Squash shoes are perhaps the most important part of a player’s attire, as they affect everything from comfort and style to safety and performance. The problem is many players won’t know exactly what constitutes a good squash shoe or which is best for their style of play.
That’s why we’re going to take a look at your options. We'll show you the choices you have, how they differ, and who each style is best suited for. That should give you everything you need to get the most out of your game.
Types Of Squash Shoes
Men’s squash shoes
Men’s squash shoes are usually the largest shoes on the market designed for squash. This is because their target audience is men, who generally have the largest feet. That said, they can technically be worn by anyone.
Women’s squash shoes
Women’s squash shoes are usually just a smaller alternative to the men’s version, although they may also feature more feminine designs, like details in softer colours, such as pink. They are specifically targeted at women but, again, can technically be worn by anyone.
Junior squash shoes
Junior squash shoes are often just a smaller version of the two previous options, aimed at children or young adults. However, they can also feature “fun” elements as well, including lights or pictures of popular children’s characters.
Things To Consider
How lightweight a squash shoe is will determine how easily you can move at high speeds. If your game relies primarily on speed and agility, it is a good idea to select an option that is as lightweight as possible.
A non-marking sole is essential to be allowed to play on many decent courts, so be sure to check this is a feature of your chosen shoe or you risked getting turned away.
The ventilation of a squash shoe dictates how much air can pass in or out of it. If you play long, intense games, or are prone to sweating, selecting a shoe with good ventilation is essential to stopping your feet from getting too hot, as well as keeping them fresh and pleasant smelling.
While performance and protection are the primary selling points of a squash shoe, you also want to make sure you get one that you find comfortable, otherwise it could potentially ruin your enjoyment of the game. This is especially true for anyone who plays long or frequent games.
This follows on directly from our previous two points. The more cushioning you have in a squash shoe, the greater its level of comfort, but the lower its level of ventilation. Make sure to select an option that best balances these issues, based on your own personal preferences.
The grip of a squash shoe will be designed specifically for the sport, with slight variations better suited for different styles. If you are a more advanced player who knows your own game, make sure to choose the shoe that best compliments it.
Some squash shoes will focus more on their ability to absorb impact than others. If you know you are on the heavier side or have a tendency to stomp your feet while playing, this is something you should seriously consider, in order to give you greater protection from injury.
Lateral support is designed to reduce the risk of injury the wearer faces from the movements involved in squash; however, it can also potentially limit your mobility. Decide which issue is more important and select the squash shoe that best matches your needs.
Material effects a vast number of things on a squash shoe, including appearance, breathability, comfort, durability and support. Make sure you select an option that gives you the combination of these that you require.
Considering they are available in many different colours and styles, be sure you select a squash shoe you’re comfortable and confident in, as confidence can have a huge effect on your performance.
Squash shoes vary from affordable to reasonably expensive. Make sure to set a clear budget from the start, so you don’t waste time analysing a shoe you can’t afford in the first place.
Squash Shoe Maintenance
The main thing you can do to maintain a squash shoe is keep it clean and fresh. This will stop them smelling or dropping dirt all over the court, which may lead to you being asked to leave. Giving them an occasional wash and using odour eaters should be all that’s needed to keep them clean and fresh.
It’s also worth noting that changing the laces when they start to wear out is important. If you don’t, they won’t give you enough support, which could result in a serious injury.