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13 Terrific Mens Tennis Shoes Reviews – Hit the Court in 2018

Sports & Outdoors

Tennis is a great way to get in shape while testing your mental prowess. That’s only if you have the best mens tennis shoes, however, which is something we’re going to help you find today…

Last updateSeptember 28, 2018
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Fletcher Adams
Today’s expert
Fletcher Adams
13 Terrific Mens Tennis Shoes Reviews – Hit the Court in 2018

Our leaders

Pros

Zoom Air cushioning

Plenty of colors to choose from

Modern design

Excellent warranty

Cons

Limited widths

Could be too snug for some

Learn more
Pros

6-month outsole warranty

Comfortable, little to no break-in

True to size

Roomy toe box

Cons

Limited sizes and colors

Style and height won’t be for everyone

Possible slippage

Learn more
Best for the money
Adidas Barricade Club Tennis Shoe
4.5 / 5

Pros

Great price point

10 different colorways

Perfect for hard courts

Very durable sole

Cons

Only medium widths

Quality control

Learn more
Pros

They are extremely comfortable

Accurate sizing

Sweet price tag

Six color options

Cons

May require an extended break in

The design may not be for everyone

Learn more
Runners up

Also good products

4 / 5

The MC806 will up your game and keep you comfortable on the court.

4 / 5

Nike strikes again with the Zoom Vapor X and its Dynamic Fit technology.

3.5 / 5

The Gel-Resolution 7 is a durable shoe built for Men looking for stability on the court.

3.5 / 5

A tennis shoe for those that want the best on clay courts.

3.4 / 5

An excellent choice when you need durability from a lightweight knit shoe.

3.4 / 5

Colorful all-court tennis shoes with Duralast soles and torsion control.

3.2 / 5

A vibrant eye-catching shoe from K-Swiss geared for any court.

3 / 5

An affordable alternative from Nike with a GDR outsole.

3 / 5

The Approach is an entry-level shoe that’s built to last without breaking the bank.

How We Decided

31Products
Tested
82Hours
Spent
09Experts
Interviewed
19Consumers
Consulted
Fletcher Adams
Today’s expert
Fletcher Adams

Fletcher is a freelance writer with a penchant for tools, tech, and toys. When not writing about smartphones and drills, he spends his time following the financial markets and waiting for Game of Thrones to return. While I’ve only played a half-dozen matches in my lifetime, I’ve owned more than one pair of classic Agassi’s and am somewhat of a sneaker aficionado.

General shopping guide

While you might believe it’s a good idea to hit the court in a flashy new pair of Air Max, it’s likely to ruin your day quicker than a moonball. If you’re new to the game, the best mens tennis shoes can be tough to find, but only if you don’t know what to look for.

We’ve taken care of that with our tennis shoe buying guide which ensures you’ll make the right choice the first time around. Our experts also put together a quick list featuring the top models as well with a style and price point for players of every level.

Research You Can Trust

At some point in our lives, most of us have played a racquet-based sport whether it’s badminton, pickleball, or tennis. As our team at Bestazy is a mixed bunch, we have a little experience in two of these three areas. We’ve covered plenty of shoes as well from footwear built for Zumba to indoor soccer shoes.

From the outsole to the topline, we took a look at all the key areas that go into making a great tennis shoe. Stability, lateral movement and the quality of construction were the first areas we considered as it’s hard to play tennis with a rolled ankle. Comfort was key as well along with the overall aesthetics of the shoe.

After careful consideration and some debate, we used our firsthand knowledge along with reviews from consumers and experts to find the best tennis shoes for men. While we considered well over 30 shoes from our list of contenders, we narrowed our list down to only 12 top models.

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Considerations

The first thing most consumers will look for is style, and it’s an obvious area as nobody wants to wear an ugly shoe. Once you settle on a few you like, you’ll want to look at the outsole and the type of tread on the bottom of the shoe.

Most of our top picks are considered “all-court” which means you can use them outdoors or indoors on both hard courts and clay. If you plan to play on one type of surface more often than not, you may want to consider a specialty shoe for optimum performance.

Want to play in the grass?

That’s not a problem if it’s a universal shoe although you may need one that meets certain requirements if you play at a particular court or club.

Clay and grass courts can be damaged if you wear improper footwear or you can wreck your new footwear. From here, you need to consider your feet and pronation type if you want a comfortable shoe. Also look at the quality of construction, support and cushioning if you’re in a rush.

