Finding the best outdoor basketball shoes isn’t tough when you know what to look for, but for those who are interested in what’s hot on the block, you’ll want to continue reading. Basketball shoes provide support and stabilization during one of the hottest sports, and without, your game could be completely thrown off. In this article, we’ll discuss the benefits of buying the best outdoor basketball shoes, as well as what to consider, and tips on choosing the best shoe.
Benefits of Buying Outdoor Basketball Shoes
Before just buying any old shoe that says it’s your size, you should be well aware of the benefits of purchasing a pair of basketball shoes for outside use. One of the primary benefits of purchasing shoes solely for outside play is movement.
Now, the term “movement” is a large umbrella term, but being able to move on easily and in a flexible manner on the pavement or cement court is something that’s pivotal in the success of your shoe. Think of it this way: you wouldn’t wear slippers to play a game of basketball outside, now would you? It would hurt, and you couldn’t be as flexible or supported when playing.
Customized support for your feet is also something that you’ll be receiving when you purchase a pair of outdoor basketball shoes that meet your foot needs. Whether you’re going for high-top or low-top based on your ankle strength and playstyle, you’ll be able to narrow it down much easier when you can recognize your needs. Finding the best outdoor basketball shoes will also keep your safety at an all-time high, eliminating the possibility of rolled ankles or missing a shot. Poorly chosen and poorly constructed shoes will always falter and will show in your game.
A shoe that’s designated for playing basketball outdoors means that it’s designed for all types of positions, as well as shock absorption. Without, your feet will suffer and you may find yourself not being able to play as well as you can or used to.
Factors to Consider Before Purchasing Outdoor Basketball Shoes
Before taking the plunge and purchasing a pair of outdoor basketball shoes, you should recognize what type of player you are.
All-around player – You’ll need basketball shoes that have more support for your ankles and an abundance of cushioning, as you won’t be designated to one area.
Fast player – You’ll need a shoe that’s more lightweight and offers a decent amount of support and flexibility. On top of this, you’ll also need a shoe that doesn’t have too much cushioning, but just enough. In doing so, you’ll have something that allows for optimal flexibility for your position. If you are a fast player, you’ll want a shoe that’s a low-cut style so you can move around more.
Power player – Those who are power players will want an outdoor basketball shoe that has the most cushioning possible for the shoe, and the most stability. You won’t be looking towards the lightweight shoe section, and want something that’s a bit heavier.
Construction of the Shoe
The shoe construction is also something you should think about, as it plays a huge role in the flexibility, stability, and shock absorption of your shoe. The first area you should look at in terms of construction is the cut of the shoe. Depending on the type of player you are, you’ll be looking at one of the following:
- High-top: Great for those who are power players because of the stability and how much ankle support there is.
- Mid-top: Those who feel that they are more restricted in high-tops, but need that stability may find solace in a mid-top shoe.
- Low-top: There aren’t many players who use this style of shoe (less than 10%), but they’re lighter and great for those who are fast players with versatility in their movement.
With the aforementioned being said, the materials used in the construction of the shoe are incredibly important. In today’s world of basketball shoes, especially outdoor shoes, it’s rare to find an all leather upper construction. You’ll typically see a combination of textures and materials to optimize durability and stability. Leather didn’t let the feet breathe and become as flexible as possible, but now it’s possible through materials like synthetic mesh.
Most high-quality shoes have an upper composition of synthetic uppers that are better in terms of durability in comparison with leather, and are lightweight for any type of player. Modern uppers won’t weigh your feet down, causing them to sweat and feel uncomfortable like leather would have.
Various Types of Closures
When it comes to closures on the shoe, it’s important that you have one that is high-quality and durable for the style of your playing. If you’ve pinpointed what type of shoe you may be looking for due to your position, you may be wondering which closures will be efficient for said players and shoes.
Laces: While laces are seen as traditional and old-school, there are more efficient ways of having a snug fit that keeps your foot stable within the footwear. However, laces aren’t the worst, and can work for the right shoe and players. In modern times, there are new systems of lace closureso n shoes to offer a better stability of the foot. With these new tying systems, your less likely to have to tie your shoe mid-game.
Straps: Let’s not forget straps exist. We’re all well-aware of the Velcro straps from when we were younger, but now, you can have a strap on the top arch of the shoe so you won’t have to worry about your ankle rolling over or you breaking your foot during an odd movement.
Zippers: While new in the world of modern basketball shoes, they aren’t totally out of the park. They do secure the foot and are a traditional tool implemented within modern footwear. However, they have a material of protection over the zipper for added stability.
Let’s not forget about Velcro (we briefly mentioned it in the strap section). However, we wouldn’t go so far as to say that adults should be using Velcro in their outdoor basketball shoe. In fact, we suggest against this, as they’re better for children who can’t tie yet. The aforementioned is due to the lack of stability seen with Velcro straps, and it doesn’t give good support.
