The first step for a beginner learning the game of pickleball is, in my opinion, to find the right shoes for it. It's easy to find a pair of court shoes that suits your style and needs. There are both crossover tennis shoes and purpose-built pickleball shoes on the market.

Which shoes do you recommend for playing pickleball in the greatest comfort? Where can I find the top ones? To find out, I went out and bought, tried on, researched, and reviewed every pair of pickleball shoes I could get my hands on. After doing all that, I think the K-Swiss Express Light is the best option. It's great for those with wide feet because it's lightweight and has a wide toe box.

In this article, I'll compare and contrast some of the other excellent court shoe options for pickleball that I've tried, with the hope that doing so will help you make an informed decision when purchasing your next pair of great pickleball shoes.


If you asked me to choose one best pickleball player overall shoe After a brief period of breaking them in, I learned to appreciate how roomy the toe box was. It's not only cheap, but also portable, comfy, long-lasting, and easy on the  


In all my years of playing pickleball, this is the toughest shoe I've ever owned. The interior's plushness and coziness also came as a pleasant surprise to me. In addition, the outsoles are guaranteed for 6 months.


The Gel Rocket 9 is my favorite pair of indoor pickleball shoes because it was made specifically for use on gym courts like those found in recreation centers. Superior in comfort and grip; ideal for use in confined spaces.


This is my 2021 recommended budget option. The New Balance MC806 is our go-to pair of pickleball shoes. My father, a more seasoned pickleball player than myself, is already on his second pair of these shoes.  

shoes for pickleball

To begin, my entire family and I are avid racket sports fans and pickleball players. We're a group of avid soccer fans ranging in age from 7 to 73, and we've all played in the shoes I recommend here.   

All of the footwear I'm going to suggest has been purchased, tried on, and worn by me or someone in my household before being included in this list. As a rule, I won't suggest a pair of shoes to you if I don't like them after extensive use. In other words, it's that easy  

This, I believe, is the best method for providing you, the reader, with the most trustworthy advice possible for selecting the ideal pair of pickleball shoes.

This article has been updated numerous times as new sneakers have been released. But if you keep reading, you'll find a list of shoes that I've suggested in the past. Only a few pairs of shoes have made it onto my best-of list, while others have been demoted. I've kept all my old favorites, so you can look at it as a sort of archive if you like.

Want a reliable selection of tried and true paddles for your game? Have you ever been curious as to what the numbers 5 through what a paddle has that a pro doesn't have To see what we mean, please go here.

K-Swiss Express Light

When it came to major tennis companies, K-Swiss did something that few others had the guts to do: They developed a specialized shoe for the sport of pickleball. Also, they did a great job with it.

After countless hours on the court, I can confidently say that the Express Light is my go-to pair of pickleball shoes. Indeed, I recommend it to anyone who is interested in picking up the sport of pickleball for the first time.

In my opinion, the Wilson Rush Pro 3 is the best. though the 0s is second on my list, I have to go with the Express Light due to its superior overall comfort. in the toe box in particular

The Express light caught my attention because of how comfortable it was overall and how roomy it felt. And after a brief break-in period, which is typical of many court shoes, the overall comfort of the shoe just kept getting better and better for me.

Initially, I had some heel slip, but after trying on a thicker pair of socks and breaking in the shoe, the problem disappeared.

This shoe felt great on my wide feet, and I experienced very little toe jamming during hard stops. It's great for people with wide feet, and the in-built DuraWrap technology gave me a sense of security even while wearing them.

DuraWrap technology is a simple but effective rubber lining that works well with the breathable mesh to add a durable layer of protection around virtually the entire shoe.  

It's a feat of engineering that K-Swiss was able to incorporate this into the shoe's aesthetic design while still keeping the shoe lightweight and breathable.

It has some flaws, though. No footwear is I thought a shoe called "light" would be more airy and airy on my foot. The only criticism I have is that I wish it had a lighter, airier texture.  

There are lighter shoes out there, but this one is only slightly lighter than the others on my list.

I recommend it as the best pickleball shoe on the market right now because it is inexpensive (less than $100), stylish, and spacious.

Here you can read my in-depth analysis of K-Swiss Express Light.

That's a 4 on my end. Top marks!

best shoes for pickleball

With the Wilson Rush Pro 3, When it comes to outdoor pickleball shoes, 0 is among the best options currently on the market.

