Best Wrestling Shoes

To write this article I spoke with coaches, wrestlers, and even some champions to help understand what features they look for to decide if something is a high-quality wrestling shoe. I've pulled that list of recommendations together to find the best wrestling shoes on the market. Make sure you read this to avoid getting ripped off and buying some expensive wrestling shoes that the champions don't use.

Choosing the right wrestling shoes can make a big difference in your performance on the mat. With so many different styles and features to consider, it can be difficult to know which shoe is the right fit for you. That's why it's important to do your research before making a purchase. In this blog, we will provide you with the information you need to choose the best wrestling shoes for your needs. We'll cover the most important factors to consider, such as fit, ankle support, traction, flexibility, breathability, weight, durability, and price. By reading this blog, you'll be able to make an informed decision and find the most perfect pair of wrestling shoes to help you perform at your best.

Best

#1 Editors Choice

Asics Aggressors 5

Asics Aggressors 5 Wrestling Shoe

The AGGRESSOR™ 5 wrestling shoes by ASICS is an exceptional addition to their wrestling range, offering both comfort and performance for wrestlers of all levels.

#2 Overall

Nike Inflict III

Nike Inflict III Wrestling Shoe

The Nike Inflict III wrestling shoes is our second choice. With a breathable mesh material, lightweight, and form-fitting feel this is a great pick.

#3 Overall

Combat Speeds

Combat Speed 5

The Combat Speed 5 wrestling shoes is lightweight with a sock like fit. The big plus for this shoe is the foot support.

#1. Asics Aggressors

Asics Aggressors 5

The Aggressor 5 wrestling shoes by Asics is an exception wrestling shoe and in my opinion the best bang for your buck available on the market. 

The AGGRESSOR™ 5 wrestling shoes is designed with a comfortable upper made of ecsaine material, providing a soft and breathable feel for your feet. To maintain stability during swift movements on the mat, the shoe features flexible supportive reinforcements on the sides. The outsole of the shoe is designed to provide targeted traction, increasing your grip on the mat and giving you the confidence to perform at your best. Overall, the AGGRESSOR™ 5 wrestling shoes are a reliable and comfortable option for wrestlers looking to elevate their performance.

Features:

  • Ecsaine material on the upper for a softer, more comfortable feel
  • Breathable and lightweight design to keep your feet cool and dry
  • Supportive reinforcements on the sides to maintain stability
  • Flexible panels that move naturally with your foot
  • Targeted traction outsole for increased grip on the mat
  • Weight: 8.6 oz.

Sizing:

The ASICS AGGRESSOR™ 5 wrestling shoes run a bit small but so do most Asics wrestling shoes in general.

Pros

  • Durable, lasting most wrestlers their entire careers
  • Lightweight at only 8.6 oz
  • Great traction on the outsole
  • Highly breathable allowing your feet to cool preventing athletes foot
  • Good support

Cons

  • Can be a bit more expensive
  • Can be narrow for those with wide feet
  • Can run a bit small

#2. Nike Inflict III

Nike Inflict III Wrestling Shoe

The Nike Inflict III is a great choice for wrestling shoes with top many of the best in class features to their shoes.

The Nike Inflict III is a lightweight and well-fitted grappling shoe with a breathable mesh upper that offers maximum ventilation and quick drying. The midsole is designed to provide superior traction and grip on the mat, while the split gum rubber outsole offers flexibility and grip in all directions, allowing for swift movements and changes in direction.

The shoe's forefoot is designed to fit snugly around the toebox, and the velcro-secured lace cover strap ensures that the laces remain securely fastened during the match. With a weight of just 8.7 ounces, the Nike Inflict III is comfortable to wear for long periods, making it an excellent choice for wrestlers who prioritize comfort and performance.

Features:

  • Breathable and form-fitting mesh upper for ventilation and fast drying
  • Full-length lasted midsole to keep your feet low to the ground and maintain great traction with the mat
  • Split gum rubber outsole provides flexibility and grip in all directions
  • The forefoot is designed to wrap nicely around the toebox and keep your feet snug and comfortable
  • Built-in velcro-secured lace cover strap
  • Weight: 8.7 oz.

Sizing:

The Nike Inflict III wrestling shoe runs small compared to other wrestling shoes and most street shoes, so it is recommended to go up a half size to a full size larger than your normal size.

