There are many things that have to come together for you in order to play the game of tennis well. You have to strike the ball properly, use the correct footwork and you better be able to serve consistently too. You will also need the right equipment for tennis such as a properly sized tennis racket and a lightweight dry wicking outfit. Among the most under-emphasized pieces of equipment for tennis is the shoes you choose to wear while playing it. They are very important to your performance, to say the least. That is why we decided to take the time to review the best tennis shoes for men and give you some buying tips when shopping for them too.
We will discuss such things as which companies make the most comfortable tennis shoes and which model shoes can be played on the most different types of surfaces. By the time we are done, you will have a much better understanding of what to look for in the tennis shoe marketplace.
Can I wear regular sneakers to play tennis?
You can but it is not allowed in many places and it is not really advisable to do so even if it is. Why might you be wondering? For one, tennis shoes have an extreme amount of support in them because it is necessary with all the footwork that you do when playing. They also have special soles that are designed to grip most court surfaces better than a gymnasium type shoe.
Tennis shoes are also extremely lightweight by design. They use special synthetic materials to achieve this. Other types of shoes or sneakers are heavier and will tend to fatigue your legs faster because of that.
What are the special features of tennis shoes?
Tennis shoes may not seem to be any different than any other type of athletic shoe. They look a lot like any training or running shoe to tell you the truth. In reality, though, tennis shoes really have a lot of hidden features that make them unique.
4 Characteristics of Tennis Shoes
Here are some of the characteristics of tennis shoes that make them unique or different than other types of athletic sneakers:
Tennis shoes take a beating because of the types of surfaces the game is played on. This is especially true on highly abrasive hardcourts such as concrete and asphalt. These types of surfaces can ruin a regular sneaker in as little time as a match or two.
That is why a tennis shoe needs to be reinforced in several key areas. The most important of which is the toe area and along the sides. That is why on quality tennis shoes you will see extra material built into the toe area and their rubber soles will wrap up the sides of the shoe slightly. This gives the tennis shoe the extra protection it needs to last a long time.
People do not think of it often as a characteristic of tennis shoes but it truly is. Tennis shoes tend to run on the more expensive side because of all the time it takes to design them and the extra work it takes to build all of their unique features into the shoe. It is very hard to find a bargain on a good pair of tennis shoes.
There is support built into tennis shoes that you will not see in the same place on other types of athletic shoes. An example of this is the extra support that tennis shoes have for the medial arch area. Tennis is a game that requires a multitude of different foot actions and because of that tennis shoes are often reinforced in a way that supports your foot when making these foot movements.
Speed and Stability
This comes into play in the way a tennis shoe sole is made in order to get a superior grip as you play the game but not so much that it slows down your movement. That is why we say you need a happy medium between these two things in your tennis shoe.
This is accomplished by using soles that have very little tread on them that is more solid in nature than what you would find on many athletic sneakers. Tennis shoes have very minimalist tread designs if any at all and their grip tends to come from the composition of the material they are made of; this is vastly different than most other types of athletic shoes.
Best Tennis Shoes for Men Comparison Chart
Adidas Men’s Gamecourt Tennis Shoe
|View On Amazon|
NIKE Men’s Court Lite Tennis Shoes
|View On Amazon|
ASICS Men’s Gel-Dedicate 5 Tennis Shoe
|View On Amazon|
New Balance Men’s MC806 Stability Tennis Shoes
|View On Amazon|
Adidas Performance Men’s Barricade Court 2 Tennis Shoes
|View On Amazon|
ASICS Men’s GEL-Resolution 6 Tennis Shoes
|View On Amazon|
ASICS Men’s GEL-Solution Speed 2 Tennis Shoes
|View On Amazon|
Best Tennis Shoes For Men (Updated List)
1. Adidas Men’s Gamecourt Tennis Shoe
These Adidas tennis shoes can be your asset on the tennis court. Made of textile and synthetic, they are so durable that you can machine wash them without ruining the sole or the fabric. These shoes are non-marking and perfect for any tennis court terrain. An interesting feature is the sewn tongue which is designed to give your feet a snug fit.
