No matter your age, sport is a great way to get outdoors and have some fun.
However, every sport has its own requirements to be competitive.
Racquetball has many requirements, including different racquets and specific rules, but having the best racquetball shoes can make a big difference to performance on the court.
The best racquetball shoes are designed for various stages of the sport. Some have professional features, while others are affordable for beginners.
In this article, we look at five of the top options for men and women. Additionally, the buyer’s guide will provide you with the criterion needed to find the right shoes if these do not meet your needs.
Don’t have time to read? Here are some of the top shoes to choose for your racquetball adventure:
Outstanding grip, ergonomic fit and awesome comfort are the things that make ASICS Gel-Rocket 9 our choice as the best shoes for racquetball.
On budget? Look no further. These Mishansha shoes are the most affordable and is a perfect choice for racquetball.
In our opinion Mizuno Lightning Z3 is the best choice for women. Excellent fit, comfortable with amazing traction will enhance emotions from the game.
Before looking at the features, the top racquetball shoes can be daunting to find. So many options are available, making it hard for people to choose. Some stick to the top brands, but there are a few uncommon brands that also make a claim for top racquetball shoes.
5 Best Men’s Racquetball Shoes
ASICS Gel-Rocket 9 Men’s Volleyball Shoes (Best Choice)
The ASICS Gel-Rocket 9 Men’s Volleyball Shoes are man made from synthetic materials that mold around your feet. The shoes include Patented Trusstic Technology for structural integrity to keep the shoe consistent.
Asics are the pioneers of the Gel System, which makes an appearance in these shoes.
The forefoot and back foot gel provide comfort all round. While expensive, the Gel-Rocket 9 Men’s Shoes are versatile for use in almost any indoor sporting environment.
- Ergonomic fit
- Retains structural integrity
- Gum rubber outsole for traction
- Versatile for all indoor sports
ASICS Men’s Gel-Rocket 8 Volleyball Shoe (Best Value)
The ASICS Men’s Gel-Rocket 8 Volleyball Shoe is almost similar to the Gel-Rocket 9 when it comes to features. It is made the same way, but the gel is only available for the forefoot to add comfort. A gum rubber outer sole sticks to the surface of the court, improving movement and traction for all indoor sports.
These shoes are slightly more affordable than the Gel-Rocket 9 is.
However, it has some of the previous generation technology. They still offer a variety of features to offer you versatility when playing virtually any indoor sports.
- Uses the Gel Cushioning System
- Available in authentic colors
- Top tier traction
- Versatile shoe
- The fit is slightly tighter than the Gel-Rocket 9
Mishansha Men’s Court Squash Tennis Shoes (Most Affordable)
Synthetic leather combined with lightweight mesh for the upper, providing flexibility while keeping the ventilation at a premium.
The gum rubber sole will add the much-needed traction one needs.
What stands out about this shoe is the design.
It features a unique arch that can accommodate the feet of people with a high bridge. The shoes have a mid-cut design, offering effective lateral movement, but still adding protection for your lower joints.
- Lightweight and breathable
- Accommodates players with a high foot arch
- Available in bright colors
- Offers decent ankle protection on the court
- The toe box is not in proportion
- Not the most comfortable insole
Sonic 2000 are some of these comfortable with a removable PU insole for additional flexibility.
At less than 12-ounces, it is one of the lightest shoes on the list. Offering an amazing grip, Head Sonic 2000 will allow you to be the best version of yourself.
- Great ankle support
- Excellent grip
- Inner mesh may worn out quickly
- Not as breathable
The HEAD Men’s Grid 2.0 Indoor Court Shoes has a synthetic leather upper, with integrated mesh for breathability and comfort. The outer sole is non-marking to protect the court as you are playing.
The quality of the outer sole does not stop there, with a high abrasion count to provide additional traction and comfort. While these shoes are not as expensive as some of the other high-end brands, the colors you have to choose from are only two.
It is an excellent shoe for beginners and intermediate racquetball players.
