Cheerleading shoes are an essential piece of equipment for both practice and competition. No matter the sport, every athlete needs a wardrobe and equipment that will protect them and allow them to perform to the best of their abilities. Continue reading to learn more about the different types and functions of cheerleading shoes.
What are cheerleading shoes used for?
Cheerleading shoes provide safety, comfort, and protection to all cheerleaders. They ensure cheerleaders can perform and compete safely depending on the type of cheer they are involved in. When choosing a pair of cheerleading shoes, it is important that they can support the cheerleader’s ankles and feet while they are tumbling and performing stunts.
When purchasing a brand of cheerleading shoes, it is important to take into consideration the materials and features of the shoe. Typically, cheerleading shoes are relatively lightweight and have a padded sole to cushion impact while a cheerleader is tumbling or jumping.
Things To Consider
When looking for cheerleading shoes, you'll want to consider the following:
- What type of cheerleading will you be using your shoes for?
- Will you be using your cheerleading shoes inside or outside?
- Is there a specific brand of shoe you are looking to buy?
- What materials do you find to be most comfortable?
- How much do you want to spend on cheerleading shoes?
There are two different types of cheerleading, and the type of cheerleading you do can determine what kind of shoes you should utilize. Furthermore, shoes can be altered depending on if the cheerleader is performing inside or outside.
Sideline cheer is when cheerleaders support sports teams during games and events. Sideline cheerleaders engage with the audience, and stunting is not allowed. Sideline cheer typically occurs outdoors, so cheerleading shoes will have specially designed soles to provide better grip on grass. Sideline shoes will not contain special features such as finger grooves, which are designed for stunts.
Competitive cheer is considered an independent sports activity, and includes tumbling and stunts. Squads perform and compete against one another in front of judges. Competitive cheer is performed indoors, and therefore cheerleading shoes are designed to provide stability on mats and smooth floors. Competition shoes will contain special features such as finger grooves, which provide better grip for stunts.
Cheerleading shoes are created with different materials that can provide support and comfort to cheerleaders.
- Memory Foam: Memory foam is created from polyurethane. Memory foam can mold its shape to your foot, and provides shock absorption. However, memory foam shoes may not be as breathable as other materials.
- Synthetic Leather: Synthetic leather is typically made from polyvinyl chloride (PVC). It can be easy to clean, which can be useful since cheerleading shoes come in all white.
- Mesh Fabric: Mesh fabric is another kind of material popular in running shoes. It gives shoes more breathability, allowing for less sweat while performing.
Today, there is a great variety of cheerleading shoe brands that offer shoes tailored to specific types of cheerleading.
- Kaepa: Kaepa shoes are great for cheerleaders who perform stunts. The shoes contain finger grooves, which allow bases and spotters to grip flyers easily.
- Nfinity: Nfinity is a very popular brand for cheerleading shoes for cheerleaders of all skill levels. The shoes are very lightweight and designed for performance. They have a full rubber outsole.
- Power: Power offers a wide variety of cheerleading shoes, including shoes with finger grooves for stunts.
There are several important factors to keep in mind while deciding what kind of cheerleading shoe to purchase including durability, cost, and sizes.
It is important that the cheerleading shoes you use are in great condition, so they can provide safety while performing. Many cheerleaders keep one pair of shoes for practice, and another for competition. It is typically recommended that cheerleaders purchase a new pair of shoes at least every season, because cheerleading shoes will wear down quickly due to their lighter weight.
Cheerleading shoes can vary greatly in price. Price is based on the kind of material, type of shoe, and the shoe’s features. When buying from a popular name brand such as Kaepa or Nfinity, shoes can range from $90 to $120. However, cheerleading shoes targeted to beginner cheerleaders can be lower in price, around $50.
Cheerleading shoes are typically offered in both youth and adult sizes. It is important that cheerleading shoes fit your foot properly in order to provide ample support and safety. Similar to sneakers, cheerleading sneakers should have about a thumb’s width of extra length, but they can be slightly tighter.
What is special about cheerleading shoes?
Compared to regular sneakers, cheerleading shoes are lightweight and sleek. They are designed to provide support to the feet and ankles during athletic activity. Some cheerleading shoes contain extra cushioning to absorb impact, or finger grips that make it easier for a base to hold up a flyer.
Do cheerleading shoes run small?
Cheerleading shoes do not typically run small. However, different brands of cheerleading shoes may have specific shapes or soles that cause them to have tighter fits. Therefore, it is important to conduct research on different cheerleading shoes brands in order to determine the average sizing of a company’s cheerleading shoes.
Can you wear cheer shoes outside?
Depending on the type of cheerleading shoe you own, you may be able to wear them outside. Typically, sideline cheer is the only kind of cheer that would require cheerleaders to wear shoes outside. Cheer shoes that are designed for the outdoors will have more tread on the soles, which allows for firmer traction on grass. It can be dangerous to wear indoor cheer shoes outside because they will not be designed for that kind of environment and footing.