The TYR L-1 Lifter made a splash in the world of weightlifting shoes with its announcement of its wider toe box. As someone who squats and competes with weightlifting shoes, I was excited to see how the TYR L-1 Lifter would stack up against other models.
More specifically, I wanted to know if the TYR L-1 Lifter had the potential to land in my best weightlifting shoes round-up. Overall, I’m impressed with the TYR L-1 Lfiter and its performance in the gym.
This model has been one of my favorite weightlifting shoes for squats and its width should work a wide range of foot anatomies. Despite liking this shoe, for the most part, there are a couple of cons that I have with this model and I’ll discuss those below.
In this TYR L-1 Lifter review, I’ll cover a wide range of topics to help you decide if this weightlifting shoe is a good fit for your training needs and wants.
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Who Should Invest In the TYR L-1 Lifter?
The TYR L-1 Lifter is somewhat of a first in the world of weightlifting shoes. I think this model will be a good fit for most lifters and athletes that often feel confined in their current weightlifting shoe’s toe boxes.
This shoe’s toe box width rivals some barefoot shoes, which I think many will enjoy when it comes to the promotion of toe splay while training. I found this shoe to be plenty wide for my needs and I enjoyed their performance for squats, cleans, and accessories.
The TPU heel and rubber outsole does a good job supporting stability and traction, and I think this shoe will work for a wide range of training contexts. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced lifter, the TYR L-1 Lifter should work well for you.
This model has an effective heel height of 21mm (.83 inches) which should also resonate well with a wide range of lifters and athletes. Note, for narrow feet, you may want to pass on this model and I’ll discuss this more in my sizing section.
- Recreational Lifting
- Wider Feet
- For Narrow Feet
- For Budget-Conscious Shoppers
- For Long-Term Sole Durability
TYR L-1 Lifter Pros
Over the course of my training and reviewing of the TYR L-1 Lifter, I found multiple pros and things to like about this model.
- Great Forefoot Width
- Stable Under Heavy Squats
- Durable Upper and Grippy Outsole
The first thing to like about the TYR L-1 Lifter is its toe box width, which is why you’re probably exploring this model in the first place. Compared to other weightlifting shoes, the TYR L-1 Lifter has the widest toe box on the market, at the moment.
This shoe is built purposely to have an anatomical toe box, and from what I can tell, TYR has a patent pending construction for this model’s toe box. If you constantly feel cramped in your weightlifting shoes, then I think you’ll enjoy the spaciousness of the L-1 Lifter.
In many ways, this shoe’s forefoot rivals the width of some of my favorite barefoot shoes that I train in. For example, check out the width of the TYR L-1 Lifter’s toe box compared to the Vivobarefoot Primus Lite III.
Another aspect to like about the TYR L-1 Lifter is that it’s a strong performer in most training contexts. This shoe’s TPU heel is stable and doesn’t compress whatsoever and I never had issues with this shoe’s stability when squatting over 400 lbs in this shoe.
I also think this model will be a strong performer for those who compete in weightlifting competitions or train with weightlifting movements on a weekly basis. For snatches and clean & jerks, this shoe should perform well for you.
The toe box breaks in pretty well after a few weeks of use and the midfoot security is solid so I don’t think you’ll lack security or stability when catching weight. I also think the length of the straps will work for most lifters’ wants and needs.
The final two things to like about the TYR L-1 Lifter are its durability and outsole construction. Thus far, the durability of my TYR L-1 Lifter has been solid and the heavier leather upper feels well put together.
If the price is causing a pause, I don’t think durability will be an issue in this model, at least on an abbreviated timeline. I have some creasing in my shoe’s toe box, but there are no glaring issues with the materials ripping or starting to fray.
I also like the outsole construction of the TYR L-1 Lifter and the amount of tread you get from this model. The rubber outsole grips wooden platforms and rubber gym floors well, so I don’t think you’ll have slip issues in this shoe whatsoever.
The additional outsole wrap over the toe box is also a nice perk for long-term durability with this shoe, in my opinion. At first, I wasn’t a fan of the chunkier construction, but if it helps prolong durability then I think it’s a net positive for this shoe.
