What Shoes are best for a First Year Wrestler

Wrestling shoes for the beginning wrestler don’t need to be expensive.  While my son has been wrestling for a very long time, a lot of his friends recently decided to pick up the great sport of wrestling.

All of his friends were asking me about the best wrestling shoes to purchase.

After talking with my son’s friends, I realized that wrestling shoes come in with varying styles and prices.  A pair of wrestling shoes can range in price from 30 bucks to well over $200.

I tend to purchase high-end wrestling shoes for my son because he is serious about wrestling and plans on wrestling in college (hopefully).

There are different ranges of wrestling shoes available on the market that are based on the level of the wrestler. There are shoes for beginners, as well as for seasoned wrestlers.

New wrestlers should stick with more affordable shoes.  The reason for this is that wrestling is a tough sport and a lot of kids decide they don’t like wrestling after one wrestling season.  Let’s discuss how to select the best wrestling shoes for a beginning wrestler.


Features to Look for in Wrestling Shoes

There are 3 things to look for in a pair of shoes for a new wrestler.  Those are the grip of the sole, durability, and price.  Wrestling shoes are extremely flexible. They are light and easy to carry. They provide extra support and strength to the ankle. Most wrestling shoes provide great support on the mat.  Here is what you should look for.

As a first year wrestler, the following features are absolutely required to be kept in mind while buying a pair of wrestling shoes.

Sole :

You want to make  sure that the sole of the wrestling shoe will provide a good grip on the mat. Most shoes will do a great job of providing traction, but it’s important to check out reviews to see what other wrestlers had to say.

Material :

The material used to make the shoe is also important. The leather and suede shoes tend to be more expensive and don’t breathe as well.  The mesh shoes tend to be cheaper.  The difference is that the mesh shoes are not quite as durable.  It’s not a big deal because your first pair of shoes only needs to last one season.


Since parents are the ones that make the purchase, the price of the shoe is an important factor.  My advice is to spend between 25 to 60 dollars on your kid’s first pair of shoes.  I would avoid the cheapest shoes and any wrestling shoes over the $60 threshold.


I would recommend that you buy a wrestling shoe that is at least one-half size larger than your kid’s regular shoes.  I would recommend that you go to a sporting goods store for your first pair of wrestling shoes.  This way you can make sure they fit.  You want your shoes to have a snug fit, but they also need to be comfortable.

Affordable Wrestling Shoes to Consider

I did some research and identified 3 pairs of wrestling shoes that perform well on the mat, but will not cost a ton of money.

ASICS Matflex :   The matflex is by far the most popular shoe with new and little league wrestlers.  The shoes provide great grip on the mat and should last a couple of seasons.  You can usually find these shoes for about $40.

Adidas HVC – Adidas has a great shoe called HVC.  It also does a great job and typically runs about $50. The main difference between this shoe and the matflex is that it has a full-length rubber sole.

Nike Speedsweep –  The speedsweep is another great choice.  I have found these shoes for about $35.  Some people prefer Nike over ASICS and Adidas.  If that’s the case, these are a great pair of shoes.

Consider Last Years Model

If you are willing to look online, you can find last year’s models for a very cheap price.  Wrestling shoes get updated every year with new enhancements.  Buying last year’s model is a great way to get a very good pair of shoes for the same price as the shoes listed above.

While I was doing the research for this article, I found a great video on wrestling shoes.  The video is by suplay.com and provides some great info for anyone looking to buy a pair of shoes.

I hope you enjoyed the article.  If you’re a new wrestling parent, buying shoes can be a little daunting.  Hopefully, I have guided you in the right direction to get a good pair of wrestling shoes and keep a little cash in your pocket.