The Ins and Outs of Zumba Shoes
Zumba is a wonderful exercise option that is taking the world by storm. It involve intense dancing and movement to exuberant musical tunes, and is bound to leave you in a pool of sweat after a good class. But did you know that there are special Zumba shoes that can take your exercise experience to the next level, while simultaneously protecting your feet, ankles, and knees from injury?
Up to 25 percent of all Zumba participants will eventually experience some kind of injury, and most of them relate to improper footwear. Special Zumba-focused shoes exist to ensure that you get your performance class after class, all while remaining injury-free.
Getting the Perfect Shoes for Zumba
Zumba has exploded in popularity and for good reason. It’s a wonderful and fun way to keep in great shape, burning 500 calories or more per hour! If you are one of the many people participating in this new exercise sensation, it’s crucial to make sure that nothing stands in the way of a solid workout.
However, to prevent injury, it is also important to ensure that your feet love Zumba just as much as you do. The best way to do this is to purchase and wear the best shoes for Zumba. In this guide, we are going to outline what we consider to be the best Zumba shoes and why. Below is our list, with in-depth explanations and full reviews of the different options and their features.
Best Zumba Shoe Summary
First, we have a quick summary table showing what we consider to be the best Zumba shoes for people of all abilities. Below the table, you’ll find our testing procedures, followed by a quick summary of each shoe along with links to the retailers that we know stock the shoe. We definitely recommend reading the full reviews if you have the time!
The Best Zumba Shoes of 2023
- Best All-Around Zumba Shoes: Ryka Influence
- All-Around Runner-Up: Adidas Edge Lux 5
- Best Zumba Shoes for Wide Feet: Zumba Air Classic
- Best Split Sole Dance Workout Shoe: Bloch Boost DRT Mesh Dance Sneaker
- Best Dance Sneaker: Capezio Canvas Dansneaker
- Most Comfortable: Hoka One One Solimar Men’s | Women’s
The Best Zumba Shoes – Evergreen
- Best Pure Dance Shoe: Bloch Alcyone
- Best for Zumba and Running: Hoka One One Kawana Men’s | Women’s
- Best High-Top Zumba Trainer: Ryka Devotion XT Mid
- Best for Zumba and HIIT: Reebok HIIT 2
Best Zumba Shoes of 2023
Best All-Around Zumba Shoe— Ryka Influence
Ryka’s Influence Training Shoe for Women is a great choice for Zumba shoes for those looking for a solid option at a reasonable price. These shoes are developed from a combination of synthetic materials and a breathable mesh. They are a great choice for strong durability with ample toe room.
Features of the Ryka Influence Women’s Training Shoe
Traction-wise, the Ryka Influence has a wonderful level of traction control on the outsole, providing improved stability in grip with rapid movements. This is important with Zumba, as it allows you to avoid slips and falls.
In terms of comfort, these shoes provide a smooth front fit, with some room for your toes to wiggle about. However, they remain snug and tight in the back, with ample heel and ankle support. To remain true to your size, it may be necessary to size up one. This depends on how you wish to wear them, though. Most people will love these shoes immediately, right out of the box.
These Ryka Zumba shoes are usable for many different types of training outside of Zumba. This includes jumping, dancing, and other exercise options.
- These shoes are lightweight and thin (but have minimal arch support)
- The padding in these shoes are incredibly soft
- Strong shock absorption leads to impressive levels of comfort
- The design says “Zumba” more than many of the other shoes we tested that were a bit more mainstream
The Ryka Influence is one of the more affordable Zumba shoes that we have reviewed. They also provided the most ample support. While they come with a solid amount of cushion compared to standard shoes, they were at the low end of the Zumba shoes we tested. However, flexibility, feel and style were all top notch, as well as slippery soles and a snug overall fit.
Best All-Around Runner-Up Zumba Shoe—Adidas Women’s Edge Lux 5
The Adidas Edge Lux 5 is designed exclusively for women, and it’s the perfect shoe to protect your joints during Zumba. A low tread and pivot point ensure that you’re able to change directions abruptly dureing a workout without putting stress on your joints, and potentially causing an injury. The Edge Lux has “flex zones” in the forefoot, meaning you can pivot easily during Zumba without causing that kind of joint stress.
