by Will Boucek

June 30, 2021   

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In this complete guide to the best shoes for tennis, we will review the top men’s and women’s shoes on the market for tennis players. We’ve also included a guide to help you choose the right shoe for your feet.

We have tested and reviewed the major shoe and tennis brands to find the best tennis court shoes from each. Then, we analyzed each shoe’s weight, comfort, support, durability, and flexibility to show you how it will perform on the tennis court. Our goal is to help you find the right shoe, so you can play your best tennis.

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Before we review each shoe, here’s our list of the top 12 shoes for the sport of tennis.

The 6 Best Men’s Shoes for Tennis

The 6 Best Women’s Shoes for Tennis

Reviews of the 12 Best Shoes for Tennis Players

Below are our picks for the top twelve shoes for tennis players. We have tested and reviewed all the major brands and have narrowed it down for you.

Not all shoes are available in Men’s & Women’s models, but we’ve clarified in parentheses. We have reviewed lightweight shoes, performance shoes, supportive shoes, value shoes, and more. You can be confident that you’ll find a good fit for you below!

Adidas Adizero Ubersonic (Men)

If you’re a competitive tennis player, on the court a few times per week or more, and need a high performance and durable shoe, the Adidas Adizero series of shoes is for you.

This shoe is made with a combination of textile and synthetic upper, with a thick rubber outsole for excellent durability. Adidas removed the tongue from these shoes, creating a mesh upper that you simply slide your foot into. It enhances the comfort level by reducing the chances of a toungue rubbing or irritating your foot. This new upper design also wraps around your foot like a sock, letting you control the shoe easier, increasing performance.

The thick, rubber sole makes it durable, making it one of the most reliable shoes on the market. For tennis players who drag their foot on serves or volleys, the Adituff toe creates extra protection.

This new line from Adidas is also more lightweight than their previous shoes. It seems like they reduced some of the cushioning around the ankle and top of foot, which doesn’t decrease comfort, but may decrease support slightly.

Colors Available: 4+

Pros and Cons

  • Very durable shoe for advanced players
  • Very comfortable upper that fits like a sock
  • Great for any court surface or type of player
  • Perfect combination durability & performance
  • Takes a few matches to break in
  • Less ankle support than other shoes

Nike Air Zoom Vapor X (Men & Women)

For a lighter weight performance shoe, the Nike Air Zoom Vapor X is perfect.

If you had to choose a shoe for only 1 match, this is it. The Vapor X is a version of Roger Federer’s shoe, and is the most versatile shoe in tennis. Nike’s Dynamic Fit system wraps around the foot for added comfort, while its breathable textile keeps your foot cool in warm conditions. This shoe has Zoom technology in the heel for extra cushion, but still has a low profile so you don’t sacrifice mobility.

Nike prioritized lightweight and versatility with this shoe, so the sole is not super durable. If you move a lot on the court, drag your foot, or simply want something that lasts longer, we recommend the Adidas shoe above.

If you simply want the best performing shoe you can find, the Air Zoom Vapor X is for you. Nike also makes some of the best tennis shorts on the market today, so your gear can match.

Colors: Over 12

Pros and Cons

  • Lightweight for all-court players
  • Great on any surface
  • Very comfortable with Dynamic Fit technology
  • Low profile for extra mobility & versatility
  • Not the most durable shoe
  • Little toe protection

Asics Gel-Resolution 8 (Men & Women)

Asics makes several great shoes for tennis. Players who use Asics shoes include Novak Djokovic and Gael Monfils.

For players who seek a quality shoe with comfort and durability, this is a great choice. The Gel-Resolution includes technology from the front to the heel of the shoe that increase comfort and stability on impact, while maintaining excellent responsiveness. It is also cushioned well throughout the shoe, including a tongue that keeps debris from getting into the shoe, making it great for clay court tennis players.

The synthetic sole wraps around the toe, and the side of the shoe for added durability. If you do wear through the sole, Asics offers a 6 month outsole warranty!

This shoe is also one of the most supportive and stable on the market. It will take a few tennis matches to break in, but the well-designed upper offers a great combination of comfort, stability, and support.

The only minor complaint about this shoe is that it’s not as breathable as some competitors. It’s also not recommended for wide feet.

Colors: 12

Pros and Cons

  • Excellent comfort
  • Top class in stability & support
  • Very durable shoe
  • 6 month outsole warranty
  • Does not breathe as well as others
  • Not for wide feet

K-Swiss Hypercourt Supreme (Women)

K-Swiss is a smaller player in the tennis world, but they provide both excellent value and products. This K-Swiss shoe is the perfect option for ladies with slightly wider feet and lower arches.

