10 Best Wrestling Shoes in 2020 (Review Guide)

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Wrestling Shoe Review GuideAlthough the Ancient Greeks who first competed in Olympic wrestling matches competed in bare feet, today’s wrestlers depend on well-made wrestling shoes to give them the comfort and support that they need while remaining lightweight and flexible enough to allow for better mobility and traction.

While wrestling shoes remain fundamental pieces of sporting equipment for interscholastic and high-level wrestling competitions, they are also popular with sports enthusiasts of other disciplines for their full-foot support design and higher interior arches for increased foot speed. Properly designed, a well-made wrestling shoe will give the wrestler a comfortable experience throughout several seasons of competitive training and sporting events.

Compare: The Top 10 Best Wrestling Shoes of 2020

What is a Wrestling Shoe?

The Ancient Greeks never used footwear for their competitive wrestling matches, but the Roman culture that soon followed afterwards began using special padded leather sandals while wrestling. Today’s modern wrestling shoes are carefully engineered to provide superior support to critical areas of the foot while increasing grip and traction on the mat to enhance a wrestler’s flexibility, speed and range of motion. Advanced material blends allow air to circulate naturally over the foot, keeping the skin dry and cool even during the heat of high-stakes wrestling competitions.

With a large, padded upper area and high-top design, a pair of quality wrestling shoes will provide unmatched support and stability for the ankle. Reinforced toe cushioning protects nails against damage or disease sustained during competition. With so many stylish and elegant designs to choose from, there is a top-quality wrestling shoe available on the market to suit every wrestler’s needs.

Due to their unique high-top design and smooth, high-traction soles, wrestling shoes make a popular fashion choice amongst some segments of the population. Wrestling shoes have a distinct look amongst athletic footwear, and their elevated comfort can serve equally well for general daily use in situations entirely unrelated to wrestling.

Stylish, well-design wrestling shoes should be both flexible and light, engineered to closely mimic the tactile feedback and flexibility of the bare foot while simultaneously increasing support for critical areas of the ankle and toes. Strategic cushioning made from advanced materials protects the wrestler’s feet during practice and competition, allowing wrestlers to concentrate on their technique and skill without having to worry about losing traction or strategic leverage on the mat.

The slightly higher arches used in most models of wrestling shoes angle the foot forward to give wrestlers maximum speed coming off the block from a stationary position.

What are the different types?

There are special shoes for everything from football cleats to wrestling shoes. In the case of wrestling shoes, they are all designed slightly differently, to help balance the optimum ideal of lightweight flexibility and comfortable padded support and cushioning. Made in a wide variety of colors and designs, some wrestling shoes feature advanced synthetic uppers made out of composite space-age materials while other models of wrestling shoe are made out of more traditional shoemaking upper materials such as suede or leather.

One of the most important components of any quality shoe is the sole, which can be designed in a myriad of ways to improve traction and grip on the mat during competition. Cushioning and interior supports in strategic locations protect sensitive areas of the foot and ankle from injury and damage during wrestling matches.

The weight and design of the shoe are also critically important to provide long-lasting comfort, allowing wrestlers to focus on their technique and training during competition instead of worrying about their footwear.

What are the advantages of a great pair of Wrestling Shoes?

For beginning wrestlers, owning the correct pair of wrestling shoe is just as essential as learning your first takedown maneuver. Careful consideration is necessary to make sure that you don’t waste money and suffer uncomfortably during a long season of competitive training and matches. While some sports departments at some schools or educational institutions may provide wrestling shoes to their teams, most wrestlers prefer owning their own wrestling footwear.

Over time, the wrestling shoe will become more “broken in,” enhancing the comfort and fit of the shoe. Many experts advise buying two pairs of wrestling shoes, one meant to take the abuse and rough treatment of grueling practice sessions, and a second pair to demonstrate your pride and commitment to the sport during competitive matches.

Many experienced wrestlers know that a good pair of top-quality wrestling shoes will eventually, over time, come to feel almost like a second skin, giving their feet the improved tactile feedback and flexibility of bare skin. A quality pair of wrestling shoe will allow the wearer to benefit from maximum speed and maneuverability on the mat.

What Size Should My Wrestling Shoes Be Compared To My Normal Shoes?