Extreme toughness has always been a hallmark of the Rush Pro line, but the new 3 The 1. 0 release improves upon previous variants by making the product more stable while simultaneously decreasing its weight and increasing its comfort level; 2. 5 and 2 0

Rush Professional Version 3 Since Wilson built in stability and durability to this court shoe, it's easy to see why 0 is such a standout. Although it isn't a true pickleball shoe like the K-Swiss mentioned above, this shoe is fantastic for outdoor pickleball in warm climates like Florida and Arizona.

Wilson states that their advanced 4D chassis is responsible for the vehicle's reliability and longevity. This shoe technology was developed to improve acceleration and braking.

And I can tell you, without a doubt, that I experienced this as soon as I put it on. Wilson nailed it when they incorporated this traction technology because it provides a "sticky" sensation in terms of grip and traction.

Around my forefoot, it felt firm, sturdy, and incredibly plush. Though I knew this shoe was built to last, I was surprised by how soft and cushioned it was.

Wow, that was a pleasant shock. Never did it feel like a tank on my foot, and it was surprisingly lightweight for its durability. The weight was lower than anticipated.

Just like the K-Swiss above, only lighter   No Yet I'm still able to relax in my usual routine   

The upper and vamp are reasonably well-ventilated, but this is not a lightweight shoe; rather, it is built for extreme durability. e A pair of Nike Vapor X

Its design prioritizes durability over breathability.

This shoe excels in traction and durability and comes with a 6-month outsole guarantee, which is longer than any other in the industry. Contact Wilson and they will replace your shoes at no cost to you if the outsole wears out before the 6-month mark.

However, if I were to make one alteration, it would be to the toe box's level of comfort. Very comfortable, but I would have liked a bit more space. The tops of the shoes had a small amount of space for my feet to jam into during quick starts and stops.

My toes felt suffocated and could have used more room if the toe box wasn't so thick and pillowy.

Click here to read my comprehensive critique of the Wilson Rush Pro 3. To see the 0 in action, please click here.

Four out of five stars from me


For some time now, I've had a soft spot in my heart for the Asics Gel Rocket series. Back when it was in its 7th revision, I considered it one of the best of its kind. There is now the ninth iteration of what I consider to be the best indoor pickleball shoe, suitable for use on a court in a gym or community center.  

The Gel Rocket's unique properties make it ideal for use on indoor pickleball courts. The secret, of course, is in the rubber.  

The Gel Rocket 9 is a basketball and volleyball shoe made specifically for use on indoor courts. The Gel Rocket 9 is a volleyball shoe, in the strictest sense.

Don't let that fool you though; indoor pickleball courts are remarkably similar to outdoor ones, making this a great shoe for the sport.

Asics is known for packing their shoes to the brim with technology for stability and comfort, which is why the Gel Rocket 9 performs so well.  

In order to reduce shock to the entire foot, improve comfort, and boost takeoff after cutting, Asics started with the forefoot (the front of the shoe where you push off).

Thus, the Asics Trussic System was born. The chassis is the part of the shoe that connects the forefoot, midfoot, and heel to increase the shoe's stability and durability by means of a sophisticated shank.

I know these are just marketing terms, but after years of wearing Asics shoes equipped with the Trussic System, I can attest to their effectiveness. These footwear are long-lasting and sturdy.

The EVA midsole completes the shoe by providing additional cushioning and a "rebound" effect for cutting and running.   

My brother has been using this shoe for years and is a huge fan. He bought it because it was suitable for the indoor league he's been participating in for the past three years and it didn't cost too much.   

Should you invest in a second pair of shoes for use on outdoor courts if you plan on playing pickleball frequently?

My brother has used the Gel Rocket 9 on outdoor courts where the standard pickleball/tennis court surface is a bit rougher than what the ball can handle. The Gel Rocket 9 was a perfect fit for him.

Thus, there is little cause for concern in terms of performance. However, an all-outdoor court would allow you to wear out the balls much quicker.

Having two pairs of shoes is a good idea if you plan on playing more games outside. The Gel Rocket 9 is ideal for indoor pickleball. and another for use in the great outdoors; this gives each set of shoes extra wear and tear resistance.   

In conclusion, if you play primarily in an indoor setting, I suggest you begin with this shoe.


In my opinion, the New Balance MC806 is the best pickleball shoe for the money because it is strong, durable, long-lasting, and inexpensive.  

My entire family swears by the New Balance MC806s for their mid-foot and arch support, and they have worn them for years.

Those with wider feet will find that they are just as comfortable.

The 806s' synthetic leather upper and sole not only give the shoe a sleek, timeless appearance, but also make them extremely long-lasting.