Pros

  • Durability of this shoe is solid and should last several seasons
  • Lightweight at only 8.7 oz
  • Great flexibility once the shoe is broken in
  • Split gum rubber sole give fantastic grip & traction

Cons

  • These shoes can be a bit on the pricy side so it's up to you weather the pros are worth the price tag
  • Can take a bit to break in the shoe

#3. Combat Speeds

Combat Speed 5

The Combat Speed 5 lives up to their name in speed. They are the lightest shoes we reviewed on this whole list. I really like them and think they are a great choice.

The lightweight design and sock-like fit provide impressive support, while the single layer mesh body ensures maximum airflow to prevent sweat during matches. The TPU 3-stripes offer flexibility without compromising the shoe's structural integrity, and the integrated side panel reinforces the "sock-like" fit, ensuring stability and comfort. The Combat Speed 5's split-suede leather outsole overlays offer the right amount of traction to keep you in control on the mat, and the internal, die-cut EVA midsole provides extra support and cushioning for optimal performance.

Features:

  • Sock-like fit for maximum comfort and support
  • Extremely breathable single layer mesh body
  • Flexible, supportive TPU 3-stripes teamed with an integrated side panel
  • Integral Support Strap reinforces the 'sock-like' fit
  • Split-suede leather outsole overlays for the right amount of grip
  • Internal, die-cut EVA midsole for added support and cushioning
  • Weight: 7.2 oz.

Sizing:

The Combat Speed 5 wrestling shoes run a bit small like most wrestling shoes so be prepared to go up a half size.

Pros

  • The shoe it self has a durable construction
  • Velcro strap to lock your foot in place
  • Lightweight at 7.2 oz

Cons

  • Narrow with a tight fit
  • Difficult to clean and can get dirty quickly
  • Tongue is a bit flimsy

#4. Asics Matflex

Matflex Wrestling Shoe

The MATFLEX™ 6 wrestling shoes are a solid piece of equipment for wrestlers of all levels of proficiency. It is constructed to confer confidence to wrestlers on the mat, by providing utmost comfort, stability, and durability during even the most grueling matches.

The mesh insole incorporated in the MATFLEX™ 6 shoes enables aeration, which facilitates the circulation of fresh air, thereby ensuring the feet remain dry and cool, even during intense matches. This attribute, in turn, mitigates the likelihood of disconcerting dampness, while reducing the risk of developing blisters or other foot injuries.

Moreover, the EVA sockliner integrated into the shoe, accords unparalleled support for the feet. This results in a boost of vitality and stamina that is indispensable for overpowering opponents. The sockliner conforms to the shape of the foot, thus ensuring a firm and supportive fit.

The outsole of the MATFLEX™ 6 boxing shoes is designed to yield excellent traction and grip on the mat, thereby conferring stability and confidence to the wrestler, which is crucial for moving with ease during matches. Given its composite of comfort, stability, and durability, the MATFLEX™ 6 wrestling shoes are an absolute must-have for any wrestler looking to take their game to the next level.

Features:

  • Mesh insole for fresh air circulation and reduced dampness
  • EVA sockliner for unrivaled support and comfort
  • Outsole designed for excellent traction and grip on the mat
  • Weight: 7.6 oz.

Sizing:

The ASICS MATFLEX™ 6 wrestling shoes run true to size, so it is recommended to choose the size you would normally wear in a wrestling shoes. With its advanced features and unbeatable comfort and support, the MATFLEX™ 6 is an excellent choice for wrestlers of all levels.

Pros

  • Good value price
  • High quality grip
  • Lightweight at 7.6 oz

Cons

  • Not very durable. Generally last for about one season.
  • Inconsistent sizing. Mine ran big but I've heard others complain they were too narrow.

#5. ASICS Cael V7.0

ASICS Cael V7.0

The ASICS Cael V7.0 wrestling shoes stand out as a premier choice high quality wrestling shoes for wrestlers at all levels of experience. Honoring Cael Sanderson, an undefeated college wrestler and Olympic gold medalist, this shoe exudes a level of flexibility and comfort that will satisfy even the most dedicated wrestlers.

The Cael V7.0 has undergone significant enhancements with a completely revamped outsole and upper. The shoe's outsole is fashioned from the most durable and adhesive split sole material that ASICS has ever produced, furnishing superb grip and traction on the mat. Additionally, the shoe features a non-velcro lace garage, which offers an uncomplicated yet convenient look.

The Cael V7.0's upper appears similar to its predecessors, but it has been renovated with superior materials. The escaine and open mesh upper is incredibly breathable, guaranteeing an exceptional fit. The shoe's interior is now lined with a rip-resistant sublimated fabric that offers unparalleled comfort.

