In the world of powerlifting shoes, Adidas powerlifting shoes rank extremely high. A quality pair of shoes is one of the few essential, non-negotiable items necessary to train properly and stay competitive on meet day (the other being a quality powerlifting belt and possibly powerlifting knee sleeves depending on whether you train and compete unequipped as many now do) Whether you are looking for a tall heel that caters to quad-dominant squatting or a moderate heel that doesn’t provide as much forward tilt, Adidas has an option to accommodate you. If you aren’t sure, look at this interesting article on squat mechanics and why your unique genetics determines your “perfect squat form”.
When it comes down to it, there are two powerlifting shoes Adidas makes:
1) Adidas AdiPowers: tall heel (.75 inches or 19mm) that makes them considered a weightlifting shoe—though still commonly used in powerlifting as well for the added ankle mobility and taller heel conducive to a quad-dominant biomechanical position.
2) Adidas Powerlifts: moderately-sized heel (.6 inches or 15mm) that still provides added ankle mobility and less steep hip angles without a large heel that some find uncomfortable or inefficient (many equipped lifters will opt to use a short heel or flat shoe to better use the squat suit’s mechanics).
When making the choice, consider what type of squatter you may be. Torso and lower-body limb length are a large determining-factor in what shoe will best suit your unique skeletal structure. If you haven’t already, read this article and learn how to find out where you lie on the wide spectrum of skeletal body types. With that said, understand that a lack of lower-body mobility is also a culprit in limiting many individuals, especially those with sedentary lifestyles that require long hours behind a desk and often include poor posture; completing lower-body mobility exercises found in physical therapy routines will relieve many issues—including a lack of flexibility and even pain.
Adidas Powerlifting Shoe Type 1: Adidas AdiPowers
Right off the bat, these shoes have a lot of great things going for them:
- Extremely rigid and solid sole with seemingly no compression (less compression means less dissipative forces)
- High-quality materials with exceptional build quality as well which makes them last for several years even with heavy use.
- While the outside of the shoe remains rigid, the front toe-box is designed to allow for hyperextension of the toes, allowing for a firm grip that satisfies proper foot proprioception
- 19mm (.75 inches) heel provides increased ankle-mobility (more accurately it masks ankle mobility issues present in the powerlifter) which can also lead to improved form in individuals suffering mainly from a lack in mobility
- Long, thick metatarsal strap that provides a satisfyingly-tight fit in the mid-foot region—the area of the foot most lifters push off of while squatting and deadlifting
However, there are also some additional facts to be aware of which can be positive or negative depending on your unique individual needs.
For starters, they are relatively narrow; if you have wide feet then Nike powerlifting shoes like the Nike Romaleos will serve you better as they are built wider and have a wider sole as well.
They are also extremely stiff right out of the box—but this is to be expected for any well-constructed piece of powerlifting equipment. Belts are another item requiring a solid amount of “break in” time if the quality of the leather is high and it is built with a thick width.
Another large negative is the price tag associated with AdiPowers. They sometimes go on sale, so keeping an eye out for discounted pricing can make the hit to your wallet a lot lighter.
If you do not have wide feet and prefer an large heel, the Adidas AdiPowers are a solid choice. However, make sure to buy all Adidas powerlifting shoes half a size down; this will provide for the best fit after they have been broken in.
Adidas Powerlifting Shoe Type 2: Adidas Powerlifts
Designed specifically for powerlifters, the powerlifts provide the much-needed metatarsal strap that any quality pair of lifting footwear has and it’s the sole reason deadlift shoes can add serious poundage seemingly overnight when coupled with the thin, rigid sole—one of the few things in the muscle and strength industry that sound too good to be true but actually are.
There are several positives when it comes to this pair of powerlifting footwear:
- Rigid and firm design that provides a “locked”-in feel
- Metatarsal strap
- Lessened heel height of 15mm (.6 inches) that produces large mobility-inducing benefits without throwing lifters forward onto their toes causing improper form and an unstable base to push off of
- Wide shoe platform for optimal force transfer across the entire mid-foot and heel
- Affordable price provides an exceptional balance between performance and value
- Eclectic collection of color variations for the more fashion-inclined lifters
If you do not have excessive quad development in relation to your hamstrings or squat in a more inclined position manner (short torso with long legs) then Adidas Powerlifts are an excellent option. As with all gear, make sure to purchase somewhere with a robust return policy that will cover you in the event that you find them uncomfortable or decide on another pair.
Again, as explained above the shoes tend to accommodate more narrow feet better. If you have a wide foot, Adidas powerlifting shoes might not be for you. All is not lost, however, as there are plenty of affordable, high quality powerlifting shoes. To learn more about your complete set of options, review the ultimate guide on choosing the correct powerlifting shoes.
Adidas Powerlifting Shoes vs. Nike Powerlifting Shoes
The debate between the two large manufacturers of shoes can be summed up quickly: Adidas makes shoes that tend to fit best for those who have narrow feet, and Nike makes shoes that fit best for those with wider feet.
Both shoe makers create weightlifting shoes (any lifting shoe with a pronounced heel is correctly referred to as a weightlifting shoe) that have metatarsal straps and both companies maintain a high standard of production quality.