Features of the Adidas Edge Lux 5 Shoes
One thing that stood out to us when testing this shoe was its weight; which is to say, it’s very light. They’re also exceptionally comfortable, using Adidas’s Bounce cushioning for max energy return during workouts. The absolute worst thing to feel during a workout is tired feet, and the Adidas Edge Lux are designed to make sure that doesn’t happen.
It’s multi-functional, meaning you can take these running, walking, or even do CrossFit; basically anything that would require cushioning over a long period of time. However, dedicated runners may find it doesn’t live up to their durabilty standards; that’s why we recommend this shoe for the gym and dance fitness classes for a longer lifespan of the shoe.
A few fun details of this shoe is that they come in seven colors and are made with recycled materials, providing lots of styling options as well as being (somewhat) environmentally friendly.
- Multifunctional – perfect for dance, running, walking, and CrossFit
- Forefoot “flex zone” for easy pivots and turns, protecting your joints
- Adidas’s Bounce cushioning to prevent foot fatique with max energy return
- Comes in 7 colors and made from recycled materials
- Hardcore runners may find it lacking in durability
The Adidas Edge Lux 5 is an excellent and affordable option for Zumba. It has the cushioning and flexibility to keep up with you in dance classes and transitions well to other exercises and terrains for a well-rounded workout.
Best Zumba Shoes for Wide Feet— Zumba Air Classic
Are you on the hunt for a solid pair of Zumba shoes, but also want to ensure that there is plenty of room for your toes to grip and flex when needed? If so, the Zumba Women’s Air Classic is the ideal Zumba shoe to exceed your needs. Manufactured from high-quality textiles and leather, the Air Classic was made for all types of terrain, not just the Zumba room.
Features of the Zumba Air Classic
These shoes were built with Zumba Air technology, providing incredible impact protection when on the dance floor. Additionally, they feature flexible mesh uppers and compression-molded EVA midsoles for both enhanced fit and a lightweight cushion. Overall, these shoes are extremely comfortable and allow the feet to properly breathe when working out.
Additionally, the breathable mesh upper provided by the Zumba Air Classic assist in eliminating and wicking away excess sweat, as well as the odors that this sweat cause over time. Many people have positive experiences with these Zumba shoes, as they provide ample support, as well as intense levels of comfort, especially for a shoe that is strictly for dance purposes.
Some have noted that these Zumba shoes are rather large, and may cause your feet to look somewhat bulky. However, if you are focused more on comfort and less on dainty styles, you can’t go wrong with the Zumba Air Classic.
- These shoes are manufactured with high quality leather
- The compression-molded EVA midsole provides impressive snugness
- Air technology provides great impact protection when dancing
- A rubber sole provides grip, while at the same time retaining slipperiness to allow pivots
With impressive material quality, a compression-molded EVA midsole, high levels of snugness and a strong fit, aur technology for solid impact resistance when pivoting and spinning on the dance floor, and a grippy yet slippery rubber sole, the Zumba Air Classic is a beautiful and wonderful all-around Zumba shoe.
Best Split-Sole Dance Workout Shoe— Bloch Boost DRT Mesh Dance Sneaker
Features of the Bloch Boost DRT Mesh Dance Sneaker
We recommend split-soled shoes for dancers who are serious about taking their skills and their workout to the next level. Split-sole shoes provide better flexibility in the arch of the foot, meaning they’re perfect for higher-level moves (but also best suited to those already comfortable with intermediate and advanced dance moves). The Boost DRT Mesh Dance Sneaker is perfect for Zumba workouts with its dance-friendly split sole.
Importantly for those dancing indoors in a studio, these shoes have a non-marking outsole, meaning you won’t be leaving black streaks wherever you go and can move with confidence. The build-in arch support and elevation accentuate the arch, providing stability and support for your feet over a long workout. You’ll get great shock-absorbtion from the DRT-cushioned heel and 4PSI midsole air cushion, two more great feature for preventing foot fatigue and issues like plantar fasciitis.
These shoes also have a pivot point, allowing for 360 degree movement. While traction is necessary for staying on your feet, pivot points reduce stress on the joints by allowing you to turn without forcing it, meaning your knees don’t take the brunt of that stress.
