In another blog post, I talked about common basketball injuries and how the biomechanics of the foot is a large contributing factor to obtaining an injury. Let’s do a brief recap: flat feet can cause over-pronation, which leads to instability in the ankles, tightness of the Achilles tendon, and rotation of the knees. This will increase your likelihood of injury. Orthotics are only one part of the equation. You have to make sure that you are in the proper shoes when playing basketball. So, what are the qualities in a basketball shoe you should look for?
There are three main qualities you should look for when choosing basketball shoes: support, traction, and comfort.
You, of course, want to buy a shoe that is sturdy to support your feet during gameplay. The shoe shouldn’t be super flexible.
The other thing to consider is whether you want a high-top, mid-top, or low-top shoe. This determines how much ankle support the shoe is going to provide.
High-top shoes are going to provide the most ankle support. This shoe is great for people with very unstable ankles and those that are prone to ankle sprains. However, these shoes are heavier than the other options. Depending on what position you play, you must decide if the maximum ankle support is worth slightly slowing your speed on the court.
Mid-tops offer some ankle support, but less than the high-tops shoes. These shoes are more flexible and lighter, so they won’t impact your speed as much.
Low-tops offer almost no ankle support. What these shoes lack in support is made up for in the speed they can provide. These shoes are ideal for players who need to be quick on the court, but be wary if you are prone to ankle sprains when wearing these shoes.
If you need a low-top shoe but still want to have some ankle support, you can wear an ankle brace. The braces we offer athletes are very sleek and will easily fit into any shoe you wear. You can get custom-made braces or pre-fabricated braces. To discuss which bracing options would be best for you, please call the office at or schedule an appointment online.
A shoe’s traction is found in the outsole. Basketball courts are slick, so you want to make sure you select a shoe that has plenty of grip. The last thing you want to do is slip while trying to pivot.
The last thing you want to consider is comfort. How much cushion does the shoe have? You want to make sure that there is enough cushion along the midsole of the shoe to absorb the shock of running across a basketball court while also making sure the material is breathable.
It can be challenging to strike the right balance of all these elements when choosing the right basketball shoe for you. Check out this guide for some great shoe options. It has some of the best basketball shoes from each brand including Nike and Jordan. All of these shoes have my seal of approval!
As always, if you have any questions or concerned you might have an injury, please call the office at or schedule an appointment online.