How Should Volleyball Shoes Fit?

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Volleyball shoes make up a part of the essential things for volleyball. That’s why you need to make sure that your volleyball shoes are perfect for you. All volleyball players want their volleyball shoes to feel comfortable on their feet. In this article, we’ll answer the question, how should volleyball shoes fit?

How Should Volleyball Shoes Fit?

Volleyball shoes should feel comfortable for the players wearing them. You should feel that the volleyball shoes move with your feet. The volleyball shoes should fit snug on your feet with a little bit of space on your toes.  

Some volleyball shoes like Adidas tend to run big so you have to sometimes go down half a size to fit your size. If you plan to buy volleyball shoes online, you should check first the sizing of the volleyball shoes by checking their sizing chart. 

Volleyball shoes in varying sizes and fit

Fit plays a huge role in how well you play with your volleyball shoes. You don’t want your volleyball shoes to fly off because they’re too big for you or too small for you that it becomes painful to run.  

How to Know if the Volleyball Shoes are the Right Fit?

Fits RightDoesn’t Fit Right
It fits your feet correctlyThey are too tight or too loose
There’s enough space for your toes to wiggleYou feel slight discomfort when jumping or running
There is enough ankle supportBending on the ball of your feet feels uncomfortable

There are signs that tell you that your volleyball shoes make the right fit for you. It should make picking the right volleyball shoes a lot easier for you. 

  • Volleyball shoes should fit comfortably snug yet don’t feel too tight. Have around ¼ to ½ inch of space.
  • The heel should be able to move a bit yet it should not cause slipping on your part.
  • There should be enough ankle support to hold your feet in place. You can choose to add an ankle brace for additional support.
  • You shouldn’t feel any discomfort even if you are standing still, walking, running, jumping, or laterally moving.
  • Bending on the ball of your foot should feel natural and comfortable.

If your volleyball shoes fit the description, then you have one that fits you perfectly. Don’t ever ignore slight discomfort when you wear your volleyball shoes. It might mean it’s not the right fit for you and it could lead to a foot injury. 

How To Choose Volleyball Shoes

Aside from fit, there are other aspects that make volleyball shoes great. This should also be on top of your list if you are looking to buy volleyball shoes. A lot of volleyball players like adding more traction to their shoes to prevent slipping on the court.


The outsoles of volleyball shoes provide superior traction unlike other athletic shoes when used on hardcourt. Hardcourts tend to get slippery and gum rubber grips hardcourt really well. 

Gum rubber outsoles should be fairly soft and slightly flexible to provide a good grip on the hardcourt. The traction pattern should also contain enough tread and flex grooves that help you to curl onto the ball of your foot naturally.  

Volleyball player standing beside the net while holding the ball


Volleyball involves a lot of jumping that’s why your feet need proper cushioning if you don’t want your feet to tire out or hurt. Landing after jumping up high causes a good amount of shock to generate. This can build up on your feet and it’s not good for your ankles and ligaments. 

Cushioning aims to minimize the shock of your feet from jumping by absorbing some of the impacts. You usually find most volleyball shoes cushioning at the heel/forefoot and at the midsole/insole because they provide the best protection.

Cushioning also adds comfort to your feet as you play volleyball for longer hours. No other athletic shoes have as much cushioning as volleyball shoes do. 


Support also plays a huge role in volleyball shoes. Aside from jumping, volleyball also uses a lot of side to side movement. This makes lateral and ankle support extremely important for volleyball shoes. 

Side to side movements put a lot of strain on your ankles. If improperly done, you can end up with a sprained ankle.  

The midsole makes up the central core of your volleyball shoes’ support. The midsole plays a large part in supporting the ball of your foot. It should be durable yet flexible enough that your feet don’t get locked into a fixed position. 


Most volleyball shoes tend to go lightweight so that players can have more quickness on the volleyball court. Women’s volleyball shoes typically weigh around 9 to 11 ounces. Men’s volleyball shoes weigh around 11 to 15 ounces.

Most volleyball shoes use synthetic materials and mesh because of their lightweight and breathable properties. Make sure you pick out the best quality materials for your volleyball shoes. 

The quality of your volleyball shoes depends on who makes them. Mizuno and Asics produce some of the top volleyball shoes you can use on the court. 

Ongoing volleyball game


You don’t want volleyball shoes that won’t last you for a long time. Your volleyball shoes should have protection in the right places so that it won’t wear out easily. The upper of your volleyball shoe should be tough. You should not use your gum rubber outsole on a rough surface so it won’t easily lose traction. 

Volleyball shoes usually last one full season of use if you play with it at least 4 to 5 times a week. If you give additional care, it may even last you for more than a season. If you play casually then it could last you for 2 to 3 seasons. 

Your volleyball shoes only lose traction or it’s support and cushioning. It doesn’t mean it’s no longer usable. You can just use them as casual wear and not use them to play volleyball.

Related Questions

Here are some frequently asked questions about how volleyball shoes should fit.

Do You Have to Break in Volleyball Shoes?

Yes, you need to break in volleyball shoes so they fit you more comfortably. This usually happens over the course of one or two weeks of constant use. It is important to remember that you need to wear them regularly for them to break in.

How Often Should You Replace Volleyball Shoes?

It depends on how much use you give them, and how good the quality is. If you have low-quality shoes, they might not last longer than a year of constant use. On the other hand, if the shoes are top-quality, they might last more than two years of regular use.

Should I Size Up or Down for Volleyball Shoes?

This is determined by the brand and quality of the volleyball shoes in question. Adidas volleyball shoes, for instance, usually run big. Nike on the other hand generally stays true to size. Therefore, you should consider that when picking a pair.

Also, remember that thick socks can affect how a shoe fits you. So, if you are going to choose a pair of shoes, wear the same kind of socks you would wear to play volleyball.


Volleyball shoes have different fit in them. Some run big, some run small, and others run true to size. You should do your work and see how specific volleyball shoes fit. Make sure to take into consideration socks and ankle braces. The perfect fit makes you comfortable and perform better on the court.

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.