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If you are looking for the best basketball shoes for jumping, your search has officially come to an end. This guide will give you everything you need to know. I get it, landing the best can be a hassle, that’s why I’ve made it easier.
- Our Top Basketball Shoes For Jumping
- What to Look for When Buying Basketball Shoes for Jumping
- Related Questions
Our Top Basketball Shoes For Jumping
To settle on the top three basketball shoes for jumping, I did plenty of research, thorough testing, and reading reviews. Towards the end of this guide, I will also talk about the key features to consider when buying a pair.
Nike Lebron Soldier XIV
My top choice is this iconic pair from the greatest of all times LeBron James’ signature line. Nike Lebron Soldier XIV is an aftercomer of the popular footwear debuted in 2020. It is meant for speed, agility, convenience, and durability. The shoes are as stylish as they get.
They boast of the coveted Zoom Air Unit in the midsole. The technology uses pressurized air and tightly stretched fibers to absorb impact and then snap back. This is for fast movement and reduced stress on muscles, joints, and tendons. This makes the player feel superb return energy with every step they take.
The pair has a rubber outsole with the advanced herringbone traction technology. As a result, whether the player jumps, cuts, and makes quick movements according to the play, they have a powerful grip. Additionally, dunkers experience better on-the-ground feel.
Lebron Soldier 14 has an impeccable lockdown system that prevents slippages. The combination of a high top with a laceless closure gives maximum lockdown for the entire foot. This is necessary for injury prevention during high impact landings.
The riptop upper stretches in target areas for a lock-in feel. Moreover, it has a flexible inner sleeve that allows the collar to expand for easy wearing and removal. On top of everything, its fashion-forward design allows you to wear it either on the court or on the streets.
- Zoom Air unit in the midsole foam
- Ripstop upper
- Rubber outsole with herringbone traction
- Laceless closure system
- Flexible inner sleeve
What I Like
- Strong impact protection
- Remarkably cushioned
- Strong grip
- Excellent ankle support
- Awesome foot lockdown
- Easy to wear
- Very comfortable and supportive
What I Don’t Like
- Lacks breathability
- Straps need a little getting used to
- Nike’s FastFit technology removes traditional lacing and uses a pull-and-release strap system for...
- Zoom Air cushioning in the heel provides a bouncy and springy sensation with every step and jump.
- A lightweight textile material provides breathability with every move. Stretchy fabric over the...
Adidas Originals Men’s Pro Bounce
Adidas Pro Bounce 2019 is a great choice if you’re looking for high performance and comfortability.
As the name can tell, these kicks feature bounce cushioning technology. This technology uses TPU compression to bring about the energy-returning effect. This is simply because, when TPU cells are compressed, they bounce back. Ultimately, it provides enhanced flexibility and comfort.
The basketball shoes have a rubber outsole with spiral-like design traction. It provides multidirectional traction to bring about a strong grip during hard landings after a player dunks. This also makes it very durable.
The mesh upper is made of Forgefiber which features heat pressed, TPU-coated fibers. They go stitched in to provide targeted support and lightweight durability. Apart from that, they make the pair breathable. This is very important, especially when a game goes on for longer hours.
The cable lacing system has webbing eyelets. These are Geofit constructed for anatomic fit and comfort. They also give the shoe an adorable silhouette. The shaft measures are approximately mid-top from the arch. Any all-rounded player would love it.
In matters of style, its neat design makes it versatile. This means it will work just as good off the court for a simple day out with your favorite jeans. Adidas Pro Bounce does not require break-in time and in fact, the base offers 2 extra inches in height.
- 100% textile
- Bounce cushioning
- Rubber outsole
- Mesh upper
- Cable lacing system
- Regular fit high top
- Good traction
- Padded collar
What I Like
- Top-notch impact absorption
- Very comfortable and well-cushioned
- Lightweight and breathable
- Reliable grip
What I Don’t Like
- Poor ankle support
- Responsive adaptive feel
- Banking barrier for lateral stability
- Textile upper with molded padded ankle collar
Adidas Crazy Explosives
If both Adidas Pro Bounce and Nike Lebron Soldiers not quite what you had in mind, here is your holy grail. Meant for high performance and comfortability, Adidas Crazy Explosives serve their purpose perfectly. For one, the shoelace system is very impressive and it relieves your feet.