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Men’s Tennis Shoe Buying Guide

In our buying guide, we’re going to talk about what makes a “good” tennis shoe great. We’re also going to break down the types of courts you may encounter if you’re just starting out, but first, we’re going to tell you why a regular old tennis shoe simply won’t do…

Someone that players soccer needs soccer shoes and golfers need specialty shoes as well so when you step onto the court, you’ll want a proper shoe for tennis. No matter how well built your new Nike Air Max’s are, they just aren’t made to play this game.

A running shoe is designed for runners for a reason, so the extra cushion or unique tread pattern won’t do you much good on the court. While it may feel good, it won’t give you any extra protection on the sides – or prevent you from rolling your ankle.

Tennis shoes are made with extra support for lateral motion and to deal with all the sudden stop and starts you’ll make on the court. These types of repetitive movements will wear the soles of other shoes out quickly, or worse, cause you to injure yourself. A twisted ankle could be the least of your worries if you smash into the court face first. Court burn is not fun either, take our word for it.

What Type of Tennis Player Are You?

If you’re just getting started and buying your first pair of true tennis shoes, you may not know what type of player you are yet. If not, we’ll give you a good idea of what’s to come as there are four main playing styles tennis players fit into today. If you’re still wondering what a foot fault or an unforced errors is, you may want to give this a quick look.

  • Serve and Volleyer – Players that utilize this style head towards the new immediately after a serve. This allows them to volley and keep the pressure on their opponent from the start. It’s also an ideal playing style for faster courts.
  • Baseliner – Someone who’s considered a baseliner is also an aggressive player. Instead of taking the serve and volley approach and rushing the new, a baseliner lays back and uses groundstrokes to dictate the pace of play and send their opponent running across the court.
  • All-Court Players – If you can hit every shot in the book, you are more than likely an all-court player. These players can handle anything headed their way and adapt their game to match their opponents’ style. Whether it’s a slow lob or a crushing backhand, these players can do it all.
  • The Pusher – No, this player isn’t someone that deals in thing typically purchased in dark alleyways. Also called a counter puncher, this playing style reacts to the shots coming their way. They rarely take the initiative and prefer the “wait and see” approach before pushing the ball back with a wide variety of shots.

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UnderPronation, Overpronation or Neutral?

Pronation may seem like a foreign word if you’ve never had an issue with your feet, but it’s one of the first things to consider if you decide to pick up a racket and hit the court with any regularity. Simply put, pronation is the way your foot rolls inward as it hits the ground.

  • Overpronation – This condition tends to affect people with flat feet like yours truly or folks with low arches. When your foot hits the ground and rolls inward towards your arch more than it should, this is what you have. That’s the nutshell version, and you generally want more support or a motion control shoe if you have this condition.
  • Underpronation – When your foot rolls outward at the ankle instead of inward, you have supination, otherwise known as underpronation. This can affect people with high arches, and the lack of inward roll can cause all types of issues although footwear with the right kind of structure and cushioning can combat the issue.
  • Neutral – If you have normal arches, congratulations… you are considered neutral. As the name implies, you can wear almost any type of footwear without needing a special insert or additional support.  The world is your oyster when it’s time to look for shoes, just remember to stick to ones geared towards tennis, not other sports.

Tennis Shoe Construction

A lot more goes into a tennis stroke than you can imagine, and the forces applied can wreak havoc on your body as well as your footwear.

That means you need to pay close attention to how well the shoes are made and perform an out of the box inspection right away. You can’t try before you buy when shopping online, but you can check the stitching and make sure there’s not an issue around the sole, toe or upper.

When it comes to the actual materials used, there are too many exotics to cover. Every manufacturer has their own type of compression tech or gel, but the upper, tongue and toe box are typically made from one of two materials – mesh or leather.

Leather is going to hold up better, but won’t allow your feet to breathe as much. Shoes with mesh sides provide you with flexibility and let more air circulate although it comes at the cost of support. Before you can understand what material might be the best for you, you’ll want to know a bit more about shoes…

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Breaking things down…

A shoe built for tennis has the same parts as a regular “tennis” shoe although the design and materials used vary considerably. These are the most common areas you’ll need to familiarize yourself with, and ones we’ll often refer to in our reviews.

The aptly named toe box is the area of the shoes that cover the toes. On tennis shoes, you’ll often find additional rubber or an abrasion resistant material around the tip of the toe box as well. Anytime we refer to the “upper” that means the part of the shoe above the sole excluding the heel and the area around the laces.