The Hypercourt Supreme has great cushioning and comfort. It’s outsole and toe protection also make this shoe last longer than many ladies shoes on the market. The flexible synthetic leather upper gives this shoe a secure yet flexible fit allowing you to move around the court with ease. The textile collar lining also adds some ankle support. This shoe is relatively lightweight compared to other shoes with similar durability.

For ladies with narrow feet, this is not the best shoe. Some players have reported that their foot slides too much because of the shoe’s width. However, many people like the extra width, especially in the toe box.

Colors: 8

Pros and Cons

  • 8 different colors
  • Great for wider feet
  • Excellent comfort
  • Good support, flexibility, & performance
  • Not for women with narrow feet

Nike Air Zoom Vapor Cage 4 (Men & Women)

Nike’s Vapor Cage line of tennis shoes are built prioritizing support, stability, and durability. These shoes are used and designed for Rafael Nadal.

The laces combine with the upper of the shoe to wrap around the midfoot to create maximum stability and responsiveness. The outsole also wraps around the outsides and toe for extra durability. The Air Zoom technology under the foot makes these shoes very comfortable.

These are excellent hard court tennis shoes because of their durability and stability. You can slide and move around the court with easy and comfort. These shoes are best for intermediate to advanced level tennis players looking for a high performance shoe.

Colors: 9

Pros and Cons

  • Great support & durability
  • Good stability for people who slide or move quickly
  • Very comfortable
  • Excellent responsiveness
  • Slightly heavier than some shoes
  • Does not breathe as well as other shoes

Adidas Courtjam Bounce (Women)

For women who do not play competitively or simply want good value, Adidas’ Courtjam Bounce is a great shoe.

The Courtjam Bounce, like most Adidas shoes, has a great combination of stability, comfort, and performance. The Bounce technology provides comfort when your foot strikes the court. The textile and synthetic upper, along with extra cushioning around the tongue and ankle, add both comfort and stability. The Adituff technology around the toe adds durability and the rubber sole protects the edges of the shoe.

Advanced tennis players who play several times per week and move quickly around the court may wear these shoes out quickly.

Colors: 2

Pros and Cons

  • Great value for all skill levels
  • Excellent comfort & stability
  • Secure & stable fit 
  • Not very durable for all court movers

Asics Gel-Challenger 12 (Men & Women)

Another great shoe for recreational level tennis players, the Asics Gel-Challenger 12 is a very lightweight, player-friendly shoe. This shoe is great for people with narrow feet.

The Gel-Challenger 12 is ideal for an intermediate-level player who wants flexibility and performance. Acics used all of their latest lightweight technology to cut ounces out of this shoe, making it fast and flexible.

The toe protection does help with toe drag, however this is not the most durable shoe. We don’t recommend it for advanced tennis players who wear shoes out easily. This shoe also is not the best option for stability or support if you have had injuries.

Colors: 2

Pros and Cons

  • Lightweight
  • Best for narrow feet
  • Flexible for all court players
  • Breathes well
  • Great value for recreational players
  • Low durability
  • Less stability & support than other shoes
  • Narrow toe box

Best Shoe for Wide Feet: New Balance MC 1006 4E (Men)

New Balance makes some of the best tennis shoes for men with wide feet. Their MC 1006 4E model is designed with maximum comfort for wider feet.

Similar to other New Balance shoes, this shoe is made of high quality materials in the sole, midsole, and upper. Their REVlite technology provides extra cushion and comfort under the foot. The outsole also wraps around the front of the toe and inside of the shoe to increase durability.

The upper is lightweight and made of mesh and synthetic materials that help with breathability. The cushioned tongue helps create even more comfort around the upper.

Colors: 1

Pros and Cons

  • Best shoe for wide feet
  • Very comfortable
  • Good breathability & lightweight shoe
  • Durable outsole
  • Not the best support

Buyer’s Guide: How to Choose the Best Shoes for Tennis

Similar to choosing a tennis racquet, when purchasing shoes for tennis, you will want to figure out what is most important to you.

There is no one perfect shoe for everyone, so below, we will help you decide what type of shoe is best for you.

The Parts of a Tennis Shoe

Before we find the right type of shoe, there are several terms related to shoes you should know to fully understand this guide.