The pair boast of full-length boost cushioning responsive to each step a player makes and even better when jumping. Furthermore, these shores are astounding shock absorbers. This provides strong protection for your feet during hard landings.
That aside, they have a thick, sturdy rubber outsole with Boost Technology that offers excellent traction. In addition to being very durable, these come in several designs, colors, and thickness levels.
The midsole is a thin layer of tinted TPU wrap designed not to overshadow the upper or outsole. The textile and synthetic upper with mesh make the pair very supportive. This sneaker has a unique anatomical lace system that contains the entire foot.
It has the Achilles arch cushioning for your heel. Moreover, laces go all the way up the ankles and the tongue consists of mesh too. This provides confounding support to the entire foot. The shoe’s entire design makes it very durable.
You can wear these kicks both on the court and on the streets. No matter how rough terrain can get or how bad the weather is, this pair can withstand it.
- Tinted TPU wrap over boost midsole
- Rubber sole with excellent traction
- Textile and synthetic mesh upper
- The unique anatomical lace system
- Achilles arch cushioning
- Comfortable textile lining
- Relatively big mesh tongue
What I Like
- Exemplary cushioning
- Amazing grip
- Very supportive and protective
- Extremely comfortable
- Lightweight and stylish
- Highly durable
- Perfect foot lockdown
What I Don’t Like
- Not very flexible and non-breathable
- Eyelets break easily
- adidas upper wraps the foot in adaptive support and ultralight comfort; Forged TPU construction adds...
- boost is our most responsive cushioning ever: The more energy you give the more you get
- Anatomical lace system wraps the entire foot and relieves pressure
Nike KD 14
The Nike KD 14 is a model series of Kevin Durant Signature shoes and has been widely popular as an all-rounder basketball shoe.
When it comes to jumping, it has a full-length Zoom Air strobel and a Cushlon midsole. This helps with getting extra bounce while having a feature that cushions your landing. The Zoom Air also makes your movement feel slappy instead of sluggish.
When it comes to traction, the KD 14 is excellent. They work really well in both indoor and outdoor courts. The grip of the outsole is consistent whatever court you play, so you may consider this your go to reliable shoe wear if you’re unsure what court condition you’re gonna play.
The materials are great and are comfortable to your feet. The break-in time is fast and you’ll feel the shape conform to your feet in 1 or 2 games. It feels durable and are comfortable to wear for outdoor games.
The KD 14 fit snug so going your size won’t pose much problem. However, I recommend getting a half size up to give your feet some breathing room and in case you have wider feet.
Overall, the full-length Zoom Air unit along with the cushion designing makes the KD 14 great for jumping in basketball. All other features also make this an all-rounder basketball shoe that will fit your needs.
- Full-length Zoom Air strobel
- Cushion foam
- Insole is the same with the Kobe 6 and KD 13
- Traction pattern fit for outdoor use
What I Like
- Runs true to size
- Ankle support is great
- Excellent cushion and feel
- Gives extra bounce thanks to the Zoom Air unit
- Locks your feet down thanks to the strap
What I Don’t Like
- Needs to break-in and materials are stiff on first use
- You need to wipe the outsoles to maintain traction
- Can become hot on your feet
Adidas Dame 7
Although Damian Lillard is known for his long distance 3 point shooting, and yet his signature basketball shoes, the Dame 7 is also good for jumping. The adidas Dame basketball shoes series have produced some popular basketball shoes like the Dame 5. Although the Dame 6 was a downgrade from its predecessor, adidas made a comeback with the Dame 7.
The Dame 7 is one of the most comfortable shoes in this list that also helps you with jumping. These shoes have excellent cushion along with impact protection to make sure you land safely. Since Dame is known as a scoring guard, it’s not surprising that the shoes favor security and comfort to balance out Dame’s aggressiveness on the court.
Although the traction is great, I wouldn’t recommend using it on outdoor courts. It feels kind of a letdown from the excellent and durable traction design from the Dame 5 which they didn’t carry over to the Dame 7.
Overall, this is one of the best shoes you can have if you want safety and comfort for jumping. It’s great for guards who like to attack the paint.
