What are the Best Obstacle Course Shoes?

Running is one of the purest forms of exercise you can perform.  When you run, you are using the body’s natural movements to propel yourself forward at high speeds. While running you get to exercise every part of your body, including your heart —  it is exhilarating, rewarding, and challenging.

Obstacle course running makes the act of running even more exciting! Working all your muscles to the extreme, it is a fantastic and challenging exercise regime. It involves running over all kinds of terrain, climbing obstacles, and jumping over barricades.  Obstacle running is a form of running that feels much more enjoyable than running in circles on a track or dodging traffic as you jog in the city.

However, obstacle course running is also an extremely demanding form of running that requires a lot of skill.  It also requires better equipment, including a great pair of running shoes that are suited to many different types of terrain including sand, dirt, rocks, cement, and mud.

This guide will offer some tips for buying the right pair of running shoes before highlighting 5 of the best obstacle course shoes on the market!

Choosing the Right Obstacle Course Shoes

Choosing the right shoes is crucial in getting serious about obstacle course running. Anyone can run, but not just anyone can run an obstacle course. Your performance, however, can be made much more enjoyable with a good pair of shoes. Here are a few simple tips to help you choose a great pair of obstacle course shoes.

Get shoes made for running.

Find a shoe that is right for your foot.

Only wear shoes that feel comfortable immediately

Look for shoes with a tight heel fit and room at the front

Choose shoes with excellent traction.

Look for shoes that address any issues you have.

Don’t spend too much — or too little!

Get a pair that is slightly larger than you would normally wear

Choose shoes with a tough and resilient upper canvas.

Don’t worry about the looks of the shoe.

Make sure they are all terrain.

Consider investing in studded shoes.

If you are working in mud, get shoes that are water resilient.

Light shoes do work best.

Inov-8 Men’s Mudclaw 300 Running Shoe

Inov-8 Men’s Mudclaw 300

  • NEW FEATURES – Designed with a 4mm drop means the update on the new model has the perfect heel to toe drop for lifting…
  • ADDED COMFORT – A minimally constructed, yet super durable upper with protective overlays creates one of the most…
  • FLEXIBLE DESIGN – The outsole technology in the forefoot ensures the foot has the flexibility and freedom to move…

The Inov-8 Men’s Mudclaw 300 is a reliable and highly durable shoe that was first released in 2015.  It is specifically designed for all terrain and cross country running, and is packed with useful features.  It has become a best seller for Inov-8 and are used by many all terrain runners.

The shoe is primarily made from fabric and synthetic materials, with a natural rubber sole.  It is a tight-knit shoe to reduce the risk of water ingress and the textile upper is abrasion resistant — ensuring the shoe continues to look great for a few years.  If water does manage to enter the Inov-8 Men’s Mudclaw 300, its quick draining system will take care of it.

These shoes come with a 6 mm removable insole, allowing the wearer to tweak the fit.  The midsole is made from injected EVA, which adds to the comfort of the shoe.  The sole features very deep cleats, which are perfect for wet conditions.


  • High sole tread depth makes them ideal for wet conditions

  • Solid construction

  • Super grippy tread


  • Made specifically for wet terrain, not dry

Salomon Men’s Speedcross 5 Trail Running Shoe

Salomon Men’s Speedcross 5 Trail Running Shoes

  • Trail Running Shoes: Featuring an aggressive grip, precise foothold, and protection, the Salomon Speedcross 5 is the ideal shoe for runners who want to conquer soft, technical trails
  • Get Rough: Redesigned with deep, sharp lugs for an improved grip and a more dynamic upper for better fit and stability, the Speedcross 5 is the perfect shoe for trail runners who aren’t afraid of wet, dirty terrain
  • Go The Distance: Whether you love road running in your neighborhood, an escape to a local trail, or something more rugged, Salomon makes shoes that ensure you have a smooth ride on any and all terrain

This is another very popular shoe amongst obstacle course racers and you will regularly spot it out on the trail.  The popularity of the Salomon Speedcross 5 is based upon its incredibly durability, and performance.  This shoe is also a fantastic all-rounder — if you are unsure about the weather or trail conditions, you can wear these shoes and be prepared for anything.