Taken as a whole, the Cael V7.0 are outstanding wrestling shoes that deliver the comfort, flexibility, and performance that serious wrestlers require.

Features:

  • High flexibility and comfort
  • Upgraded outsole for increased durability and grip
  • Non-velcro lace garage for a more minimal look and added convenience
  • Escaine and open mesh upper for a great fit and breathability
  • Rip-resistant sublimated fabric lining for added comfort
  • Weight: 7.8 oz.

Sizing:

The ASICS Cael V7.0 wrestling shoes run true to size, so it is recommended to choose the size you would normally wear in wrestling shoes. With its advanced features and unbeatable comfort and support, the Cael V7.0 is an excellent choice for wrestlers of all levels who demand the best in quality and performance.

Pros

  • These shoes are very unique and have more interesting colors and designs than other shoes.
  • These shoes are highly durable
  • Lightweight at 7.8 oz

Cons

  • Limited style choices
  • Go up a 1/2 size they run a bit small

#6. Mat Wizard 5

Mat Wizard 5

The Mat Wizard 5 wrestling shoes have been added to the Mat Wizard line, which provides wrestlers with excellent grip, flexibility, and comfort on the mat. The upper of the shoe has undergone an upgrade, utilizing a new, lightweight design that incorporates both mesh and suede to deliver a softer and more luxurious feel. This new upper eliminates any plastic elements and provides a secure foothold while maintaining the required flexibility for swift movements.

The Mat Wizard 5 features an open mesh upper, which is both breathable and stable. Additionally, the shoe's anatomical tongue design ensures a flawless fit while offering added support for your feet during even the most intense matches.

The Triaxial Structured Outsole of the Mat Wizard 5 provides an innovative grip that allows you to execute quick and sharp movements with maximum traction. The medial and lateral drive zones of the shoe offer a reliable surface grip, even at extreme angles.

To sum it up, the Mat Wizard 5 are exceptional wrestling shoes that cater to the grip, flexibility, and comfort demands of wrestlers of all levels of expertise.

Features:

  • Lightweight upper made of mesh and suede for a premium feel
  • Open mesh upper provides breathability, comfort, and stability
  • Anatomically shaped tongue for a perfect fit and added support
  • Triaxiel Structured Outsole for groundbreaking grip
  • Medial and lateral drive zones provide consistent surface contact and perfect grip on the mat
  • Weight: 8.6 oz.

Sizing:

The Adidas Mat Wizard 5 wrestling shoes run true to size, so it is recommended to choose the size you would normally wear in a wrestling shoes. With its advanced features and unbeatable grip and flexibility, the Mat Wizard 5 is an excellent choice for wrestlers who demand the best in quality and performance.

Pros

  • These shoes are nice and affordable

Cons

  • Not durable I found that they began to wear out pretty quickly compared to other shoes.
  • Clunky build and a bit heavy for a wrestling shoe at 8.6 oz
  • I'm not a fan of the style

#7. ASICS Split Second

ASICS Men's Split Second

The ASICS Split Second wrestling shoes are another good wrestling shoe from ASICS intended to provide you with the edge to gain momentum and control on the wrestling mat. Its split sole wrestling shoes offer unparalleled flexibility, allowing you to pivot and switch direction in a flash. The outsole's tread pattern is tailored to address your crucial pivot points, ensuring you remain firmly planted on the mat, even under the most extreme circumstances.

The ASICS Split Second boasts ample mesh construction that facilitates the circulation of fresh air, maintaining your feet dry and comfortable during intense matches. This high-performance wrestling shoe is meticulously crafted to help you achieve optimal performance and comfort, integrating advanced features that make it stand out from the competition.

ASICS is an enterprise that believes in promoting a healthy and happy lifestyle by advocating total health and fitness. The company now offers a complete line of athletic shoes and technical active sports apparel and accessories dedicated to bringing harmony to the body and soul, as it continues to prioritize the wellbeing of its clients.

Features:

  • Split sole design for flexibility
  • Tread pattern that addresses key pivot points for maximum traction
  • Ample mesh to help keep you cool
  • Weight: 7.6 oz.

Sizing:

The ASICS Split Second wrestling shoe runs tight like all ASICS shoes so it is recommended to choose a 1/2 size up from what you normally would.

