The Best Boxing Shoes (2017 Review)
I’ve spent more than fifty hours researching boxing shoes for this article, mostly because I love shoes! (and boxing of course). I’ve analyzed some of the best shoes for boxing, and picked out the crème-de-la-crème in the market.
After putting in the time (I definitely got carried away - I even took a few pairs for a spin in the ring). I found that the Cleto Reyes High Top boxing shoes are by far the sturdiest, and most supportive shoes for the price, and will be a great fit for most boxers out there - whether you’re just getting started, an aspiring amateur or a professional in the making.
Before I get into the specifics, let me give you a quick run-through of some of the important factors you need to consider before buying a boxing shoe.
5 Points to Look Out For When Buying Boxing Shoes
Let’s state the obvious; shoes are definitely the second most vital piece of equipment in your boxing kit, after the gloves. They have a direct impact on your performance in the ring, so don't jump too quick with just buying any old pair.
If you’re someone who is simply learning the ropes (yesss, got a pun in) or if you’re working your butt off to become one of the greatest of all time, make sure you invest in a pair of good boxing shoes.
To help you make your buying decision easier, I have put together a short list of things you need to consider.
1. Comfort & Width
The right comfort and width will be different for each person as we all have different feet, however the key points to look out for are:
Generally, the materials that the shoe is crafted from or the design that has gone into making the shoe will determine the comfort. Note; a comfortable boxing shoe will provide a snug fit, right cushioning, good heel support, a good feel right through the arch area, and most importantly, no restriction on pinching in the forefoot.
As far as width is concerned, there’s no two ways about it - boxing shoes are by and large narrow and fit tighter than athletic shoes. So you need to make sure that the shoes you pick are the right width. Try a pair of shoes - lace them up and ensure your feet fit in properly. Here’s a tip to check if the width is right: Check if the eye stays are parallel when you’ve stepped in to the shoes.
2. Height & Ankle Support
Low top shoes, thanks to their airy profile, promote nimble footwork, and help maximize your mobility and ability to jump. They clearly help satisfy that need for spring-like footwork and speed, but they’re no match to the mids and high tops when it comes to stability and cushioning. In addition, low shoes allow your feet to move in ways that high tops and mids don’t, making your ankles vulnerable to rolling and twisting.
Having to make half or full pivots or moving around the ring all the time causes your ankles to twist and turn, so wearing shoes that prevent your feet from rolling is very important. That being said, you take ankle support out of the equation when you go with the low shoes. But the mids and high top shoes come in handy if you want the surety of extra ankle support.
Sure, the mids and high shoes don’t guarantee any mishaps to your ankle, but the extra support and stability they offer does make a difference. Overall, it comes as no surprise that mids and high tops are the better choice for boxers who bet big on their footwork or for boxers who typically have larger frames.
3. Weight & Thickness
The choice of materials used in soles and uppers determine the weight of the shoe. As simple as that.
It makes sense to go for shoes that have just the right composition of textile, materials and sole - to give you the right support, stability, cushioning, and comfort. There’s no rule of thumb per se, but your boxing shoes need to be light enough to facilitate your speed and footwork, and heavy enough for maximum support and stability when transferring power. Pay close attention to the specifications of the shoe to avoid ending up with too much material for your boxing need.
4. Sole Construction & Texture
The method of marrying a boxing shoe’s insole, and outsole into an integrated unit can affect its overall fit and performance.
Shoes made with fine leather insole (for better balance), good top-grade midsole (for better cushioning and comfort), and heavy composition durable rubber outsole (for better traction and enhanced support) give you great bang for your buck.
Look for shoes with flat soles if you want to feel connected to the ground or textured/grooved soles if you want to feel more secure when you’re standing on the canvas.
5. Grip & Pivot
Grippy shoes prevent your feet from sliding too much, giving you the ability to transfer power while allowing you to go through with your punches or keep your footwork in top form.
Having said that, shoes that are too grippy could actually make it difficult for you to pivot as easily as you’d like. Worse yet, they could really trip you up at times.
The best boxing shoe for you, in terms of grip and pivot, is the one that offers the right support while transferring power and lets you pivot easily while ensuring maximum support.
Best Boxing Shoes: The Top Picks
Now to the good stuff. The top boxing shoes as reviewed by myself. I've picked out the top 6 and given you the hits and misses (pros and cons) of each along with a rating out of 5. Enjoy!
Can you tell I like black shoes? Some shoes do comes in other colors, such as blue and even white, you can check these out after you click through to view the shoe in greater detail.
1) Cleto Reyes Leather High Top Boxing Shoes
Everything about the Cleto Reyes shoes are designed to help improve your footwork without having to sacrifice any comfort or performance along the way. They are thinner and lighter than a pair of bog standard shoes, and have everything you’d expect from a quality pair.
Recommended for professional boxers looking for a comfortable boxing shoe and even beginners who to start with a great training shoe.