- Non-marking, split outsole for flexibility for advanced dance moves
- Midsole has lightweight air cushion of 4PSI
- Pivot point and spin spot on outsole allow for easy 360 degree movement
- Lightweight cushioning and built-in arch support
Decide whether split-soles are right for you before buying. That said, you can’t go wrong with the excellent arch support and midsole cushioning of these shoes. They’re built to keep you safe and comfortable during your workout.
Best Dance Sneaker— Capezio Canvas Dansneaker
These are great shoes for beginners as well as experienced Zumba dancers. They’re flexible, lightweight, and provide excellent support for your feet during intense dance workouts. What we liked most about these was their PU outsole with built-in flex points and forefoot spin spot. Particularly for dancing, too much traction can work against you, requiring more effort to change directions and potentially putting stress on your joints.
Features of the Capezio Canvas Dansneaker
In addition to the above-mentioned features, these shoes also come with a padded EVA midsole for added comfort. These also provide a softer surface to practice Zumba on, while also allowing for stronger impact absorption. Additionally, the contoured, removable EVA footbed lets you customize the fit and cushoining to suit your needs, such as for those more prone to foot fatigue or plantar fasciitis.
A padded heel area ensures the Achilles tendon is kept comfortable and safe. This isn’t something found in most shoes, and is almost solely a Zumba and dance shoe feature. There is also a padded collar and tongue, preventing the shoe from digging into the ankles, and an effective lacing system that provides high levels of support and a snug fit.
Finally, the split-sole allows for excellent flexibility, and the non-marking outsole ensures you won’t be leaving scuff marks behind, just sweat!
- Ample cushioning and support
- Strong absorption impact resistance
- Non-scuff heel avoids black marks on the floor
- Comfort levels are higher than most alternatives
Sure, these aren’t the least expensive Zumba shoes you are going to find. However, regardless of this they have extensive features that make the Capezio Canvas Dansneaker is well worth the cost. They are supportive, comfortable, durable, and stylish!
Most Comfortable— Hoka One One Solimar
You’ve probably heard the hype around Hoka One One shoes by now, and it’s well-earned. Runners, gym regulars, and even podiatrists have vouched for the brand. They’re on the pricer end, so consider them an investment in your long-term foot health and comfort. There’s no subsitute for good, quality cushioning and foot support, especially during high-impact activities like Zumba that can be rough on your feet if you don’t have the right shoes!
Features of the Hoka One One Solimar
Before we talk about the cushioning, one thing we really liked was that shese shoes are breathable. Any cardio exercise will work up a sweat, and the last thing you want is to pull off your shoes to blisters or foot odor from clammy feet. These shoes use rubber to combat high-sweat areas. They also have removable textile insoles, meaning you can replace them with your choice of supportitve insole. The textile lining and synthetic upper also work to keep you fresh.
But of course, where these shoes really shine is their comfort and foot support. The Solimar has an extended crash pad and “rocker” bottom for shock absorbtion, meaning they propell you forward and take the brunt of the impact off your heels and toes. Speaking of toes, the toe box has a high flexibility and is soft and stretchy. This shoe is also lighter and less bulky than some other well-known Hoka running models, which makes movement in them easier.
This overall cushioning and energy redirection throughout the shoe will actually help protect your entire body from the ill-effects of high-impact activities on hard floors.
- “Rocker” bottom and insole cushioning provides extra shock absorbtion
- Textile lining and synthetic upper to prevent sweat buildup and increase breathability of the shoes
- Removable insoles for customizing the fit and cushioning with your own inserts of choice
- Flexible toe box and lightweight construction
In addition to having a safe, comfortable workout, you can also wear these shoes to and from the car, the store, and to work. Preventative measures like comfortable shoes helps you avoid later issues with foot fatique or plantar fasciitis, which can be one of the worst scenarios for those who like to stay on their feet. If you’re looking for comfort, the Hoka One One Solimar is your new go-to!
