How to choose Pickleball Shoes?

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Pickleball is a rage now in America. And there is no slowing down. Most of the people who play pickleball would agree that having the best pickleball equipment is important to win. But, having a proper pair of pickleball shoes can also make or break the game. Why? Because the best shoes will prevent injuries and provide the required comfort during the game.

Importance of Pickleball Specific Shoes

Pickleball shoes that do not provide proper and adequate support to the arches and heels restrict the range of motion.

So, other parts of the body must counteract and compensate by modifying the body’s inherent biomechanics during the forward motion.

It is important to be very careful while choosing the right and a new pair of shoes for the pickleball court. Traction and lateral stability are two of the most important factors to consider while hunting for the good shoes.

A pickleball game requires swift movements in many directions. So, most pickleball shoes will come with a higher density rubber outsole having tread patterns.

Furthermore, the design of the midsole structure helps fast-twitch and quick side-to-side movements.

In fact, the right pickleball equipment must provide arch support and control. Comfort, weight, and breathability are some variables to consider while picking a suitable shoe.

Key Considerations While Shopping for Indoor Pickleball Shoes

  • Most of the hardwood floors or gym floors are smooth and slippery. Thus, opt for a shoe with a sturdy sole.
    Indeed, the best shoes for pickleball have soles made up of natural gum rubber. They have more traction and better grip for those slippery gym floors.
  • Remember, that currently there are no specific “pickleball shoes” on the market.
    So, the best shoe alternatives for indoor pickleball derive from other sports that are played on similar court surfaces and involve identical athletic movements.
  • Volleyball shoes can be a great choice for indoor pickleball players. They provide the required support for lateral movements.
  • Further, the court shoes for volleyball have the right sole that prevents slipping and sliding in indoor courts.
  • The gum rubber sole of a volleyball shoe ensures firm footing. Further, such a kind of sole safeguards against injury.

Apart from considering volleyball athletic shoes for a pickleball game, one can also consider shoes used by players of other indoor racket sports like squash and racquetball.

Keep the Court Surface in Mind While Shopping Shoes for a Pickleball Player

Here are a few things that you would want to keep in mind while choosing the best Pickleball shoes and wearing court shoes.

Indoor Courts

An older indoor gym floor was made of wood. Whereas, the new ones are made up of a wood-looking material. No matter which court you are playing on, go for comfortable shoes with a strong grip.

The best indoor shoes for a pickleball game are the volleyball shoes.

Outdoor Courts

Most of the outdoor play courts are made of concrete or asphalt. So, the court shoe is subjected to more wear and tear.

Thus, the best kind of outdoor shoes will be those with reinforced durable pairs.

Indeed, the best tennis shoes seem good for outdoor pickleball games.

Courts that Allow only Non-marking Pair of Footwear

Many courts, whether indoor or outdoor, only allow non-marking court shoe that cause no damage to the floor.

Certainly, many athletic shoe brands are non-marking. Still, choose wisely, if you regularly play on such courts.

You can also go for wide-toe box shoes if you plan to play in a tennis court or basketball court. So, you do not have to buy a separate pair of tennis shoes or basketball shoes.

Avoid These Shoe Options for Pickleball

  • Never wear running shoes for a pickleball game. Normal running shoes are not suitable for pickleball.
    Their sole and overall design are not as per the racket sports like pickleball and can easily cause injury.
  • Running shoes do not provide lateral support during the quick stops, starts and lunges after pickleballs.
  • Similarly, cross-training shoes are also not suitable for pickleball. They have softer soles. Consequently, they are subject to more wear and tear of hardcourts or clay court playing surfaces.

Finding the Best Pickleball Shoes

The best pickleball game pairs are designed specifically for quick lateral motions. Additionally, they are designed to withstand wear and tear on both outdoor and indoor pickleball courts.

A good shoe will have a wider base that will properly hug the foot length. It will have a more durable outsole and midsole.

Most pickleball game footwear look like quality tennis shoes or volleyball trainers.

A pickleball shoe also requires additional stability and build. Therefore, they will be a little heavier than a pair of lightweight everyday sneakers. Pickleball necessitates fast movements and strength.

Features of Good Shoe for Pickleball

Cushioned Midsole

The Pickleball game involves a lot of jumping – up and down, right and left. These fast motions can impose a lot of strain on the feet and knees if you’re not wearing the right footwear.

The best quality shoe for pickleball will have a superior cushioned midsole.

This cushioned midsole safeguards against impacts and jerks. Furthermore, it provides overall comfort.

Stable Lateral Support

A lot of strain comes on the ankle while playing pickleball. Thus, ankle sprains and twisted ankles are the most common injuries in pickleball.

Therefore, you would want your shoe to have a firm base and structural midsole.


Another consideration while selecting the dedicated pickleball shoe is weight. This also directly impacts their durability.  While the weight will vary depending on your shoe size, you should compare weights of different options.

A lightweight shoe provides comfort and ease, even to a wider feet. Whereas, a heavy one may hinder performance and stamina.

A heavier shoe will usually provide more support, whereas a lighter shoe will let you move faster on the court.

It all boils down to what you are looking for in a proper footwear for a pickleball game. If you’re more concerned about injuries, get a pair of outdoor shoes with plenty of support.

If you want to be able to move fast during a pickleball game, choose a light shoe, of course, with ample support.

Shoe Material

Each shoe brand has its specific shoe material. Ensure that the footwear has a mesh upper part for breathability.

Furthermore, the sole should have plush cushioning of foam or gel and have a sticky rubber outsole.


With the growing popularity of pickleball, many new shoes suitable for pickleball from major brands are now available. Finding the shoe of your dreams can be difficult if you are unfamiliar with the must-have features, utility, and functionality. Using the points described above, thoroughly browse through many options to pick the best one. Certainly, it should be – comfortable, durable, have firm grip and friction.

If you are looking for the best pickleball paddles for women, here are the tips for the Best Pickleball Paddles for Women!

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