Pros

  • Split sole offers good flexibility
  • Lightweight at 7.6 oz

Cons

  • Sizing is anywhere from 1/2 to a full size off

Criteria for finding the best wrestling shoe

When looking to buy new wrestling shoes, there are several factors to consider to ensure you find the right pair that meets your needs. I made a helpful list of the 8 factors I use to find the best wrestling shoes for me:

  1. Fit and Size: Finding a pair of wrestling shoes that fit well is crucial. Make sure to measure your feet and choose a size that is comfortable and provides a snug fit. Keep in mind that wrestling shoes tend to run smaller than other shoes, so it is recommended to go up a half size to a full size larger than your normal shoe size. The best wrestling shoes fit snuggly and move with your feet so don't be afraid to order multiple shoe sizes and send back the ones that don't fit.
  2. Ankle Support: Ankle support is huge personally I needed to train my ankles to stop them from being injured but a good pair of wreslting shoes should help proctect them on the wrestling mat as well. You want to have your pair of wrestling shoes snug your ankles in a way that they can move freely but is difficult to overrotate or hyperextend them. If you have weak ankles or are prone to injuries like me, look for shoes with high-top designs or added ankle support.
  3. Traction: The best wrestling shoes need the best traction! The difference between cool wrestling shoes and the best wrestling shoes is traction and grip on the wrestling mat. Look for shoes with outsoles made from rubber or gum rubber, as these materials offer excellent grip and flexibility. A split sole wrestling shoe which means they have breaks within the outsole that allow flexibility and grip unlike unisole shoes.
  4. Flexibility: Wrestling requires a lot of movement and agility, so it's important to find shoes that are flexible and allow for a full range of motion. If I can't move while wearing wrestling shoes then they aren't the best wrestling shoes for you no matter how nice they look. Split sole wrestling shoes are a good option that provide flexibility on your grip but a lot of other factors come down to personal taste.
  5. Breathability: We all know that wrestling shoes can start to smell fast. To prevent this a great wrestling shoe is breathable so it doesn't soak up all your sweat. If you feel like you are walking in a pool of sweat you can have serious problems like athlete's foot. I recommend looking for wrestling shoes with breathable materials like mesh or perforations to keep your feet cool and dry.
  6. Weight: Wrestling shoes should be lightweight if you are slowed down by heavy shoes you won't be able to perform at a high level. No matter what pair of wrestling shoes you get make sure they are lightweight. I've included the weights of all the shoes we reviewed so you don't make the mistake of buying wrestling shoes that are super heavy.
  7. Durability: Wrestling shoes should be durable enough to withstand the wear and tear of the sport. The best wrestling shoes like wrestlers themselves can take a beating. Look for shoes with reinforced stitching and durable materials that can handle the rigors of wrestling. If you aren't sure if the wrestling shoes you want to get are durable look up the 2-4 star reviews of the product and look for complaints of durability.
  8. Price: Wrestling shoes come in a range of prices. Consider your budget and look for shoes that provide good value for the money. The most expensive wrestling shoes might not be your favorite wrestling shoes. I personally think right around the $100-$150 price range is where you get high quality wrestling shoes that aren't overpriced and will last.

By considering these factors, you can find the right quality pair of wrestling shoes that meet your needs and help you perform your best on the mat.

Best Wrestling Shoe Brands

There are a lot of wrestling shoe brands out there but the brand I have found to be the most consistent is asics wrestling shoes. In my opinion they create the top wrestling shoes consistently. If you are looking for the best wrestling shoes I recommend starting with them. Other brands that have good quality wrestling shoes are Nike and Adidas.

Should you wear socks with wrestling shoes?

Wrestlers do normally wear socks with their wrestling shoes. Socks help add extra cushion, prevent blisters, and can keep your feet dry to prevent atheletes foot. We highly recommend wearing athletic socks with your wrestling shoes.

Why are wrestling shoes so tight?

Simple put the reason wrestling shoes are so tight is because the tight fit prevents injury and gives wrestlers more control in their foot movements. The majority of professionals wear their wrestling shoes snug as they are more comfortable and feel better for experienced fighters.

Do you need wrestling shoes to wrestle?

During training as well as competition it is mandatory to wear a wrestling shoe. Wrestling shoes increase traction allowing for optimum performance of wrestlers' technique and movements. It also helps improve ankle stability preventing injuries.

What is the difference between Split Sole vs. Unisole?

Split sole and unisole are two different types of shoe soles. The main difference lies in the construction of the sole. Split sole shoes have separate sole segments for the heel and the ball of the foot, providing greater flexibility and arch support. On the other hand, unisole shoes have a single continuous sole, offering better durability and stability. The choice between split sole and unisole depends on personal preference and the specific activity or dance style involved.