A shoe that is predominantly leather will last much longer than a shoe that is made of mesh.

Conversely, shoes like the MC806 that are constructed with a higher percentage of leather and a lower percentage of mesh block more air from reaching the wearer's feet. In other words, you might develop a case of stinky sock syndrome.

Is that also the case with the New Balance MC806s?   

Most emphatically not  

These footwear are water-resistant unless you wear two pairs of socks. no matter how much leather  

New Balance's Lightning Dry technology is responsible for dispersing the moisture and keeping your foot dry in these situations. The action is occurring within the body's inner lining.

The shoe also features technology known as Abzorb, C-Cap, and Rollbar.

All of this allows you to play with greater cushioned ease, greater stability when cutting, and additional tow guard protections when dragging your foot across the court to attempt shots that are just out of reach.

The MC806 has received aesthetic criticism for its alleged lack of unique design over the years. It's also rather unremarkable. However, New Balance has added some spice to the latest version.  

There is now more of a window-like design at the back of the heel, revealing the padding inside, and a more pronounced flare at the back of the heel.  

But it's not a big deal at all

The MC806s still have a minor problem with boring color schemes, and if I were in charge of marketing for the company, I'd probably shrink the big "N" that says "New Balance" on the side of the foot.  

Minor cosmetic complaints for a shoe that isn't meant to compete with Nike and HEAD's neon-bright court shoes.  

If you're on a budget and don't care about flashy details, this is the shoe for you.

The New Balance MC806 accomplishes that goal magnificently.    

In terms of footwear, court shoes are ideal for the sport of pickleball. Specifically, tennis shoes. The tread pattern of court shoes is perfect for pickleball.  

Court shoes are designed with a tread pattern that allows the wearer to move laterally, or side to side, as well as forwards and backwards.

A good pair of court shoes will have a Partial or Modified Herringbone Tread Pattern. What you need for secure, stable, and efficient cutting and side-to-side movement is the pattern design on the outsole.

shoes for pickleball

Most pickleball and court shoes have outsoles with a modified or incomplete herringbone pattern. Still, a tread pattern known as "Full Herringbone" is possible. This court shoe tread pattern was developed for use on clay tennis courts and is relatively uncommon.

Needless to say, if you're playing pickleball, you shouldn't wear your full herringbone court shoes. Nonetheless, you shouldn't worry, as the shoe's description will make it clear that it is meant for use on clay courts.

In fact, many of the top shoe companies produce their signature shoe in at least two variations. A pair with a herringbone tread pattern that has been tweaked for use in the outdoors or on the court And there's a Full Herringbone design that's ideal for clay courts.   

It's obvious that this is a pair of clay court shoes. If you come across such a thing, keep looking until you find a pair with the right tread pattern.

To What Extent Do Tennis Shoes Work For Pickleball?

Yes The best shoes for playing pickleball are tennis shoes because tennis shoes are court shoes. In fact, if you already own a quality pair of tennis shoes, you'll be all set to play pickleball.

Good tennis shoes are suitable footwear for playing pickleball on any surface, including an outdoor tennis court with pickleball lines painted on it or a tennis court at a tennis club that has been converted into a pickleball court.  

Nothing changes because the courts always rule the same way Those courts are used for tennis.

So, if you're going to a tennis court, whether indoors or outdoors, you can play in the same shoes.   

Can You Play Pickleball in Running Shoes?

best shoes for pickleball

Shoe with a left-facing tread pattern indicates a runner. Court Shoe on the Right

No Neither running shoes nor cross-trainers are ideal for pickleball. Pickleball is best played in a pair of court shoes.

I've played "driveway pickleball" in running shoes before, and even in that relaxed setting, I could tell I was wearing the wrong shoes.   

My Achilles' heel started to hurt and ache after 30 minutes of play. It worried me because I've heard of many cases of people tearing their achilles tendons while playing pickleball in running shoes, so that's a common combination.

Tread patterns on running shoes are optimized for one particular purpose. running The tread pattern is designed to only move you forward, so that's crucial information to have. Based on their tread pattern, they are designed for forward motion only.

Running shoes aren't optimal for lateral, or side-to-side, movement.  

And there's a good chance you'll hurt yourself badly in the process.

The comments section of the article I wrote about common pickleball injuries and how to avoid them should convince you that running shoes and pickleball are not a good idea.

Honestly, I beg you not to!

If you're wondering, "What Do Indoor And Outdoor Pickleball Shoes Mean?"