Comfort is the word we can use to describe this Adidas pair of game court tennis shoes. We have tried them on and, believe us; you can feel the generous toe box and the soft insoles. Moreover, this product will also give you great lateral support. The comfort comes from the performance as well. The traction on the soles is so excellent that you can actually hear the shoes squeaking while you make sudden movements.
If you have wide feet, then these tennis shoes might not be for you. The tongue is an elastic band that stretches and should come up around your ankle. But this means that the opening can be too narrow for your wide foot, so it may be really hard for you to put these shoes on.
2. NIKE Men’s Court Lite Tennis Shoes
Nike is here with a great pair of tennis shoes. They are designed to be long-lasting and at the same time, super comfortable no matter the size or the type of feet you have. This unit comes with a GDR outsole which will provide you with more durable traction even on rough surfaces.
There is also a full-length Phylon midsole to soften the pressure your feet exert on the shoes while in motion.
The shoes’ performance on the court is what we think is the key advantage of this product. You can easily move with them, and they grip the floor quite well. Also, the fact that these tennis shoes are very lightweight does not mean that they will not have lasting traction on any hardcore surfaces. And apart from being so supportive, this pair fits true to your size, so no worries about that.
If you want the latest style of tennis shoes, then this pair may not be your thing. Some of us did not like the too classic tennis shoe look and even compared it with “dad” shoes – comfortable but yet not that fashionable.
3. ASICS Men’s Gel-Dedicate 5 Tennis Shoe
There should be no wonder why this brand is on our list with another great product. ASICS makes quality sports shoes, and this goes for this pair. The Men’s Gel-Dedicate 5 tennis shoes are made of 100% textile and are designed to be extremely light, durable, and comfortable.
There is also a 1-year warranty for manufacturing defects if you can find any. These shoes are the perfect unit for your recreational tennis games or professional training. Either way, you will feel the snug fit of these tennis shoes around your feet as well as the excellent grip and support.
We loved the fact that this pair is perfect for people with narrower feet. Most sports shoe manufacturers do not take this into account, but ASICS does not belong to this category. Also, the unit worths the money you will pay for it – you will get excellent stability and a slightly wider toe box.
The only thing we did not like is the lack of enough ventilation. The mesh is too thick, and this prevents the shoes from breathing well, especially on hot days.
4. New Balance Men’s MC806 Stability Tennis Shoes
This is a tennis shoe that has lots of support built into it to help take care of your feet as you play the game of tennis. New Balance is a popular name when it comes to athletic shoes and this fine pair of tennis shoes definitely does not disappoint. They help to eliminate much of the abuse your feet take when you are playing or practicing tennis.
It is a shoe that features only basic styling but there is nothing basic about how good it feels when it is on your foot. These feature superior cushioning all the way throughout the shoe and they support your arches beautifully also.
We were impressed with the durability and support of this shoe. It is made with a combination of leather and tough synthetic material. It features a true rubber sole that wraps around the side of the shoe slightly and reinforcement in the toe area. We feel this is a tennis shoe that will hold up well for a long time.
Most of us agreed that the styling of these new balance tennis shoes was not up to par with some of the other models of shoes that we reviewed. We also think you may want to try ordering a ½ size bigger than normal because these seem to fit a little tight on some of us.
5. ASICS Men’s GEL-Resolution 6 Tennis Shoes
If you want to play the game of tennis in a shoe that looks great and will also enhance your performance, then this is the best tennis court shoes for you. Asics is known for making high-quality tennis shoes and this pair of shoes certainly fits that model. You can’t beat them when it comes to comfort and quality.
The emphasis on these wonderful tennis shoes is definitely for comfort and traction. The rubber sole works great on almost any tennis court surface. These shoes also come in a very wide color selection so everyone should be able to find a pair that appeals to them.