Parts of a tennis shoe
  • Sole or Outsole – the bottom of the shoe. Usually made of rubber.
  • Insole – the insert that goes inside the shoe under your foot.
  • Upper – the top part of the shoe that covers the foot. Typically textile & synthetic material.
  • Tongue – the part of the shoe under the upper that goes over the top of your foot.
  • Laces – you better know what laces are 😉

In the video below, Dr. Zach Thomas explains in great detail all the parts of a shoe built for tennis and how each part help tennis players perform better.

Now that we’re talking the same tennis shoe language, let’s figure out what is important for you in a shoe.

Do You Want a More Durable or Lightweight Shoe?

With shoes, you typically have to choose what combination of durability and weight that you want.

Durability Helps the Tennis Court Shoes Last Longer

Characteristics of shoes for tennis

This is important for advanced players who play tennis often, and move fast around the court, but don’t want to have to buy a new pair of shoes every 6 months. Players who choose a more durable shoe also typically (but not always) get more support. We’ll have more on support below.

However, to make a shoe for tennis that is durable, shoe manufacturers have to add more materials to the shoe. This increases the weight of the shoe.

There are some materials and technologies that will help a shoe stay lightweight and last long, but that only works to a certain point. Playing tennis is tough on shoes, and all materials wear out eventually. Adding a fraction of an inch to the sole is an easy way to make a shoe last longer, so that’s often what the designers do.

Lightweight Shoes Help the Tennis Player Move Faster

A lightweight shoe will obviously let you move faster on the tennis court. You’ll be able to feel court easier through a thinner sole, and move quicker. Tennis players who are in good shape and who like to cut, jump, and run quickly will often want a lighter shoe.

In general, lighter shoes will not last as long, so you have to buy new shoes every 6 months or so, depending on how you move on the court and how often you play.

The best tennis bags often have pockets for shoes to keep them protected when you’re not on the court.

Flexibility & Performance vs Support & Stability

Choosing between flexibility and support is similar to choosing between a durable and lightweight shoe. As you prioritize one, you sacrifice the other.

Who Uses More Flexible Shoes?

Flexibility allows the shoe to mold to your foot better as you move around the tennis court. A more flexible shoe will help you cut and run around the court better because as you move, the material in the shoe will adjust with your movement.

A more high-performance, flexible shoe is typically for advanced players who are in good shape, and less prone to injury. This type of player moves quickly on the tennis court and needs a shoe that can respond to their movements.

A good rule of thumb is, the more flexible you are, the more flexible your shoe can be. A shoe that is more flexible, however, will also usually have less support.

Who Needs a More Supportive Shoe?

Support provides stability and cushion for your feet and joints. A supportive shoe can have a higher profile around the ankle for extra support. It can also have more cushion in the sole and upper to absorb the impact and keep your foot stable when it hits the tennis court. This helps with pain and can help prevent injury, but does sacrifice mobility and flexibility.

If you’ve had tennis injuries, ankle, or knee pain in the past, then support will be a priority for you. To increase support and comfort further, make sure you’re wearing the best tennis socks for your feet.

Also, if you’re new to tennis or about to start playing more, and plan to play on hard courts, we recommend prioritizing support. Playing tennis on hard courts is harder on your joints than almost any sport you’ll play, so starting with a supportive shoe is advised.

Note: If you have had injuries, or are worried about injuries, please speak with a doctor about the right type of shoe and insole for you. We are not medical professionals.

Quality vs Value in a Tennis Shoe

As with any purchase, you have to decide how important the quality of the tennis sneaker is to you.

There are many shoes on the market you can get for under $100, but they will typically not last as long or have the combination of performance and stability that competitive players look for.

That said, if you’re only a recreational tennis player who only plays a few times per month, then a better value could be more important to you.

You ultimately have to decide for yourself. Above, we have reviewed both types of shoes.

Conclusion: Our Pick for the Best Shoes for Tennis

By now you should have an idea of what type of shoe for tennis you need. To recap, decide which of these criteria are most important to you.

  • Durability vs. Lightweight
  • Flexibility & Performance vs. Support & Stability
  • Quality vs. Value

Our pick for the best men’s shoe for tennis is the Adidas Adizero Ubersonic for its combination of performance, comfort, and durability.

For ladies tennis players, our top choice is the Nike Air Zoom Vapor X. It is a lightweight, comfortable, and responsive shoe for any level of tennis player.

Will Boucek

About the author

Will Boucek is the Founder & CEO of The Tennis Tribe. He has played and coached tennis for over two decades. Will is a strategy analyst for ATP & WTA tour players and coaches. He also tests the latest tennis gear from Wilson, Babolat, Head, Prince, and other tennis brands. He currently lives in Fort Worth, Texas where he plays USTA leagues & tournaments.