What Are Cross-Training Shoes Used For: A Beginner’s Guide

Natalie Cecconi
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What Is Cross-Training?

Cross training is an activity that mimics an activity but doesn’t use the body in the same way. For example, running is different from playing a sport like basketball but still uses most of the same muscles.

Cross-training shoes are primarily used by runners, who can use them for other activities with the understanding that they may not perform as well in the new activity as compared to a specialized shoe made for use in just that activity.

If you’re looking to develop more strength and stability as you exercise, taking your shoes beyond the treadmill and into the weight room is a great plan.

Since you’re getting more use out of your shoes, it’s important to purchase shoes made specifically for multiple activities. Cross-training shoes should be efficient runners, as well as good jumpers, boxers, and lifters.

Top Benefits of Cross-Training

For runners, high-performance running shoes are a necessary premium purchase — they help to control and enhance performance. However, for all the other popular sports that require you to run (or focus on the use of your legs), running shoes just don’t work.

When you play tennis, basketball, and many other sports, you need shoes that provide good control and stability, but your shoes also need to be comfortable and light.

And this is where cross-training shoes come in!

Cross-training shoes are a perfect medium for these different sports; they offer the control and stability of a running shoe, but are more flexible and have a lighter build than running shoes. They also offer a more comfortable fit than training shoes, which usually have a very exaggerated arch support.

Cross-training shoes usually feature a solid, flat sole with a high arch support and a thick midsole. It may come as a surprise to some, but the flat sole is one of the most important parts of the shoe. The flat sole helps you to balance and constantly correct your movements, which is essential for sports like tennis or basketball.

The high arch support and thick midsole work together to stabilize your foot and allow you to jump, stop, and transfer your weight more effectively. The stiff midsole also helps you to push off hard — great for repetitive sprinting.

What Are Cross-Training Shoes Used For?

Even if you are a regular gym goer, you would have noticed a lot of people train with these type of shoes. What are they doing in the gym? Are they apart of a special exercise? Or maybe they are simply on their way to another place.

Nope, they are just your run of the mill everyday gym goers, but they are training with cross-trainers.

These are special shoes that provide a little more support than your everyday running shoe. Their design is simple and focuses on improving balance and stability. This is useful to anyone who is trying to build up their strength to have amazing martial art moves. What if your are a beginner? I may not be the best person to ask. But I do know what the experts say about the shoe. The soles have more stability and are often more firm than your average running sneaker.

Maybe the price is a little hard to swallow, but remember, you get what you pay for. You will be using these for a long time because they are a special trainer.

If you are just getting into running, I recommend a more standard shoe. Later on you can upgrade to a special trainer that helps you develop strength.


Cross-training shoes are specifically designed for sports and indoor exercise routines. As a result, cross-training shoes are very useful for weight training, distance running, cycling, and any other sport that requires a firm grip. You can easily find cross-training shoes that are designed for multiple sports. They provide the required support and stability that is needed to achieve excellent results whether you are involved in running, weight training, or doing aerobics. So if you wish to build muscle mass, cross-training shoes are a great choice.

You can instantly get a comfortable fit that will offer all the support and stability you require. A lot of cross-training shoes today are made with lightweight materials that will not slow you down as you run. This means that you can run faster and longer, and at any time of the day or year you choose.

The soles of cross-training shoes have special features designed specifically to provide traction in a variety of outdoor conditions. Some soles are made with specialized materials that can absorb shocks and help you maintain your balance even on slippery surfaces. If you are prone to slipping, or if the floor of your gym is always wet and slippery, you should get cross-training shoes that have these specialized features.


Unsurprisingly, you should opt for trainers that are best suited to the type of exercise you are planning on doing.

Opt for cross-training shoes that are flexible enough to allow you to switch between training sessions without experiencing any discomfort. These shoes should be lightweight and breathable to allow the feet to breathe.

Another factor that influences the choice of cross-training shoes is what surface you will be training on.

If you’re aiming for a multi-surface trainer, then you need to make sure that the shoes are not only suitable for multiple activities, but they should also be durable enough to handle the different surfaces.

Finally, it’s important to think about your budget.

If you have the budget, you should be able to get a pair of cross-training shoes that are suitable for multiple exercises and can last you for a long time.

However, if you’re on a budget, it’s more important to prioritize qualities over price, maintain the right fit for your feet, and choose a multi-purpose shoe that’s affordable.

Fast drying sho laces are a great feature to have.

Cross-Training Shoes vs. Running Shoes

While this may seem like a silly question to ask, another common answer is that cross-trainers are used for weightlifting and for gym exercise. Some will also say that cross-trainers are used to do cardio.

But in reality, cross-trainers are a type of shoe that can do any of the three. In any case, they are more designed for activities that involve moving sideways, not straight forward. An ordinary running shoe, on the other hand, is designed for running.

As a beginner, just know that cross-trainer shoes are essentially a hybrid of running and walking shoes. They are shoes with broader soles, making it easier to move your feet in all directions.

They are also more flexible, which allows for your feet to move naturally without restrictions.

When Should You Replace Cross-Training Shoes?

Cross-training shoes are some of the most versatile footwear of all time.

The fact that all of the components of a cross-training shoe are engineered together ensures that they are going to perform well in a variety of environments.

Unfortunately, that also means that once one element starts to wear out, you are going to get some pretty uncomfortable side effects.

That’s why you should pay close attention to the wear and tear that takes place. This is one of the most important aspects of maintaining cross-training shoes. Remember, if the shoe feels good you are going to identify the issue when it’s best to take care of it before your shoe starts to wear thin.


A few days ago I published a comprehensive guide on cross-training shoes, and I hope you enjoyed reading it 🙂

As I promised in my introduction, I will follow up in a couple of weeks with a more technical guide on the characteristics of cross-training shoes, but today we’re going to take a look at what cross-training shoes are actually used for ↦.

We all know a lot of people (myself included) who like to try new things when it comes to physical activities ↦ and among those activities, there are a few that cross-trainers may be interested in taking a try at.

Cross-training shoes (sometimes referred to as cross-trainers) are designed to provide all-around comfort and support for users who want to take up a range of activities such as walking, running, cycling, hiking and so on.

While they aren’t as specialized as the shoes used in each of these activities, they are more versatile than regular sneakers.

So why are cross-trainers so popular?

First of all, they are very comfortable, versatile, and durable.