When you’re sizing your wrestling shoes, you should opt for a tight fit. Remember, your feet are going to swell a little bit when you’re wrestling, but not as much as they might if you were using your wrestling shoes for long walks.

If your wrestling shoes are too loose, you’ll lose your stance, and you’ll also experience friction which can give your feet blisters extremely quickly. Likewise, your wrestling shoes should have tall cladding which allows you to secure your lacing around your upper ankle.

When you secure your laces around the top of your ankle, you’ll provide it with additional support that will help you to get more leverage when you’re trying to tackle your opponent. You’ll also incur less fatigue on your foot muscles.

Which models are contenders for Best Wrestling Shoe on the Market?

ASICS Men’s Split Second Wrestling Shoe

This stylish and supremely comfortable wrestling shoe from one of the preeminent manufacturers of athletic footwear gives wrestlers outstanding comfort and support. The asymmetrical lace closure system gives a snug, comfortable fit while the synthetic mesh upper protects delicate ankle and upper foot pressure points.

ASICS Aggressor 3

This top-quality wrestling shoe from ASICS is one of the premier wrestling shoes on the market today. Available in the wrestler’s choice of three bold color designs, these well-made wrestling shoes from ASICS offer outstanding grip and maneuverability on the mat. With a straightforward front lace assembly and thick interior cushioning, the ASICS Aggressor 3s gives every wrestler the confidence to execute even the most difficult maneuvers on the mat.

Adidas adiZero Jake Varner Wrestling Shoes

The legendary sports footwear manufacturer Adidas has named their premiere model of wrestling shoe after one of today’s greatest living wrestlers, doing honor to his name by giving even beginning wrestlers advanced traction control and explosive speed off the block with a highly-advanced synthetic split-sole design.

Features to Evaluate


Each manufacturer offers different varieties of wrestling shoe design, including advanced materials used in the upper, while other models feature high-grip soles and simple, snug lacing enclosure systems.


Wrestlers know that traction, grip and leverage are fundamental concepts to successfully overpowering opponents, and the design of the sole can greatly enhance the wrestler’s ability to maintain balance during competitive matches.

Upper Shoe Design

A top-quality wrestling shoe will be comfortable while providing enough rigidity, cushioning and support stability to properly protect sensitive areas of the upper foot and ankle from damage.

Unique Features

To enhance the appeal of their excellent line of athletic shoe apparel, most wrestling shoe manufacturers offer unique features on each of their wrestling shoe models.


The ASICS Men’s Split Second

With an aggressive cross-hatch design emblazoned across the upper and available solid two-tone color options, the ASICS Men’s Split Second adds a stylish bold look to any practice session or competitive match. Provides upper foot and ankle support and maximum traction for better leverage and on the mat.

ASICS Aggressor 3

The ASICS Aggressor 3 comes in one of three unique styles: the standard black, a dark blue, and an elite white design that adds class and style to any practice or competitive wrestling match. A well-engineered one-piece synthetic outsole gives wrestlers improved grip and leverage at all angles.

The Adidas adiZero Jake Varner

Available in traditional black as well as a wide range of extremely bold two-tone color design choices, the Adidas adiZero Jake Varner shoes add a distinct flair and bold style to any practice session or competitive match.


The ASICS Men’s Split Second

Comes with an advanced split-synthetic rubber sole with strategically placed tactile gripping points to give wrestlers unparalleled maneuverability and stability on the mat.

ASICS Aggressor 3

The sole of the ASICS Aggressor 3 is made from an advanced-engineered synthetic split-sole matrix that features special high-grip discs at key tactile points along the bottom of the foot. A suede upper adds style and durability that gives due honor to the name of the fallen wrestling legend.

The Adidas adiZero Jake Varner

Footwear engineers at Adidas carefully studied the takedown techniques of the American sports legend and then custom-designed a unique multi-sole synthetic design that adds traction pads to key grip points on the bottom of the foot to give even beginner wrestlers championship traction on the mat.

Upper Shoe Design

The ASICS Men’s Split Second

Features a stylish and uniquely comfortable asymmetrical lace enclosure system and upper shoe constructed out of advanced synthetic materials to improve comfort and breathability.

ASICS Aggressor 3

The key supports of the upper are quality suede, with an advanced synthetic material that increases comfort and flexibility to the shoe. The overlay accents and straightforward lace entry give this quality wrestling shoe a classic look.

