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Cross Trainers or Running Shoes

What would make the best gym shoes for me? This is a question we always get asked by our customers and the answer is not always the same. Simply, it depends on what you are going to do in the gym.

You need running shoes if…

The majority of your work is on the treadmill followed by some bike work, rowing and then a few toning weights.

Sounds like you? Well, we would recommend you use running shoes.

The benefits of Running shoes in this instance are:

  • You can purchase a shoe with the right level of support – thereby protecting yourself from injury during your core running discipline (are you a neutral runner, a moderate overpronator, or a serious overpronator?).
  • A running shoe is lighter
  • A running shoe is probably more cushioned.

You need a cross trainer if…

You do more circuits, classes and aerobics. And / or you also like to play court sports like squash, badminton etc.

Cross trainers would be better in these circumstances because:

  • X trainers are usually more responsive – lower to the ground – which decreases the risk of injury as there is less chance of going over on your ankle during lateral exercise movement.
  • X-trainers have non-marking soles – often gum rubber - running shoes are made from carbon rubber (for durability) which can mark on court surfaces.
  • During court sports, there is a danger that the constant aggressive changes of direction might make running shoes separate (the upper comes away from the sole). Cross trainers are more protected (often with a bumper) around the toe to add durability and prevent separation.
  • The uppers of cross trainers are usually stronger (often leather) which although slightly heavier gives better medial and lateral support. This is required for the common movements in aerobic and circuit work.
  • So, as a simple conclusion we would advise that the cross trainer is better if you play a variety of sports and want one shoe for everything. A running shoe is better if the majority of your gym work takes place in the cardio suite.

Click here for more guides and advice.

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