Are Volleyball Shoes Good For Pickleball – Choose the Right Shoes

Pickleball and volleyball are two distinct sports with different demands when it comes to footwear. So the question arises: are volleyball shoes good for pickleball? Wearing volleyball shoes for pickleball is generally not recommended when you are playing on hard surfaces, shoes can wear out quickly, and there is a risk of injury as well. 

Volleyball shoes are designed to meet the specific needs of volleyball players, while pickleball, although sharing similarities with tennis and badminton, has its own unique requirements.

Are Volleyball Shoes Good For Pickleball

Volleyball shoes are used for indoor courts whole pickleball shoes are used for both indoor and outdoor courts, supporting the lateral movements during the game. You can wear volleyball shoes to play pickleball shoes, but still, you must know what is the main difference between both shoes and why you should have separate shoes for each game.  Also, read the Can you Play Pickleball on a Tennis Court?

Anatomy of Volleyball Shoes: What Shoes are Good for Volleyball? 

Volleyball shoes are designed with specific features to accommodate the rapid lateral movements, quick pivots, and jumping that are required in volleyball. These features often include:

  • Gum Soles: Volleyball shoes typically feature gum rubber soles, which provide excellent grip on indoor courts. This gum sole is designed to minimize slippage and maximize traction on smooth surfaces.
  • Cushioning: Volleyball shoes offer cushioning and shock absorption to protect the feet and joints from the impact of jumping and landing. This is a key requirement in volleyball, where jumping is extremely frequent.
  • Low-Cut Design: Volleyball shoes often have a low-cut design, which provides agility and flexibility for lateral movements and quick changes of direction.
  • Breathability: Many volleyball shoes are designed with breathable materials to keep the feet cool during fast-paced, high-intensity play.

Aspects Of Pickleball: What Shoes Are Good For Pickleball?

Pickleball is a racket sport that combines elements of tennis, badminton, and table tennis and mostly played on outdoor courts. While it shares some similarities with these sports, it also has its distinct characteristics:

  • Court Surface: Pickleball is played on a variety of surfaces, including indoor courts, outdoor hard courts, and even on concrete surfaces. This diversity in playing conditions requires the kind of footwear that can adapt to various terrains.
  • Lateral Movements: Like volleyball, pickleball involves lateral movements and quick changes of direction, making agility an important factor in shoe choice.
  • Grip and Traction: Good traction is essential for pickleball players to move quickly and avoid slipping, especially when playing outdoors or on rough surfaces.
  • Cushioning: While pickleball doesn’t involve the same frequency of jumping and landing as volleyball, some level of cushioning is still important for comfort and shock absorption.

So, Can Volleyball Shoes Be Suitable for Pickleball?

Volleyball shoes can be used for pickleball, but they may not be specifically designed for the game. Volleyball shoes can wear out more quickly and can also result in foot injury. On the other hand, Pickleball shoes have features that cater to the sport’s unique movements, such as lateral stability and non-marking soles.

If you already have volleyball shoes, they can work for pickleball, but it might be more beneficial for you to invest in a pair of suitable pickleball shoes for better performance on the court. 

Volleyball shoes can be used for pickleball, but their suitability depends on several factors:

  • Court Type: If you mostly play pickleball on indoor courts with smooth surfaces, volleyball shoes with gum rubber soles can offer excellent grip and traction. However, for outdoor play or on rougher surfaces, you might find the grip less effective. The hard surface of the outdoor pickleball courts can also cause your volleyball shoes to wear out in no time. 
  • Versatility: If you’re a pickleball enthusiast who plays on various surfaces, it may be more practical to opt for a shoe designed for multi-court use, such as tennis shoes, which are often equipped with herringbone-patterned outsoles for better grip on different surfaces.
  • Cushioning: While pickleball involves less jumping than volleyball, some cushioning is beneficial for comfort and impact protection. If your volleyball shoes provide adequate cushioning, they can work for pickleball, but only on indoor courts. 

Considerations for Pickleball Players:

If you’re a dedicated pickleball player, it’s worth it if you explore specialized pickleball shoes. These shoes are designed to the sport’s specific demands, offering an optimal combination of grip, comfort, and durability across various court surfaces.


What shoes are ideal for pickleball? 

Shoes that are specially designed for playing pickleball both on indoor and outdoor courts are ideal for pickleball. 

Can volleyball shoes be worn on outdoor hard pickleball surfaces? 

No, volleyball shoes can not be worn on outdoor hard court surfaces due to their inability to provide enough traction. The shoes can wear out rather quickly, and there is a risk of the player injuring himself. 

Is it a good idea to wear volleyball shoes for pickleball? 

Volleyball shoes can be worn for pickleball games, but it is mostly not recommended. This is due to the fact that the kind of traction and grip that pickleball shoes are designed for, volleyball shoes might not be able to provide you that. 

Are there any drawbacks to using volleyball shoes for pickleball?

While volleyball shoes can be suitable for pickleball, they may lack some specific features tailored for pickleball, such as reinforced toe areas for dragging during serves and volleys. However, for casual or recreational play, volleyball shoes can still be a good option.


While volleyball shoes can be a suitable choice for pickleball, their effectiveness greatly depends on the playing conditions and individual preferences. If you mostly play pickleball on indoor courts and find your volleyball shoes comfortable and grippy, they can serve you well.

However, if you play on different surfaces, particularly outdoor courts or hard surfaces, then you might need to consider investing in pickleball-specific footwear. Ultimately, the best shoe for pickleball is one that provides the comfort and performance you need on the court.

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