The Best Outdoor Basketball Shoe
1) Nike Men’s Hyperunk 2015 Basketball Shoe
Bold in design, the composition of the shoe creates streamlined usage to enhance the user’s performance. Coming in an array of color choices, this high-top shoe provides maximum flexibility and ankle support. Beyond the aforementioned, the Nike Hyperdunk also boasts the following:
- Lightweight, hyperfused construction
- Rubber sole
- Flywire cables for better fit
- The outsole wraps around the side for maximum ankle support and stability
Breakdown of Features
The lightweight, hyperfused construction allows for maximum breathability and flexibility without compromising your game. When a shoe is too heavy for your position, especially in the outdoors, your feet may drag and you’ll be unable to perform at personal peak levels. Beyond this, there are flywire cables to create a better fit for your feet and ankles. In doing this, you are guaranteed a solid fit and lockdown. The padding lines of the shoe collar allow for a more comfortable fit due to the articulation, and the Zoom Air units allow for an extremely responsive cushioning. Those who play specific roles that require this will find solace in knowing the Hyperdrunk can provide it. Last but not least, the outsole of the shoe wraps entirely around for maximum support of the ankles, along with optimal stability that many other high top shoes cannot provide for a sport as such.
One of the many advantages of the Hyperdunk lies in the aesthetics of the shoe. There are a plethora of color combinations for various sizes, whether you’re a guy who likes masculine colors, or you’re more into the RiFF RAFF neon scene. Along with this, you can expect maximum stability and support infused into a lightweight shoe. These features will provide even the pickiest of players with a comfortable experience.
Of course, where a product is great, there are also disadvantages. In this product, you’ll only find a shoe optimal for those of medium width. However, the sizes range from 7 to 15, despite the medium width. For those who need wide-width shoes, you may have to look elsewhere. Although, it’s worth mentioning that those who fit into a medium-width won’t have any issues with this shoe whatsoever, as it’s one of the best on the market four playing basketball outdoors.
2) Nike Lebron XIII Men Round Toe Leather Black Basketball Shoe
Try saying the name of this next shoe three times fast! The Nike Lebron XIII is a shoe that puts many others to shame, despite its simplicity. A highly-rated shoe in general, not just for playing basketball outdoors, features of this shoe include the following:
- A microfiber creation
- Synthetic sole
- Decent ventilation
- Extremely durable
Breakdown of Features
For many people, they see microfiber as a really cheap material that shouldn’t be touched, especially for pricy shoes as such. However, it’s worth mentioning that many high-end products on the market today feature the microfiber material due to its durability and flexibility. Microfiber is in everything from your favorite fleece blanket to these pretty shoes. Beyond this, the shoe is very comfortable – more so with thicker socks, and has decent ventilation. Breathability is key when providing a comfortable environment for your feet. With a synthetic sole, you can maximize breathability and increase flexibility.
To play any outside game well, especially basketball where you’re constantly on the move, you’ll need a shoe that’s highly flexible and durable. Thanks to the microfiber material and synthetic sole, you’ll have both comfortability and flexibility with ease. Beyond this, you’ll need something that’s not so heavy on your feet, holding them down like cement blocks. Another advantage is the high-top shape of the shoe, allowing maximum ankle support as you play. Last but not least, these shoes come in a medium width for those who fall in between normal and wide width. Having something high-quality as such that caters to your feet will provide you with a fantastic experience and up your game.
While the Nike Lebron XIII are a fantastic product, not everyone is going to be happy with them – it’s life. However, we want to let you in on what you may dislike about the product before you purchase. Doing so will allow you to weigh out your options. One of the main disadvantages of this shoe is that there’s no wide-width available. For those who are looking for that width, you’d probably look elsewhere, but for everyone else, you’ll enjoy this shoe just fine. One last disadvantage is that the design of the shoe doesn’t change, and has one solid color palette, unlike others. However, neither of the aforementioned affect the performance of the shoe whatsoever.
3) Onemix Men’s Basketball Shoes
A more traditional styled basketball shoe, (remember those Jordan’s from like 10 years ago with the Velcro strap?) Anyway – Onemix has released a quality basketball shoe for the outdoors that will allow you to get the most out of your game. There are a ton of features in this shoe, including the following:
- A rubber sole
- Open mesh upper
- Phylon for cushioning
- Rubber outsole
Breakdown of Features
The aforementioned are just a few of the stunning features of Onemix’s basketball shoe. Let’s start at the beginning: this shoe has a rubber sole, as well as an open mesh upper for maximum ventilation, durability, and flexibility. Having breathability and a full range of motion will allow your foot to excel. Beyond these, Phylon is included in the composition of this shoe for maximum cushioning in a lightweight manner. There’s nothing worse than a heavy shoe, as it holds you back from your top game – however, this isn’t something you’ll have to worry about with a pair of Onemix basketball shoes.
