Thursday, August 11, 2016

These Aren't Steph Curry's "Dad Shoes"

I'll admit it. Last week I checked out what sorts of shoes the guys in my Krav Maga classes were wearing.

I prefer to wear sneakers when training, because I wear orthotics. I also don't walk barefoot on the street, so I like to train in shoes. I didn't always practice martial arts in shoes, but at this point in my career I prefer to wear them.

For the last seven months I wore black Nike Air Monarch IV cross-training shoes. These worked pretty well, but they suffered a few drawbacks, especially weight and undue contact with mats. I primarily chose them because they were sold in wide sizes, they were black, and they were cross-trainers.

Last week I decided to take a closer look at the shoes the instructors were wearing. That primarily means you, Sam and Chris. I noticed these two high-ranking gentlemen were wearing wrestling shoes. I hadn't wrestled since high school gym class, and certainly not in special shoes. However, I decided to do some research and buy a pair.

The major problem I encountered was that most wrestling shoes are very narrow. I found only a few options for those with wide feet. The shoes I decided to buy are ASICS Snapdown Wrestling Shoes, pictured above. I bought them from because it was difficult to find them in local stores.

My verdict, after wearing them for about 8 hours of class doing striking, kicking, groundwork, weapons, and Kung Fu forms, is that they are keepers. I like how light they are, and that they allow me to pivot more easily. They remind me a little of the racing flats I wore in high school track. I'm using a set of orthotics that are half-inserts, meaning they sit at the heel but don't reach into the toe of the shoe. They fit well and support my feet as necessary.

A word of warning: pay attention to the reviews which recommend buying a full size larger than your regular sneaker. I wear size 10 in the Nike Air Monarch IV cross-training shoes, yet as you can see I bought size 11 ASICS. The ASICS are not as wide as I would have liked, but they still fit well.

If I encounter any unforeseen wear or product failure, I'll update this post!

What sort of shoes do you wear training? Do you prefer to be barefoot?

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