Without a doubt, the best thing about these shoes is their comfort and cushioning. As you bounce around the court these feel like you are playing with shock absorbers on your feet. They are one of the most comfortable tennis shoes that any of us have ever tried on.
One thing that you may not like about these great tennis shoes and will definitely jump out at you is the price. They are definitely only for someone who takes their tennis very seriously. We think they also tend to run a size big, so if you like tight-fitting shoes when playing tennis you may want to consider ordering a ½ size down.
6. ASICS Men’s GEL-Solution Speed 2 Tennis Shoes
Asics jumps back into the top tennis shoe review list with one of the most affordable tennis shoes that we looked at. Just don’t mistake that for meaning it is not a very good quality tennis shoe. It has many of the same enhanced features that some of the more expensive shoes that we looked at have.
These shoes are built with a lot of synthetic materials that help keep them light in weight. Even the sole of them is more synthetic-based as opposed to more traditional rubber soles. Asics has designed these in several different color combinations also.
We all really like the way these shoes have excellent padding throughout them. They are very comfortable, to say the least. They have gel cushioning in both the front and back of the shoe. This also helps them fit the form of your foot nicely too.
We feel there might be some durability issues with these shoes because of how lightweight the material is they are constructed out of. They may be the type of shoe you just want to wear during matches. Sizing them can be a little tough too, so try them on before wearing them to play or practice in.
Ultimate Tennis Shoes Buying Guide
Many people wonder if having a shoe that is made for a particular type of court surface is important when you are about to have a tennis match. The answer to that is yes if you are a serious level tennis player. The reason why this is true is that tennis balls react differently to each type of tennis court surface. It stands to reason that you will need different footwork and different shoes to adjust to the different ways that a ball plays on a particular type of tennis court surface.
Choosing The Right Type of Tennis Shoes for the Surface You Are Playing On
Here are some things to keep in mind about which tennis shoes to wear on clay, grass, and hard courts:
Clay courts are some of the most common tennis court surfaces you will find. They are preferred by power hitters who like to stand back and put everything they have into their shots because the play is a little slower than other surfaces.
Here are some of the preferred characteristics of tennis shoes that are designed for use on clay courts:
Clay courts tend to be very dusty so you will need a shoe with a rubber-type sole that offers excellent grip
Clay will actually accumulate in any treads that you have on your tennis shoes so you want shoes that do not have thick treads that clay can accumulate in
Since you have less traction on a clay surface you will do a lot of sliding when you play. This can be brutal on shoes that do not have reinforced sides.
Superior Lateral Support
Since you mostly play the baseline on clay most of your movement will be from side to side and you will need a shoe that supports this type of movement well.
As with most any surface, you want a shoe you can securely fasten so your shoes to move as your feet do
This is probably the least common of tennis court surfaces because of the upkeep it requires. Grass tennis courts (artificial grass) tend to play very fast and they are ideal for players with booming serves and who like to charge the net.
Here are some of the characteristics of tennis shoes that you will need on this type of surface:
The grass is very sensitive to any types of tread moving across it so in many places with grass courts you are required to wear completely flat tennis shoes
Grass can be a very slippery surface because it tends to get worn down over time and it can be like ice when it gets even a little moisture on it
Shoes that you can tighten very much often work the best on grass courts because of the need to have your shoe quickly move as you do
Other Hard Courts
These tend to be more of a hybrid type surface that combines the play characteristics of both grass and clay courts but does so in a more moderate fashion. These types of courts suit all different playing styles because of that.
Here are some of the key characteristics of tennis shoes that you will need on this hybrid type of surface:
Without a doubt, hardcourt surfaces tend to be the roughest on your tennis shoes. The more reinforcement inbuilt into your tennis shoe the better; especially on the sides
Hardcourt tennis surfaces are not only rough on your shoes they are rough on your feet also. If you play regularly on a hardcourt surface you should invest in a shoe with lots of padding inside
It’s ok to have a sole with a slight amount of tread on a hardcourt surface. Just make sure it is not one that will wear down very quickly
You want a shoe you van lace uptight and it fits your foot like a glove. If your foot moves around in your tennis shoe as you play on a hardcourt surface you will be in big trouble.
