5 Best Shoes for Ellipticals in 2021

Not all shoes are suitable for working out on ellipticals. Especially, when you look for comfort and safety for your knees, it gets quite stressful to choose the best pair of shoes that would meet your needs.

Brooks Dyad 11 is one of the most preferred and recommended workout shoes.  It offers more stability and comfort than its competitors. Its innovative GuideRails system and Biomogo DNA cushioning to protect knee joints, keeps it ahead of any workout shoe in the market.

However, even the most recommended shoes can disappoint you based on your safety needs and fitness regime. Also, the shape of your feet might also alter the definition of which is best. This buying guide briefly analyzes the 5 best shoes for ellipticals so that you can decide which shoes will not compromise your comfort and knee safety. 

Before we get straight into the review, have a look at this comparison table to get some insights into how these shoes are different from each other.

ShoesOffset(Heel to toe drop)SupportFabricLinks
  Brooks Dyad 11  10 mm    Stability  Mesh  Check Price on Amazon
  Nobull Radial Trainer  4 mm    Neutral  SuperFabric  Check Price on   Amazon
  New Balance Men’s MX517V1    10 mm  Neutral  Full Leather and Mesh  Check Price on Amazon
  Nike Metcon 6  4 mm to 12 mm  Neutral  Dual-layered Mesh  Check Price on Amazon
  Reebok Nano X1    7 mm  Neutral  Flexweave Grit  Check Price on Amazon

5 Best Shoes for Ellipticals in 2021

Wearing the right type of shoes for different types of workouts is necessary. Otherwise, misfit and uncomfortable shoes increase the chances of twisting your knee and facing chronic joint pain (osteoarthritis). Below here are the 5 most recommended and preferred shoes for ellipticals.

Brooks Dyad 11

This pair of shoes is one of the most recommended ones by exercisers.  Its unique stability design, a full mesh body, and Guide Rails system are the significant reasons for considering it one of the best. 

The traditional stability designs are targeted for exercisers with flat or low arches. Exercisers with flat arches need a stabilizer to prevent their joints from rolling too inward. But if you have high arches you would feel uncomfortable working out in traditionally stabilized shoes. But Dyad 11 has fixed this problem with its unique stability design.

This model integrated two pieces of foam under the mid feet instead of integrating a rigid plastic shank, unlike the traditional stability shoes. And therefore, the shoes do not control your movement rigidly. It provides moderate control so that the users with high arches can flex their feet easily without rigidity. 

Also, its guide rails system and upper mesh provide more shock absorption so that you do not twist any joint while doing a high-intensity workout. And its thumb width gap in the front allows your feet to feel comfortable. 

Specifications 

  • Model: Brooks Dyad 11
  • Weight: 10.7 ounces (women) and 11. 6 ounces (men)
  • Fabric Type: Mesh
  • Support Type: Stability 
  • Midsole Drop: 10 mm
  • Removable Footbed: Available 
  • Cushioning: Long-lasting cushioning
  • Arch: Flat and Medium

Features

GuideRails Technology: This innovative feature sets Brooks apart from any other shoe brand. This feature is configured with two extra firm foam pieces in the midsole or any side of the shoe heel. The extra foams provide more grip and stability while you work out.

Different Stability Support: The stability support system in other shoes is not quite effective for exercisers with a high arch. But the stability design in these shoes is not a traditional one. It features two pods under the mid feet so that exercisers with high, low, or flat arch can comfortably use the shoes without twisting any joint. 

Mesh Fabric: Mesh fabric is one of the best fabrics to make your workout experience comfortable. This fabric is highly breathable and therefore it allows your workout shoes to evaporate skin moisture instead of absorbing. So, shoes with this feature are more durable. 

BioMoGo DNA cushioning: Brooks always comes up with features that can best suit exercisers’ needs. This model combines DNA and Biomogo technology to provide a softer cushion that can make your elliptical pedaling more balanced and comfortable even at a higher resistance. This feature makes the cushion suitable for all types of users.

Pros

  • Engineered with Mesh upper
  • 10 mm offset for a high-intensity workout
  • More durable
  • Suitable for all types of arches
  • Comfortable cushioning
  • Moderately lighter
  • Comparatively affordable
  • Orthotics friendly 
  • Securely fit


Cons

•Sole is not much flexible 

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Nobull Radial Trainer

This model should be your preference if you love doing low-intensity workouts. Its 4 mm midsole drop makes it a perfect fit for such workouts. 

If you have an elliptical that does not provide higher resistance and incline then consider buying this one. Its low drop midsole is perfect to keep your balance at a lower resistance and slope setting of your elliptical. 

Also, it is not very flexible because of its super fabric material. But this rigidity is good to have for an elliptical recumbent or your continuous one-way elliptical pedaling. Because the rigid material will prevent the shoe from getting worn out from the continuous one-way pedaling. 



