There was a time when basketball was considered a men-only sport.
But then there was a time when people used to think that human beings will never manage to fly.
As a matter of fact, today, basketball is not only a sport – it is a hobby and sort of status symbol.
People love to have a hoop at their homes and love dribbling the ball and dunking hoop with their families.
Today, USA has got women’s national basketball team and Women’s National Basketball Association.
So, yes, women love playing basketball, and this article is to help women find the best basketball shoes for them.
Here we go …
Best Women Basketball Shoes 2020 [TOP PICKS]
We will explore their features, talk about main qualities like traction, material, cushioning and lockdown, and take a look at the pros and cons to be able to judge them.
The main concern here is to find out the subtleties and the qualities that make a women’s only sneaker different than men’s only.
We know that as per recent researches, the differences between men and women’s feet are not only in terms of sizing. We know that a woman’s feet are narrower than a man’s feet. We also know that a woman’s feet are higher than those of a man’s.
Let us use this knowledge and find out the best basketball sneakers for women.
Nike Precision III
Nike’s Precision III is more or less a unisex basketball sneaker. However, since it is unisex, it is considered good for women too. In terms of its colorways, it does not appear to be much like a ‘woman’s shoe’ – but there are certain qualities that will make a woman pick it.
This shoe features a tough rubber sole with multi-directional traction pattern. The grooves are not very deep, but they are not shallow either. This is why you enjoy a strong grip on the court while wearing this sneaker. The dual pivot points on the outsole help with rotational motion.
In terms of cushioning, this shoe is average – it could be above average had Nike used one of its proprietary cushioning technologies. Still, the plush foam cushioning does a good job at a) absorbing the shock right after the landing and, b) creating rebound energy.
It is a mid-top shoe with adequate padding on the collar and the tongue. It is safe to say that wearer will have ample ankle support – which is something to cheer about.
As far as the material is considered, this shoe’s upper material is a mix of fabric and performance mesh: the best combo for breathability and durability.
Nike Air Visi Pro V
Nike’s Air Visi Pro V is another mid-top sneaker. However, if there were categories among the mid-top shoes – this one would be called a low mid-top sneaker. This is not for the fans of padded collars and ankle support.
In terms of traction, this shoe is great. It has got deep grooves on its outsole, and that outsole is made of tough rubber.
The traction pattern can be said multi-directional, but at least half of it is herringbone which is the reason why shoe delivers so good at clean and slippery courts, as well as the on the dirty courts.
The cushioning of this shoe is a mixed bag of everything. There is a Zoom Air unit right underneath the heel and molded sockliner does rest of the cushioning job. Also, mesh bootie construction is another reason why this shoe is good at shock-absorption.
The upper material of the shoe is a mix of synthetic fabric and faux leather. This looks more like a shoe for those who are bent on protection from water as well as wear and tear.
People who prefer breathability might not find it ideal; although, mesh lining on top and around the collar provides somewhat breathability.
Nike Court Borough Low
Another low-top basketball sneaker …
I can guess what you might be thinking, but there are certain factors that dictate purchasing decisions.
Research shows that women not only prefer more colorful shoes, but they’re also not big fans of a big collar and highly-padded shoes.
This shoe has a clean, crisp and concise profile of a women-only basketball shoe.
Let us take a look at the traction first. This sneaker has got a tough rubber outsole with a circular pattern on it. The grooves aren’t deep, but they are positioned close to each other. The kind of traction you enjoy on a court with this shoe is above-average – but not the best.
In terms of cushioning, this sneaker failed to impress me. It has foam-based cushioning that can only help with average shock-absorption. However, you cannot expect it to give you a rebound effect.
The material is faux leather. While there is mesh lining on top and in the collars, you cannot say that this shoe is breathable. This is definitely for those who prefer faux leather for durability, protection, and water-resistance.
However, there are machine-made perforations on the leather – from top of the toe to sides – and these perforations along with mesh lining, make it mildly breathable.
Adidas Pro Model Zero
In case being a woman does not stop you from seeking out for basketball sneakers that deliver and do the job – even if they have to be big, bulky and boring, this one is made for you.
To start with – this is a mid-top basketball shoe with a very well-padded collar so you can claim your womanly right on ankle support. The tongue does not have much padding but is mainly made of mesh to keep things breathable in the tongue and collar area.
The outsole is made of tough rubber and it has a pattern combo of circles and waves on it. This kind of pattern is considered useful for multi-directional movements. The grooves are deep and hard – I see no reason why this shoe would not provide a really good grip on all/any sorts of basketball courts.
In terms of cushioning, this shoe features Adidas’ proprietary Torsion system and EVA midsole. The EVA midsole is not among Adidas’ primary/proprietary cushioning technologies, but it does a good job at shock absorption.
The Torsion system is basically a thermoplastic arch between the wearer’s heel and forefoot. It provides support to your foot and makes it easier for midfoot to have better control on the ground.
Adidas BBNEO Raleigh Mid
There is no hard and fast rule about the kind of sneaker a man or a woman should wear. If you’re the personification of Venus, you might want a lightweight, delicate and colorful sneaker.
But what if you’re the macho-woman? What if you do not want a shoe, but a fort for your shoe? What if you’re so bent on protection from wear and tear and water and ankle injuries etc.?
