like flexible body armor for your feet. They are virtually wear-proof, but breathable and flexible at the same time.

They are flexible in all the right places but add stability in the heel and have a flat stable base which makes them a favorite for Olympic lifts.


  • Seamless “superfabric” upper is nearly indestructible.
  • Breathable and light.
  • Grippy rubber sole.


  • Not too comfortable to run in.


High performance CrossFit shoes that are supportive and flexible just where you need them to be.

5.11 Tactical Women's Recon C Cross-Training Shoe

5.11 Tactical Women's Recon C Cross-Training Shoe,Caribbean Sea,7.5 D(M) US
  • 8 mm heel-to-toe drop
  • OrthoLite insole
  • Full-length CMEVA midsole
  • Helcor leather
  • Rope Ready Zone

Review: These 5.11 Tactical Women’s Recon shoes were designed with CrossFit in mind and have everything you need for functional training.

They have a rope ready sole and strategically placed overlays on the upper to add durability where you need it.

The shoes are minimally cushioned and allow you to get feedback from the ground, and the sole is flat, providing a secure stable surface for your feet while lifting.


  • Rope ready area with upper overlay for added durability.
  • Minimalist feel and flat sole for max ground feedback and stability.
  • Really great price.


  • Not great for running.


A great CrossFit shoe for lifting and plyo WODs, at a reasonable price. They are really cute too!

Nike Women's Flex Supreme TR 4 Cross Trainer

Review: These CrossFit shoes live up to the name ‘Flex Supreme’. They are flexible and low profile, just what you want for training shoes.

The sole is wider than Nike’s tend to be, which lends itself to lifting. The grip is good, your feet will not move while doing planks and pushups.


  • Very light and flexible.
  • Decent padding.
  • Ample lateral support.


  • Not much cushion and may be not very durable.


If you use these shoes for CrossFit, they will not disappoint. This is not a running shoe, because they don’t have much cushion. It’s a specialized, extremely lightweight shoe that does the job it was made for.

Asics Women’s Met-Conviction Cross Trainer

ASICS Women's Met Conviction Fitness Shoe, Black/Black/Iris, 6 M US
  • SPEVA midsole material- improves bounce back characteristics and decreases midsole breakdown
  • AHAR plus: strategically positioned in critical areas of the outsole, this exceptionally durable compound is 50 percent more durable than standard ASICS high abrasion rubber
  • Comfordry sockliner- provides cushioning performance and anti-odor properties for a cooler, drier, healthier environment
  • Lace garage- a pocket enabling the laces to be tucked in and unexposed
  • Reinforced vamp- vamp mesh durability is increased by the addition of a thin, seamless underlay

Review: The Asics Met-Convictions have a flat sole with a wider base, perfect for lifting. They are plenty flexible, making jumps and squats more comfortable too.

They are grippy and stay put during vigorous exercises.


  • Minimal cushioning makes for good lifting form.
  • Flexible grippy sole.
  • Durable yet breathable upper.


  • Shoe runs small.


This is a good shoe for CrossFit. Many will find the minimalist design comfortable and advantageous.

woman in CrossFit gym holding a kettlebell and wearing CrossFit shoes

Women’s CrossFit Shoes Buying Guide – How to Choose CrossFit Shoes

CrossFit shoes have a tough job.

They must wear many hats.

They need to allow you to perform Olympic lifts, run a little, squat, do wall balls, jump on plyo boxes, speed through agility ladders, climb ropes, lunge, and all that while being comfortable and keeping your feet protected, without wearing out.

CrossFit Shoes, Not Like the Other Kids!

Shoes that are good for CrossFit are often not good for other stuff. For example, those shoes that you can wear all day, like if you work on your feet? Yeah, those won’t make good CrossFit shoes.

Those zoomy, highly padded running shoes you love? Also not ideal for CrossFit.

Here is what you must look for in the best women’s CrossFit shoes, based on specific CrossFit exercises.

CrossFit Shoe Features for Heavy Lifting, Olympic Lifts, Squats and Lunges

female athlete performing weight lifting exercise at gym

Flat Sole with Wide Base

When you are lifting heavy weights using a barbell, aka, Olympic lifts, you need shoes that have a FLAT, WIDE sole.

This gives you a stable base to lift from.

Heel Wedge for Lifting

Some dedicated lifting shoes also have a wedge heel that lifts your heel one inch up or so. This changes the angle between the knee and your ankle and allows a greater range of motion.

In other words, it makes it easier for you to bend your knees and get your butt lower to the ground. This is especially helpful if your ankle mobility sucks.

CrossFit Shoe Features for Rope Climbs

Rope Tech

The rope will tear up your average sneaker in no time. The best CrossFit shoes come with “rope pro” “Rope tech” or “Rope Ready” features.

Basically this is a rubber overlay that starts at the sole of the shoe and goes up over the instep and shoe outer, giving you traction on the rope and saving your shoe from rope burn.

woman doing a box jump exercise at the CrossFit gym

CrossFit Shoe Features when the WOD Calls for Plyometrics, Jumping or Agility

When the WOD calls for jumping, plyo or agility type movements here is what you need.

You Need Shoes that are Lightweight

Heavy shoes will weigh you down and hurt your performance.

You Need Shoes with Minimal Padding

Padding will get in the way when you are jumping and will dampen the feedback from the floor or box.

Too much padding can also cause injury when you are doing dynamic agility moves because they prevent your feet from being connected to the floor or box.

You Need Shoes with Lateral Support

Lateral support, what does that even mean? I will tell you what lateral support is!

Lateral support is the support that protects the foot when it moves from side to side.

