If it’s your first time in spin class or you’ve been doing this for a while, one thing that is very clear from the beginning is that it’s paramount that you have the right shoes. If you’re going to invest your time, money, and energy to get the best workout you need to invest in the best cycling shoes for spin class.
If you’re a fitness enthusiast, you know that spinning is a great way of burning calories, reducing fat, building on your endurance, and toning your lower body. Something that you may not know is the importance of wearing the right shoes for indoor cycling. You might think that all you need are your running shoes, but they aren’t designed for supporting your ankle and foot or for fast pedaling. They only end up adding more strain and pressure on your feet and they are more likely to slip off the pedals.
What are spinning shoes?
Spinning shoes are designed with a stiff sole and less padding than other athletic shoes. The sole is made with rubber to prevent your foot from slipping and to help keep your ankle and foot secure while pedaling. The most important feature of a spinning shoe is the type of cleats attached. Most cycling shoes don’t come with cleats so you have to buy them separately because two different types can respond to either of the two pedaling systems; the SPD AND Delta systems.
Before you decide on which spinning shoe to buy, check with your gym or studio to see the pedaling system used in the spin classes. Most gyms use the SPD cleat because they don’t damage the gym floor. You can comfortably walk and exercise in them and they work on and off the bike.
Why should you invest in the best cycling shoes for spin class?
When you invest in a good pair of indoor cycling shoes they change your whole workout experience for a couple of reasons.
- Spin shoes help you to transfer more energy from your legs to the bike because the shoe doesn’t have padding that will absorb it. This, in turn, helps your muscles to work harder which results in a great lower body workout.
- When you wear cycling shoes they help to reduce your chances of injury and muscle soreness after a workout. It may be pricey to buy spinning shoes and considering that most gyms or studios rent out the shoes, but in the long term, it’s much better if you got your pair.
- Spinning shoes not only help to tone your quads, but also the hamstrings at the back of your thighs and your flexors at your lower front legs and hips.
- Clipping your feet to the pedals helps to reduce the pressure that you would use in a toe cage making it easier on climbs and giving you a more fluid pedal stroke which is much better on your knees.
- The stiffness of the sole in the cycling shoes means that there is more power transferred to the pedals and the sole helps to prevent your feet from arching or going numb around the pedal.
Different types of spinning class shoes you can wear
There are different types of cycling shoes depending on the firmness of the shoe and the design of the cleat at the sole of the shoe and not forgetting the look and style of the shoe. Some cycling shoes have a synthetic rubber sole, partially synthetic, full carbon, and partially carbon. The mountain bike and touring shoes have the SPD recessed cleats that sit in the shoe sole and don’t touch the ground when you’re walking. However, road shoes have protruding SPD-SL cleats that stick out under the sole and make it difficult to walk in them. Most gyms don’t allow these shoes since they damage the gym floor and because they have no grip so you can easily slip off in them.
Mountain bike shoes
These shoes have a stiffer sole than running shoes, but they’re a bit more flexible. The sole has a bumpy grip so you can easily walk or run in them on your bike. This makes them very practical shoes to use on and off your spin class. Mountain shoes come with an added weight and for a successful spin class session, you need to keep your feet light and moving for the entire session. Cycling in a heavy shoe might feel great at first, but after a few miles you will feel like you’re feet are carrying bricks which will cause your stride to suffer. These shoes also reduce power transfer. Mountain bike shoes are designed with durability and protection in mind because when you’re out riding in trials, the terrain is very different from the one you find in a gym or on the road.
Cross road or touring shoes
These shoes are not only designed for cycling, but you can also use them for your day to day walking. They have a rubber sole and look more like gym sneakers or hiking shoes.
Although these shoes are the firmest and most effective in transferring power to the pedal and amazing power distribution, the cleats stick out of the shoe which makes walking around the gym difficult. Road shoes are great on the streets and at improving your gym performance, but at the expense of your comfort when walking around in the gym.
Review: Comparison table for the best cycling shoes for spin class
Type of pedal compatibility
Check on Amazon
SPD cleat compatible
LOOK and SPD cleats compatible
SPD cleat compatible
SPD, SPD-R, SPD-SL cleat compatible
SPD cleat compatible
This cycling shoe comes with a stylish look and beautiful color combinations that give the shoe an aggressive authentic look giving you the confidence to pedal through your session. It’s an SPD compatible shoe with an outer sole that is firm and supportive and designed with technology to help remove any hot spots and keep your feet cool during your session. Pearl Izumi is a very well-known brand for the aggressive specs in their shoes that help you to easily power through a workout. The shoe has an upper made with a mix of rubber, textiles, and plastic, with a Velcro closure, while the sole is made from rubber, nylon, plastic, EVA, and steel. The perforations on the upper part of the shoe help to keep your feet cool and with the constant airflow, there is a reduction of moisture during your workout.
There is an anatomical closure that helps to eliminate any pressure and hot spots from the foot instep. It’s much easier to walk to and from the locker room in this shoe thanks to the foam and rubber heel bumper that help to protect the cleat area. The power plates provide a lightweight, stiff feel, but also gives you a firm power transfer ensuring that your efforts are transferred to the bike. The insole provides support for your ankles and feet to make sure that you’re stable in all directions.
- Very comfortable to walk in
- Well ventilated to keep your feet cool
- Eliminates pressure points in your feet
- Made from good quality materials
- Can be a bit small
- You need to get a bigger size than your normal size
A versatile cycling shoe that is both compatible with the SPD and road pedal systems improving your performance and workout in the gym. It has a stiff but supportive sole and a well-ventilated upper to keep your feet cool as the insole gives you comfort and support all round.