With regards to pickleball footwear, this is the toughest query to answer. The available information becomes murky upon closer inspection.  

The two different types of pickleball courts cause the surface to become muddy. The answer is yes, and there are two distinct varieties of pickleball courts.   

Here's why:  

For a second, we're going to get into some technical details.

Pickleball can be played on both outdoor and indoor courts.   

In every way, a tennis court can be played on an outdoor court. No change in the coarseness So, any type of outdoor court shoe, such as a tennis shoe, will do. Not a thing

When pickleball is played in an indoor setting like a Y or recreation center, however, the rules become more murky. The game is now essentially played on a basketball court.

The surface of that court is noticeably different from that of any outdoor court.  Obviously

If you play pickleball on an indoor "gym" court, you might want to consider a pair of court shoes like the Asics Gel Rocket 9 (technically a volleyball shoe) due to the extra natural rubber on the outsole.

What's the point, if anything?  Somewhat However, this is not a major turning point.

Whether you're playing indoors or outdoors, any of the shoes I've mentioned will do the job.

For the sake of providing you with more useful information, allow me to get technical about the court surfaces.   

If you only play indoors on a gym floor, like at my local Rec Center, then I recommend something like the Gel Rocket 9. You can't go wrong with any of these pickleball shoes.

All of the shoes we've tried from this store that I'm recommending have served us well on a variety of courts.   

shoes for pickleball

We went into great detail in my article Common Pickleball Injuries and How to Avoid Them to stress the importance of a good pair of dedicated pickleball shoes.

When starting out in pickleball, one of the worst things you can do is step onto the court in a pair of regular gym shoes or running shoes. While it's true that better performance can be achieved with better gear, it's just as important to play it safe and avoid injuries.

Finding the right pickleball shoes can make a world of a difference when it comes to avoiding devastating injuries.

You should check the outsole of your court shoes to ensure they have a lined pattern that is conducive to lateral durability, as I mentioned before.  

However, quality court footwear also provides ample ankle support to prevent players from rolling their ankles.

When the volley action heats up, they also need a stiff toe box so that they can drag their toes.  

Shoes need to be bendable at the toe joint so that they can move with your foot. Because court shoes tend to be rigid, it's important to find a pair with plenty of "bend" in the toe box.  

At long last, ease has taken center stage. The insole and midsole of your tennis shoe are responsible for its cushioning properties.

Internally, the insole will serve as an arch support, and outwardly, the midsole will cushion your ankles and knees. If the midsole provides adequate cushioning, your joints will be spared some of the stress of every step.

Court shoes are typically used for tennis, racquetball, squash, and even volleyball; however, as you will see from our top picks, they can also be useful for the sport of pickleball.

Pickleball shoes need to be replaced every 60 hours, according to experts. That could mean switching to a new pair every three to four months, depending on how often you play.  

The insole usually wears out first, causing a loss of comfort. The outsole, which is made of rubber, is built to last and is extremely sturdy.  

If, however, the sole of the shoe where your foot rests is worn out, you should probably get a new pair.  

Professionals also advise buying two different pairs of shoes for indoor and outdoor play.

Professionals advise getting two sets of shoes, one for indoor and one for outdoor use, and replacing them every 60 hours of play.

Because it can be played in any weather, regardless of season, pickleball is gaining in popularity.  

Pickleball is typically played on indoor courts during the winter months in states like Michigan, Ohio, and Wisconsin.  

Players in states like Arizona and Florida can choose between playing on indoor and outdoor courts.  

Knowing whether you'll be playing mostly in the shade or under the sun can help you choose the right pickleball shoes.  

As always, I appreciate you taking the time to read my recommendations for the best pickleball shoes of 2021.1 But please do get in touch with me.

Describe the footwear you're currently rocking and tell us why you adore it.

Finally, some of the items on this list will shift around. Whenever I review a new pair of Nikes or Asics and they end up being better than my current favorites, I'll edit this post to reflect that.   

Do you need my opinion on a specific pair of pickleball shoes? If you let me know, I can take a look at them and report back to you.  

shoes for pickleball

The Adidas Barricade Boost 2018, a men's tennis shoe, has just been released and is receiving widespread acclaim.  

With its cutting-edge features, this Adidas shoe is the best court shoe the brand has ever made. Adidas' Barricade line of tennis shoes has always been well-liked, but the 2018 Boost model has really elevated the company's reputation.  

Adidas' Adiprene and Barricade Chassis have been used in previous Barricade models to enhance the shoe's take off and stability.

