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The Best Women’s Basketball Shoes

OlhaTsiplyar/Shutterstock.com
🕚 Updated September 2022

A good pair of basketball shoes is critical if you take your game seriously. They can provide proper traction so you can pivot and run the court and offer plenty of cushioning so that you land comfortably after your jump shot. Check out these women's basketball shoes we recommend.

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  Top Choice Best High-Tops Best Vintage Design Best for Budget Also Great
 
  Under Armour
Unisex-Adult Lockdown 5 Basketball Shoe
Reebok
Adult Resonator Mid Basketball Shoe for Men and Women
Nike
Women's Shoes Blazer Mid '77 Suede
Adidas
Women's Entrap Mid Basketball Shoe
Adidas
Women's Postmove Mid Basketball Shoe
 
Our SummaryPerformance shoes that prioritize agility and comfort.Basketball shoes that prioritize ankle stability but can also turn heads off the court.Style and function combine with this throwback style from Nike.Solid basketball shoes with ankle support that won't break the bank.Head up and down the court with a secure fit.
ProsUnisex sizing, enhanced breathability, plush sock liner, multiple colors, popular pick.Ankle support, wide color selection, most stylish, well-known brand.Enhanced tread for better traction, good ankle support, trusted brand.Affordable, ankle support, enhanced tread, popular brand.Ankle strap, ankle support, leather upper, reputable brand.
ConsCan run about one size too small.Shoes run small.Run a half-size small.Stiff leather upper might take longer to break in.Inconsistent fit throughout.
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The Best Women’s Basketball Shoes

Young athletic woman is training to play basketball on modern outdoor basketball court.
OlhaTsiplyar/Shutterstock.com

Buying Guide for Women’s Basketball Shoes

Young female basketball player sitting cross-legged on the outdoor court.
Oleg Mikhaylov/Shutterstock.com

Why buy women’s basketball shoes?

Whether you’re a competitive athlete or simply like to play the occasional pickup game, you need the right gear for the task at hand. Good basketball shoes can give you the support you need to stay comfortable while you’re playing. They can also provide proper cushioning to prevent discomfort if your game runs long. And, of course, you’ll want a pair of shoes that offers plenty of traction on whichever court you’re on.

What should you consider when shopping for women’s basketball shoes?

  • Fit: Since basketball games can last for an hour or more, you want a pair of shoes that fit well so that you aren’t in pain by the end of the game. They should hug your feet so that they’re not sliding around but still be breathable enough that the interior isn’t rubbing uncomfortably or pinching.
  • Breathability: Basketball is a full-body sport, which means you’ll very likely get hot and sweaty. So, look for shoes that feature breathable uppers, such as mesh ventilation or fabric material that offers better airflow than leather or faux leather materials.
  • Support: Whether you’re frequently jumping from the three-point line or need to quickly pivot to pass the ball, you want a pair of shoes that offers adequate support for how you play the game. This means that features such as supportive insoles that feature EVA foam or other materials are going to be critical. And consider whether you want a mid- or high-top shoe since this might provide more ankle support if you’re concerned about rolling your foot.
  • Tread: Similarly, you’ll want soles with grippy tread to ensure that you’re not slipping and sliding around, especially if you’re playing on an indoor court.

Do you have to buy basketball shoes to play the game?

If you’re just playing a casual pickup game, you might not need basketball shoes. Someone who only plays basketball occasionally may find that a simple pair of breathable athletic sneakers with good tread, breathability, and cushioning is sufficient. But for those who play basketball frequently or competitively, investing in dedicated, well-designed basketball sneakers is essential for better performance.

Our Picks for the Best Women’s Basketball Shoes

Top Choice

Under Armor Unisex Adult Lockdown basketball Shoe

Performance shoes that prioritize agility and comfort.

Pros: When you’re running up and down the court, you need shoes that let you stay light on your feet but don’t encourage slipping. These Under Armor sneakers are designed with a unisex fit and prioritize breathability. Between the mesh upper and built-in ventilation in the synthetic overlays, you don’t have to worry about your feet staying dry.

Cons: Under Armor tends to run about one size smaller than average. So, if you think these are the shoes of your basketball dreams, you’ll want to order up a size.

Bottom Line: Performance is the name of the game with these shoes designed to promote breathability. Just be aware that you might need to order a size up to get a comfortable fit.

 

Best High-Tops

Reebok Adult Resonator Mid Basketball Shoes

Basketball shoes that prioritize ankle stability but can also turn heads off the court.

Pros: When you’re constantly pivoting and jumping to make the shot, you want to be sure that your feet are properly supported, including your ankles. These Reebok basketball shoes provide extra stability around the ankle. You’ll get leather uppers with rubber soles and a wide choice of colors with these unisex shoes.

Cons: These shoes also seem to run a bit small. Additionally, some people mentioned that while the product description refers to leather uppers, what you actually get is synthetic.

Bottom Line: Those who prefer a bit more support in the ankles will like these high-top shoes. And the unisex fit means that it’s more universally functional.

 

Best Vintage Design

Nike Women's Blazer Mid '77 Suede Sneaker

Style and function combine with this throwback style from Nike.

Pros: Sometimes, you just want to go back to the heyday of basketball shoes. If that sounds familiar, this throwback pair of Blazer Mid ’77 sneakers from Nike is for you. Along with an enhanced tread sole, which translates to better traction, you’ll get ankle support and reinforced construction throughout.

Cons: As seems to be common with these basketball shoes, most complaints centered around the shoes being too tight. Recommendations ranged from sizing up a half to a full size for added comfort.

Bottom Line: Style and function combine to create shoes that will keep you on your toes but also turn heads. A reinforced tread gives you enhanced traction when you’re pivoting, while a mid-design means your ankle gets more support. But you might want to order up anywhere from a half to full size, so they fit properly.

 

Best for Budget

Adidas Women's Entrap Mid Basketball Shoe

Solid basketball shoes with ankle support that won't break the bank.

Pros: Let’s face it: while basketball is one of the more affordable games a person can play, the shoes can be expensive. This wallet-friendly option from Adidas is a good mid-priced pair of sneakers that offers the essentials of what you need—ankle support and enhanced tread. You’ll get a 100% leather upper and your choice of three colorways.

Cons: Many people found these shoes required more effort to break in. With stiffer leather being used for the upper, these may be a little uncomfortable for some people.

Bottom Line: When you’re looking for a solid women’s mid-court shoe that’s not ridiculously expensive, the options can be slim. Thankfully, this Adidas style fits that bill. Just be prepared to break them in.

 

Also Great

Adidas Women's Postmove Mid Basketball Shoe

Head up and down the court with a secure fit.

Pros: Never worry about sliding in these sneakers with Velcro straps for extra control. You’ll get a synthetic sole paired with a genuine leather upper. Also note that these are mid-cut shoes, so you’ll get better ankle support as well.

Cons: The biggest complaint we found with these shoes is that the fit was inconsistent. While many people mentioned that they were too tight in the toe box, others mentioned that the back felt loose.

Bottom Line: This is another classically inspired style that offers ankle stability. But an inconsistent fit throughout the shoe might be a problem for anyone spending significant time on their feet.

Final Thoughts

If you’re shopping for basketball shoes, don’t forget to prioritize performance, stability, and support throughout the ankle so you can stay on the court rather than on the sidelines.

Dorian Smith-Garcia Dorian Smith-Garcia
Dorian Smith-Garcia is a diverse writer across beauty, fashion, travel, parenting, consumer goods, and tech. You can also find her work on Inverse, Healthline Parenthood, MindBodyGreen, The Confused Millennial, XONecole, Glowsly, and The Drive. Read Full Bio »
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