This shoe is packed with useful features including anti-debris mesh to keep crud out of your shoes and the quicklace speed lacing system.  This lacing system uses Kevlar fibres and a plastic pulley system to lace up your shoes and lock the laces into place.  This system seals the shoes well and makes putting them on a breeze.

The Speedcross 5 has a well padded heel, so it is an excellent option for runners who experience some heel discomfort.  This shoe has a synthetic, seamless upper with SensiFit construction.  This is a seriously well-made upper that will do well in any weather conditions.  The sole is synthetic and has a sole tread depth of 3/16 inch.  It has an aggressive tread pattern which provides excellent traction on most surfaces.


  • An incredibly durable and tough pair of shoes!

  • An excellent warranty against defects

  • A huge range of colors!


  • The drainage on this shoe could be more effective

  • The heel drop might be too high for some people

ASICS Men’s Gel-Quantum 360 4 Running Shoes

ASICS Men’s Gel-Quantum 360 4 Running Shoes

  • Rearfoot and Forefoot GEL Technology Cushioning System – Attenuates shock during impact and toe-off phases, and allows…
  • Trusstic System technology – Reduces the weight of the sole unit while retaining the structural integrity of the shoe.
  • Heel Clutching System Technology – Exoskeletal heel counter provides improved support and creates improved heel fitting…

ASICS recently updated its ASICS Men’s Gel-Quantum 360 line, making a number of improvements which make the shoe even better for obstacle course running.  The ASICS Men’s Gel-Quantum 360 how has a better sole and an anti-gravel tongue to prevent debris from entering the shoe.

The latest version also has better drainage and breathability, which makes this shoe a great choice in wet conditions.  The ASICS Men’s Gel-Quantum 360 has a Solyte® midsole, which reduces the weight of the shoe.

ASICS shoes are usually very comfortable and the ASICS Men’s Gel-Quantum 360 is no exception.  It has a thick heel gel cup and plenty of cushioning in the shoe itself.  The excellent support provided by this shoe makes it a great choice for people with weak heels or ankles.


  • Extremely comfortable to wear, with great ankle support

  • Lightweight

  • Suitable for all weather conditions

  • Strong mesh material that protects the feet well


  • The grip isn’t as effective as some Innov-8 shoes.

Reebok Men’s ZigWild Tr 6 Trail Running Shoe

Reebok Men’s ZigWild Tr 6 Trail Running Shoe

  • Garment leather upper for comfort, support, and authentic heritage style
  • Low-cut design for an iconic silhouette
  • Die-cut EVA midsole for lightweight cushioning and stability

Rebook appears committed to produce a great pair of obstacle course running shoes.  They have been regularly modifying their Reebok Men’s ZigWild shoe based on user feedback since it was released.

The latest version of the shoe features a super-tough Condura® upper, which uses high tenacity synthetic fibers.  This is a huge improvement over the original All-Terrain Super OR, which had issues with ripping.

This shoe uses a speed lacing system that is simple-to-use and effective.  It helps to reduce the amount of debris that can enter the shoe while running.  If any fluid does enter the shoe, it is quickly removed with the Reebok’s H2O Drain technology.  Other useful features include mid-foot teeth for additional traction while climbing and an underfoot rock guard.  This is a great all-rounder shoe that will perform well in any conditions.


  • Extremely lightweight (219 grams)

  • Works well on any terrain

  • Strong mesh material that protects the feet well and excellent drainage


  • Slightly more expensive than competitors

Inov-8 Women’s Trailtalon 235 (W) Trail Running Shoe

Inov-8 Women’s Trailtalon 235 (W) Trail Running Shoe

  • For running fast on trails, hard-packed trails and over rocky terrain.
  • Superior trail traction: Multi-directional 4mm deep studs, each with a wide contact area, provide aggressive grip,…
  • Superior trail traction II: Using three sticky rubber compounds on the outsole increases grip and durability. The…

This is another great pair of obstacle course shoes from Inov-8.  These shoes are designed for competitive runners and are very lightweight.  Because they are designed to minimize their weight, they have less padding than most obstacle course shoes and the heel drop is only 3 millimeters.

