Skateboarding is a thrilling sport perfect for adrenaline junkies. And as with any sport, skaters should always have safety equipment on hand. This means helmets, knee- and elbow-pads...and good-quality skateboarding shoes.
People tend to think that any kind of athletic shoes are fine for skateboarding, but this is totally wrong. Skateboarding shoes come with specific sets of needs for protection, grip, and comfort.
This doesn’t mean you need to buy the most expensive pair of shoes on the market! You just need to know what you’re looking for.
Here are the four things you need to ask yourself when buying a pair of cheap skateboarding shoes.
1. Do these shoes protect my feet?
The whole point of shoes is to protect our feet, no? Well, this goes double for skateboarding. When skateboarding, protection is key. Cheap skateboarding shoes should be able to endure a lot of weight, and be bendable enough to allow some movement. If the shoes are too flimsy or too stiff, the shoes won’t be able to do their job and keep you safe.
2. Are these shoes comfortable?
Like any other shoe, skateboarding shoes should feel cool and comfortable. When you’re wearing them, you should feel steady. They should feel good on your heels and the soles of your feet.
If you get cheap skateboarding shoes that are uncomfortable, you could end up with swelling and lesions on your feet--and if that happens, you won’t be able to skateboard for a good long while. Better to go for comfort!
3. Are these shoelaces strong enough?
A basic pair of shoelaces could easily break after an hour or two of expert skateboarding. Because of this, skateboarding shoelaces need to be tougher than your garden-variety laces.
When you’re checking out your shoes, give the laces a yank and make sure they feel sturdy. Do they feel totally immovable, or like you could tear them if you tried? If you’re particularly concerned, extra-durable skateboard laces are easy to find online.
4. Is this a decent grip?
The grip of a branded-yet-cheap skateboarding shoe should be able to easily grasp the skateboard. Most sports shoes, no matter how expensive, will cause skaters to slip or slide off a skateboard because of a total lack of grip on the sole.
When you look at the sole of the shoe, there should be patterns and ridges--anything smooth should be an immediate deal-breaker.
Whether you’re looking to cruise around your college campus or tear up your local skate park, these tips will help you save a pretty penny--without sacrificing quality or safety.
Skaters--did we miss anything? Let us know in the comments!
About the Author: John Dev is a professional blogger who loves to write about his passion for skateboarding and longboarding. A big fan of the sport, he is also an in-house blogger for SkatesUSA, and guest contributor to the Board Blazers blog. In his free time, he longboards on his Loaded Complete Tan Tien 2012 longboard.