What Shoes To Wear For Pickleball


Are you unsure of what shoes to wear for pickleball? It’s essential to know that your footwear can play a significant role in how well you move and perform on the court. This blog post will guide you through the types of suitable shoes, key features to consider, and how to choose the best fit for your game.

Let’s jump right in!

Types of Pickleball Shoes

There are three main types of shoes commonly worn for pickleball: pickleball-specific shoes, tennis shoes, and basketball shoes.

Pickleball-specific shoes

Pickleball-specific shoes are designed to maximize your performance on the court. Pickleball shoes offer stellar traction with rubber soles, great stability, and adequate arch support.

Whether you’re a man or woman, play indoors or outdoors, there’s dedicated pickleball footwear tailored for hard court surfaces to ensure optimum lateral movement.

So when it comes to picking the right pair of shoes for this fast-paced sport, consider footwear specifically made for pickleball.

Tennis shoes

Tennis shoes offer a versatile solution for athletes engaging in multiple court sports. Designed with herringbone outsoles, these shoes deliver superior traction on various surfaces.

This feature proves useful irrespective of whether you’re playing pickleball or any other court sport.

While not purpose-built for pickleball, tennis sneakers can still serve as an excellent choice, especially for outdoor play. Outdoor courts are typically rougher and demand more from your footwear.

In such settings, the durability and support offered by tennis shoes make them a worthy contender among other types of pickleball footwear.

Can You Wear Basketball Shoes for Pickleball?


Basketball shoes are often chosen for their ankle support and cushioning, but they aren’t the best option for pickleball according to Dink and Dominate. The high tops of these athletic shoes restrict movement, which is crucial in the quick lateral cutaways required in a game like pickleball.

Moreover, they tend to be heavier than most racquet sport shoes or court-specific options such as squash or volleyball shoes. This weight can slow you down on the pickleball court where agility and speed trump everything else.

An alternate choice would be specialized indoor or outdoor pickleball shoes that provide better traction and sufficient foot support while being relatively lightweight.

Choosing the Right Pickleball Shoes

Consider the court surface, looking for traction and stability, prioritizing comfort and support, and taking into account your playing style when choosing the right pickleball shoes.

Consider the court surface

Pickleball shoes are designed specifically for hard court surfaces, which are the most common type of pickleball court. These shoes have gum rubber outsoles that provide excellent grip on indoor surfaces, making them ideal for playing on indoor courts as well.

On the other hand, tennis shoes typically have herringbone patterns on their outsoles to ensure optimal traction on tennis court surfaces. So when choosing the right shoes for pickleball, it is important to consider the type of surface you will be playing on to ensure that you have the proper footwear with the right grip and stability.

Look for traction and stability

Pickleball is a fast-paced game that involves quick lateral movements and changes in direction. That’s why it’s essential to look for shoes with good traction and stability. Traction refers to the shoe’s grip on the court surface, preventing you from slipping during intense rallies.

You want a shoe with a tread pattern designed specifically for pickleball, like a herringbone pattern, which provides excellent grip and traction. Stability is also crucial because it helps support your feet and ankles during explosive movements.

Pickleball shoes are built to be laterally stable, so you can make those quick side-to-side movements with confidence. By prioritizing traction and stability in your shoe choice, you’ll have the footing you need to excel on the court.

Pickleball-specific shoes are designed with features that optimize traction and stability for this specific sport. The tread patterns on these shoes ensure maximum grip on the court surface while providing stability when making multidirectional moves or explosive lateral movements.

Prioritize comfort and support


Comfort and support should be your main focus when selecting pickleball shoes. Look for shoes that have adequate cushioning to provide comfort during long matches, as well as stability to prevent injuries while making quick movements on the court.

Arch support is crucial for maintaining proper alignment and reducing foot fatigue. Additionally, consider shoes with padded insoles and ankle support to enhance overall comfort and protect against potential sprains or twists.

Remember, prioritizing comfort and support will allow you to play at your best without any discomfort or limitations.

Consider your playing style

When choosing the right pickleball shoes, it’s essential to consider your playing style. Different players have different styles of play, which can influence the type of shoes that work best for them.

For example, if you’re an aggressive player who moves quickly and makes sudden stops and starts, you’ll need shoes that provide excellent traction and stability. On the other hand, if you’re a more defensive player who prefers to stay back from the net, comfort and support may be more important factors for you.

By considering your playing style when selecting pickleball shoes, you can find a pair that enhances your performance on the court.



Ultimately, the shoes you choose can make or break your pickleball experience. Just as a professional dancer wouldn’t perform in casual loafers, a pickleball player needs specialized footwear to truly shine on the court.

The sport demands quick reflexes, agile movements, and robust endurance, which can only be achieved with the right foundation under your feet. While there are various options available in the market, the key is to find a pair that feels like an extension of your feet.

Always try multiple pairs, walk around, make some quick moves, and ensure they feel comfortable. Investing in a quality pair of shoes can not only elevate your gameplay but also protect you from potential injuries. So, make a wise choice, lace up, and get ready to dominate the pickleball court with confidence and style.


Written by Kan Dail