Other features include a water-repellant textile upper, thick teeth on the sole tread, a toe guard, a removable 3 mm insole, the TPU Lacing System, and a minimally-padded tongue.  These shoes have a low-profile injected-EVA midsole, making them somewhat shorter than most other pairs of obstacle course shoes.

If you are interested in racing competitively, these shoes are an excellent choice — just be aware that because they are lighter, they are less durable than other obstacle course shoes.  If you regularly run in extreme conditions, you will see these fail earlier.


  • Extremely lightweight

  • Comfortable

  • A great choice for runners who want to race


  • Not much cushioning, which makes them unsuitable for very long runs

  • Expensive

Our Verdict

Best Value for Money Obstacle Course Shoe

The Reebok Men’s ZigWild Tr 6 Trail Running Shoe usually retails for less than the other shoes reviewed here.  Despite it being an affordable option, this is a well-made shoe that is highly durable and performs well.

Best Competitive Obstacle Course Shoe

The Inov-8 Women’s Trailtalon 235 (W) Trail Running Shoe should improve your performance on the track because it is so lightweight.  While the X-Talon 190 is an excellent shoe, remember that it hassles padding than other models.  It is best suited for short to medium length competitive races.

Best Obstacle Course Shoe Overall

It is a tough choice, but the best obstacle course shoe overall goes to the Salomon Men’s Speedcross 5 Trail Running Shoes.  It has the perfect combination of features, price, and quality for obstacle course running.

We hope you enjoyed reading our guide to the Best Obstacle Course Shoes.  These shoes will deliver many hours of fun on the trail! Make sure you check out our obstacle course ideas for adults

Featured image via Unsplash

6 Best Spartan Race Shoes

Best Spartan Race Shoes

Since its birth in 2010, the Spartan race series has expanded outside the United States and franchised into fourteen countries including Australia, Canada, Europe, and South Korea.

What is a Spartan Race?

A Spartan race is a sequence of obstacle races that can vary from 3 miles long to the distance of a marathon.

Just like the variation of length in the race, the obstacles also vary according to the race and can consist of anything from running around cones, mud crawling, rope and wall climbing, tire flips, carrying heavy objects and so much more.

Some of the races you might hear people talk about are the Spartan Sprint, the Super Spartan, the Spartan Beast, and the Ultra Beast.

You don’t want to be a competitor who fails to complete an obstacle because then you must accept and complete a 30 burpee, (otherwise known as squat thrusts) penalty before advancing to the next race.

What are the Best Spartan Race Shoes

Now that you know what to expect from a typical Spartan race obstacle course, it should be obvious that you can’t successfully complete it without the best pair of shoes.

There are many options to choose for men and women both, but it can become tricky if you’re not entirely sure what you are looking for.

When it comes to a great pair of shoes, of course, you want to be sure they fit properly. Choose a pair that is lightweight so that your feet and legs won’t get tired, and just as important you will want to make sure they are comfortable.

The grip is important to keep you on track; rock guards, mid-foot teeth, and drainage ports are also important.

Pay attention to the ones that advise against use on asphalt; all-terrain shoes are an excellent choice, especially when you’re not familiar with the course.

The following list is compiled of 6 of the best Spartan shoes that can help you get started:

Spartan Race Shoes for Men…

Inov-8 X-Talon 212 Trail Running Shoe (MENS) Salomon Men’s Speedcross 3 Trail Running Shoe (MENS) Salomon Men’s Speedcross 3 Trail Running Shoe Inov-8 X-Talon 212 Trail Running Shoe (WOMENS)
Various Sizes Various Sizes 1 Size Various Sizes
1 Color Choice 13 Color Choices 3 Color Choices 3 Color Choices
Synthetic Synthetic Synthetic Synthetic/Fabric
Trail Running Shoe Trail Running Shoe Trail Running Shoe Trail Running Shoe
Check Price Check Price Check Price Check Price

Inov-8 X-Talon 212 Trail Running Shoe

For an excellent grip on that unpredictable terrain, these shoes will definitely do the job!