So if you are a serious tennis player, then match these preferred tennis shoe characteristics to the type of surface you will be playing on. It will really up to your game a notch if you do. All these apply to the best tennis shoes for women, too.
Tips for Choosing the Most Comfortable Tennis Shoes
When people talk about tennis equipment that talk inevitably centers on the type of racket you use. That is a shame because that often leads to the importance of the shoes you wear is completely overlooked. That is a surefire recipe for disaster no matter how good a racket you have to use.
Why are your shoes you play so important to you in the game of tennis? There are two reasons for this. One is that traction and grip are essential to performance; if you cannot get to a ball and then plant your feet to stroke it, then you are simply not going to play the game very well. The other important aspect of tennis shoes is their comfort level. Your feet take a beating in the game of tennis so you want to keep your feet as cool and comfortable as possible when you play the game.
4 Things That Make Tennis Shoes More Comfortable
There is nothing more uncomfortable than having wet and stinky feet. This can be avoided by having a pair of tennis shoes that have good air ventilation characteristics. This is usually accomplished by having mesh panels built into the tennis shoes that promote good airflow through them.
It’s no secret that gel inserts are becoming more and more popular to use in various types of sporting equipment and tennis shoes are no exception to that. They are popular because not only do they help cushion your feet but they also are flexible so they conform to the shape of your feet when you put on your tennis shoes. It makes for more of a custom type feel that greatly improves the comfort level of your feet when you wear your tennis shoes.
Soft foam cushioning found throughout the inside of a tennis shoe will also make them very comfortable to wear. The more cushioning found inside your tennis shoes the better there will feel as you wear them. This type of padding works great because it has some give to it as you play the game of tennis and it also conforms to your feet when you lace your tennis shoes uptight.
You have probably felt the difference of the weight on your feet when you wear a pair of work boots as opposed to a pair of sneakers; the heavy boots are much more uncomfortable to wear than the sneakers are. Weight makes a big difference in such things as the amount of effort it takes to move and how quickly you can move. That is why it is best to get the lightest tennis shoe possible so you can wear them for a long time and they will still feel good on your feet.
The more of these types of comfort aids a tennis shoe has the more comfortable it will be the longer you wear it.
How to Clean Tennis Shoes
Here are some instructions for cleaning your tennis shoes when they need them:
Some people say it’s ok to throw your tennis shoes in the washer but we strongly disagree with that. If your tennis shoes rub up against heavier clothes or the internal part of a washing machine it can really be harmful to the surface of them. Here is how we would go about washing them.
- Prepare a light clothes detergent solution in a bowl and also round up an old toothbrush or other very soft bristle type brush. You will also need a clean rag.
- Use the rag dipped in the detergent solution to saturate the outside material on your tennis shoes. Try not to get the inside of them wet if at all possible because this can dry rot the interior and make them smell bad too.
- Next, lightly scrub any stained spots on the outside of them with the toothbrush. Press lightly at first and get progressively harder if the stained area is not coming out. Don’t overdo it here because a stain is much better than a hole in your expensive tennis shoes.
- Once you have cleaned your tennis shoes thoroughly with the toothbrush then it is best to get the detergent off them. Do this by turning your tennis shoelace side down and lightly rinsing them with water. Again be careful not to get the inside of the tennis shoes wet.
Once again we are not going to advocate putting your shoes inside an electric or gas clothes dryer to get them dry. This is best done naturally. Loosen the laces on your tennis shoes and pull the tongue back slightly. Place the shoes outside in an area that is exposed to the sun. If it is a cloudy day then keep them inside with an electric fan blowing on them to dry them faster.