TYR L-1 Lifter Cons
Overall, I’ve enjoyed training in the TYR L-1 Lifter, but I do have a couple of cons with this model that may turn off some lifters and athletes.
- Narrow Feet Will Likely Not Enjoy This Shoe
- Not the Most Cost-Efficient Weightlifting Shoe
- Sole Can Lip for Certain Lifters
The first drawback that I could see others having with the TYR L-1 Lifter is its width for athletes with narrow feet. I think it’s important to understand that while wider toe boxes can be great for many, that doesn’t mean they’ll work for everyone.
For example, if you have narrow feet, then you find yourself “swimming” in this shoe’s toe box and sliding into the end or sides of the shoe when doing more dynamic movements like snatches, quad-biased walking lunges, and clean & jerks.
I actually noticed this during one of my athletic-focused days when I forgot socks and wore them sockless. I have a neutral-width foot and I was sliding around a bit in this shoe’s toe box without socks on.
To assist with this, I cranked the lower strap tight to help with security and I also noticed that the strap overhung a bit and got awfully close to the ground. It almost reminded me of the Nike Romaleos 2 and how those straps could have on the ground at times for some athletes.
Another drawback with the TYR L-1 Lifter is that it does have a more premium price point at $199.99 USD. This price is pretty standard amongst other premium weightlifting shoes like the Adidas Adipower III, so it may not resonate with everyone.
If you’re not in dire need of a wider toe box and you’re turned off by the price of this shoe, then I’d suggest looking into models like the Reebok Lifter PR II or the Adidas Powerlift 5 as both of these shoes run neutral and have price points around $100 USD.
Another drawback that I’ve had some of my clients and lifter report on is that their L-1 Lifter’s outsole has started to peel away on the heel. I haven’t experienced this issue, but when the community reports a problem to me I want to make sure I mention it.
If you’re an adamant weightlifter and you’re traditionally hard on your shoes, then I’d suggest keeping a close eye on this and if this happens to you quickly, then I’d suggest reaching out to TYR about a potential defect with your model.
To break down the performance of the TYR L-1 Lifter, I’ll cover how this shoe performs in various training contexts. I’ll discuss the L-1 Lifter’s performance for squats, weightlifting, and accessory exercises.
This way, if you’re considering this shoe, you can hopefully better understand if it will fit your training needs and wants, especially for its price point.
Testing the TYR L-1 Lifter for Squats
When it comes to squats, I’ve really enjoyed the TYR L-1 Lifter’s performance. After multiple heavy squat sessions, this has been one of my favorite weightlifting shoes for squats in the last few years.
The stability of this shoe is good, and I like that the TPU heel doesn’t compress whatsoever under heavier sets. The thicker rubber outsole supports this shoe’s overall stability, which I was a fan of, especially through the toe box.
I think the main perk of this shoe for squats is its toe box width. If you love having room to splay the toes and grip the floor, then you’ll thoroughly enjoy this aspect of this shoe.
To add to this, I noticed on a few sets where I lost my balance forward, it felt a bit easier to ground the feet and realign my balance to finish the set. In narrower shoes, this can sometimes be a problem depending on the shoe’s last and your foot anatomy.
I also like the 21mm (.83 inch) heel-to-toe drop in this shoe and felt like it resonated well with my squat needs. I have long legs so I typically enjoy higher heels, especially for high-bar squats.
Testing the TYR L-1 Lifter for Weightlifting
In the context of weightlifting, I think the TYR L-1 Lifter will perform well for most athletes. These shoes have a good amount of midfoot security for locking the feet down when catching cleans and snatches.
The outsole is also grippy and should fair well for providing a nice amount of grip on wooden platforms and competition platforms. I also think wider-footed weightlifters will really enjoy the fit of this shoe and will like its toe box.
From a pure performance standpoint, it’s tough to fault the TYR L-1 Lifter for weightlifting. It delivers the aspects you’d want for the sport of weightlifting or for those regularly tackling weightlifting movements in CrossFit workouts.
What I’m most interested in with the TYR L-1 Lifter in the context of weightlifting is how their durability will fare for different athletes. I’m curious how these shoes will hold up long-term for serious weightlifters who constantly break down their models. More data points are needed here.