I’ll tell you what if … in that case you should go for a show like Adidas BBNEO Raleigh Mid. It is a mid-top sneaker with decent padding inside and synthetic leather outside.
Traction first …
This shoe has got a tough rubber sole – and as we all know, from traction’s viewpoint, tough rubber sole is best for all types of courts.
But where it really disappoints me is with a pill pattern and almost non-existent grooves. This is why wearers report that on a clean/slippery court this shoe does not perform as well as a shoe with tough rubber sole normally does.
Another not much pleasing fact is that Adidas did not provide much cushioning to this sneaker. It has got pretty basic cushioning that comes from the insole and that’s it. However, due to an almost non-existent midsole, this shoe stays real close to the court and thus wearer enjoys a low-to-the-ground court feel which is a plus point.
Adidas Candance Parker Pro Bounce
Well, no one said that asking for a mid-top shoe is the same for asking for steel-capped shoes that are better suited for Chinese traditional foot-binding.
You can a woman, own a beautiful pair of sneakers, those sneakers can be mid-top and yet highly breathable and durable.
Everything is possible – but there is nothing like a perfect shoe.
This shoe appears to be too perfect; let us start reviewing it with its top imperfection.
It has got a translucent rubber outsole. The problem with translucent outsoles is that their edges start fraying after some time and there is no getting away from that.
With frayed patterns and edges, you fail to manage grip on clean courts and even dirty courts. And as if this problem was not enough, the pattern on the outsole is also neither very deep nor much clear.
With this being said, the best quality of this shoe that I must mention is its premium mesh material. This material is breathable like – well, mesh – but it is not as vulnerable as simple mesh. It is a durable material and only second to faux leather or other such materials.
The second best thing about this shoe is that Adidas blessed this clearly women-only shoe with Bounce midsole cushioning. Bounce is Adidas’s proprietary cushioning technology.
This is EVA foam-based cushioning that is known for its rebound energy effect.
Under Armour Torch
I think you’d agree …
We’ve reviewed a big number of basketball sneakers for women so far and as we can see, manufacturers apparently do not take traction seriously when it is about women’s shoes.
We can say – more or less – the same about cushioning.
However, UA is one of the few basketball manufacturing companies that take traction as a serious matter.
Take this shoe for example. It has got the best and most perfect combo when it comes to having a solid grip on the court.
The outsole of this shoe is made of tough rubber while the traction pattern is herringbone. It goes without saying that with this shoe you’d never complain about grip on the court.
From toe to heel, this shoe is covered with bright red faux leather – whether you’re a fan of leather or not, you’d agree that women love leather shoes with vibrant colors.
There are perforations in the leather that make this shoe breathable.
Under Armour Jet
This is another amazing mid-top basketball sneaker made for women, by Under Armour. Unlike Adidas mid-top shoes, UA’s mid-top sneakers have a sleek and smart profile – which resonates perfectly with women.
If we take a look at the traction-relation features of this sneaker, I’d have to say that this is a second sneaker from the same company in the row (in this list), that has the best combo that is needed for strong grip on the court.
It has a tough rubber sole and unique variation of a herringbone pattern. The triangles are wavy and uniquely distorted to make this pattern more about multi-directional movements. And grooves are really deep – too good for the wearer.
In terms of upper material too, this shoe delivers better than others. It has engineered mesh upper with synthetic leather on the sides. Perforations in leather and mesh, make this a really breathable shoe.
Under Armour Jet Mid
An important thing to remember here …
The abovementioned and reviewed UA Jet is not to be confused with UA Jet Mid that I’m going to review now.
Both of them are mid-top shoes and have some similarities, but they are not the same sneakers.
With this confusion out of the way, let us take a look at this shoe’s qualities.
This sneaker has got a tough rubber outsole and a proper herringbone pattern. I cannot emphasize enough, but UA sneakers’ outsoles are the biggest reason why I love them.
They do not lose customers after useless experimentations with the outsoles – they know the importance of the outsole and thus most of their shoes feature this combo.
This shoe also has a thin EVA sockliner and a full-length EVA midsole for lightweight and modest cushioning.
It is made mostly of synthetic leather, but the upper has engineered mesh.
Skechers Take Charge
Skechers is not a very famous name in the industry of basketball shoe manufacturers, but considering the kind of wild (in a good way) response this sneaker got on Amazon and noticing its qualities, I had to add it to the list.
It has a tough rubber sole with a multi-directional pattern. What I really loved about the outsole (apart from tough rubber) is how deep are the grooves. This shoe performs well on all types of courts.
It is fully covered with soft and smooth synthetic leather – obviously perfect for those who want a water-proof, protective and highly durable sneaker.
It has bungee laces that might not have the same kind of lockdown that you get with laces, but they are super-fast and easy to cinch down.
Now, you must be waiting for my verdict on the 10 best women basketball shoes…
Which of these 10 you can pick from …
Well, choosing a basketball shoe depends on many factors – one of them is the budget.
Then there are other factors such as breathability or protection, mid-top or low-top, more cushion or more traction etc.
However, I believe that nothing can wrong with these 3 winners:
- Under Armour Jet
- Adidas BBNEO Raleigh Mid
- Nike Court Borough Low
So, pick one of these 3 winners or expand the choice to all 10 of them.
Even then if you think you need to search for better options – use our buyer’s guide and pick the best basketball sneaker for you.