- Ultra-lightweight cushioning
- Durable rubber outsole although I won’t recommend using outdoors
- Soft leather material makes it comfortable
- Soft ankle padding for preventing ankle injuries
What I Like
- One of the better breathable and comfortable shoes on the list
- Great shoe option for scoring guards
- Lightweight yet durable design
- Cushions and absorbs impact from landing
What I Don’t Like
- The shoes run big so get one or half size down
- Requires more time for breaking-in
What to Look for When Buying Basketball Shoes for Jumping
Jumping is a high-impact activity. This means the joints are put under a lot of pressure, especially during a hard landing. You need to get a basketball shoe that effectively protects and supports your feet. Above all, the basketball shoe should be able to stand the force. Other important factors include:
|Cushioning||Provides shock absorption, which prevents joint injuries|
|Support and traction||Improves stability, mobility, and prevents injuries|
|Lightweight||Reduces the energy it takes for you to jump|
|Material flexibility||Improves mobility and prevents injuries|
One recommended way to protect your feet is by getting a well-cushioned shoe. Midsoles, insoles, and liners act as shock absorbers. When your feet hit the court, they dissipate the force of impact. The trick lies in the technology used.
Among the leading techniques is air cushioning which lets the wearer walk on air. You can see this with Nike shoes like Lebron Soldiers and Nike Air. A close second is the Adidas boost foam, seen in the brand’s shoes. The latter uses a TPU compression mechanism.
When it comes to dunking, you do not need a shoe with ankle support only. However, they should support the entire foot. For this reason, I prefer high tops or mid-tops with padded collars. Shoes with either tend to protect your feet during hard landings.
In this guide, I have mainly discussed mid-top basketball shoes. That’s an indicator that most basketball shoes used for jumping should follow suit. If you find high-tops bulky, mid-tops are your next option.
I can not stress this enough, traction is everything. To achieve this in basketball shoes, the soles feature traction patterns in their design. They vary from spiral patterns to the advanced herringbone traction ones. While all serve the same function, others are more effective.
These traction patterns also prevent dirt from adhering to the outsole. By the end of the day, you should go for shoes with enough grip even if you’re just starting.
Picture this: You are jumping then one of your shoe drops. You would never want that, especially in a crowd.
This is where the fit comes in, by wearing a fitting shoe, you enjoy the maximum privileges a pair has.
The right fit also ensures your feet get enough support which, in turn, improves stability. This increases your chances of landing back safely after a high jump.
Quality basketball shoes should be able to withstand high impact activities on the court.
Different brands make various types of shoes with different specifications. Some are better for speed, others comfort, and the like.
The basic factor among all of them should be durability. The materials used are the best indicators of this. Leather uppers and thick rubber soles are highly ranked.
While this should not be a major determinant, you can’t completely ignore it. Major brands collaborate with famous athletes to make signature footwear. They also offer competitive designs with brilliant color choices to choose from.
After looking at the most important aspects, choose basketball that shows your personality. For instance, channel the fierce dunker in you by donning one of James Lebron’s signature lines.
Here are some frequently asked questions about the best basketball shoes for jumping.
Are There Shoes That Help You Jump Higher?
Yes, they are called plyometric shoes. They are designed to make you jump at least 5 inches higher. However, these kinds of shoes are banned from the NBA and other professional tournaments. This is because these shoes provide an unfair advantage over other players.
When it comes to unbanned shoes, while they can help you jump higher, the difference is not that noticeable. These shoes focus more on shock absorption and support so you don’t get injuries after jumping.
Are Lighter Shoes Better for Jumping?
Yes. It is proven that lightweight shoes improve jumping and sprinting. However, the improvement in the vertical jump is less than two percent. So, while it can be beneficial, it isn’t too noticeable. On the other hand, it takes less energy to jump while wearing lighter shoes, leading to better performances.
Are High-Top Basketball Shoes Better for Jumping?
No, as high-top basketball shoes are heavier. However, they do provide more comfort and ankle support than low-top shoes. Therefore, it is up to your preferences and needs. For instance, if you wish for stable shoes that prevent ankle injuries, you can pick high-tops.
Did you love reading about the best basketball shoes for jumping? I hope you found it helpful too. Carefully consider each option and then choose the best for you. Don’t forget to also look at factors like style.