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If you’re a powerlifter with a wide feet profile, it’s necessary for you to pick a deadlift shoe suits your above-average width for both comfort and performance.
So what are the best deadlift shoes for wide feet? The Sabo Deadlift Shoe Pro is my top choice for deadlifters with wide feet. The shoes have the widest toe box out of all the models we tested, in addition to being extremely comfortable and having all of the other requirements needed in a deadlift shoe; a minimalistic design, a flat rigid sole, and a durable high top construction.
In today’s article, I’ll walk you through a brief guide with everything you need to know about deadlift shoes for wide feet. Let’s dive in!
Top 5 Deadlift Shoes for Wide Feet Available on the Market
The top 5 deadlift shoes for wide feet are:
- Sabo Deadlift Shoe Pro – Best Overall Deadlift Shoe For Wide Feet
- Otomix Stingray Shoe – Runner Up
- Lifting Large Deadlift Slipper – Best Budget Option
- ASICS Men’s Snapdown 3 Shoes – Best Wrestling-Type Shoe For Lifters With Wide Feet
- Converse Chuck Taylor – Most Flexible Option
Sabo Deadlift shoes are one of the greatest shoes for deadlifts out there. But if you have wide feet, you should consider the Pro version because it comes with a roomier toe box.
I also found that the Pro version was the most comfortable out of all the deadlift shoes just in terms of wearing it throughout the workout. As you might know, deadlifting shoes aren’t typically known for comfort because of the lack of arch support.
In terms of performance, I really liked how you could grip your big toe and pinky toe into the floor (because of the wide toe box), which enhances your stance and allows for the maximum transfer of force through your feet into the barbell.
The shoe is fully dedicated to deadlifts, as it comes with a thin incompressible sole with no cushioning or padding to keep you as close to the floor as possible. The benefit of this is that you minimize the range of motion you have to pull the barbell.
The outsole is also made from slip resistance material to keep your feet stabilized. This is especially important if you deadlift sumo, since you don’t want your feet slipping sideways. As well, while high ankle support isn't necessary for conventional deadlifting, the Sabo Pro versions have the ankle support required if you do pull using the sumo stance.
Moreover, Sabo Deadlift Pro has a tiny bit of arch support while keeping the shoes flat as much as possible, so it’s also suitable for those suffering from wide and flat feet together.
- Extremely durable construction and specifically designed for deadlifts
- Roomy design to help you grip the floor with your toes
- The small arch support makes it perfect for those who value comfort
- Comes with a premium price tag (worth it if you have a wide foot though)
Another shoe that is known for its wide feet support is the Otomix Stingray shoe, which is a widely versatile shoe that can also be used for a variety of other activities, such as MMA, boxing, wrestling, and general weightlifting.
What I like about the Stingray besides being versatile is that it comes with a wide toe box that suits people with wide feet.
The shoe is quite durable and the outsole is made of synthetic rubber that resists heavy compression, making it a great choice for lifting heavy barbells without worrying about slipping as well as wear and tear.
The Otomix Stingray is renowned for its excellent ankle coverage. The shoe comes with an extra-tall ankle collar that provides top ankle support.
This makes it great for deadlifters who like to have extra gripping support on their ankle while lifting heavyweights. Mostly a benefit for sumo pullers.
One of the things that make the Otomix Stingray a unique shoe is that it’s designed to be as lightweight as possible. Although this isn’t a necessity for a great deadlift shoe, it’s a great option for those who don’t like to feel a heavy shoe on their feet.
I started my powerlifting career wearing the Otomix shoes, but then upgraded to the Sabo Pro Deadlift shoes once they became available on the market. Honestly, either shoe is going to be great if you have wide feet.
- A highly versatile option that can be used for tons of exercise activities
- The flat and thin soles minimize the range of motion and enhance stability
- Lightweight yet durable shoes
- Lacks midfoot arch support, so it’s not suitable for those who have flat feet
If you’re on a tight budget, you might want to consider a deadlift slipper. These products are usually quite cheap when compared to actual shoes. However, they do work brilliantly for conventional deadlifts. Not for sumo deadlifters because they don't have the ankle support.
You would wear a deadlift slipper if you like deadlifting barefoot. However, the design of a slipper gives you the proper protection from the dirty floors as well as the slip resistance you need to stay stabilized. It's no doublt, a deadlift slipper is extremely thin and gets you the closest to the floor.
I would say these shoes weren’t built from the ground up with “wide feet” in mind. So if you have quite wide feet, I would opt for one of the two options above (Sabo Deadlift Pro or Otomix Stingray).
