There are a lot of people who go to the gym to do weightlifting, but do not have the proper pair of shoes to do the task. I have seen a number of weightlifters wearing sneakers or running shoes while lifting some serious weights. This can be very dangerous as well as considerably decrease performance.
Most people who go shopping for their first pair of “gym shoes” usually tend to look at things like looks and comfort since they don’t know that there are proper weight lifting shoes available in the market. Weightlifting shoes are designed for a purpose and running shoes or any other type of shoe must not be used for weightlifting for a number of reasons.
First, weightlifting shoes have hard soles which are designed for stability and performance enhancing. The stability given by hard soled shoes is much better as compared to running shoes. The reason behind this is that while lifting heavy weights, a lifter must bend the knees and ankles to their maximum limit in order to go as low as possible. There is a great amount of force that is produced and all that force can make the weightlifter lose balance if he has no hard foundation to stand on, especially when he is bending so much. Try lifting weights on a trampoline and you will see how hard it is to remain stable. A hard base is crucial for lifting heavy weights without losing balance.
Another important thing a hard sole does is that it helps the weightlifter to use all the force produced to lift the weights. A running shoe, which always has a soft sole, will not only make you lose balance, but will also dissipate all the force to the ground. This considerably reduces the amount of weights a weight lifter can lift since quite a lot of the force that is being generated to lift the weights is wasted.
Finally, the raised heel of the weightlifting shoe and its benefits must be discussed. While performing a squat (a technique used by weightlifters to lift heavy weights while going under the barbell), a weightlifter must bend the knees and ankles their maximum capacity, along with keeping both the feet flat on the floor. But keeping both feet flat on the floor while bending so much is quite impossible and instead the feet automatically tend to rest only on the ball and toes of the feet. While lifting heavy weights it is only but common sense to have both feet flat on the floor. Weightlifting shoes can take care of this because of the raised heel. The raised heel fills the gap between the heel of the foot and floor and allow for maximum stability.
So the next time you go out to buy a pair of gym shoes make sure you get the proper weightlifting shoes and not some running shoes. You might think that’s it’s a waste of money but once you wear them you will notice the difference immediately and wont regret spending on your new weightlifting shoes.