- Non-marking gum rubber outer sole
- High abrasion count
- Flexible with an ergonomic fit
- Fit is quite narrow
- Only available in two colors
5 Best Racquetball Shoes for Women
Mizuno Women’s Wave Lightning Z3 Volleyball Shoe (Best Choice)
Much like its male counterpart, Mizuno Women’s Wave Lightning Z3 Volleyball Shoe is littered with great features for all indoor sports. It has a durable synthetic leather upper, with integrated mesh cushioning for better ventilation and breathability.
The Parallel Wave Plate works similarly to a shank would, providing structural integrity on slippery courses. However, the non-marking rubber outer sole will ensure one does not trip up.
Compared to the male version, there are a few more colors to choose from, and the price is still reasonable.
- Available in numerous colors
- Offers great structural integrity
- Reasonably priced
- No ankle protection
ASICS Women’s GEL-Rocket 6 Volleyball Shoe (Best Value)
The ASICS Women’s GEL-Rocket 6 Volleyball Shoe is the perfect shoe for players coming into the sport with existing foot issues. While it features a synthetic leather construction, it has a removable insole. The insole spot has the right size for accommodating orthotics or any custom type of insole you would prefer.
The gum rubber outsole combines with a gel in the front of the shoe for better shock absorption. However, the gel does tend to burst after many years of playing.
Fortunately, Asics has addressed this issue in many of the subsequent versions of this shoe.
- Works with an orthopedic insole
- Wide inner design
- Offers ankle support
- The gel might burst after a few years
It is made from durable synthetic leather, with a softer feel that molds around your feet. Breathability is at a premium with synthetic mesh forming some of the bonding parts between the leather.
Trusstic Technology and an upgraded gel system give the player years of comfort. It also allows the shoe to absorb most of the impact on the court.
The non-marking outer sole is perfect for traction and not damaging the court.
- Durable Gel System
- Non-Marking rubber outer sole
- Breathable construction
- Reasonably priced
- The fit is narrow
For female racquetball players, the Adidas Originals Women’s Ligra 6 Volleyball Shoe should work wonders to help improve their game and provide a comfortable feeling when playing.
The shoe features mesh for the majority of the construction. While it might not seem durable, a synthetic leather overlay adds to the durability and stability. These shoes are low-cut but had a higher arch, which might help to protect ankles.
- Top Reliable brand
- Versatile shoe
- Offers support in lateral movement
- Reasonably priced
- The insole is not removable
It is a little bit different from the Gel-Rocket Series with a more durable upper. The upper makes the shoe slightly heavier, but in turn will give you more stability for lateral movement.
GEL-1150V is the choice for the gel insert, but it protects the entire bottom part of the foot from impact. These shoes are available in a few unique colors that are sure to draw some attention.
They are a great alternative to the Gel-Rocket Series.
- Durable upper construction
- Available in unique colors
- Impact-resistant gel system
- Abrasion-resistant inner lining
- Heavier than competitors
Buying Guide: Choosing the Right Pair of Racquetball Shoes
While selecting shoes are easy for some, others like to have a deeper understanding of the features.
Here, you can find the guide that will go deeper into the fundamentals of racquetball shoes and how you should go about when selecting your favorite pair.
These features can be used as a criterion for selecting the best racquetball shoes.
What is Racquetball?
Racquetball was born in the 1950s after paddleball was the sport that everyone chose for a past time. The sport follows many of the same principles that squash and paddleball have, but a few slight differences.
Racquetball is played indoors, but modern racquetball has also been introduced to the outdoors.
It uses a set of lines on the main wall at the front, which the ball should cross when played. Points are scored when one player plays the ball into a section of the court where the other player cannot reach and make the shot.
The sport evolves each year with new equipment and specialized racquets making headway into the sport. Indoor and outdoor court surfaces tend to be similar, but with outdoor courts not regulated, one might find a couple of differences. It is important to understand all the rules before playing racquetball, as this can help out beginners.
