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Tennis Shoes – 7 Things You Should Know Before You Buy One
In order to play the game of tennis, you need to buy tennis shoes, just like every other amateur or professional does.
They have certain characteristics that make them adequate and performant on the court, unlike regular walking or running shoes.
If you are familiar with the sport of tennis, you may know a lot more than someone just starting out and looking for more knowledge about the tennis shoes they want to have.
In this article, we will discuss 7 important things any tennis player should know, especially a beginner or a recreational player.
Why Are Tennis Shoes More Expensive Than Regular Shoes?
To play tennis, you need adequate shoes having far more technology and features than regular sports sneakers.
They need to provide great support, stability, cushioning and help the player in sliding and stopping with enough traction.
The biggest sports brands have been innovating throughout the years to come up with new features that are more comfortable and performant on the courts.
All this creativity and the choice of materials add up to drive the cost of tennis shoes up, compared with regular shoes.
Typically, the price of premium tennis shoes endorsed by professionals and semi-pros varies between $120 and $180.
This price range is significantly more expensive than regular sneakers because of the choice of the materials and the technology used in the upper, the soles, and the cushioning for ultimate tennis performance.
How To Choose Your Tennis Shoes?
What makes a tennis shoe adequate to play the game is a combination of these elements:
Another factor to consider is the budget. People who play tennis frequently need to change their shoes every 2 or 3 months, so they look for more durability and more resistance. This ensures that the pair lasts at least 3 months before another bill.
In order to choose the best tennis shoes for you, you have to look for a durable, comfortable, and supportive pair. While you may have a certain preference for a brand against others, it doesn’t matter that much.
We have a detailed article about choosing the perfect tennis shoes for you.
How to Break-In Your Tennis Shoes?
Just like regular shoes, some tennis shoes need to be broken in for some time before they start to feel comfortable and amazing.
To break them in can be easier since the materials used are flexible and simpler to stretch than leather boots for example.
Everyone wants to do it quickly and doesn’t want to wait for days or weeks. If you want to learn how to break in your new pair of tennis shoes in no time, we got you covered.
You can use the solutions below.
- Wear them for a few minutes using thick socks. It may feel a little painful but they will start to stretch. You can also play a tennis session to familiarize with on-court movements.
- Blow them with a hair dryer then go for a short walk outside.
- Use a shoe stretcher or have a repair shop stretch them for you in no more than 24 hours.
Remember that playing with narrow and uncomfortable shoes can lead to severe foot pain like hammertoe, bunions, corn foot, or plantar fasciitis.
Can You Wash Your Tennis Shoes?
Yes, you can wash your tennis shoes. No one wants to keep playing with the same dirty and sweaty pair of shoes for weeks because they can be smelly and weird.
If you have a new or an expensive pair of tennis shoes, we recommend having them hand-washed.
Leather and fabric shoes can be put in the washing machine, but are exposed to chemicals that may damage their materials and look.
Washing your pair of tennis shoes is not difficult and only takes a few steps.
1) Remove the laces
It is important to prevent them from getting entangled during the process. They should be cleaned separately using detergent.
2) Clean the insoles
The original or any added insoles have to be removed and cleaned separately.
You may use a piece of cloth dipped in lukewarm water with some baking soda and wipe them to remove dirt and bacteria.
3) Remove dirt
Rinse the shoes and remove soil and big pieces of dirt. Then using a soft brush and a heavy-duty detergent, scrub to wash properly the upper, the sides, and the outsole.
4) Rinse and dry
Finally, rinse the pair with water and let the excess drip away.
Then, put the shoes in a ventilated area to air dry for a few hours or days. Eventually, you can use a dryer to accelerate things, but never blow hot air, which can damage the materials of your shoes and melt the glue.
Can You Put Your Tennis Shoes in the Dryer?
We highly recommend not putting your washed tennis shoes in the dryer for the following reasons:
- The shoes get beat up and damaged when tumbling around.
- The shoes may shrink and lose their shape due to high temperatures.
- The glue inside the shoes can melt and provoke your pair to fall apart.
- Supportive materials like GEL or Mesh can melt or deform making the shoes less comfortable and less cushioned.
Using a piece of newspaper to remove moisture is an alternative quick method recommended on many other sites.
However, it is not better than air-drying, because the ink of the newspaper might stick on the outside and hit the beautiful look.
Can You Use Your Tennis Shoes for Walking?
In normal circumstances, people buy tennis shoes to play tennis exclusively and not to wear them outside a court. They are expensive and have specific requirements that meet the needs of tennis courts.
Tennis shoes are designed for on-court movements, which are abrupt, quick, and multidirectional with many rebounds, quick changes of direction, and sliding.
You can wear anything you want to simply walk as long as it’s comfortable in the long run. Nevertheless, there are special circumstances you can use your tennis shoes for walking or hiking. Here are some:
- If you play tennis occasionally, you might use your pair of shoes to walk in the park or go for a trail. But bear in mind that the lifespan of the your shoes may be shorter than expected.
- If the soles are worn out, the shoes are no longer effective on a tennis court and can be used for everyday walking if they are not damaged or broken.
Can You Use Your Tennis Shoes for Running?
Again, there is a reason why you find tennis shoes and running shoes. Each one of them is designed for a specific purpose.
Tennis shoes are constructed to provide more stability of the foot and help with multidirectional movements, whereas running shoes encourage forward movement and prioritize comfort and cushioning with big padded midsoles.
We don’t recommend wearing tennis shoes for running for the following reasons.
- Running shoes are lightweight while tennis shoes are much heavier to provide better stability and traction. Running with tennis shoes will decrease your performance and make you tire quicker.
- The soles of tennis shoes are flatter with only a few tread patterns. Running shoes need complex patterns for better grip on different soils and effective forward movement. Running with tennis shoes can provoke more slipping and less grip.
- Tennis shoes have stiff uppers while running shoes need very flexible and more breathable uppers with a snug fit. Running with a pair of tennis shoes can be painful due to the lack of flexibility on the long run.
- Tennis shoes sacrifice the padding of the midsole for the sake of stability. Runners may find tennis shoes less supportive and not adequate for big distances.