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This complete guide to the best shoes for tennis will show you the top shoes on the market for both men and women, and how to choose the right shoe for you.
Here’s what we did. We reviewed the major shoe brands for tennis to find the best 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 make the best decision for your feet, so you can play your best tennis without pain.
Before we dive into the individual reviews of each shoe, here’s our list of the top 11 shoes in case you’re in a rush.
The 6 Best Men's Shoes for Tennis
The 5 Best Women's Shoes for Tennis
Reviews of the Top 11 Shoes for Tennis Players
Below are our picks for the top 11 shoes for tennis players. We have reviewed 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 3 (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: 9
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.
Colors: Over 12
Asics Gel-Resolution (Men & Women)
Asics makes several great shoes for tennis. Players who use Asics shoes include Novak Djokovic, and Gael Monfils, who uses this shoe.
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.
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.
K-Swiss Bigshot Light (Men)
Another K-Swiss shoe, the Bigshot Light tennis shoe for men, offers great support and stability at a lower cost than competitors.
The supportive upper made of textile stabilizes your foot, so if you’ve had ankle or leg injuries in the past, this shoe might help. These shoes are comfortable and have a sole that wraps around the front of the toe all the way to the inside of the midfoot for extra durability.
These shoes are best for beginner or intermediate level tennis players. Competitive players (USTA 4.0+) who want to move quickly around the court should consider other shoes. The shoe prioritizes support and stability over flexibility and performance. But for most recreational players who want to spend under $100 on shoes, the Bigshot Light is a great choice.
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 toungue and ankle, add both comfort and stability. The Adituff technology around the toe add 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.
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 isn not the best option for stability or support if you have had injuries.
Best Shoe for Wide Feet: Adidas Barricade Classic Wide 4E (Men)
This is the best tennis shoe for men with wide feet. Adidas Barricade’s Classic Wide 4E model allows maximum comfort and support for wider feet.
Similar to the rest of the Barricade series, this shoe is made of synthetic materials that increase comfort and durability for tennis players. Their Adiprene technology provides cushion and response in the forefoot, while the Adituff sole comes around the toe and inside of the shoe to make it last longer.
The upper is made of mesh and synthetic materials that add stability around the foot. The cushioned tongue also creates extra comfort.
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.
- 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 😉
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 makes the shoe last longer. 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 brands 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.
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.
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.
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.
Who uses more flexible shoes for tennis?
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.
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.
Who needs a more supportive shoe?
If you’ve had tennis injuries, ankle, or knee pain in the past, then support will be a priority for you.
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
As with any purchase, you have to decide how important the quality of the shoe is to you.
There are many shoes on the market you can get for well 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 3 for it’s 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.