What Physical Requirements Does Racquetball Have?
There are no requirements that are forced upon a player when they want to start playing racquetball. However, a certain level of fitness is what most doctors will recommend to players.
Racquetball is extremely fast-paced, and the different balls one finds on the market can also make the game faster or slow it down.
As a beginner, a slower racquetball with high visibility is a great way to get into the sport. The Propenn Green Racquetball is a perfect example of the racquetball you will be using to start with. It is also approved for use in tournaments.
However, you still need a decent amount of fitness and at least joint flexibility to play the game. Lateral movement at high speeds is very common and you might suddenly need to make directional changes.
Prospective players with heart conditions and medical history of things like asthma should consult a medical professional before playing.
Outdoor vs Indoor: What’s The Difference?
A common misconception is that racquetball is only played indoors.
While this was the case when the sport started, it has slowly evolved into a sport that can be played indoors and outdoors. However, there are a few differences one needs to be aware of, but this mostly pertains to the design of the court and not the equipment:
|Shoes and Balls||No Difference|
|Court||The outdoor racquetball courts are not regulated. Many of them have half-wall, while some even exclude the walls completely. The most common difference is the lack of a ceiling and the influence that weather conditions can have on the game. For the surface, one might find that it is and occasionally a little more rugged.||An indoor racquetball court has specific design factors. The court features long walls that stretch to the end and meets the back wall. A ceiling is at the top, which can be used for specific shots to help you win the game as well. However, the most important thing to keep in mind is that all indoor racquetball courts adhere to a specific set of rules.|
What to Look For in Racquetball Shoes
One of the most important features to consider is the traction that shoe offers.
The outer sole is responsible for traction and needs to be gum rubber. Since racquetball courts have a smooth surface, you need something sticky that helps to stick to the surface when moving around at top speeds, without potentially slipping.
Outdoor surfaces might have courts with a little more resistance to the surface.
The surface can be more rugged and require less traction or abrasions on the outer sole of your shoe. However, these courts are not regulated by international standards and should not be the main premise on which you base your decision for a racquetball shoe.
You might have seen by now that you will be moving around at a fast speed with your shoes.
Unfortunately, this also puts a lot of strain and tension on the shoe, which might lead to tears and damages. One of the important features is the construction of the outer materials, more specifically, what is used for the upper.
Synthetic leather is a common choice.
Compared to leather, it is lighter and more affordable. However, synthetic leather has more flexibility for players to work with. An ergonomic fit is important and can be provided by a decent synthetic overlay and integrated mesh for ventilation.
Linking to the durability, foot and ankle injuries are prevalent in a sport like racquetball. Fortunately, the right shoe can help players to prevent and completely avoid these injuries altogether. A low-cut shoe has movement benefits but will leave your ankles exposed. However, if the shoe has a slightly higher than average arch, you will find much more ankle support.
Gum rubber is the preferred choice for the outer sole of any indoor sports shoe.
The gum rubber not only adds more traction to the shoe, but it does not leave any marks on the court. Since these courts are fairly expensive to maintain, a non-marking gum rubber outer sole is often mandatory for playing in certain locations.
Fit and Size
It is extremely important to find a shoe that offers you the right fit when selecting racquetball shoes.
In many other sports, one can get away with an oversized shoe, but this can be dangerous and lead to injuries in a fast-paced sport like racquetball. You will need to put in the time to find a shoe that offers an ergonomic fit if possible.
One common trend is that most racquetball shoes have a narrow fit.
This is true, but since the outer materials are flexible, your feet will stretch out the synthetic leather. The shoe will offer a snug fit and provide support. However, finding a shoe for players with wide feet can be daunting, and you should consider a brand like HEAD.
Comfort and Breathability
Racquetball games can be short, but many of them are also extremely long.
As you become more advanced, you will find opponents that can match your rallies, which extends the time of the game and the time you spend on the shoes. If you will be spending so much time in the shoes, it is important to make sure they are comfortable.
