Best Wrestling Shoes

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Wrestlers need shoes that allow them to quickly pivot, change position, and burst. Their shoes therefore need to be lightweight, sturdy but flexible, and have great traction on the soles. This is why manufacturers make specifically designed shoes that are well suited both for training and competition.

These types of shoes can be beneficial for other sorts of workouts/ lifting, boxing, and other combat sport participants frequently opt for wrestling shoes to fulfill their training needs. Because of their specificity, customers will probably be seeking very particular attributes. We have examined what some of the top brands are offering to help clarify what can be found in the market right now:

 

Best Wrestling Shoes

Editor’s Choice

ASICS Men’s Snapdown Wrestling Shoe

Pros:

  • Large size variety. These wrestling shoes from ASICS are available for a wide scope of wrestlers. Anyone with a size foot between 5 and 14 should find one of the three color variations as an option.
  • Serradial traction pods. The ASICS Men’s Snapdown Wrestling Shoe has a series of traction nodes on the bottom of the shoe. These provide extra traction and grip specifically for wrestling.
  • Lace garage. These shoes have a mesh pocket at the top of the tongue where wrestlers can store excess the excess lace that typically otherwise hangs from the shoes.

Cons:

  • Sizing chart is off. Wrestlers may be surprised to see that the size they typically wear may be quite snug. Wrestlers may need to buy one size higher as these shoes are rather narrow.
  • Doesn’t breathe much. This shoe doesn’t offer much ventilation so can get damp with extended use.
ASICS Men's Snapdown Wrestling Shoe
ASICS Men's Snapdown Wrestling Shoe
ASICS Men's Snapdown Wrestling Shoe

ASICS Snapdown Wrestling Shoe is a handsome shoe designed specifically for wrestling. The traction pods along the outer surface of the sole and the lace garage for surplus lace material make them ideally suited for wrestling matches and practice.

The Contender

adidas Men’s HVC2 Wrestling Mat Shoe

Pros: 

  • Kids sizing and adult. These classic wrestling shoes are available for kids all the way down to size 1. Adult sizing is available as well.
  • Mesh. A major part of the shoe design relies upon a mesh material. This is great for breathability and making the shoe even more lightweight than its all-suede competitors.
  • Utility. These adidas wrestling shoes cost little more – if not less – than standard sneakers. A great gift purchase for growing kids who may need new shoes every year.

Cons: 

  • Thin insoles. Wrestlers may notice that the insole is quite thin and doesn’t provide as much support as 3rd party insoles would provide. Those wanting extra comfort can buy replacements.
  • May not be durable enough for some sports. Depending on the intended use, these shoes may actually be too lightweight for some activities. For example, boxers who jog in between training sessions may wear them out quickly.
adidas Men's HVC2 Wrestling Mat Shoe
adidas Men's HVC2 Wrestling Mat Shoe
adidas Men's HVC2 Wrestling Mat Shoe

These adidas HVC2 Wrestling Mat Shoes sport the classic adidas look in a rich variety of colors. With a lightweight mesh, suede, and imitation design, these are great for kids and adults for various combat training sessions.

Best Basic Wrestling Shoe

adidas Men’s HVC2 Wrestling Mat Shoe

Pros: 

  • Kids sizing and adult. These classic wrestling shoes are available for kids all the way down to size 1. Adult sizing is available as well.
  • Mesh. A major part of the shoe design relies upon a mesh material. This is great for breathability and making the shoe even more lightweight than its all-suede competitors.
  • Utility. These adidas wrestling shoes cost little more – if not less – than standard sneakers. A great gift purchase for growing kids who may need new shoes every year.

Cons: 

  • Thin insoles. Users may notice that the insole is quite thin and doesn’t provide as much support as 3rd party insoles would provide. Those wanting extra comfort can buy replacements.
  • May not be durable enough for some sports. Depending on the intended use, these shoes may actually be too lightweight for some activities. For example, boxers who jog in between training sessions may wear them out quickly.
adidas Men's HVC2 Wrestling Mat Shoe
adidas Men's HVC2 Wrestling Mat Shoe
adidas Men's HVC2 Wrestling Mat Shoe

These adidas HVC2 Wrestling Mat Shoes sport the classic adidas look in a rich variety of colors. With a lightweight mesh, suede, and imitation design, these are great for kids and adults for various combat training sessions.

Best Wrestling Boots

Ringside Undefeated Wrestling Shoes

Pros: 

  • Hightop. The most distinctive aspect of these shoes are their height, standing around 14” tall. This is great for those looking for extra support for their ankles.
  • Lightweight. Even with the extra material used for their height, these shoes weigh a paltry 1.5 pounds. This is crucial for agility on the mat.
  • Thin soles. This shoe is made with a lightweight, non-slip rubber sole. This sole is thin and helps the user feel traction with the ground during training and competition.