Best Zumba Shoes – Evergreen 2022
Best Pure Dance Shoe— Bloch Alcyone Dance Shoe
Bloch’s Alcyone dance trainer is one of the most highly-rated dance shoes around. They are strictly for dance and Zumba use, and have the durability to last for well over the one-year mark that we recommend. With arch support, great flexibility, a light weight, and a reasonable price point, these are a perfect all-around Zumba shoe for your next workout.
Features of the Bloch Alcyone Dance Trainer
These shoes provide an impressive amount of flexibility, and more than adequate arch support. This is thanks in part to the dynamic midfoot stretchable mesh that encases the shoes. These mesh uppers provide high levels of breathability. Additionally, the contoured and removable sock liners let wearers adjust the fit of their shoes as needed, while providing additional comfort as well.
Also, the Bloch Alcyone is incredibly lightweight (some of the lightest that we tested). They also feature a non-marking outsole that encourages far simpler turns and spins and pivots throughout Zumba workouts. The Alcyone is also very, very durable, manufactured from mesh and a combination of soft-action leather
Price-wise, these are right on the money. Their reasonable price point is a great draw, especially when combined with the durability and additional benefits and features. This shoe will provide improvements in performance during Zumba workouts, saving you from potential injury while also maximizing your results.
- Design allows for maneuverability while providing support
- Non-marking rubber outsoles are perfect for dance floor surfaces
- Breathability, flexibility, and comfort are outstanding
- A removable sock liner makes for effortless comfort
- Durability is a strong suit with these Zumba shoes
- Extensive arch support is perfect for those with fallen arches or with plantar fasciitis
Overall, we are incredibly impressed with the utility and comfort levels that were in the Bloch Alcyone Dance Sneaker. Remember, an ideal pair of shoes will provide you with comfort, and free up movement when dancing. The Bloch option reviewed here does this and much more.
Best for Zumba and Running— Hoka One One Kawana
Hoka One One has always made incredible products. Many people know them for their oversized, highly cushioned soles. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that they have made this list of the best zumba shoes with the Kawana. Unlike some other shoes we tested, these are not Zumba-specific. However, they perform admirably both on and off the floor. They provide a great option if you want lots of cushioning, and plan to use these shoes for walking or jogging in addition to Zumba.
Features of the Hoka One One Kawana
Until the release of Nike’s SuperRep Surge, this was our top choice all-around shoe for Zumba and gym workouts for women. These shoes are lauded for their high levels of cushioning and impressive stability, perfect for dancing about the Zumba floor to high-intensity music.
These shoes boast complete synthetic construction, with low-top uppers and flexible soles. This provides a comfortable, yet snug and tight fit. With an ultramodern design, these shoes seem quite casual, and wouldn’t look out of place while at the mall. They also benefit from sleek uppers that have loops on the tongue to prevent laces from flopping around and coming loose.
Further, they have an extremely lightweight midsole foam layer that provides amazing cushioning. Highly cushioned, thick soles are what Hoka is known for, and the Kawana lives up to that reputation. These features work together to provide really nice underfoot cushioning to absorb impact from jumps or hops.
The Kawana offers high stability standard overall, without any of the apparent bulk you’d expect from shoes providing the durability and comfort that can be seen here. These are ideal for the rapid movements and pivots common in Zumba.
- Many find these shoes so comfortable they wear them even outside the gym floor.
- These shoes are lightweight, and the uppers are extremely breathable.
- For Hoka, these shoes come in an impressive variety of colors.
- Having the option for a wider shoe is ideal for those with wider feet. As of this writing (March 2022) the wide sizes were not available for all colors, so you get a bit less selection if you need a wide shoe.
- With a lower cut, these shoes are great for use in the gym or out and about.
Best High-Top Zumba Trainer— Ryka Devotion XT Mid Top
The Ryka Devotion XT Mid Top Zumba shoe is an ideal option for Zumba that looks a bit different than the standard low-top Zumba shoe commonly found in almost all other models. These shoes, manufactured from a combination of breathable mesh and other synthetic materials, are a wonderful option for all. This serves to provide enhanced durability and a lighter weight overall for the Ryka shoe, as well as far stronger ventilation when doing Zumba or dance-based exercise routines.