However, the material is somewhat stretchy so if you do have wide feet, there is a little bit of “give” and it should stretch out over time. But like I said, my recommendation is still likely to go with one of the other two options above, especially if you know you have super wide feet.
- Costs a fraction of what other shoes do
- Allow you to quickly pack them when not in use
- Gets you the closest to the floor
- Don’t provide ankle support (can’t be used for ankle stressing techniques like sumo)
Asics Matflex shoes are originally designed for wrestling. However, the powerlifting community has been using wrestling shoes for lifting for a long time because they fit the bill for good deadlift as well as squat shoes.
The Snapdown 3 from ASICS is known for having a “wide” option in its sizing scale, which is excellent for those who require a little bit of extra width in their shoe.
The soles on these shoes are almost entirely flat where it matters, as they have no heel elevation. This protects you from losing your balance and keeps the barbell on you all the time during a deadlift.
The soles on the shoe are only 5 mm thick at the thickest point. This means that it will keep you as close to the ground as possible. It's not the “most minimalistic” shoe on the market (which you want for deadlifting), but it certainly isn't terrible.
The outsoles on the shoes are made of synthetic rubber and come with a special pattern with multiple traction pods that provide excellent slip resistance and foot stabilization. As such, you will see a lot of lifters using this shoe for sumo deadlifting.
Another thing that makes the Asics Snapdown 3 great is the tremendous level of ankle support it offers. It has more rigid ankle support than the Otomix shoes that I discussed above.
Also, the ankle region has minimal padding to stabilize the feet and allows you to tighten up the laces for further ankle support. This makes it ideal for various deadlift techniques, such as sumo.
If you like the design of these shoes and you're thinking about getting them, definitely make sure you size up by 1, especially if you have wide feet.
- Has a separate sizing option for wide feet
- Made of durable fabrics to withstand the extra stress of the wide feet
- Thin and flat soles for stabilization
- You might still need to go one size up in the wide section
Last but not least, if you’re looking for a versatile shoe that you can use for various purposes all the while having a wide profile, you might want to try the good ol’ Converse shoes!
With tons of colors and sizing options, some of these shoes have a wide toe box design that makes them suitable for athletes with wide feet.
Converse shoes also have a flat sole with minimal padding to keep your feet stabilized and minimize the range of motion.
The sole thickness of converse is usually 8 to 10 mm, which can be a little thicker than average deadlift shoes but not too high and suitable enough for powerlifting, whether it’s deadlifts or squats!
They're not the best shoe for deadlifting with wide feet, especially when comparing the other products above. But hey, they're pretty darn affordable! So if you're on a budget, and you don't want to wear deadlift slippers, they're a great option. Once you have more money to invest in deadlifting shoes, you can then go with one of the options above.
- A highly available shoe with tons of colors and wide size options
- Fairly comfortable can be worn for various workouts and outside the gym
- The minimal padding with flat rubber soles stabilizes the feet perfectly while lifting
- Canvas isn’t as durable as other fabric options
- Has the thickest soles out of all the deadlifting shoes reviewed
What to Look for in Deadlift Shoes for Wide Feet?
Deadlifts are physically demanding exercises that rely on tons of variables, and being in the right shoes won’t only keep you comfortable and protected while lifting, but it can also enhance your lifting kinematics.
That’s why it’s essential to keep an eye out for some essential features and aspects of the shoes.
In this section, I’ll briefly discuss the most critical one:
General Deadlift Shoe Characteristics
No matter your foot size, there are some general features that make any shoe a good one for deadlifts.
For instance, it should have a flat and thin sole that helps in keeping you as close to the floor as possible while you’re lifting.
This minimizes your feet’ range of motion and anchors them to the ground. Also, the shoe should have incompressible soles with no padding or cushioning to transfer all the force of the left through the floor and maximize your performance.
Sizing and Wide Toe Box
If the main pain point you have while buying a shoe is that you have wide feet, finding a shoe with a wide toe box is among the most critical things to consider.
As the name suggests, the toe box is the area that extends from the beginning of the toe bones to the tips of the toes.
In the majority of cases, the widest point in your feet is usually within the borders of the toe box. That’s why it’s essential for the toe box in a shoe to be large enough to accommodate your feet and you should look for a shoe with a wide toe box.
Alternatively, some shoe manufacturers have separate sizing options known as the “wide” sizing.
For example, you may find shoes that are size 7.5 and 7.5 wide. In that case, both of them would have the same length, but the wide option will have a roomier toe box.
Going for a roomy toe box isn’t only a comfort necessity but it also gives you the ability to clench your toes and anchor your feet to the floor, which allows for the maximum transfer of power through your feet, resulting in a successful lift.
