7.24.19

Best Basketball Shoes for Volleyball

Volleyball is one of the most popular sports for girls across America, and in the past couple of years it has become increasingly popular among guys as well. Despite its popularity, there is a surprising lack of options when it comes to volleyball-specific footwear. Many of the major brands only put out one or two pairs of shoes per year in a limited number of colorways, which prevents players from expressing their style. This pushes many volleyball athletes to playing in basketball shoes. There are plenty of reasons for this. Since both sports are played on the same surface and feature similar movements (explosive jumps, quick cuts) there is crossover in many of the tech elements between basketball and volleyball shoes. The traction patterns are very comparable, there is an emphasis on support, and all the shoes are equipped with a cushioning system designed to protect the athletes from high-impact landings.

Nike Kyrie 5

Kyrie 5 Basketball Shoe for Volleyball

The Kyrie 5 is a popular shoe among volleyball players and it’s not hard to see why. The Kyrie is unique in that the outsole wraps up and around. It was designed this way to help Kyrie Irving attack from any angle, but it translates well to volleyball, too. Volleyball players are constantly leaning or stretching to reach balls which leads to them being off balance. The curvature of the outsole helps ensure they can still maintain their grip on the court. With volleyball being such a high-impact sport, cushioning is crucial to lessen to the strain these athletes put on their knees. That’s why the Kyrie 5 has Nike Zoom Air to help soften the pressure from each landing and keep players fresh all game. To help lock down and secure athlete’s feet there are flywire cables and an overlay that was inspired by the Venus flytrap. The fact that the Kyrie also has a mesh upper gives it excellent breathability and flexibility. There is also a wide array of flashy, interesting colorways, some of which draw on inspiration from past decades and “Have a Nike Day.”

adidas Harden 3

Harden 3 Basketball Shoe for Volleyball

The Harden 3 is one of the best basketball shoes available, and its best features are especially appealing to volleyball players. It’s super low cut which allows the athletes to wear ankle braces comfortably without creating a clunky fit. To really help ensure your foot has freedom of movement, designers put on a high heel collar to make sure your foot doesn’t feel constricted. What makes the Harden 3 really special is how they combine that comfort and freedom with support. They use an elastic strap to lock down the forefoot and a webbing system and synthetic overlay to create a setup to ensure that wherever your foot moves the shoe sticks with you. This is crucial for volleyball players especially at higher levels when the game really speeds up and your reactions need to be lightning quick. Another feature that separates the Harden from the other shoes on this list is that adidas’s Boost cushioning system runs the full length of the shoe. This gives you more protection and comfort from the pounding your knees and feet take during a volleyball match. There is also a wide array of unique colorways including one that features callouts of Harden’s journey to the league.

Nike Mamba Focus

Nike Mamba Focus Basketball Shoe for Volleyball

One of the lesser known basketball shoes has become popular among volleyball players. The Focus is one of Kobe’s signature shoes and has become popular among high school players. The Focus provides a ton of support thanks to an external TPU shank that provides torsional rigidity. This means that whenever you’re in awkward positions and off balance, the shoe won’t flex which helps prevent your ankles from turning or rolling. That strong base of stability will also help you maintain your balance better as you are reaching and lunging for balls. The traction pattern is a bit more modern on the Focus with a Mamba-inspired pattern that was designed for maximum grip when pushing back or backpedaling which is an even more common movement in volleyball than basketball. The Mamba Focus, like the Kyrie, features Nike Zoom Air in the forefoot to keep your feet feeling great.

Nike PG 3

Nike PG 3 Basketball Shoe for Volleyball

One of the newer signature shoes has really taken basketball by storm and has the potential to do the same for volleyball. Like many of the other shoes on this list the PG is a low top which allows players to fit ankle braces on a little easier. A big differentiating factor for the PG is the traction pattern which features dozens of tiny circles. It’s a storytelling element representing the craters on the moon which connect back to the NASA station in Paul George’s hometown of Palmdale. It does serve a practical purpose as it better supports multidirectional movement so you can push forward, backward, and sideways with confidence. The PG 3 is also one of the lightest shoes available because designers approached the shoe with one goal in mind, strip down the excess. They integrated the tongue into the collar to help reduce bulk and went with a mesh upper to keep the weight down. All this works to make sure you aren’t weighed down as you jump, set, and spike your way to victory.

As volleyball continues to grow in popularity more models and colorways will undoubtedly be designed. For now, though there are plenty of basketball shoes that will help you thrive on the court. You can check out eastbay.com for any other volleyball needs and find our list of the top volleyball gear here.

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