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Shoes for Basketball

Shoes for Basketball

The Fila Stackhouse Spaghetti Athletic Shoe

Playing basketball demands high-performance shoes that provide support and comfort. Anyone who wants to spend time on the court needs a pair of shoes that fit not only your feet, but also the type of game you want to play. Fashion is not something to ignore either. Spend some time researching shoe features and options to choose the pair that fits both your playing style and fashion preferences.

Specific Features of Basketball Shoes

Playing basketball often involves sprinting, jumping, sudden stops, and more. The nature of this sport places basketball players at an elevated risk for shin splints. The good news is that basketball shoes have special features that provide both support and cushioning to reduce shocks and vibrations that can cause shin pain. Arch support is another special feature of basketball shoes, because they help to absorb impacts without pain and injury. The soles of basketball shoes are wider than other types of athletic shoes, because this helps with both motion control and to prevent rollovers. Those playing basketball outdoors should look for extra thick soles to cushion feet playing on asphalt or concrete courts. Consider lace choice too, because some players believe that flat laces stay securely tied better than round laces do.

Basketball Shoe Anatomy

The upper of a shoe is the part that covers the tops of the feet. The typical basketball shoe covers the ankle as either mid- or high-tops, because this feature enhances function and provides more ankle support. Some players prefer more flexibility and choose mid-top shoes. Low height uppers are also an option for those players who don't need the ankle support and want to go for speed and agility instead.

Although laces are the most popular method for securing the upper, some shoes feature straps, hook-and-loop closures, or zippers. Alternative closures may be more secure, but they can also add extra weight to the shoes.

The midsole is the area where cushioning is provided. Midsoles usually contain different types of foams. Compressed foam is lighter than polyurethane, but the latter is stronger and denser. Some shoe manufacturers have created special cushioning technologies that provide extra cushioning at pressure points on the feet.

The outsole is usually made out of rubber or a synthetic material. The outsole provides traction while playing the sport. Choose shoes with flat, wide outsoles for the best balance. Outsoles that feature a hexagonal or herringbone pattern tend to provide the best traction.

Choosing Basketball Shoes for Positions

Those playing specific positions might make a shoe choice based on features designed to enhance and support the needs of specific types of play.

Guards - Guards need to move quickly on the court. Choosing a low-top upper doesn't support the ankles, but this type of shoe makes moving easier when speed and agility are important.

Forwards - Forwards play basketball aggressively. High-top uppers provide the extra ankle protection and support that forwards often need while playing.

General Players - Those players not specializing in a position often choose a mid-top shoe that provides some support and also the flexibility needed to move quickly.

Shoe Aesthetics

Shoe performance and features are critical when choosing basketball shoes. Once function has been satisfied, it's fine to turn your attention to appearance and choose shoes that appeal to your sense of style. Various designs and color schemes are available, appealing to all different tastes. Some players prefer to choose shoes in colors that match a team uniform or school colors. Other players just want shoes that are bright and bold. Of course, basketball shoes are also a winning choice just to round out an outfit for school or daily life.

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