A primary advantage of this shoe is that it is lightweight in design, despite its incredible number of features. With the rubber outsole and open mesh upper, every angle of the foot will benefit from this pair of basketball shoes. If you don’t have a comfortable sock to go with this style of shoe, you won’t have to worry as each purchase comes with a pair of high quality socks. There’s also five different color options, including red and white, silver and blue, white and black, red, yellow and black, and lastly: orange and red. Shoe the team you’re on fire with your game and your aesthetics!
One major disadvantage of this shoe is that it’s not high-top. While it provides an incredible amount of flexibility, some players swear by the high-top design. However, the performance of the shoe is still fantastic and one we’d highly recommend. One last slight disadvantage is that the sizes run from 7 (medium width) to 12 (medium width). If you’re larger than 12, you’ll have to look elsewhere, but the performance of the shoe is still phenomenal beyond belief.
4) Nike Men’s Lebron Soldier IX Basketball Shoe
If you’re looking for something that’s unpredictable in performance and well-worth a second glance, you’ll want to look to the Nike Men’s Lebron Soldier IX basketball shoe. Sleek and hard-hitting in design, you’ll have an array of color combinations to choose from, along with an attractive list of features. Features of the Lebron Soldier IX include the following:
- Mesh and rubber sole
- Flywire cables and mid-foot strap
- Hexagon pattern for traction
- Rubber pods for flexibility, motion range, and durability
Breakdown of Features
The above mentioned may have already caused you to impulse purchase, but let’s break down the features one by one, and how they can play into your game. The mesh material incorporation along with a rubber sole allows for comfort and durability, as well as flexibility. Beyond this, there are flywire cables and a mid-foot strap to ensure that you’ll receive optimal lateral support along with a lightweight shoe design. Beyond this, you’ll have rubber pods for the ultimate range of motion within a basketball shoe, as well as for durability. Lastly, you’ll see that this show features a hexagonal pattern for traction in multiple directions.
As we mentioned first, this shoe has a range of color options for you to choose from. The color options include both bold and daring colors, as well as neutral tones for those who like their game to show their brightness for them. From the hottest pink to blues and greens, you won’t be disappointed in the selection. Beyond this, you’ll enjoy how much flexibility and comfort you’ll receive with the lightweight flywire cable and mid-foot strap design. It’s also worth mentioning that the strap is adjustable to your foot, for a bonus of maximum, customized comfort.
You know the drill: any great product comes with its own set of disadvantages. While the range of sizes is wide, there aren’t any wide-width options available to accommodate. However, those who can fit into these shoes will find that they provide your foot with optimal playing conditions. Lastly, the shoe is not waterproof so you shouldn’t expect it to be in pristine condition and provide you with a completely dry foot during these conditions.
5) Adidas Performance Men’s Isolation 2 Wide Basketball Shoe
Wide foot friends rejoice! There’s finally a quality basketball shoe for those of wide-width feet, unlike many others on this list. Beyond this fact, there are an abundance of features that the Adidas Isolation 2 has, including the following:
- Coated leather, rubber sole
- Synthetic and leather mixed upper
- Perforated rear collar
- Torsion system
Breakdown of Features
Having a shoe made for wide-width, especially a quality athletic shoe, is something that dreams are made of. Before we take too much time talking about this feature, let’s talk about the quality mixed material upper that’s perfectly composed on this shoe. Having the mixed materials allows for a comfortable and strong shoe design. However, the perforated rear collar adds even more benefits, including breathability (ventilation) and maximum comfort. The torsion system included within the design of this shoe improves the integrity of stability of your midfoot. It’s important to not only look at the heels and toes of your foot, but the midfoot area for maximum stability.
Okay – we have to mention this one more time as an advantage: WIDE WIDTH, PEOPLE! It’s fantastic. Alongside this dream, you’ll receive textile lining, a quality upper for the flexibility and breathability for your foot, along with a quality appearance of your shoe. You won’t have to compromise to get an attractive or comfortable shoe ever again.
There are two disadvantages to this product, but neither of them affect the performance of the shoe. For those who don’t need a wide-width, you can look anywhere else on this list for the perfect and durable basketball shoe. However, those who are wide-width will find that the performance of this shoe is insanely good. Lastly, there isn’t a lot of color options, just a neutral black, white, and grey palette. Neither of the aforementioned play into the performance, just preferences on the player.
The Final Verdict
Now that you’re overwhelmed with some of the best outdoor basketball shoes, you may still want a helping hand in narrowing down to one. Thankfully, we can do that for you. The winner of our roundup is the Nike Lebron Soldier Men’s Basketball Shoe. The aforementioned has the best amount of support and weight for most positions on the basketball court, and is naturally comfortable in design. With an incredible amount of color options, you won’t be disappointed or feel buyer’s remorse when you snag up a pair of these.