Once your shoes are dry add a little talcum or athletes foot powder inside them to keep them smelling fresh and to help remove any excess moisture that may have gotten inside as you were cleaning them. If you do these steps as described, then it will go a long way toward keeping your valued tennis shoes looking great and also help make them last you a long time.
After cleaning your tennis shoes thoroughly, you may put them into your highest-quality tennis bag without any second thoughts!
What Are Tennis Shoes Made Of?
The trend in tennis shoe design these days is to make shoes that are very lightweight, have excellent traction, and are very durable too. This is a lot harder for the manufacturers to do than one might think. The key to making shoes this way is in the materials that the tennis shoes are made of.
So what are tennis shoes made of these days? The answer to that is they are made of newer type synthetic materials that are known to be durable too. This means they are made out of such materials as stretch polyester and more rigid forms of a spandex type material. There is very little leather in them these days which was the most common material found in them in the past. Some brands of tennis shoes even have soles that are made out of synthetic materials these days.
Most of the soles on tennis shoes are not made of synthetic material but newer forms of lightweight rubber. You will also see many types of mesh material used in tennis shoes so your foot will stay cool and dry as you play the sport too.
There is no doubt about it that the sophistication of the materials that are used in tennis shoes goes up seemingly every year. Unfortunately, so does the price of tennis shoes because of that too. So tennis shoes really have a lot more to them material-wise than meet the eye.
Tennis Shoe FAQ’s
Can women wear men’s tennis shoes?
The answer here is no but with an asterisk. A male or female can wear a tennis shoe that was designed for the opposite sex as long as it does one thing and that is fit. If a shoe is too loose or too tight it could be disastrous to your tennis form.
Men’s and women’s shoes tend to be designed differently because the normal characteristics of each sex’s feet are normally shaped differently. A man’s foot tends to be wider and taller than a woman’s foot is. A woman’s foot tends to be narrower than and not as high as a man’s. Since manufacturers build these characteristics into their tennis shoes the opposite sexes shoes will usually not fit the other sex well.
How do tennis shoes differ from running shoes?
This is a very good question and one that we get all the time. Although they offer to appear similar, running shoes and tennis shoes have a lot of subtle differences between them. For starters, running shoes tend to have a much more aggressive tread design than tennis shoes. This is because sometimes extra traction is needed to jog off-road or on taller grass surfaces.
Another difference is that running shoes are designed to support you as you jog or walk in a relatively straight line manner. Tennis shoes on the other are built in such a way that they allow you to move very freely from side to side. Such things as reinforced toes and medial arch supports are found in tennis shoes but are not usually built into running shoes.
Because of these differences, it is recommended that you always wear proper shoes when playing tennis. This will help not only improve your performance but will also protect your feet better as you play the game.
Is it important to match the type of shoe to the surface you are playing on?
Some of you may not like this answer but it is both yes and no. How can it be both you might wonder? That is because it really depends on the level of tennis you are playing at. Let’s be realistic if you are a casual tennis player that goes out and hits balls with friends occasionally it is probably not going to matter what type of tennis shoe you have on.
On the other hand, if you are a serious player, play in a club sanctioned league, or are even a pro or semi-pro player, then you will definitely want to match the tennis shoe you wear to the type of surface you are playing on. Tennis shoes are designed by experts on all different types of tennis court surfaces and they design shoes that will help you get better traction and cut faster on a specific type of surface.
Match The Tennis Shoe You Buy To Your Level Of Play
We have gone over an abundance of information on tennis shoes in this article. That included several reviews on the best men’s tennis shoes. You can say it might even have been information overload or some things you already. Whatever the case may be the general theme you should have gotten out of this article is that you need to match your tennis shoes to your level of play in the sport.
You can also refer to this article when you are shopping for tennis shoes if you decide not to purchase any of the models that we reviewed for you. The buying advice we supplied here is sound and will help guide you in selecting the best shoes for tennis that fit your needs. This information will also do such things to tell you what makes the most comfortable tennis shoes. Good luck with your shopping and have fun playing the wonderful game of tennis.