Adiwear, Adituff, and Geofit technologies were added to the Boost model in 2018, making it Adidas' most advanced court shoe to date.  

The best pickleball shoes feature cutting-edge technology, but they don't come cheap. Those familiar with previous Barricade models will appreciate the streamlined design and comfortable heel. However, additional protection on the front would make what is already a very attractive shoe look even worse, so we'll let it slide for now and see if the Adituff is sufficient to reduce toe drag scuffing.

I think this court shoe is attractive and comfortable. The top and bottom of the shoe are integrated into a single unit for a secure, comfortable fit. The seamless mesh construction is great for breathability (we have a problem with sweaty feet) and extra comfort.  

Indeed, the one-piece construction and seamless stitching make this the most wearable Barricade to date. Ultimately, this is a top-tier Adidas court shoe that excels at pickleball.  

While it is technically a volleyball shoe, the GEL-Rocket 7's adaptable design earns it a spot on our list. Almost any indoor court sport can be played on it thanks to its versatile design.

The Rocket 7's rubber outsole and Trussic system are great for those who suffer from instability or plantar fasciitis while playing pickleball.

Once again, this system improves the shoe's structural integrity and support while reducing its overall weight. creating a sturdy shoe that is surprisingly lightweight  

Despite the fact that it doesn't last as long as the others on this list, it's still a customer favorite on Amazon thanks to its low price, high levels of comfort, and fashionable design.

The Asics Dedicate 4 Tennis Shoe is another option on our shortlist. New players who want to make the transition from running shoes or cross trainers to court shoes often start with the D4.  

If a player is switching to these shoes from a non-court shoe brand, they should feel an immediate reduction in foot fatigue.

This inexpensive alternative to running shoes sells well on Amazon because of its flexible rubber sole and toe box and its ability to keep the foot cool and dry. There will be much less discomfort during initial setup times.

Asics' GEL Resolution 6 tennis shoes are among the company's best-selling models because of their superior stability and durability.

To enhance performance and toughness, Asics prioritized the toe guard and rubber sole, particularly the outsole, with technologies they call PGaurd and AHAR.

All of these names refer to the same thing: a shoe that is more durable than the standard mesh court shoe.

In the interest of maintaining a level playing field, players who require extra arch support may want to consider a different option.

The GEL Game 5 is the next level up from the GEL Dedicate 4, which was described as an entry level court shoe.

Players can expect the same level of support and cushioning as the Dedicate 4, but with increased durability thanks to Asics PGaurd technology, which drives up the price. Since toe drag is so common on outdoor pickleball courts, PGuard reinforces the shoe's toe box to prevent wear and tear.

This is the perfect pair of pickleball shoes for women who want to look good on the court. There isn't a better looking women's tennis shoe out there than this one, and it comes in more vibrant colorways than any other shoe of its kind thanks to its unique heel counter design.

Prince's T22 line of tennis shoes is widely regarded as the best tennis shoes by tennis aficionados, so it should come as no surprise that they also made our list of the best shoes for pickleball.

The T22's synthetic mesh upper and mesh tongue make it an excellent tennis shoe for keeping your feet cool and dry. There is a clever sock liner in this shoe that can be taken out and replaced with more or less padding, depending on the wearer's preferences.  

Prince has included a variety of lacing choices to further the garment's adaptability.

A mid-range shoe that looks and feels like a high-end court shoe, but doesn't break the bank It's worth mentioning that there's also a "Lite" version of the T22, which is a bit narrower and not as popular.  

Check out the full length review on our friends' site,, for an in-depth look at what makes the Prince T22 such a great court shoe.

Although dressing appropriately can help your performance, reading our strategy articles is also essential. The quality of the shoes they produce is why brands like Asics and New Balance top our list. Running and walking shoes from Asics are among the best on the market.

We'll show you how to get better at the third shot in tennis, whether it's serving, returning, or something else entirely.

Do you find this article useful? Do you have a favorite pair of tennis shoes that we didn't include? Please use the space below to tell us which one you think should be on the list, and why.

I just enjoy playing any game where a racquet, a net, and a ball are involved. My entire family is avid pickleball fans and players. My goal in creating this site is to provide users with the useful performance advice and product details they require to make well-informed purchases.  

Everything I recommend has been thoroughly investigated, compared, and in many cases purchased, tried out, and worn. I won't suggest a product if it's not good. Any purchase, no matter how small, through this site earns me a commission that goes toward maintaining and expanding this resource for your benefit.