Basketball is a variety of running, jumping, quick stops, and quick direction changes. Regular trainers can support some of these movements, but only the right basketball shoes sustain them all.
Some shoes make for perfect all-rounders while others excel in a specific characteristic like grip or cushioning. One may ask why not running shoes? This is due to the benefits of good basketball shoes.
The first thing to check is if the shoe has great traction. This sport needs good traction because of the intricate footwork that it requires. The quick stops, jumping, and a lot of sideways actions.
These high-intensity movements are what running shoes can't do. Another is Its slightly less cushion. Due to the intricacy of their footwork, the players need to feel the court.
A lot of cushions can however lead to risky movement miscalculations, slips, and falls. The next is more support. A good basketball shoe resists huge pressure from aggressive movements. This is due to the extra stiffness and weight. A running shoe however lacks these benefits. With good basketball shoes, you're sure to perform at your highest.
Choosing one basketball shoe among seemingly great options is already a large task. Positions in Basketball help to predict what moves a player most likely makes in the game. A good place to start getting the right basketball shoe for you is to find ones designed to cater to players who have the same playing position, or that suit your playing style.
Shoes made for smaller quicker players will put more emphasis on traction and court feel, while sneakers for big more powerful players will pack as much cushion and aid as possible. This is why the shoes should correspond to the needs of the wearer’s playing position. If this isn't the case, you end up having a frustrating game.
Generally, basketball shoes shouldn't just be limited to what the player plays on the court. Best shoes are often furnished with laces, which can be tied in different ways depending on the size and shape of your foot. Even if you’re a seasoned basketball player, you're still not sure of the features that are best suited for your playing style.
Good shoes can however be purchased from top producers like Nike, Adidas, and Jordon. Here's a list of them.
Adidas Trae Young 1 Shoes
$130 now $91 at ADIDAS.com
Exciting growth in the world of basketball shoes of 2021-2022 is the coming of Trae Young's signature shoe. The Adidas Trae Young 1 comes with a couple of unique style points. Firstly, the low-top silhouette features a laceless construction(although adjustable). However, the real interest here is the sole unit. It's a rubber outsole. One-quarter of the production materials are a minimum of 50% recycled content.
The multi-directional ridged outsole attaches you to the hardwood while the ergonomic midsole aids support and comfort where you need it. The future of the game is somewhat Trae Young: unconventional, fearless, and with a flair for the dramatic. An ultra-lightweight Lightstrike midsole with an energy-returning BOOST and a superior internal lockdown system all give comfort that matches your agility.
Nike KD 14. Price: $150
The Nike KD 14 gives great traction, great cushion, decent materials, solid fit, and decent support. More supportive than last year's KD 13 with a lighter feel. It’s a well-rounded, all-around performer, ideal for any type of player, and one of the best basketball shoes out there. If the right fit is gotten, your body will enjoy the cushioning combo of a full-length Zoom Air Strobel and Cushlon midsole.
Rated a 9.5 out of 10. The Cushlon is soft, bouncy, and fairly responsive. Its Zoom Air unit keeps the shoe feeling snappy underfoot rather than slow and the midsole isn’t too thick, so you end up with a plush ride that offers a bouncy effect with every stride. The strap makes feet feel locked down. This is one of the best shoes that grants a great time in indoors and outdoors and is price friendly.
Under Armour Curry 8
It is among the best Basketball shoes with the best grip. Ranked 4.3 / 5 from 39 users and an 89 / 100 from 13 experts, its popularity is about 26%. If you want a basketball shoe that will keep you surefooted when stepping on a banana peel, this is it!. It's also not lacking in other good basketball shoe qualities. This model is sizeable too.
Its weight is likened to the weight of socks. Its supportive feature prevents ankle rolling even upon aggressive movements. It has a good cushioning effect too. It's however too tight and just for indoor plays.
Air Jordan XXXVI
The Air Jordan XXXVI doesn't just transcend this list of Best indoor Basketball shoes through name value alone. They did because they were designed to serve on the court via their lightweight materials and solid traction for movement.
Its lightweight is credited to the hollow gap between the outsole and the midsole, which prevents the shoe from weighing you down as you twist, turn, and do other aggressive movements. Through the inclusion of Zoom Air, the impact felt when landing from an explosive jump is distributed.
It's one of the lightest Air Jordan game shoes to date, that aids in your performance while on the pitch.
Nike PG 5
Graded a 4.6 / 5 from 134 users, and an 88 / 100 from 20 experts, it's also among the basketball shoes with a highly cushioning effect. A 5% in Nike basketball shoes and the Top 7% most popular basketball shoes and many more rankings. It has a superb traction ability and is also good-looking too to give you a kingly or queenly look on the pitch.
The Nike PG 5 offers players a solid platform for jumping. This would be a suitable shoe for a big or power forward who normally stays on lanes and remain on the block. It's also price friendly. It however feels somewhat rigid, with minimum speed and tight fitted.
Nike Cosmic Unity
Not bad to start with its praises - Top 2% in basketball shoes, Top 3% in Nike basketball shoes, and Top 3% of most famous basketball shoes, It's also of top-tier cushioning capabilities.
