In the earliest days of skateboarding, when it still wasn’t such a popular activity, nobody really paid much attention to things other than the skateboard they rode. However, as the trend grew, the accessories and apparel available for skateboarders grew simultaneously, as a lot of brands picked up on the trend and decided that skateboarders need something unique, something they’d call their own. And thus came to be the skateboard shoes as we know them today.
Considering that the feet are the most important part of your body for skateboarding, it’s of utmost importance to have a few pairs of them that will make this hobby of yours much more enjoyable and most importantly – safe. Concrete, grip tape and metal can all take a toll on your kicks, so most skating shoes are constructed with more durability in mind than the average sneakers. When choosing your new pair of skateboard shoes, you need to think about what you want from them. Generally, what skaters look for in skateboard shoes is durability, comfort, cushioning and board feel/grip.
The sole of the shoe can be vulcanised and cupsole. The soles of your shoes are of utmost importance as they’re the connection between your skateboard, yourself and the ground. Vulcanised soles are melted and glued onto the shoe. These soles are flexible and thinner, which provides a great feel of the board. Vulcanised shoes aren’t as durable as the cupsole ones, but they feel amazing to skate in. Cupsole soles on the other hand, are stitches to the outside of the shoe instead of glued. They generally provide extra protection and more durability as well as take more impact from large drops like gaps and stairs.
If you’re a beginner, I suggest the cupsole type, as it will last longer and provide better protection. Once you notice you’re getting better in skating, try on some vulcs and decide whether they are better for you or not. Besides the sole of the shoe, another thing to consider is the technology and cushioning. Many skate shoes are now borrowing technology from basketball and athletics footwear and adapt it to suit the needs of skaters. Hidden padding and extra cushioning are designed to ease skaters’ problems such as ankle pressure and heel bruising.
Don’t be afraid to spend an extra buck on skate shoes, especially if you skate often, in which case well-designed skateboarding shoes will last much longer than cheaper ones. Bear in mind that the right skateboarding shoes can save you from all kinds of injuries. Make sure your shoes fit perfectly and that your feet feel comfortable and well supported in them.