Imagine you are running the agility ladder side to side. Your foot pushes to the side of the shoe as your foot strikes the ground.

This side of the shoe is precisely where you need lateral support. You need the support to prevent your ankle from rolling too far, and also for the integrity of the shoe, to prevent it from wearing out.

You Need Shoes with Good Grip

Grip is important for lifting and agility. When you are lifting, you need to feel secure and that your feet will not move.

With agility movements, like jumping up on a plyo box, doing wall balls, or that agility latter I just talked about, you need to be sure-footed.

The last thing you want when you jump up on that box is your feet slipping and you falling in a humiliating and painful display in front of your class.

CrossFit Shoe Features for Handstand Pushups

Some CrossFit shoes have a plastic TPU heel clip which helps hen the WOD calls for handstand pushups. While this feature is not a crucial IMO, but it is nice to have, because it helps your feet slide smoothly on the wall.

Without the heel clip your feet will catch a bit on the wall, which is an annoyance.

woman exercising with slam ball

CrossFit Shoe Features for WODs with Running

Let’s be honest.

The features that make a great CrossFit shoe and the opposite of what makes a great running shoe.

Great running shoes are well cushioned and have a lot of bounce. CrossFit shoes are wide and flat, like two planks of wood (only more flexible).

See the difference?

Luckily, most WODs do not call for a ton of running. So, you need shoes that are simply passable for running, not ones that you can run a marathon in.

If they will do for 400, 800 or even a kilometer without killing your feet, and they have everything else you need in a CrossFit shoe, they are a good choice.

Women’s CrossFit Shoes FAQs

female crossfit athlete exercising with dumbbell

Do CrossFit Shoes Really Help?

Yes, yes and yes!

CrossFit specific shoes improve your performance and safety. Flat sole and good grip are necessary to perform Olympic lifts safely and comfortably.

CrossFit shoes have a minimal cushion and are often minimalist style shoes. Too much cushion while doing CrossFit agility movements or plyometrics can cause foot injury or a painful fall.

CrossFit shoes have added durability in the sole, upper and toe. Standard running shoes or casual tennis shoes will get eaten up in the CrossFit environment. CrossFit specific shoes are designed to handle the abuse.

What are the Benefits of CrossFit Shoes?

The benefits of CrossFit shoes are improved performance, longer-lasting shoes, and safer shoes. CrossFit shoes are the right tool for the right task for CrossFit.

They improve performance by allowing your feet to be closer to the ground and giving your feet a safe, stable base to lift.

CrossFit shoes with a heel wedge improve squat and Olympic lift performance by enhancing your range of motion, and overcoming tight ankles and other mobility issues.

CrossFit shoes are reinforced on the upper, toe and rope area to prevent premature wear. Other sneakers are not built like this and will not last as long if you use them for CrossFit.

Do I Need Special Shoes for CrossFit?


Regular, padded athletic shoes are unstable for lifting, and the padding in them will get crushed or worse, dig into your feet and cause pain. You need a flat base and flat insole to lift well.

You can easily ruin a pair of running shoes in one shot if you use them on the rope climb. CrossFit shoes are designed to withstand the wear.

CrossFit shoes are designed with superior grip, so you feel grounded and stable, something you want when jumping up onto a plyo box.

two people start a running in CrossFit gym

Can You use Running Shoes for CrossFit?

I recommend against it.

Running shoes are designed with cushion, arch support and lots of rebound, all things you do not want for CrossFit.

There are however some good CrossFit shoes that you can run in. I have a list of the best CrossFit shoes for running right here.

How are CrossFit Shoes Different?

CrossFit shoes are different from running, walking and tennis shoes in several ways.

  • CrossFit shoes have minimal padding and arch support.
  • CrossFit shoes have a flat, super grippy sole.
  • CrossFit shoes have very little, if any, bounce, rebound or energy return.
  • CrossFit shoes are reinforced in the sole, upper and toe to withstand abuse.
  • CrossFit shoes are designed with other features like heel clips for handstand pushups and rope tech for added durability for rope climbs.

Are CrossFit Shoes Good for Walking?

No, not really.

Walking shoes usually have cushion, support and rebound energy. CrossFit shoes have none of these features.

You may find it uncomfortable to walk for a long time in CrossFit shoes, and if you are looking for padding or bounce, forget it!

How Often Should You Replace CrossFit Shoes?

A good rule of thumb is every 6 months, but they may last longer if they are durable to start with and you only use them for your workouts.

Some athletes get away with wearing a pair for 9 months to even as long as a year.

CrossFit shoes do not have the padding that can wear down like running or tennis shoes do.

You know it’s time to replace them when they rip or tear, the sole starts to separate from the upper, or you start to notice foot and knee pain.

What CrossFit Shoes Should I get if I have Flat, Narrow or Wide feet?

I have just what you need! I carefully curated a list of the best CrossFit shoes for wide or narrow feet here, and another list for CrossFit shoes for flat feet here.


After reviewing 25 CrossFit shoes it is evident that manufacturers know their business when it comes to CrossFit training and what a shoe needs.

Reebok is head of the pack when it comes to making the best CrossFit shoes for women. Vibram makes a novel 5 toe design that CrossFit enthusiasts love.

Nike has designed a few shoes with the CrossFit athlete in mind, New Balance and Inov-8 also considered the athlete with several shoe models specifically designed for the sport.

If you want to see more of the best workout shoes, we have a list of the top contenders here.

While you are in the market for CrossFit shoes, you may also want to check out the hottest CrossFit shorts for women, we have them reviewed here.

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