The Adidas adiZero Jake Varner

The ultra lightweight upper mesh material of the Adidas adiZero Jake Varner gives wrestlers unparalleled levels of comfort and breathability even during the heat of high-stakes championship matches.

Unique Features

ASICS Men’s Split Second

The asymmetrical lace enclosure system leverages basic physical principles to use cross-angled tension to increase torque on the shoe’s grip around the foot, making the wrestling shoe easy to adjust for maximum comfort.

ASICS Aggressor 3

The secure front lace enclosure system and thick cushioning on both the upper foot and ankle area of the ASICS Aggressor 3s increase comfort and protection from injury during vigorous practice sessions or high-stakes competitive wrestling matches.

Adidas adiZero Jake Varner

The advanced matrix used on the dual synthetic sole design give wrestlers improved traction and grip, allowing them to sprint forward at maximum speed off the block or execute pivots and changes of direction with ease.

Our Final Wrestling Shoe Reviews Are In!

The ASICS Men’s Split Second – Best Cheap

ASICS Men's Split Second Wrestling ShoeThis bold, stylish shoe from one of the top manufacturers of wrestling shoes comes with an advanced synthetic split-sole design to give wrestlers utmost confidence and better leverage in competition matches against opponents. The integrated lace enclosure system adds maximum comfort while the well-engineered upper body system protects delicate ankle pain points from injury during matches.


  • It takes a moment to get used to the unique lace enclosure system but once you cinch it down, users will experience full-foot comfort even over the course of a long, grueling season of practices and competitive matches
  • Mesh material on the upper help keep the foot cool and dry even during the heat of a championship match


  • Not for general outdoor use. It is not for use in wet or inclement weather

ASICS Aggressor 3 – The Best for the Money

ASICS Aggressor 3These top-quality shoes from ASICS are made of only the finest materials, giving today’s wrestlers a sizeable advantage during competition. Using advancements in understanding foot points, the advanced engineered synthetic split sole design gives wrestlers maximum leverage grip stability in undertaking both horizontal grip maneuvers or standing takedown attacks.


  • The thick cushions on the foot and the secure grip around the ankle protect feet against damage or injury while giving lasting comfort and support throughout even the most grueling seasons


  • The all-white model may require additional cleaning and care to maintain its elegant streamlined appearance

The Adidas adiZero Jake Varner – Best Wrestling Shoe Overall

Adidas adiZero Jake Varner Wrestling ShoesAs stylish and fashionable as the Adidas adiZero Jake Varner wrestling shoes look on the outside, it only takes wearing them once to understand just how comfortable these shoes really are. Made by one of the top names in sporting apparel, the Adidas adiZero Jake Varner wrestling shoes are designed to have that “broken-in” feel straight out of the box to allow wrestlers to immediately begin enjoying the stylish comfort of these top-quality wrestling shoes.


  • These shoes look so good that many people will want to buy a second pair just for casual, everyday use
  • Uniquely designed pads on the sole give amazing grip and traction even on sweat-slicked competitive wrestling mats


  • Become degraded or damaged if you use them outdoors in wet or inclement weather

In Conclusion

Coaches and experienced wrestlers know that beginners entering the sport need to make sure that they buy one or more pairs of top-quality shoes to enjoy lasting comfort and support throughout an entire season of training and competition. Advanced dual-sole designs take advantage of high-friction pads at key points along the bottom of the foot to give wrestlers maximum traction at all angles. Quality upper sole designs made from an advanced blend of synthetic and natural materials increase comfort and breathability, keeping the foot cool and dry even during the hottest competition conditions.

Although many fine models of wrestling shoes exist on the market today, only the Adidas adiZero Jake Varner wrestling shoes give even beginning wrestlers the ability to enjoy championship-grade traction, comfort and support. That’s why they are the best wrestling shoe out there. Featuring an advanced synthetic dual-sole design, this unique set of footwear uses special high-friction materials to improve torque against the mat, giving wrestlers maximum leverage at all body angles. Stylish enough to be worn in town, these wrestling shoes give both beginning and experienced competitive wrestlers superior ergonomic support for critical areas of the upper foot and ankle while feeling as comfortable as a well broken-in pair of shoes right out of the box.