A bike shoe with a very athletic look, stylish design, and attractive color. Giro is an outstanding brand that is known for its high-quality gear and attire. Treble II is a versatile bike shoe that is compatible with SPD cleats to help you push yourself for many miles both in and out of the gym. Since it’s compatible with two and three-bolt cleat patterns, you can use it with any pedal so you don’t have to worry about finding a gym with the right pedals when you’re not home. The upper part of the shoe is made with synthetic fiber that can adjust quickly to the three straps on top.
The Velcro closure consists of three hook and loop straps that make it easy to put on and remove the shoe and allows for any adjustments you need to make for your feet to feel comfortable. The perforations at the top allow air to circulate keeping your feet cool during your workout. It has a molded EVA insole to provide arch support while the Aegis anti-microbial treatment ensures that your shoe is free from any bacteria build-up and odor after a sweaty spin session. The outsole is made from nylon which is less firm than carbon fiber but still allows for good power transfer so you don’t have to use a lot of energy when cycling. This is a great spin class shoe if you’re looking for a shoe with functional comfort but you’re on a budget.
- Very reasonably priced
- Perfect for people with wide feet
- Lightweight and comfortable
- The adjustable straps ensure you get a snugly fit
- Don’t leave your feet hot
- The sizes may vary
A very affordable spin class shoe that provides you with comfort, support, and versatility. You can use this shoe with any pedal and at the end of the spin session, your feet will not be drenched in sweat. The perforations at the top ensure your feet are kept cool while the EVA insole gives your arch the necessary support to avoid getting foot pains from all the pressure and strain.
This is a women’s shoe that is designed for all terrains from spinning to dirt riding to commuting, this shoe covers all your different activities. This versatile spin shoe has a low profile design which makes it perfect for spinning and it’s a unique shoe in that it’s lightweight. It’s made with special technology the SELECT 1:1 nylon composite power plate that makes the shoe stiff, durable, supportive, and protective without adding on any weight that will weigh down on your feet.
The SELECT insole provides you with great arch support keeping you comfortable throughout your spin session. The Velcro straps give you a nice snug fit so your feet don’t slip when clipped on the pedals. They also come with a padded collar that ensures you don’t get any blisters while the bonded seamless upper makes you feel comfortable.
- Very comfortable for spin class
- They fit perfectly
- The Velcro straps make it easy to put them on and take off
- Has rubber grips at the bottom prevent you from slipping
- They require some breaking in
- Can be a bit narrow for people with wide feet
A lightweight and versatile spin shoe that you can use in many terrains. They’re made with a unique technology that ensures the shoe is durable, comfortable, and supportive of your arches so you don’t get foot pains after any workout session. It also has a padded collar to prevent blisters.
An all-round bike shoe that is built to handle everyday use, an intense spin class workout, or a trail bike ride. This sneaker has a lace-up style with a stiff and rigid sole, but offers the right support and fits snugly in your feet. This sneaker is designed to work with the clipless pedal system to help increase efficiency and power transfer. They’re sturdy and lightweight which makes it easy to cycle and walk around in them. The upper is made with a breathable mesh and synthetic microfiber leather that adds to its durability and prevents your feet from sweating after a hot, sweaty, and intense spin workout.
This cycling shoe is well constructed with a stiff sole that helps to effectively transfer power to speed. You can wear this sneaker on and off the bike because they’re supportive enough for short walks or an intense cardio workout. The lace-up closure is designed to keep you comfortable while keeping you securely fastened. The bright green reflective highlights on the sneaker are protective measures so you can be visible when riding in a place that isn’t properly lighted.
- Very comfortable to wear
- Doesn’t leave your feet feeling hot
- Can be used as normal sneakers
- Perfect fit and secure
- The straps are cumbersome
- Not good to wear on long rides
A stylish sneaker that you can use in your spin class, to run to the grocery, or go on a mountain trail ride. It’s comfortable and well-constructed to provide good support and flexibility and an efficient power transfer for a great spin workout.
This is a great spinning shoe that comes with a free set of pedals and they can fit all SPD pedal systems which makes them the perfect choice for you. These are very comfortable spinning shoes that fit like a glove and a heel that provides your feet with enough support in the most comfortable way. A versatile shoe that combines comfort and performance making it the perfect shoe for spin class, off-road riding, and commuting.
The upper is made from a high-quality microfiber with strong nylon mesh inserts for excellent ventilation and 3 Velcro straps to make it easy to strap the shoes on and start your workout. The footbed is made with a molded and removable EVA insole that is breathable for extra comfort during a sweaty workout session. The small flex in the forefoot of the shoe makes it easy to walk around the gym without worrying about slipping and falling. The tough and stiff sole helps to effectively transfer power to the bike so you get a very productive workout.
- You can clip in and out very easily
- Very comfortable and lightweight
- The Velcro straps give the shoe a sleek look
- Very good ventilation
- Provides good traction
- Has some durability issues
A stylish and comfortable shoe made with modern technology to ensure that you’re comfortable and performing your best in different terrains. Whether it’s commuting, off-road riding, or in your spin class, this shoe will ensure that you enjoy your exercise.
You should always remember that when it comes to choosing the best cycling shoes for spin class, it will mostly depend on your personal preference. What is best for you is not necessarily best for someone else. Also, keep in mind that all feet are unique, so weigh the good and bad before making a decision. The Pearl Izumi RD IV-M cycling shoe is stylish cycling shoes that are SPD compatible and provide you with good air circulation, comfort, and support whenever you wear them for a workout. They provide you with everything you need for a productive spin class session.