It ranked 4.6 / 5 from 108 users and 89 / 100 from 15 experts. It has consistent traction both on clean and dusty surfaces, although better on the clean courts.
A perfect combination of responsiveness, impact protection, and court feel underfoot that keeps you low to the ground and simultaneously delivers a nice rebound.
Once you put on a Cosmic Unity, you undergo a real unity with its form-fitting and soft knit upper. There is no heel slippage or side-to-side fluctuation in its supportive hug.
25% of the production materials are trash. It's very incredible that recycled materials nowadays are put to good use. It's nice for outdoor use and got awesome looks too. It's not so comfortable as it needs a constant break in removal.
Nike Kyrie 7
Among the best basketball shoes with the best support. With a 4.5 / 5 from 461 users and a 90 / 100 from 11 experts, it is among top 5% in basketball shoes, top 6% in Nike basketball shoes, and top 3% most popular basketball shoes
Remarkable lockdown for firm grip, feels light and very comfortable. It's stable even during lateral movement. It's also price-friendly and used by players at all levels. Very bouncy in nature but however you can slightly slip while rocking backwards. You can however maximize side-to-side movements with these boots.
Under Armour basketball shoes
This shoe was ranked 4.5 / 5 from 159 users and a 90 / 100 from 2 experts, it's seen as Top 21% in basketball shoes, Top 15% in Under Armour basketball shoes, and Top 22% most popular basketball shoes
It has great traction as basketball players say it's “freaking phenomenal”. It has a balanced midsole. Under Armour's Micro-G tooling provides an amazing blend of comfort, impact protection, and court feel. It's OK for outdoors: A player confirms that the outsole of this Under Armour shoe is sturdy enough for outdoor purposes. It's lightness is about 11.2 oz or 318g. The shoe's worth $100, price friendly, right?
Jordan Zion 1
4.6 / 5 from 165 users
85 / 100 from 15 experts
Top 10% in basketball shoes
Top 12% in Jordan basketball shoes
Top 3% most popular basketball shoes
Reliable multidirectional traction
Superb lateral support
Great impact protection
Minimal break-in period
Not durable for outdoor play
The Zoom Freak 3 is a solid performer for me due to its supportive fit, tacky indoor traction, and propulsive forefoot cushioning. Wearing these felt light and bouncy on foot, and none of its weak points majorly stuck out to me during gameplay. The Zoom Freak 3 felt like the ideal prototype for a team model shoe - adaptable, generic fit, light and supportive cushioning, and no major weaknesses all around.
Nike LeBron 19
The Nike LeBron 19s are designed to be the comfiest pair of sneakers on the court thanks to the 360º Max Air unit within the thick, responsive Zoom Air unit found under each shoe's forefoot.
On top of that, you get pods implanted in the tongues and collars of these sneakers to equip lightweight cushioning around the ankle and over the top of your feet. To round off Nike's dedication to comfort, these sneakers feature full inner sleeves which contour to your feet for a snug, protected feel. Recommended for persons with wider feet.
The thin, transparent exterior layers are said to be highly durable and lightweight to help reduce in-shoe movement, thus making them a great option to consider if you're looking for a pair for wider feet.
These are just a few of brands out their to suit your needs as a Basketball player. Go for the best, don't just get any running shoes for your Basketball experience.
Finding the best fit in basketball shoes
You should obviously get the right size to maximize a shoe’s potential. What’s not so obvious are the factors that affect your size-related decisions.
Brands fit differently. RunRepeat is equipped with a tool that helps you find the right size given the brand. This tool can also use your actual size, brand preference, and input from other users to come up with sizing recommendations.
Consider the thickness of your braces. Ankle braces provide additional support to your foot. Braces basketball players use are thicker than normal. If you plan to wear braces, get shoes that are at least half a size larger than your usual shoe size.
Don’t forget the aesthetics
Low or high, know what you want. Low tops are not really better performers than high tops, and vice versa. It’s just a matter of preference.
Know your color. Basketball shoes are available in thousands of colourways. Some of these colours allude to NBA teams, NBA events, popular holidays (e.g. Easter and Christmas), and even political advocacies (e.g. Black History Month).
Indoor or outdoor: The sturdiness test
The basketball shoe industry is largely driven by the NBA. As such, brands rarely release shoes that are deliberately for outdoor hooping.
If you often play outdoors, you need to know how to assess a shoe’s outdoor playability. Here’s our suggestion:
The best basketball shoes for wide feet
We have to be blunt, top basketball shoe creators like Jordan and Adidas rarely release products that are really for those with wide feet. Buyers will really have to rely on reviews of fellow wide-foot players before they make purchase decisions.
In the first half of 2020, LeBron James’s LeBron 17 and Paul George’s PG3 from Nike and Chris Paul’s CP3 12 from Jordan are among the basketball shoes voted to be the best for wide-foot players.
A lacing technique can also help in making regular shoes fit wide feet better. You can watch a quick demonstration here.
There's a lot to consider when searching for the best basketball shoes, particularly with the wide selection of models and brands to choose from.
With sneaker technology constantly improving as well, like these Luka 1s that feature new IsoPlate foot frames, finding the right pair for your playstyle requires a bit of research.
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