When you're just starting out with padel, it's important to purchase the right padel gear, and padel shoes are a crucial part of that. Many people who are new to the sport think that a pair of running shoes is enough to go on the court with. If you only play recreationally once in a while, this may be true. However, we believe that the chances are high that you will quickly become addicted to the game and play on a weekly basis. In that case, it is highly recommended to invest in a pair of padel shoes. In addition to improving performance, padel shoes also have a significant impact on injury prevention. In this blog, you will learn more about the importance of padel shoes and what to look for when buying them.
The importance of padel shoes
As mentioned earlier, many beginners assume that they can just play padel in their regular or running shoes. However, this is a big mistake. Running shoes are designed for running in straight lines at the same pace. Padel, on the other hand, is a game that requires a lot of twisting and turning. Jumping for a smash and many short sprints are all part of the game. You will notice that as you play more often and the level increases, the rallies become more intense. This means that these many vertical, fast, and unexpected turning movements and sprints only become more frequent. That's why it's recommended to invest in proper padel shoes.
Padel shoes have a stiff sole with deep grooves. This gives you more grip on the court and prevents serious ankle twists. In addition, padel shoes have good cushioning, which absorbs the impact of landing on the ground each time. Purchasing padel shoes not only enhances performance, but more importantly, it helps prevent unnecessary injuries. So, how do you choose the right padel shoes and what should you look for?
The best padel shoes for you
The ideal padel shoe for you depends on your level and the frequency with which you play. If you are an avid padel player who spends a lot of time on the court, it is advisable to invest in a top model. Although they are more expensive, they provide the best protection against injuries and help you move better and more comfortably on the court. It is also worth noting that better models last longer, which is important if you play a lot.
If you are new to padel and do not play very often, it is less important to invest in a top model. A cheaper and simpler model that provides enough comfort and support should be sufficient. Beginners play at a lower level, so the rallies are less intense. This means that quick turns and short sprints are less common, reducing the risk of injuries and premature wear of the shoes.
Your weight and height are also factors to consider when choosing the ideal padel shoe for you. If you are heavier, your ankle needs a shoe that provides a lot of support to prevent the most serious injuries caused by twists. This does not mean that lightweight people do not need sturdy shoes at all, but lightweight players benefit more from a slightly lighter shoe that is more flexible. A shoe that is too heavy can get in the way and have a negative impact on their agility and speed. The perfect padel shoes offer an ideal balance between strength and flexibility.
What are the different types of padel shoes?
As mentioned before, padel is a sport that involves a lot of turning and twisting on short distances. Occasionally jumping for a smash or long ball is also part of the game. The soles of the shoes take a lot of hits, so it's important that there is good cushioning in the sole to absorb these impacts. The three most common soles are the omnizone, herringbone sole, and the mixed sole. Each sole brings certain characteristics with it. One shoe may be better suited for a specific surface or for a certain playing style. Below we provide a brief overview of the different sole types and their advantages and disadvantages.
The omni-sole is characterized by the small "nubs" on the bottom of the shoe. Most padel courts are made of artificial grass carpet, and these nubs prevent you from slipping when playing. Due to the better grip provided by these shoes on artificial grass carpets, shoes with omni-soles are very popular among padel players. A disadvantage of the omnizone is that you may find it harder to slide with them because of the good grip they offer. Sliding can be useful when trying to reach a long ball. Therefore, it's useful to consider your own playing style. If you're someone who likes to slide a little to reach that ball, then the omni-sole may not be the best choice for you.
The herringbone sole is characterized by deep, zigzagging lines that run under the sole. The zigzag lines provide enough grip but also allow for better sliding than the Omnizone, allowing you to reach far balls. The herringbone sole is especially suitable for padel courts with larger amounts of sand. For those who like to slide, a padel shoe with a herringbone sole is highly recommended.
As the name suggests, the mixed sole is a mix between the herringbone sole and the Omnizone. The combination of nubs and zigzag lines on the sole provides good grip while still allowing for good sliding. Padel shoes with mixed soles are popular because they are suitable for almost any surface and playing style. The ideal sole if you play on a lot of different courts. This can be the case, for example, if you play in competition and have to go to different padel clubs.
When buying padel shoes, it's important to keep a few things in mind. First and foremost, it's important to know what type of surface the padel court you plan to play on has. If it's a bit sandy, for example, you may need more grip. On the other hand, you may be a player who likes to slide a bit to reach a far ball. If you already have more experience and play frequently and competitively, you probably know all of this already. Then we recommend going for a top model. The Asics Gel-Resolution 9 Padel is probably a good padel shoe for you.
If you play less frequently at a lower level, we recommend a cheaper model. In that case, the Asics Gel-Game 9 Padel may be the ideal padel shoe for you. This shoe may be less professional and innovative than the Asics Gel-Resolution 9 Padel. However, the shoe is much cheaper and still has all the necessary features and innovations to play padel comfortably and injury-free.