The breathability will help with comfort, to provide a consistent flow of air through the shoe for your feet to cool down.
The one thing you need to look for if you want breathability is the integration of mesh. Mesh might not have the best overall durability, but it does provide ventilation and can wick away sweat.
Support and Stability
Much like you need ankle support, you will want to avoid any other foot injuries that are commonplace.
The inner sole can be one of your best friends in these situations, but unfortunately, not all shoes have removable insoles. If you find one that has a removable insole, you can add an orthopedic insole for more comfort and stability.
While these shoes rarely have a shank added, the design of the upper can give you an indication of the structural integrity. Players love to have a shoe that compacts the feet, making it easier to move around on the court. More synthetic leather can allow you to have this, but the trade-off might be a little bit of breathability.
A light shoe is a preferred choice for any racquetball player.
If you barely notice or feel the shoe, it helps keep you from feeling distracted by the weight. Additionally, a lighter shoe also helps to reduce the fatigue that could set in. Reduced fatigue can improve your stamina and help you outlast your opponent in a long game.
A Few Smaller Features Often Overlooked
All the features we mentioned above will form the backbone of your selection process. However, there are still a few smaller features that people often overlook. Most of these features directly pertain to comfort but can have a big effect on your game.
Here are a few additional features to look for if they fit in your budget:
- Inner Lining: The inner lining is often neglected for mesh, but the mesh cannot wick away all the moisture. Having a decent inner lining can keep your feet dry at all times. Additionally, it helps to prevent abrasions from the shoe, especially during the first couple of games. It is often referred to as the break-in period.
- Inner Sole Type: PU is the most common option for the inner sole because it is also one of the most affordable options. However, it does not always provide the best comfort. A custom memory foam inner sole could be your best option. However, EVA should also suffice.
- Aesthetic: The aesthetics are not as important as many of the other features, but you do want to look like a professional. Colorful colors are a new common trend that seems to be favored by top players.
- Shock-Absorption: Not all of these shoes have decent shock absorption, but a brand like Asics has made it part of their mission to make every sports shoe shock absorbing. If your shoe can absorb shocks, it reduces fatigue and prevents potential long-term injuries.
Keep in mind that all of these features will come to increase the price, but they can definitely add a little bit of edge to your shoe.
Your shoes are just as important as the gear you are using to play with, which means that you can spare a couple of extra bucks to find a shoe that is worth it in the long run.
Frequently Asked Questions
Racquetball can quickly go from being a hobby and become an addiction. However, a good addiction will keep you healthy and fit. The features and reviews should allow you to choose the right shoes with ease, but there are still a few questions making rounds.
Here are some of the most common questions answered:
Can you use tennis shoes for racquetball?
Racquetball shoes cannot be used on tennis courts or vice-versa. The court surfaces are different and the rubber used on tennis shoes can cause damage to the softer surface on a racquetball court.
Is racquetball a good workout?
Yes, a standard 150-pound person can burn up to 236 calories every 30-minutes of playing casual racquetball. The number of calories burned will increase with each pound your weight increases.
Which brands are the best for racquetball shoes?
You can’t simply use any sports brand to play racquetball. However, many brands specialize in creating shoes specifically for racquetball. Here is a list of the best brands that you need to consider:
Asics is the brand many people swear by and they are the only brand to insert the gel into the outer soles of the shoes.
Adidas has been around since the inception of racquetball. However, they have only lately jumped onto the bandwagon of making racquetball shoes to great effect.
HEAD specializes in creating shoes specifically for tennis and indoor sports. All of the technology in the shoes are dedicated to indoor sports performance.
If you don’t have a hobby or sport that you enjoy, racquetball provides you the opportunity with more than 36,000 professional courts around the world. These shoes are some of the best racquetball shoes on the market today, but they are not too expensive. Be sure to share some of your thoughts in the comment section and recommend some of your personal favorites.