- High quality leather upper construction means better performance and fit.
- The cowhide leather is beautifully produced. Quite soft in texture, whereas many leather boxing shoes in the market are stiff.
- Unique insole made of durable polyurethane delivers the right combination of energy return, shock absorption and comfort.
- Have sturdy non-slip rubber outsoles provide good traction.
- The toe box area is wide and rounded upwards. And there are no sharp edges that can catch the canvas surface.
- A minor quibble: The zippers aren’t too easy to grab, but you'll get used to it.
2) Adidas Box Hog 2 Boxing Shoes (SS17)
Fitted with a special single layer open mesh material that allows for greater breathability, yet still tough enough for the ring, the Adidas Box Hog 2 shoe is one of the best boxing shoes on the market right now. To complement this mesh design, the shoes also include a solid piece of EVA midsole for extra cushioning and stability.
If you're a bigger boxer who need plenty of foot support - these are for you. And of course, still suitable for everyone else.
They look stunning as well, definitely my favourite in terms of design.
- Wonderful initial feel. Really good for pro boxers who want to get more use out of their boots.
- Offers great comfort with a combination of midsole cushioning and good support.
- There’s good breathability in the textile uppers. This is quite unique to a boxing shoe.
- Some boxers said that the shoe can be a little firmer than expected.
- The shoes clearly feel lightweight and comfortable around the heel area but could do with a bit more stability in the forefoot area.
3) Ringside Undefeated Boxing Shoes
Here are some super light high top shoes that are definitely not light on features. Both fashionable and functional (I stole that line from Vogue), the Undefeated shoe from Ringside combine sure-grip rubber outsole construction with a neatly-lined nylon/mesh upper, designed for a snugger fit and better grip than most shoes in its class.
- They’re quite comfortable and provide very good grip.
- 'Dancing on air' has been said, more than once.
- I love the thin, rubber sole that’s comfortably stable and the light, airy-feeling uppers.
- They seem to fit well and require little breaking in.
- A lot of people also wear these for wrestling.
- Make sure to double check what size you need as there are quite a few size complaints. You can view a size guide by clicking the link below.
4) Title Boxing Title Lo-Top Boxing Shoes
Renowned for its line of training equipment and competitive gear, Title offers a line of boxing shoes as unique as it is. Featuring full synthetic leather upper, the Title Lo-top shoe is flexible, lightweight, and supposedly uses a rugged construction to give you better fit and comfort. Translation: super lightweight, super comfortable.
- Its lightweight design gives you the flexibility to move around easily.
- Fits snug around the ankles, allowing for better ankle support and more agility.
- Soles are made of polyurethane, which is known to be less compressible and more durable.
- While the overall fit and stability is decent, some people have stated that the rubber soles come loose (sometimes within weeks).
- Initially the shoes don't feel like they are the right size, it takes a few wears for the shoe to stretch out a bit and feel a bit more comfortable.
5) Ringside Diablo Boxing Shoes
If you’re just getting into boxing, you’ll dig the Diablo boxing shoes from Ringside. Designed for those who are finding their feet in boxing 😉 - the Diablo shoes come with a nylon-mesh pattern for better breathability and leather finish for good support.
You can buy these in many colors, even green and pink. I double dare you.
- Comfortable shoes that are snug and nice, especially near the heel area.
- Many people state that the rubber outsoles have good traction and hold well on canvas.
- Particularly good for kicking around at the gym.
- Not a lot of work has gone into making the shoes look more appealing. They look a bit cheap, but each to their own!
- The overall fit is decent, but the shoe could do with a bit more support.
- The choice of materials is nothing to write home about.
- Might take a few wears to get used to.
- A common complaint is that the laces tend to untie easily.
6) Ringside Power Boxing Shoes
If you’re looking for a pair of decent entry level boxing shoes, the Ringside power comes the closest. Featuring a breathable mesh/suede upper and a rubber outsole, these shoes are fitted with a special reinforced toe for easy pivot and an ankle strap for added support.
You can also get these in red or blue.
- Many boxers found the shoes reasonably comfortable.
- Mesh uppers ensure good breathability.
- The straps hold your ankle securely, but require a bit of adjusting to get there.
- The grip is decent however the shoes could be better if they had better quality outsoles with high-friction rubber.
- Heard some complaints about the soles starting to peel off around the edges and from the center after a few weeks of use.
- The outsoles tend to wear out quickly and foot support is not that great.
- On the lesser end of value for money.
There you have it. Six of the best. You can't really go wrong with any of the shoes above, they are the best after all, however I found the Cleto Reyes leather hi-top boxing shoes to be the best in the market.
Reasons? Again, they are nicely made and ensure great speed, good traction and maximum comfort in the ring, therefore allowing you to put in your best performance and do what you do best - dominate in the ring.
I hope you enjoyed this post - any questions let me know in the comments below.