Finding the best shoes for Zumba is one of the most important steps you’ll take in your whole workout. In this article, we review the best shoes for Zumba in 2021 and point out the top 4 features to look for in a pair of Zumba shoes so you can get the most out of your workout.
With the enormous range of motion involved in a Zumba session, from top to toe your Zumba apparel is going to make a huge impact on your workout efficiency and this is most true when it comes to what’s on your feet.
Like any type of workout, wearing the right shoes for Zumba is important for safety as well as maximizing your performance. Looking good doesn’t hurt either and there is a huge range of shoes for Zumba on the market right now that fit right, perform well and look fantastic.
What to Look for When Buying Shoes for Zumba?
There are four key factors to consider when choosing shoes for Zumba:
We’ll go through each of these below providing examples of the best shoes for Zumba that meet these requirements.
Choose lightweight Zumba shoes made from breathable material
The best shoes for Zumba should be lightweight so they won’t get in the way of you keeping good form while executing your moves.
Breathable material is another desirable feature for a pair of Zumba shoes as with any intense physical workout, you’ll be looking to keep your feet as cool as possible during your session to maximize your overall performance.
Find the right balance between traction and ease of movement
Good shoes for Zumba will also need to have superior traction, but at the same time a shoe with too much grip will prevent you from moving properly, so it’s important to find that right balance in a shoe that will let you glide and turn easily, but also prevent you slipping over.
Cushioning and support are essential for Zumba shoes
From the Merengue to the Reggaeton and every step in between, during a Zumba workout, your feet are under a lot of pressure from a range of different angles so your Zumba shoes need to have good cushioning and support. The best shoes to wear for Zumba classes or working out on your own will provide adequate arch support as well as stability to protect your ankles. A lot of Zumba sneakers will also feature a special pivot point support on the ball of the foot.
While cushioning and support are vital for your safety and your foot health, you don’t want your shoes to be so cushioned or bulky it impedes your foot flexibility. As such, you’ll be looking for a shoe that strikes the perfect balance between support and flexibility, stability and movement.
A lot of Zumba dancers workout wearing traditional jazz shoes. While jazz shoes are lightweight and flexible, they don’t offer a great deal of ankle stability or footbed support. Plus, the traditional high heel design of a jazz shoe can cause a whole load of problems during an intense Zumba session, particularly with anyone dealing with pre-existing knee or back issues.
Tennis shoes and other standard sports trainers are also a popular choice among the Zumba crowd, as they’re typically well cushioned and also provide decent traction. For some participants, tennis shoes for Zumba will work fine. It’s important to remember though that your sneakers will need to provide you with enough flexibility along the length of your foot as well as the cushioning and stability a pair of sneakers will offer.
Zumba is a unique sport, so whether you’re shaking your shimmy at home to a Zumba fitness DVD or dancing till you drop in a studio with a group class, get a pair of shoes designed to cope with the unique range demands Zumba place on your feet.
The Best Shoes for Zumba in 2021
Now we know what we’re looking for, what are the best shoes for Zumba?
Let’s take a look at the four best shoes for Zumba in 2021!
The Puma Tazon 5 is one of the most obvious choices for the best Zumba shoes for women. Not only are they available in a great range of colors and fashionable designs, but the Tazon 5 is also super lightweight, available with synthetic leather or patent uppers and a comfortable padded collar and tongue. Puma’s lacing system ensures a close but not restrictive fit along the length of your upper foot. It’s a minor point, but depending on your personal foot shape, sometimes these flat laces can come undone easily so a lot of dancers prefer to switch to a different style of lace.
The Tazon 5 also features a reinforced pivot point to give the ball of your foot that extra bit of support during your workout.
The Puma Tazon 5 has a slightly rounded sole and contoured arch support which provides a good range of motion through anything a Zumba workout can throw at you. However, if you have specific sole needs, orthotics, for example, the contoured fit might not be your best choice.
