The 8 Best Shoes for Spartan Races of 2019

Conquer every obstacle in your path

Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the best products; you can learn more about our review process here. We may receive commissions on purchases made from our chosen links.

First Look

Best for Women: Altra Women’s Lone Peak 4.0 at Amazon

"Altra’s overall philosophy is to create a shoe design that mimics that shape of your foot."

Best for Men: Saucony Men’s Peregrine 7 at Amazon

"As a trail shoe, you get your extra grippy outsole to hold onto grass and gravel as you dash from obstacle to obstacle."

Best for Wide Feet: Asics Gel-Venture 6 at Amazon

"These shoes have an outsole that is fit for the trails, so you’ll stay sturdy as you traverse mountains and stride on slick conditions."

Best for Narrow Feet: Brooks Cascadia 12 at Amazon

"You get extra stability on the sides of the heel and forefoot, along with lugs that go in multiple directions."

Best for Wet Conditions: Reebok All Terrain Running Shoe at Amazon

"Built specifically for Spartan Races, these shoes cross off all the key elements you need in a course-crushing shoe, including their stand-out quick-drying material and drainage points in the forefoot."

Best Lightweight: Merrell Agility Synthesis Flex Sneaker at Amazon

"The trail-specific outsole provides that extra traction you need when on rough or slick terrain."

Best Extra Grip: Salomon Speedcross 4 Trail Running Shoe at Amazon

"The mudguard and GORE-TEX finish also keep your feet dry and warm, in case you battle any water obstacles or extra muddy conditions."

Best Style: Adidas Terrex Tracerocker at Amazon

"These shoes allow your feet to air out on the move and they’re comfortable enough to support you through every mile and any terrain."

Our Top Picks

Best for Women: Altra Women’s Lone Peak 4.0

Altra Women’s Lone Peak 4.0

Courtesy of Amazon

Altra’s overall philosophy is to create a shoe design that mimics that shape of your foot, meaning you get a wider toe box and room to push off each digit. The brand also has a women-specific, Fit4Her technology that makes them the perfect fit for any female athlete. A huge comfort bonus: the zero-drop cushioning means your heel doesn’t lie higher than your forefoot, so your stride feels more natural.

This particular shoe is also extra lightweight so you can move with speed on the course, but it's also super durable thanks to the lugs on the bottom that protect your feet and stop you from slipping through each step. 

Best for Men: Saucony Men’s Peregrine 7

Energy return (which means added bounce) and soft, smooth landings will come easily in these Saucony sneakers. As a trail shoe, you get your extra grippy outsole to hold onto grass and gravel as you dash from obstacle to obstacle. As a running shoe, you also get a construction that protects your foot and gives you the support you need to keep you moving forward. 

With this pair of kicks, you also get a moisture-wicking liner that will help keep your feet dry when the weather (and obstacles) get dicey come race day.  

Best for Wide Feet: Asics Gel-Venture 6

If your feet need some room to breathe, Asics has you covered thanks to their wider toe box and a fit that doesn’t leave you feeling constricted. The best thing about the brand’s gel cushioning is its superior bounce back—you’ll feel like you have an extra spring in your step as you run from one obstacle to the next. 

These shoes also have an outsole that is fit for the trails, so you’ll stay sturdy as you traverse mountains and stride on slick conditions. They also have a removable sock liner, which means you can take them out and replace with an orthotic if you need it. 

Best for Narrow Feet: Brooks Cascadia 12

If you want to stun at your next Spartan Race, pick up of a pair of these vibrant Brooks shoes. They come in cool color combos, so you can pick your favorite hue. In addition to the fun design, these sneakers have a smart construction, with lots of flexibility for easy heel-to-toe push-off. You also get extra stability on the sides of the heel and forefoot, along with lugs that go in multiple directions—all features that help keep you sturdy as you run side-to-side and land each foot strike.

Best for Wet Conditions: Reebok All Terrain Running Shoe

Built specifically for Spartan Races, these shoes cross of all the key elements you need in a course-crushing shoe, including their stand-out quick-drying material and drainage points in the forefoot. That means if you’re tackling water-filled obstacles, you won’t get dragged down by a heavier shoe, because these allow the H2O to seep right out. Even better: they easily clean up afterward—all you have to do is spray them down.

In addition to handling wet conditions, the All Terrain shoes also have excellent tracking under your foot, so you’re not sliding when running up hills or steps. 

Best Lightweight: Merrell Agility Synthesis Flex Sneaker

If you prefer a shoe that is lightweight, yet still supportive, then this pair is for you. They won’t weigh you down while you try to kick up your pace, but you won’t let you slide around as your speed increases. The trail-specific outsole provides that extra traction you need when on rough or slick terrain.

Best Extra Grip: Salomon Speedcross 4 Trail Running Shoe

You won’t have to worry about untied laces in these trail runners—just pull the strings as tight as you want them, and you’ll be set for the day. The lugs underfoot also make it stand out from the crowd in terms of traction—it’s designed to help you tackle soft ground, so your feet grip the surface. Then, they allow you to speed off without stumbling.

The mudguard and GORE-TEX finish also keep your feet dry and warm in case you battle any water obstacles or extra muddy conditions. 

Best Style: Adidas Terrex Tracerocker

You can’t go wrong with an all-black shoe, especially if you’re looking for a stylish one that goes with anything. This Adidas pair looks chic yet fierce and they're perfect for handling any difficult race course. It’s not all about looks, though. You still get the necessary features in a trail shoe that performs during obstacles, including a rubber, grippy (and super durable) outsole and breathable materials that allow water to seep out as you go.

Plus, these shoes allow your feet to air out on the move and they’re comfortable enough to support you through every mile and any terrain.

Our Process

Our writers spent 3 hours researching the most popular shoes for Spartan Races on the market. Before making their final recommendations, they considered 50 different shoes overall, screened options from 10 different brands and manufacturers, read over 15 user reviews (both positive and negative), and tested 4 of the shoes themselves. All of this research adds up to recommendations you can trust.

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