Specifications

  • Model: Nobull Radial Trainer
  • Weight: 10 ounces for both men and women
  • Fabric Type: SuperFabric
  • Support Type: Neutral
  • Midsole Drop: 4 mm
  • Removable Footbed: Available 
  • Cushioning: Not much soft
  • Arch: Flat and medium

Features

SuperFabric Outer Construction:  Though these shoes are not engineered with mesh fabric, it is still durable than many of its competitors. The superfabric incorporates close plates within the shoe fabric so that the fabric acts as rigid material to make the shoes waterproof. Also, this rigid fabric prevents the shoes from getting worn out easily after heavy use. 

Removable Insole: The model comes with a removable footbed or insole. This allows you to insert your customized footbed and adjust your orthotic needs. Many times, the built-in insoles do not provide much comfort for the elderly exercisers. In that case, it is a good feature to have if you want more comfort in your knee joint.

Pros 

•Waterproof

•Suitable for flat elliptical pathway

•Many styles to choose from

•Vibrant colors

•Removable insole

•Moderately durable

Cons 

•Expensive

•Not suitable for a high-intensity workout

•Not suitable for circular elliptical pathway

•Cushioning is not much softer

•Might absorb skin moisture 

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New Balance Men’s MX517V1

This pair of shoes, with its unique lace-up closure, synthetic fabric, and memory foam insole cushioning stand out from the rest of the others in this list. 

This model is mostly preferred by men with diabetes and orthotics needs. Sometimes, only a customized insole does not provide extra comfort for chronic knee pain. Because some customized insole does not stay firmly attached to the shoe without a lace-up closure. So, to provide the full benefit of a customized orthotic, this model integrates lace-up closure.  

Also, when you wash workout shoes, it takes time to dry. But, this pair has synthetic fabric, therefore, it does not take much of your time to dry them. 



Specifications 

  • Model: New Balance Men’s MX517V1
  • Weight: 11.3 ounces 
  • Fabric Type: Combination of full leather and mesh
  • Support Type: Neutral 
  • Midsole Drop: 10 mm
  • Removable Footbed: Available 
  • Cushioning: Comfortable with Memory foam cushioned footbed
  • Arch: Low to flat

Features 

Lace-up closure: Shoelaces are looked past almost by all brands nowadays. But laces can help patients out with diabetes and orthotic needs. Therefore, this model features lace-up closure. This prevents the exercisers from putting much force that can increase their diabetes ulcer.  Also, this closure system prevents your feet from sliding inside the shoe.

Memory foam insole cushion: Cushions that are made of memory foam insoles work better to align all the joints while you work out. This cushion provides more softness and extra stability by absorbing shock. As it eases out pressure, it keeps your knee in a good position. 

Leather and Mesh combination: Not many shoes for elliptical are engineered with the synthetic fabric of leather and mesh. The leather makes the shoes easier to clean. And the mesh provides grip while you work out. This synthetic fabric makes this pair the most durable among any other shoes on the list. 

Pros

•Most durable

•Synthetic fabric provides a better fit

•Easier to clean

•Lace-up closure provides more control and prevents sliding

•Memory foam insole

•Absorbs moisture

•Removable insole

•Waterproof

•Moderately affordable

Cons

•Traction sometimes is not good

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4. Nike Metcon 6 

This model offers a midsole drop from 4 mm to 12 mm so that exercisers with different arches heights can use this pair comfortably. If you do not like working out with a higher incline then go for the 4 mm midsole drop. And for a higher incline elliptical workout, choose the pair with a 12 mm drop. 

Its dual mesh fabric and dual cushioning provide stability, flexibility, and comfort during your high-intensity workout sessions. Not many shoes for ellipticals can provide such features for high-intensity workouts. Therefore, those tend to get worn out soon. But Nike Metcon 6 has longer durability even after HIIT sessions because of its dual fabric and cushioning. 

Its midsole drops and dual technology are aimed to prevent you from twisting your knee joint from an unstable posture on ellipticals.



Specifications 

  • Model: Nike Metcon 6
  • Weight: 10.8 ounces (women) 12.8 ounces (men)
  • Fabric Type: Dual Layered Mesh
  • Support Type: Neutral
  • Midsole Drop: 4 mm to 12 mm
  • Removable Footbed: Available 
  • Cushioning: Dual-density cushioning to absorb shock
  • Arch: Low to Zero

Features

Dual Density Cushioning: This dense cushioning is apt for High-intensity interval training (HIIT) workouts. If you set your elliptical resistance at a higher level, you would be putting more pressure on your joints. And this cushioning would absorb the extra shock and prevent causing any strain on your knee. 

Dual Mesh Fabric: The upper forefoot and the midfoot of this pair are engineered with dual mesh. One layered upper mesh fabric does not provide flexibility for backward pedaling on ellipticals. But with these shoes, you can get stability and flexibility for backward pedaling.  

