If you're not a weightlifter, or thinking about becoming one, this post probably isn't for you. If you are into weightlifting like myself, there's a good chance you're also obsessed to some degree with everything related to, and designed for weightlifters.
If you want to find out why people wear weightlifting shoes check out this blog post.
There was no real reason for me to get the new Adidas shoe. Other than maybe; they're cool, I like them and there's a small (very small) chance they'll make me better at weightlifting. A chance I'm willing to take.
They're the most expensive pair I've bought (£179 from adidasspecialitysports.co.uk) but still around the same price as Nike Romaleos 2's (the Romaleos 3 came out in the same fortnight but I'm not convinced the design got better). Adidas seem to have taken feedback on board with the changes to the Leistungs, namely the colour and slight design changes and the lacing system. They haven't however made the toe box any wider as far as I can tell so the Romaleo 2's still win in that category. Unfortunately Nike seem to have gone backwards on this with the 3's...
Having been a long time fan of the Adipowers and having tried numerous other shoes (Original Do-Wins, Inov8's, Asics and played around in Romaleo 2's, some older Adidas shoes and the hybrids) I can honestly say I feel a really positive difference in the new Leistung II.
Some stats on the heel differential and changes:
Original Leistung Rio 16 :
New Leistung II
What do the differences mean practically?
The lacing and boa system makes the fit really secure and they feel as good if not better than the Adipowers. I thought I'd find having no strap a bit odd at first but don't even notice it when I'm lifting. The fit around your heel feels a bit higher (as if you're lifted slightly out of the shoe) and not 100% locked in but I think this is a compromise for the heel height addition. It hasn't had any negative effect on the shoe fitting for jerks which the Asics I've reviewed before feel like. I'm not sure the shoe really even needs the lacing as the boa system seems to do quite a lot of the support as a strap would but I'll play around with the configuration and see how it feels.
I have used these now for around 9 weeks and feel that the extra heel height (compared to the Adipowers) improves my overhead position in the snatch and I'm not someone who usually struggles in this area. It does mean I've had to focus on a few positional changes, which is good for me anyway, and would be for you too. I massively recommend these for serious weightlifters and although the price tag sets them out as a shoe probably not for novice lifters you wouldn't be making a mistake. Great shoes.