Features of the Ryka Devotion XT Mid Top
Additional incredible features of the Ryka Devotion are a solid rubber outsole. These don’t wear away as easily as competing Zumba shoes. They also feature a pivoting design that allows owners to pivot themselves quickly and on the spot, as well as slide across the ground with ease. These are all requirements if you are doing Zumba properly.
These shoes also provide users with a precise return footbed. This makes them extremely comfortable to wear while also providing a very snug overall fit. Also aiding to the snug fit is the Velcro and lace combination, which serve to keep the feet in place inside the shoe far better than competing Zumba shoes that don’t offer both Velcro and lace.
They have ample arch support and cushioning, as well as Flex Foil and Direct Fuse material composition. These serve to maintain shoe flexibility, provide a secure fit, and comfortable to wear for hours on end.
While not the most expensive or least expensive shoes on our list of the best Zumba shoes, these options have a strong feature set for the dollar amount. And with an impressive build quality of both synthetic materials and mesh, Velcro and lace and more, these shoes are a solid option for anyone looking for a high quality Zumba shoe at a reasonable price point.
- These shoes provide an easy and quick pivot
- They are quite breathable and lightweight
- The Ryka’s are extremely flexible
- Comfort levels are higher compared to alternatives
- The style and design are quite good-looking
- Snugger fits ensure no slippage
Due to their increased support, intense levels of cushioning, very high comfort-per-dollar ratio, and a snug, supportive fit, the Ryka Devotion XT Mid Top made our list of the best Zumba shoes without a second thought.
Best for Zumba and HIIT— Reebok HIIT 2 Training Shoes
Reebok has always been a stellar brand for exercise and workout shoes, especially for HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) workouts, with which Zuma shares many features. The HIIT 2 Training Shoes are their newest flagship product that dances into the Zumba craze, and they do so with a comfortable, stylish, and customizable option with the HIIT 2.
Features of the Reebok HIIT 2 Training Shoes
One of the first things you’ll notice about the Reebok HIIT 2 is just the amount of material in the sole, both over and under the foot. Many Zumba and dance shoes are manufactured with the focus of being “minimalist”. In comparison, these shoes have quite the thick sole.
Additionally, where the original HIIT Training Shoe had a noticeably tight area over the arch, the second version of this shoe has this dialed back for a more comfortable fit.The uppers of the HIIT 2 are both comfortable and soft, similar in nature to a mesh sock-like fit. This material provides durability and strong support with a relatively straightforward and simple design. In the previous HIIT model, there was a very tight fit across the midfoot that served to “lock down” the foot in the midst of dynamic movement.
However, it did not function well for many people, and was far too restrictive. For the second version, Reebok removed this in favor of a more simpler lacing system approach.These shoes have more cushion than any of the shoes that we tested except for the Kawana from Hoka (further down the list) for the best shoes for Zumba. This made them ideal for turns and spinning.
However, one downside of these shoes is that, despite the ample cushioning, they don’t provide the arch support you would expect.The HIIT 2 is on the wide end of the spectrum. This is strange for shoes that are focused on dancers, who often are plagued with narrower feet.
With the ample cushioning, we think that Reebok developed these for those who are heavier and have lower arches. However, if your feet are far narrower, we suggest going with an alternative.
- With it’s mesh upper material, this was one of the lightest shoes we tested.
- Removal of the overly tight mid-upper from the original HIIT Training Shoe improved comfort considerably.
- These shoes are incredibly thick and wide, providing intense cushioning.
Overall, the comfort level of these shoes were astounding. It felt like we were doing Zumba on clouds. However, for those who have narrower feet or higher arches, we suggest going for the Nike SuperRep 2. Otherwise, these shoes are a great step up from their predecessor and a wonderful option for dance workouts.
Things to Look For When Purchasing Zumba Shoes
Zumba shoes are typically not extremely expensive. However, you aren’t wanting to spend money on something that isn’t going to suit your own personal needs. There are some things that should be looked out for before you make a purchase of shoes for Zumba. This includes the style, pivoting, cushioning, supportiveness, material, and fit.
Style is probably not something at the forefront of your mind when looking for a shoe for Zumba. However, when it comes to group-based exercise such as Zumba, especially when taking classes with others, you are likely going to want a pair of shoes are look relatively decent and have some impressive color patterns and style points to them.