Pros – Pivot point. High arch popular with flat feet.
Cons – Contoured sole might not be the best choice for dancers with specific arch and foot support needs. Flat laces can come undone easily.
The Ryka Enhance 3 dance shoe is one of the most popular shoes for Zumba in 2021. Available in a range of funky colors and designs, the Ryka Zumba sneaker features a combination of synthetic molded covering and breathable mesh to provide a lightweight and flexible design that will keep your feet cool all workout. Ryka also has removable sock liner slippers for breathability and dry comfort.
A padded collar and tongue ensures comfortable heel stability and the midsole and heel sole cushioning provide superior shock absorption. The Ryka also features a solid rubber vertical shank for the added arch to heel stability, particularly around the Achilles area. This is a relatively flat-soled shoe so might not be your first choice if you’re after firm arch support built-in.
Pros –Light. Removable slipper lining for increased comfort and breathability.
Cons – Little contoured arch support, may cause problems for people with flat feet.
In the Nike range of dance shoes, the Nike Musique is often the first choice for Zumba shoes. A lot of Zumba dancers however find the Musique have a touch too much grip and are also not the most breathable or flexible of Zumba shoes.
Instead of the Musique, many dancers looking for Zumba shoes in 2021 are opting for the Nike Free 3. The Nike Free brand is a barefoot running shoe with excellent reviews across the fitness industry and has now taken the Zumba crowd by storm.
The Nike Free is great for Zumba as they have fantastic traction but are still smooth enough to let you glide and spin. The strategically placed rubber pods in heel and forefoot suit a wide range of floor surfaces from carpet to tiles and boards and even outside.
The Nike central lacing system and cushioned collar and tongue ensure a snug fit.
These shoes are super lightweight and flexible and although they are flat shoes, they have a cushioned insole with impressive impact resistance. The foam midsole together with the patented Nike flex grooves on the outsole is designed to work with the natural range of motion in your foot, mimicking the feel of bare feet and providing great flexibility while still offering secure foot support.
The Nike Free 3 are available in an incredible range of fun colors and exciting designs, making these some of the best-looking shoes for Zumba available.
Pros – Incredible flexibility and great range of colors and bold designs.
Cons – Moderate arch support and flat sole might not be enough support for some dancers.
One of the best all round dance sneakers on the market, the Reebok Nano 9 is lightweight and breathable, with a mesh overlay combined with a shoe frame that’s both supportive and flexible. They are available in a fantastic range of colors and designs that really suit the spirit of Zumba.
The Nano 9 has a great and comfortable fit with a padded collar and tongue as well as a traditional sports sneaker lacing system to ensure the shoe remains snug right along your foot. That said, they do run a bit narrow on sizing so ordering half a size up might be a handy tip for wider feet.
A lot of close-fit shoes will limit flexibility, but not so with the Reebok Dance. These shoes have special grooves built into the sole to provide a fantastic range of movement, with rugged traction that’s still smooth enough to glide and step smoothly.
Reebok’s patented Ultralight outsole is super supportive, with great shock absorption but still won’t weigh your foot down like a lot of heavily cushioned sneakers will. The sole also has an inbuilt pivot point and patented turn zone to take the impact on those pressure points across the top of your foot strike. As with the Nike Frees, these Reeboks have a flat sole so that might not be the first choice for Zumba dancers looking for inbuilt arch support.
Pros – lightweight but still excellent cushioning and stability, with superior shock absorption designs through the sole.
Cons – a narrow fit won’t suit wider feet.
So there you have it. Wonder no more what to wear for Zumba with four of the best shoes for Zumba in 2021. Like any fitness pursuit, finding the right pair of shoes most suitable for the activity as well as your feet can take some trial and error. But remembering the four key factors in choosing Zumba shoes – lightweight, supportive, flexible and breathable – you should match your feet to the best shoes for Zumba in no time and be ready to set the floor on fire.