Another critical aspect for someone with wide feet is the durability of the shoes. A wide foot would typically apply much higher lateral force on the shoe, which ends up messing with the internal stitching of the shoe, let alone the added pressure of the barbell while lifting.
In fact, even if the shoe doesn’t rip apart with time, it still loses much of its supporting capabilities, which eventually reduces your performance.
This is why picking a deadlift shoe that is made from durable fabrics that can handle all that pressure.
Importance of Wearing Proper Shoes While Deadlifting with Wide Feet
Some Deadlift Techniques Requires Specific Shoes
A lot of people with wide feet do their deadlifts barefooted or in socks to avoid the discomfort as well as the adverse health side effects of wearing tight shoes.
However, some deadlift techniques might put too much stress on some parts of the feet, making proper footwear necessary.
For instance, sumo deadlifts put so much pressure on the ankles during the lift. To maximize your performance and avoid injuries when lifting with this technique, you need a wide shoe with ankle support, such as Sabo Deadlift Shoe Pro.
Protect You from Certain Injuries in the Long Run
People who have wide feet probably know that there are certain conditions and injuries that they’re more likely to get, especially if they always wear shoes that are too tight for them.
This includes foot bunions, which is the protrusion of the big toes bone outwards, forming a bony bump on the side of the feet and is removed surgically.
Another complication to wearing tight shoes too often and curling the toes inside is known as “hammertoes”. This one is deformation in the feet muscles and ligaments that make them rest in a bent position.
One of the best ways to avoid extensive treatments is to wear proper shoes while exercising that aren’t too tight for you as well as maintaining exercise to straighten the toes.
Gym floors aren’t always clean, so wearing proper footwear is essential to protect your feet from infections and germs.
Moreover, Lifting on an exposed or slippery ground can be a recipe for disaster, so wearing shoes that have slip-resistant rubber outsoles gives you the needed traction to anchor your feet to the ground and maximize the force transfer while lifting.
Do You Have Wide Feet?
Before deciding to buy a shoe that is suitable for wide feet, it’s important that you make sure that you have one in the first place, so here’s what you should know about wide feet.
What Do Wide Feet Actually Mean?
The problem with shoe sizing systems is that they always focus on the length of the feet rather than their width.
Since some people may have genetically wider feet, you may end up buying a deadlift shoe that slips in easily and has a perfect room at the tip of the toe yet relatively tight at the sides.
The thing is, for regular shoes, it’s expected for them to loosen up a bit after wearing them for a decent time, and it has enough padding and cushioning to make the breaking-in process much easier and quicker.
But on the other hand, deadlift shoes are designed to be flat with incompressible soles that have no padding or cushioning, so it would be extremely uncomfortable to wear them all the time or move and train around with them.
In addition to all that, during strenuous physical activity, muscle and vascular activation at the feet causes them to naturally swell up, which makes the shoes feel even tighter.
Since you use your feet to anchor yourself to the ground during a deadlift, expect your feet to swell up during exercise.
How to Tell If Your Feet Are Wider Than Average?
Most shoe brands and manufacturers design their shoes according to the average width per foot length. So while it might fit most people, those with wider than average feet may not feel comfortable wearing a tight fit shoe, even if they’re wearing the right size.
Ideally, the easiest way to tell how your feet are wider than average is by measuring your feet at home and compare the results to global size charts or the ones presented by the seller of the shoes in mind.
The process of measuring is fairly easy and it only needs a sheet of paper, a pen or a marker, and a measuring device or ruler. Here’s how to do it properly:
1. Start by placing the sheet of paper on a level and flat ground.
2. Step with one foot (any foot would do) on the sheet of paper.
3. Use the marker or pen to trace the outline of your feet. (Tip: if you find it hard to stay balanced while leaning forward, you can put the other knee on the floor or ask someone else to do it for you)
4. With the outline of the foot marked on the paper, measure the maximum length of the foot, which is the distance from the heel to the longest toe you have, then record it as “foot length”.
5. Measure the maximum width of the foot (between the widest parts of your feet, which is usually at the ball of the foot), then record it as “foot width”.
If you're looking for a pair of squat shoes for wide feet, then be sure to check out my recommendation of the top 4 brands.
That’s it for today’s guide on the best deadlift shoes for wide feet! Personally, I recommend the Sabo Deadlift Shoe Pro as the overall best option on the market.
The shoe is specifically designed for deadlifts and provides ultimate performance for powerlifters with wide feet.
However, if you’re looking for something more versatile while staying decently affordable, you can always settle for Converse Chuck Taylors, as you can wear them from deadlifts and squats to off-gym activities!