Man-made construction with a synthetic sole, along with a precision fit, a Meta-Flex forefoot flex groove, and then completed with an injected EVA foam midsole, Inov thought of it all.

These shoes are so stylish that you will be weary of getting them dirty, but no worries, because they will clean up like brand new when the race is over, and they are so light and comfortable that you will forget you are wearing them.

Various sizes are available so you shouldn’t have a problem finding a perfect fit, and although there is only one color to choose, the black, red, and gray combine a great style that everyone will love.

The high rating says a lot and the price is acceptable, making this one of the best choices for Spartan racing shoes on the market.

Salomon Men’s Speedcross 3 Trail Running Shoe

While the others are slipping, and sliding through the mud, sand, and snow, you will be running by like a breeze.

These shoes are designed with a Contagrip non-marking rubber outsole, an Ortholite insole, and a protective rubber toe cap.

Moisture and debris will never be a problem with the water-resistant mesh upper that features Sensifit technology, and the Quicklace system will speed up your dressing time.

With various size availability and the variety of colors offered from Salomon, you will be sure to find something to please your taste.

These shoes are complete with a super rating and a price that won’t empty your wallet.

Salomon Men’s Speedcross 3 Trail Running Shoe

These shoes feature synthetic materials to better cope with the rigors of running off the beaten path. A special, rugged, spiked rubber sole helps you to grip the ground as you traverse difficult terrain.

A rubber toe cap keeps your toes protected from unseen debris and obstacles, while built-in water resistance keep your feet comfortable even in mud and marsh.

A handy Quicklace lacing system makes tightening each shoe a breeze. Reviewers report these shoes as being exceptionally durable and more than capable of withstanding adverse environmental conditions as well as long, grueling running events.

Spartan Race Shoes for Women…

Inov-8 X-Talon 212 Trail Running Shoe

Inov sees no prejudice in these shoes; Just like the men’s, these are built with the same quality!

The man-made synthetic sole provides perfect traction and grip while running along the off-road terrain.

The removable 6mm insole will assure easy cleaning and the brilliant design of the X-TALON outsole offers deep cleats for added security against sliding.

A precision fit, along with the heel pull loop and a great rating make these running shoes complete.

The best part is that with the price of these shoes, you won’t have to break your bank.

Reebok All Terrain Super Women’s Running Shoe

Run through the mud, jump the rocks, and climb the ropes, no obstacle is a challenge when you have these shoes on your team.

Mesh drainage ports were strategically placed to permit the water and mud to escape with ease; the mid-foot teeth, the underfoot rock guard and the dura grip upper will provide extra security throughout the race.

Lightweight, comfortable, high-quality terrain and a great rating prove that Reebok went above and beyond with these shoes.

They are designed with style, and although the price is higher than some of the others on our list, you won’t be disappointed with the performance of these race shoes.

Reebok Women’s All-Terrain Super Running Shoe

If it’s your first time in the race, these shoes would be a great choice for you!

Fashionable style, attractive colors, a comfortable and lightweight fit with a high, snug heel, what more could you want from a running shoe?

Perhaps you might also like the strategically placed drainage ports and the 360-degree traction outsole with an additional obstacle grip and rock guard.

Reebok brilliantly added a toe grip for wall climbing and an instep grip to hold on to the ropes.

These shoes are true to the term all-terrain, and you will not be disappointed with the average fit and high arches.

The price and the positively high rating are just two more reasons why these shoes are on the list.

Now that you have had some help in choosing the best pair of shoes for the race, you should have no problem beating any obstacle that gets in your way.

Happy Racing! Make sure you check out our fun obstacle course ideas for adults.