The upper is either one-piece or several but is always made from a mesh-like fabric, synthetic or real leather if it’s a shoe in the higher end of the footwear scale. It’s safe to assume that everyone knows what an insole is, but what about the midsole?

The midsole is the cushy region between the outsole and insole and EVA is one of the more popular materials in use today. As for the outsole, you’ll want a shoe with a solid layer of rubber and treads to match the type of court you plan to play on.

Understanding Tennis Court Surfaces

Remember where we talked about your playing style? Well, the surface you play is just as important as the way you play when it’s time to buy shoes.

  • Hard Courts – Whenever you play on a hard court, your feet can take a beating. It’s not as forgiving as grass or even clay so cushioning and stability are key. A good hard court shoe will have an ample amount of padding in the midsole and sport a herringbone style pattern on the outsole.

The pattern tends to vary somewhat from brand to brand, and you can “usually” use hard court shoes on clay or grass courts as well. There are a few exceptions, but we’ll get to that soon enough.

  • Clay – If you’ve never played on clay, you’re in for a treat – as long as you’ve got the right shoe. Shoes build for clay tennis courts need to have a lot of grip and plenty of support for lateral movement. You’ll want a shoe that allows you to slide into a shot, but may not necessarily need a specialty shoe.

You can usually get by with a good hard court shoe on clay if you only play occasionally. If you play regularly and want to improve your game, you need to invest in a pair of shoes dedicated to clay courts – don’t give it a second thought.

  • Grass – If you’ve ever run across a yard or field of any kind, there’s a good chance you’ve slipped on the grass. It happens to the most agile of us, and it will happen rather quickly when you’re swinging a racket at full force. Unfortunately, grass court shoes are few and far between unless you’re a pro.

Multi-court shoes will work provided they give you enough grip and don’t destroy the court. You also won’t need as much cushion, as grass is much easier on your feet.

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Other Things To Consider…

We’re almost to our top picks although there are still a few more things to keep in mind before settling on a shoe. The first one is fairly obvious, but we think you’ll be surprised by the others unless you’re a true sneaker freak.

Sizing

When buying a shoe online, sizing can be tough unless you’ve purchased that same shoe before. Thankfully, most companies have a sizing chart you can use which makes things easy. Well, unless you have a narrow or wide foot that is…

The options for extended width tennis shoes are sparse and usually depend on the brand. New Balance is great about it while Nike and others stick medium or standard widths only. It may not be an issue, but it’s something to keep in mind if your shoe size is generally hard to find in brick and mortar shops.

Some brands can run smaller or larger as well, which is where the term “true to fit” comes into play. That means a size 10 will fit like one, and not feel like an 8 ½ or an 11 although it also depends on your foot.

One good example would be Adidas – a brand I have personally never been able to wear comfortably. Whether they are too loose in the heel or too narrow in the toe box, they don’t fit my feet like a shoe from Nike or New Balance.

Again, everyone’s feet are different, so if you’re unsure of sizing simply sticking with a familiar brand is an excellent place to start. Even if you have your size locked down, there’s still one more area to think about when using your PC display or mobile as your shopping assistant.

Looks can be deceiving…  

So, you’ve finally found the perfect set of tennis shoes, and you’re ready to pull the trigger. Unfortunately, those red accents may not actually be red at all – hopefully you like pink. Manufacturers don’t make it any easier when they use wild monikers like “Cherry Flame,” and then we have to take into account the whole Blue Dress debacle that temporarily broke the net…

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Nobody wants to shell out their hard earned dough only to find out the hue is wrong. There is one way you can combat this, and the first is to check out user videos. We’ve included some for our top choices below, and thanks to the internet, you can find a live video of almost any tennis shoe you can imagine.

Videos have another perk as you can see how a shoe reacts on the court or get an up-close look at the fabric or flex. A simple squeeze on the sides of the shoe or bending the toe can tell you a lot more than a photo can.

The Warranty

It might come as a surprise that some shoes have a warranty that extends past the usual 30-days. If you buy boots or are used to shelling out hundreds of dollars for new kicks, you may be in for a rude surprise. They are definitely hard to come by in the tennis shoe world at times.

Our experts did our best to dig up warranty info on our top choices, but it was mixed at times and absent altogether in a few cases. In a nutshell, the best warranty you can expect is a 6-month guarantee on the outsoles, and those are rare on shoes in the mid-range class.

