Do Basketball Shoes Work for Volleyball?

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Both basketball and volleyball are mostly played indoors so they share the court most of the time in sports gyms. Because most basketball shoes are for hardwood floors, you are probably wondering: do basketball shoes work for volleyball?  

Do Basketball Shoes Work for Volleyball?

Yes, basketball shoes for volleyball. Wearing basketball shoes for volleyball works because some of the features of basketball shoes are also similar to that of volleyball shoes. That’s why many volleyball tournaments allow the use of basketball shoes. 

Though you might see a lot of volleyball players wearing signature basketball shoes, you don’t see many basketball players wearing volleyball shoes. This mainly because volleyball shoes aren’t fit for basketball games which involves a lot of physical contacts. 

Players wondering, do basketball shoes work for volleyball

On the other hand, you can easily wear a pair of bulky basketball shoes in volleyball and they would work just fine. Some volleyball players wear basketball shoes for better protection. Basketball shoes often use a  high cut which protects your ankles especially from jumping so high, that’s also a movement often done in Volleyball.  

How Are Volleyball and Basketball Shoes Different?

Both volleyball and basketball use the same court involves lateral movement, and require jumping abilities. However, they have a lot of differences. 

There is a lot of versatility when it comes to basketball shoes. They cater to the different positions in basketball that require different skill sets. There are:

Volleyball shoes are more lightweight to reduce weight when jumping. Because of that, they sacrifice a bit of protection for better performance. This explains why some volleyball players like to wear basketball shoes for better protection. 

What Shoes Should You Wear for Volleyball?

It all comes down to your preference. Go for the shoes that make you feel comfortable and confident on the court. Whether it’s basketball or volleyball shoes does not matter. However, you should take into consideration these features and what you need the most.

Players attempting to block a ball
  • Jumping: the shoes should have features that improve your jumping ability or aid with your jumping. Features like Adidas’ bounce technology and Nike’s air max technology help with jumping.
  • Impact Cushioning: the shoes should have ample protection especially if you jump a lot. This puts a lot of strain in your feet and you need shoes that help absorb the impact from landing.
  • Traction: volleyball isn’t only about jumping, you also need to do lateral movements. That’s why shoes with great traction will help with moving in quick directional changes especially if you are chasing after the volleyball.
  • Comfort: the shoes should be comfortable and cool to wear. You don’t want sweat on your feet. It affects your performance on the court.

What Shoes Should You Wear for Volleyball?

WearableNot Wearable
Basketball shoesSoccer cleats
Badminton shoesSneakers with bad outsoles
Volleyball shoesShoes that are too heavy

Either basketball or volleyball shoes are fine. You can even wear badminton shoes as long as you are comfortable with it. However, if you are planning to buy one to use for volleyball, it’s better to buy shoes designed for the sport. 

If you have spare basketball shoes at home, then you should test it out when you play volleyball. Volleyball shoes can be expensive so if you are not that serious in playing volleyball, you should be fine with basketball shoes. 

Make sure they fit you and try jumping a couple of times to get a feel of the shoes. You don’t want it to feel uncomfortable during a game. Make sure that the cushioning is enough to keep you protected from landing. 

What Are the Lightest Basketball Shoes?

Weighing in at 10.3 oz, the Kobe AD NXT 360 is the lightest basketball shoes. The shoes feature 360-degree Flyknit technology on the upper. 

Volleyball players lined up

A lot of volleyball players like wearing these because they’re so light and flexible while still being durable. The inside is breathable and provides enough protection from landing on a jump. The shoes are also great for lateral movement because of the traction and how lightweight they are. 

Another great thing about these shoes is that they almost wrap up your foot. You would feel like you weren’t wearing anything. 

Are Kobes Good for Volleyball?

Most Kobe signature basketball shoes do well in volleyball. While most Kobe basketball shoes are lightweight, they also give you enough comfort and protection to match Kobe’s explosiveness on the court.

Kobe shoes are lightweight, have excellent traction, and have jumping features that most volleyball players would want on their shoes. If you have Kobe basketball shoes at home, you could wear it in one of your volleyball games. 

Although you can wear other basketball shoes for volleyball, Kobe shoes are just better. It feels like they were designed for volleyball even though they were for a professional basketball player. 

Related Questions

Here are some frequently asked questions about basketball shoes for volleyball.

What Should You Not Wear for Volleyball?

When it comes to shoes and volleyball, you should never wear things that are slightly uncomfortable for you. Although it might cause just a little inconvenience, it can turn into bigger problems over time.

Can You Use Kyries for Volleyball?

Yes, Nike Kyries 5s are a good option for volleyball. They are comfortable, have great shock absorption, and protect your feet. This is one of the most convenient shoes to get if you play both basketball and volleyball.

Can You Wear Normal Sneakers for Volleyball?

Yes, however, they might not be as good as the others. Therefore, you might have a disadvantage inside the court. Normal sneakers do not have outsoles with the same traction as volleyball or basketball shoes, so your mobility will be affected.


Wearing basketball shoes for volleyball can work and quite good at it too. As long as it feels comfortable wearing in actual volleyball games, there should be no problem with it. Some volleyball players even wear basketball shoes. 

Tim Frechette is an avid athlete, having played sports like soccer and basketball his entire life. He brings a wealth of athletic knowledge to his writing.