Testing the TYR L-1 Lifter for Accessory Exercises
The performance of TYR L-1 Lifter for accessory exercises will be very hit or miss depending on your foot anatomy. Regarding stability and versatility, this shoe performs well and these factors are not the limiters for accessory exercises like leg presses and hack squats.
I think the limitations of this model will revolve around different athletes’ foot anatomies. For example, if you have narrow feet, then you may find yourself swimming in this model when doing exercises that are more dynamic in nature.
I mentioned this above in my cons section, but this will definitely be something lifters should consider before investing in these shoes. For neutral and wider feet, I think you’ll enjoy this shoe’s performance for accessory exercises.
Once the toe box breaks in, you get a nice level of mobility with this shoe’s forefoot, and its stability and traction are nice perks when doing different movements with these shoes.
TYR L-1 Lifter Sizing and Toe Box Comparison
For the TYR L-1 Lifter, most athletes and lifters should be safe going true to size with this model. The length of this model fits true and the toe box is what I would describe as wide, while the midfoot and heel are slightly wide.
To add context here, if you’re a lifter with neutral and wider feet, then you’ll for sure be safe going true to size in this model. For narrow feet, you may want to pass on this model entirely due to the toe box not resonating with your foot anatomy.
I worry that since the length runs true sizing down won’t be the most productive move for narrow-footed athletes.
- TYR L-1 Lifter Sizing Thoughts: True to size for most. Narrow feet may want to pass on this model.
If you have additional sizing and fit questions on the TYR L-1 Lifter, drop a comment below and I can try to help you accordingly. To add more depth and highlight the width of this shoe, I wanted to compare its toe box to the Adidas Adipower III, check it out below.
I’ve also highlighted the width of the TYR L-1 Lifter compared to other weightlifting shoes like the Inov-8 Fastlift Power G 380 on my YouTube channel.
For the TYR L-1 Lifter, you can expect to pay $199.99 USD. This price point is similar to other weightlifting shoes like the Nike Romaleos 4 and Reebok Legacy Lifter II.
Personally, I think the price point for this model is fair, especially if you are interested in a wider toe box with your weightlifting shoes. This shoe performs well, so I don’t necessarily have a glaring knock against this model’s performance for its higher price.
Plus, the price will be even more justified for those who have been wanting wider weightlifting shoes for a while. I also think the construction features in this shoe are pretty good for their price.
On that note, if you don’t have a dying need for a wider shoe and you don’t want to drop that much money for the L-1 Lifter, you can definitely find models that are half the price that perform fairly well.
- Recreational Lifting
- Wider Feet
- For Narrow Feet
- For Budget-Conscious Shoppers
- For Long-Term Sole Durability
The construction of the TYR L-1 Lifter is relatively simple in nature compared to other weightlifting shoes. Below are some of the key construction details to note about this model.
- Effective Heel Height: 21mm (.83 inches)
- Weight: 19.05 oz (for my size 10 model)
- Removable Insole: Yes
- Leather Upper Construction
- Dual Velcro Midfoot Straps (plastic loops)
- Padded Mesh Boot
- Full Rubber Outsole
- TPU Heel
- Padded Mesh Tongue
- Anatomical Toe Box
If you have additional construction questions on the TYR L-1 Lifter, drop a comment below and I can you help out accordingly.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Q:Are the TYR L1-Lifter true to size?
Q:What is the effective heel height of the TYR L1-Lifter?
Q:Are the TYR L1-Lifter good for squats?
The TYR L-1 Lifter has been a strong-performing weightlifting shoe and I think it’s going to fill a current need in the market. This shoe’s toe box width awards this model the most width of any current lifter on the market.
The dual midfoot straps, TPU heel, and leather upper are also nice touches to add to this lifter’s overall value and construction.
That being said, there are athletes that I think should pass on this shoe, for example, narrow-footed athletes may not resonate with this shoe’s fit.
If you have additional questions on the TYR L-1 Lifter, drop a comment below or reach out to me personally via Instagram (@jake_boly or @that_fit_friend).
I buy and test the products featured on That Fit Friend using a regimen of training tests that I’ve developed over years of testing training shoes and gear. I may earn commissions on sales made through the links on my site.