Pros

•More flexible for backward pedaling

•More stability

•Suitable for HIIT workouts

•Midsole drop ranges from 4 mm to 12 mm for low to higher inclined workouts

•Removable insole

•Comfortable

Cons

•Might not be suitable for wider feet

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5. Reebok Nano X1

This model has revolutionized stability and resistance with its Floatride foam technology and new fabric technology.Its ultra-resistance and stability mitigate the chances of dislocating any joint while working out on a circular elliptical pathway. 

This has wiggle room for your feet to move comfortably especially when it’s swollen after a continuous workout session. 

Specifications

  • Model: Reebok Nano X1
  • Weight: 10.8 ounces for women, 11.4 ounces for men
  • Fabric Type: Flexwave Grit
  • Support Type: Neutral
  • Midsole Drop: 7 mm
  • Removable Footbed: Not Available
  • Cushioning: Responsive cushioning because of float ride foam
  • Arch: Flat

Features

Floatride Foam Technology: This technology would give you responsiveness while you set your elliptical resistance at higher levels. Therefore, you would be able to perform smoothly on the machine. Even if you push the pedal harder, its responsive balance would ease out the pressure so that you do not strain your knee joint. 

FlexWave Grit Fabric: To adapt itself to the higher resistance elliptical workout, this model offers this fabric type. This fabric is specially designed to provide an ultra-resistance feature so that you do not slip down.

Pros 

•Lightweight

•Ultra-resistant

•Responsive balance

•Durable

•Breathable

•Wiggle room

•Comfortable

Cons

•Tongue sliding

•Sometimes the heel feels hard

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My Top Pick

It is not easy to simply categorize a pair of workout shoes as best. However, after thoughtful consideration, I have decided to go with Brooks Dyad 11 for my top pick. Its GuideRails technology, mesh fabric, and removable footbeds are the major reasons that make it excel the others in this list. 

Dyad 11’s innovative guiderails technology and mesh fabric are integrated together to give you more stability during any intense level workout. The mesh fabric does not absorb moisture from your skin, therefore, the shoes help to maintain the grip of your toes. 

The guide rail system integrates two more pieces of firm foam on the side of the shoe heel. Therefore, the system enables you to align your feet and knee posture in accordance with your workout intensity to protect your joints from strain.

The extra support and grip it offers at an affordable price make it excel others on the list. It is the best go-to shoe for different types of indoor workouts on ellipticals. 





What Features Are a Must in Shoes for Ellipticals? 


For sure, based on the needs, different exercisers need different features in workout shoes. But, you should not totally get swept over by the bells and whistles of shoes. So that you do not look past some basic yet useful features. Here are three of the features you should never compromise with


Removable Footbed

You should always consider buying workout shoes that feature removable footbeds. Removable footbeds are the insoles that can be removed to adjust your own customized insoles. 

A removable footbed allows you to insert your own customized insole for orthotics to mitigate the chances of having knee pain. Orthotics provide extra support and shock absorption to protect your knee joint from strain, unlike built-in insoles.

Also, if you do not want to skip your workout even with a tad bit of pain in your knee then shoes with a removable footbed come in handy. Because you can adjust the orthotics and wear the shoes while you do a low-intensity workout.  And, the orthotics will prevent your knee pain from spreading while you work out.

Nowadays, orthotic shoes are available in the market but those are way too expensive than shoes with removable footbeds. Also, orthotic shoes are heavier and limited in style. So, you should look for shoes with removable footbeds.

Thumb’s Width Gap

Your workout shoes should always have a ½ inch to ⅜ inch gap from your longest toe tip to the shoe’s toe tip. To break it down, when you wear your shoes, from your long toe tip to the end of the shoes there should be a thumb’s width gap.

Without a thumb’s width gap, your shoes will not allow your toes to wiggle when you workout. After a certain point of working out, your feet would swell, and therefore, this gap is a must to fit your swollen toes comfortably. Otherwise, too-tight shoes will not allow you to continue to work out comfortably as there’s no room for your toes to wiggle.

Mesh Fabric 

Workout shoes that are made of mesh fabric tend to be more durable and comfortable than other types. Mesh fabric is breathable, which means, it allows for the moisture from your skin to evaporate. As the moisture is not absorbed the fabric remains durable for a longer time and it also prevents discomfort and skin infections.

It would be really frustrating if you need to buy workout shoes frequently. Therefore, always look for shoes engineered with mesh fabric for longer durability and grip.

Conclusion

I hope this brief review of these 5 best shoes for elliptical could provide you with some insights which would help you decide your best pair. Before you shop for your shoes, always figure out your workout pattern and intensity. Only then you would know whether shoes with particular bells and whistles or the regular features would be best for you.

Thank you so much for going through the review. I wish you good luck in finding the best pair of shoes for you. 

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