Cons: 

  • No half sizes. These shoes are unfortunately only available in whole numbers, so those with a size ending in “half” may not find a good fit.
  • Narrow. Customers with wide feet may need to have the shoes stretched before wearing, especially at the toe-end of the shoe. Another alternative is to buy one size up.
Ringside Undefeated Wrestling Shoes
Ringside Undefeated Wrestling Shoes
Ringside Undefeated Wrestling Shoes

The Ringside Undefeated Wrestling Shoes feature an extended height that can provide extra support for the ankles and lower leg. These classically designed shoes are lightweight and durable.

Best for Youth

Brute Xplode 2 Youth Wrestling Shoes

Pros: 

  • Split sole design. The sole of this shoe is divided into two parts, at the heel and ball of the foot. This can create greater flexibility and traction during training. 
  • Laces or velcro. There are two versions of this shoe; one with velcro and one with laces. This is great for catering to the needs of differently-aged children.
  • Easy to put on. Due to the low profile of the topline (where the foot goes in) and the shape of the heel, these shoes tend to be easier to put on than typical wrestling shoes. This may be a great relief to parents who are frustrated with the difficulty of putting on other pairs.

Cons:

  • Soles come unattached. Depending on the veracity with which they are used and the accuracy of the fit, the soles may start wearing down at the edges after extended use.
  • Tight fit. Wrestlers should wear thinner socks when wearing these shoes. They have a rather snug fit. This may be troublesome for kids who are growing quickly.
Brute Xplode 2 Youth Wrestling Shoes
Brute Xplode 2 Youth Wrestling Shoes
Brute Xplode 2 Youth Wrestling Shoes

These youth wrestling shoes from Brute are designed to be just as effective as adult shoes, but with some features that parents will appreciate. They are available in velcro and are noticeably easier to put on than many other brands of wrestling shoe.

How We Picked

Wrestling shoes have the dual-distinction of being crucial for the rigors of training but also representative of the wrestler when competing as an individual and a team. This necessitates both the form and function of the shoes, as competitors will need to find products that can withstand daily use and that represent the swagger, flash, or stoicism of the competitor. With the makeup and designs of competing shoes varying in all sorts of ways, we focused on a few key factors when rating these products. 

Design

The top brands seem to be in a competition for who can make the most stylish, modern, and flashy wrestling shoes. Some of the color combinations have soft pastel pallets while others have contrasting colors that make the accents really pop. The soles are another location of the shoe where funky designs often live.

Alternatively, some brands focus on more subdued and neutral colors, such as white and black, with only moderate accenting and design. These may be the best fit if outfitting for an entire team. These also may complement team colors and other uniforms better. Whether wrestlers are trying to let their skills speak for itself or show their swagger with their shoes, there will be options available.

Fit

As the maxim goes, “if the shoe fits, wear it.” Unfortunately, most lines of wrestling shoes will make this more difficult than is expected with most sneakers and athletic shoes. Lots of leading brands have wrestling shoes that are quite narrow. A narrow berth can be helpful in aiding agility during training and competition, but it can also make the shoe fit rather snug or not fit at all. 

Users should perhaps purchase a pair that is one or even two sizes larger than they normally order. This is especially true for those with wide feet. For those who find their shoes a bit snug, it is recommended to only use them for wrestling, lifting or other low-impact combat sports. Jogging in them or even wearing them for the duration of a day may cause some foot pain.

Structure

Wrestling shoes have a specific aspects of their design that are meant to aid in training and in competition. For one, the soles tend to have some sort of grip pattern, typically at the ball and heel portions of the sole, but sometimes throughout. This is instrumental in helping with agility and traction when facing an opposing force. The soles tend to be lightweight, especially if made of one continuous material, but that sometimes affects their durability.

As for the body of the shoe, often times this is quite stiff and relatively unforgiving. This helps prevent ankle injuries by providing support, but it can also make the shoes feel quite uncomfortable when first wearing them. Shoes that are made of one continuous material can be more flexible, but again, not as durable. Shoes with mesh as part of the body breathe better and are more lightweight, but may not provide as much support.

Tips

Not sure which wrestling shoe is right for you? Read below to see some of our tips on making a purchase.

  • What is your aesthetic? The shoes that have the most vibrant colors and patterns certainly stand out the most.
    • In a team setting, wearing loud shoes can sometimes cause tension or even discord if it seems like someone is trying to be above or outside of the team structure. However, some coaches and teams encourage competitors to display their confidence and flashy shoes are one of the subtle ways to do so.
    • Those buying the shoes for a whole team or simply for modest personal training may opt for a more subdued neutral color. These can still be smart and fashionable, but without the added attention that can come with bright colors.
  • Make sure you get the right size.
    • These shoes sometimes fit very snug. If you have wide feet, you may need to look to get a size higher than you are used to.
    • If you already bought a pair and are going to stick with them, make sure you ease into wearing them in order to stretch them out. Don’t do high impact exercises like jogging without breaking them in.
  • What is your budget? Depending on your needs, some shoes can come at a very affordable rate, less than most sneakers. 
    • If you are a beginner and are not sure if you will continue wrestling, perhaps you should buy a lower-priced offering to decrease the risk of a sunk cost. 
    • If you are just getting another pair after wearing out your last pair of wrestling shoes, you’ve probably got some specific qualifiers and can splurge for the shoes that fit your needs.