Having the right workout shoe is critical for any workout but how do you find the one right for you? Is it as simple as looking at the labels for “running,” “tennis,” or “cross training” shoes in the store? Unfortunately, it is not. Running shoes are constructed for the repetitive heel-to-toe motions and are good for running or walking because they last longer, according to RealSimple. The best cross training shoes for women are designed for multiple types of activities including those involving hard surfaces and lateral movements.
Yet simple knowledge about your stride can make a huge difference because people have different ways of stepping, including under- or overpronating. Underpronators often have high arches and their feet roll out as they walk. As a result, more cushioning is needed to absorb shock. Neutral, or even weight distribution, steppers needs cushioning and support. Finally, overpronators usually have flat or low arches and their feet roll inward with each step, requiring motion-control and high stability. Which are you? Look at your shoes. Underpronation is shown by a worn top outer edge. Neutrals are evenly worn and underpronation has a worn top inner edge. Finally, watch the midsoles of your shoes, which is the layer of cushion between the mesh and treads, if they have deep wrinkles, it is time to fork over the money for a new pair.
For the women athletes out there, here are the top 8 best cross training shoes for women in 2016. Keep in mind your specific needs as you read.
Reebok Women’s Crossfit Nano 5.0 Training Shoe
This best cross training shoe for women comes in two versions, a regular cut and a mid cut for more ankle protection. Both versions are made the same except for the cut. The Reebok Crossfit Nano 5.0 has a Kevlar infused shell for durability. The new additions of a molded heel counter and footbed not only delivers increased security but also a more natural fit. The Nano 5 sports RopePro carbon rubber with mid-cut silhouette for rope climbs as well as MetaSplit expansion grooves in the forefoot to improve foot splay and balance. Finally, the raised lug pattern of the outsole increases surface area which provides better grip and traction.
ASICS GEL-Fit Sana Cross Training Shoe for Women
Asics created the lightweight Gel-Fit Sana with support in mind. The external heel cage of woven bands, stretching from heel to forefoot, are flexible and adapt to provide support in designated areas. The mesh upper works with the MONO-SOCK® (an elastic sleeve inside the Gel-Fit Sana in place of the tongue) for a secure, sock-like feel. Shock absorption and smooth transitioning from heel to midstance are the result of the Rearfoot GEL® cushioning system. Partner all that with the AHAR® (Asics high abrasion rubber) for exceptional durability and you have one of the best cross training shoes for women.
Nike Women’s Flex Trainer 5 Training Shoe
The lace up Flex Trainer 5 stabilizes the foot through the laces, upper, and webbed straps. The upper is made from mesh and foam so the foot stays dryer even during the hardest workouts. The midsole is lightweight without sacrificing cushioning through the use of Pylon infusion. Likewise, the Pylon outsole with multidirectional flex grooves increases traction without weighing down the foot. The hexagonal grooves also enhance the natural motion of the foot. This best cross trainer for women completes its stability with heel and toe leather reinforcements, plus giving extra protection to the toes. Finally, the shoe is provided in a large variety of colors for those looking for style as well as fit.
RYKA Women’s Flextra Training Shoe
Made by a company that focuses only on women, the Ryka Flextra is a lightweight, low cost trainer. The fabric upper is made with breathable mesh and has an overlay to increase support. The padded tongue and collar work with the RE-ZORB sockliner for added comfort and stability. Meanwhile, the dual density EVA midsole cushions the foot on impact while providing lateral stability, and the Ultra Flex system affords natural flexibility, cushioning, and traction. Lateral movement is optimized with the Pivot Point. A solid rubber outsole offers greater traction. Overall, this lace up best cross trainer for women provides support and comfort without compromising its durability.
PUMA Women’s Cell Riaze Mesh Running Shoe
The lace up Cell Riaze running shoe makes the list of top 8 best cross training shoes for women by providing a stylish sneaker that is well-cushioned and tough enough for any WOD. The upper is constructed from mesh and bonded synthetic material which, along with the EcoOrthoLite® sockliner, allows the foot to breath even with the snug fit. The midsole sports bubble technology and EVA foam for a high level of comfort, improved shock absorption and extra cushioning for the heel. The rubber outsole provides a superior grip on most terrains. Designed with women in mind, the shoe is styled to be used in the gym or for everyday activities.
Skechers Sport Women’s Skech Air Cross-Trainer Sneaker
The Skech Air Cross Trainer contains mono mesh fabric on the panels to assist in cooling the foot while the smooth leather upper protects the toe. The padded collar and tongue work with the lace up front to provide stability during any workout. Memory foam affords more cushioning via the insole as the midsole attenuates shock. The Flex Groove midsole is designed for improved support and flexibility with natural movements. Completing this best cross training shoes for women is the non-marking 26 air pillow pockets outsole for added bounce, cushioning and traction.
ASICS Women’s Gel-Craze TR 2 Training Shoe
Loaded with technology, the Asics Gel-Craze TR 2 provides support, cushioning and a comfortable fit. The trainer has a slightly asymmetrical design to assist in quick movements in any direction. This is followed by a dual-density midsole with a harder foam for lateral support covered with a softer foam for comfort. The mesh upper has a synthetic overlay that assists in keeping the shoe breathable. The Rearfoot GEL cushioning improves the fit and comfort as the FluidAxis platform partners with the rubber outsole allowing for optimal traction during natural movements. With double-sided reflective stripes, this lace up trainer easily makes it on the list of top 8 best cross training shoes for women.
PUMA Women’s Pulse XT Geo Cross-Training Shoe
Rounding out the top 8 best cross training shoes for women list is the Puma Pulse XT Geo. Designed for optimal speed, flexibility, comfort, and fit, the Pulse XT Geo is a lightweight trainer that withstands high-intensity workouts. The ariaprene bootie is constructed for breathability along with the modern upper. The injected-molded EVA midsole affords support and cushioning for the foot while the responsive footbed technology reacts and recovers after each step. The rubber outsole gives an improved grip on multiple terrains. The padded collar and tongue along with the fabric lining enables this trainer to have a comfortable, snug fit.