The wild and wonderful world of Zumba includes an abundance of pivoting, fast movements, slides across the ground, and quickly going from one dance move to the next with no lag time in between. As such, you are going to want a pair of Zumba shoes that has a relatively slippery outsole.If the sole of your current Zumba shoes are too sticky, or have too much grip, you are going to struggle with smoothness and pivoting capacity when executing some of the maneuvers. Also, transferring from one dance move to the next will prove to be tricky.
One of the most important things that needs to be considered when researching Zumba shoes is the level of cushioning they provide. Zumba is an incredibly high-impact exercise option, and therefore you are going to want to purchase a pair of these shoes that provides ample cushioning.This is more than just the heel. It also goes for the midfoot and the ball of the foot as well. An hour workout in the “Zumba room” will definitely cause your feet to start hurting when you lack shoes with proper cushioning.
As Zumba includes extensive quick movement, and hard landings, you will definitely want a pair of Zumba shoes that provides quite a bit of support to the owner. In an ideal world, your Zumba shoes will have strong arch support. This is especially true if you suffer from flat feet (see our guide to the best shoes here) or plantar fasciitis (see our guides here on that ailment).Additionally, your selected pair of Zumba shoes should have high levels of ankle support. Faster movements can easily end in sprained ankles quickly without ample ankle support.
The material composition of your new pair of Zumba shoes may not be all that important. However, the features present in the material are. The material of your Zumba shoes should be as breathable as possible, as Zumba is an incredibly intense exercise form, and you will definitely be sweating.You want a pair of shoes that are breathable and lightweight, which will prevent your feet from getting too sweaty and hot. This can cause your Zumba experience to be uncomfortable, and in some cases painful.
One of the other most important things to take note of when researching Zumba shoes for purchase is that they are snug and well-fitting. You want shoes that will lace up tightly. Some take things a step further and have a velcro strap as well.The goal is to have a shoe that fits snug enough that your feet don’t move and rub around all too much, but they aren’t too tight. Too much space in a shoe can easily cause blisters and calluses, and in some cases cause you to trip and fall.
Frequently Asked Questions About Zumba Shoes
Why can I not just use my standard running or gym shoes?
While this is a doable thing, we don’t recommend it. Typical cross-training and running shoes are developed for forward movement. Zumba, on the other hand, has dancers moving back and forth in all directions, doing pivots, turns and other impressive moves. As such, the grip that makes running shoes incredible for outdoor running and trail hopping proves disastrous in a Zumba environment, where shoes need to be slippery.
How often do Zumba shoes need replacing?
Not as often as you might think! We here at Shoe Guide generally will recommend between nine and 12 months. We also suggest not wearing them outside of your Zumba class. This is one of the most tragic mistakes that can be made and decrease the longevity of your Zumba shoes. Dance shoes, with their slippery outsoles, will wear out far faster than comparable running shoes that are meant for outdoor use.
Do Zumba shoes need to be broken in at all?
Breaking in your Zumba shoes, while not required (at least with the recommendations above) is still suggested. Many Zumba professionals and participants will recommend putting your new Zumba shoes on and walking around with them on a carpeted surface. Alternatively, a bit of light dancing will help in ensuing your first full Zumba session is comfortable and pain-free. This lets your shoes loosen a bit, while also providing extra time for the feet to adjust to the traction needed.
Can orthotic insoles be worn inside my Zumba shoes?
They definitely can, and you most definitely should! Please note that, if you are going with a style of Zumba shoe that has minimalist stylings, you are going to have far less space for both your insole and your foot. In these cases, we recommend choosing a Zumba shoe that mimics the size and shape of a typical sneaker.
Wrapping Up Our Zumba Shoes Reviews
Please remember that Zumba workouts are intense. As such, they provide an extensive range of health benefits. Wearing the proper footwear can lower the chance of injury for this low-impact exercise. No matter your experience level or age, the incorporation of a bit of Zumba into your schedule every now and then can provide tremendous positive benefits to your overall mood and health.
We at ShoeGuide are hopeful that this guide has provided you with the necessary information to make a choice on the best Zumba shoes on the market today. Thanks for reading, and have fun dancing!