Taking Care of Your Tennis Shoes

Once you’ve found your perfect pair, you’ll want to take care of them. Cleaning sneakers isn’t something most people would consider fun, but it’s necessary if you want your shoes to give you optimum performance on the court.

It’s good to get into the habit of cleaning your shoes after you’re through playing for the day, and the first place to start is the soles. A toothbrush and a little tap water can do wonders for small spots, or you can opt for a cleaner with a built-in scrubber or a full blown kit as well. It will cut down on your cleaning time, just remember to buy the proper type of cleaner for the material of your shoe.

You will also never want to throw your shoes in the washer… it’s just not a good idea.

Even with a warranty, there’s one part of your shoe that will probably give out long before the rest – the laces. Whether they get too grimy from the court or tangled in the washer, eventually you’ll need to replace the laces in your tennis shoe.

As you’d expect, there are hundreds of laces that claim to be the best around. While we didn’t put them all to the test, there are a few we can recommend. While Lock Laces are definitely an option, they can be an acquired taste. If you just need something simple, but effective the OrthoStep round athletic laces are your best bet. They come in a variety of lengths, and you may even be able to find a color to match an accent on your shoe.

The Best Mens Tennis Shoes Reviews

01

Nike Mens Zoom Cage 3 Tennis Shoes

Nike Mens Zoom Cage 3 Tennis Shoes

Nike tends to dominate when it comes to popular athletes wearing their products, so this shoe may seem very familiar. The Nike Zoom Cage 3 is worn by Nadal and other top pros, and while it won’t get you to Wimbledon, it may very well help your game.

2 e1538150165491 300x129 - Nike Mens Zoom Cage 3 Tennis ShoesYou can always count on Nike to do things a little differently when it comes to style. The Zoom Cage 3’s are reminiscent of the Air Max 96 than a typical tennis shoe. The vented design gives you a bit more stability and structure than you’ll find on those classics. They also lighten things up and protect the sides against slides or other impacts that would ruin a full mesh panel.

There’s air in there…

One of the things that make folks flock to Nike are those cool little air pockets in their shoe. You may not be able to see it, but there is a Zoom air unit in the heel of this shoe. This gives you responsive cushioning on the court, and you’ll need it as these are geared towards hard courts which can be tough on your feet.

If you’re concerned about wear to the midsole, don’t be as the company has zonal high abrasion patterns on the shoe to increase durability. The sole sports a herringbone pattern so you’ll have plenty, and these shoes are nice and snug thanks to the full bootie design. Kurim helps in that regard as well along with an external heel clip.

The best tennis shoes for men or women should always fit well and provide an ample amount of support. The Cage 3 tennis shoes offer up a flexible support system that provides stability without compromising the weight with features like side and split heel support. They will feel great on your feet as long as the sizing is right, and we promise these shoes will get you some looks on the court as well.

Nike offers this shoe up in around 20 different colors from simple black and white combos to wilder options like lava glow and hot punch. They are sized from a 5.5 to a 15 and only available in medium – the standard D width for men.

It’s a new shoe, so don’t pay attention to the ratings on this one as this footwear is beloved by the pros and average Joes. The Cage 3 comes with a 2-year warranty against defects in workmanship and a six-month durability guarantee on the outsole.

Features

  • Caged design
  • External heel clip
  • Medial mid-foot shank
  • Medial mid-foot shank


Pros

Zoom Air cushioning

Plenty of colors to choose from

Modern design

Excellent warranty

Cons

Limited widths

Could be too snug for some


02

Babolat Men’s Propulse Fury All Court Tennis Shoes

Babolat Men’s Propulse Fury All Court Tennis Shoes

Babolat is a name tennis players will know although they haven’t been producing shoes nearly as long as dedicated shoe companies or other athletic manufacturers. The Babolat Propulse Fury shoes are our top pick from the company and one that should be high on your list.

The first thing you’ll notice about these shoes is the design. They have a 90s kind of vibe, which isn’t a bad thing – especially if you like fading color schemes. The outside of the shoe has one of those which extends to the quarter on one side. On the opposite side, the mesh is fully encased three-part shield system.

The design isn’t just for looks…

Capture2 300x130 - Babolat Men’s Propulse Fury All Court Tennis ShoesThis shoe has a higher collar which gives you extra support, but it’s cushioned and quite comfortable along with the tongue. That funky outside layer is a shield system of sort comprised of three different technologies with the S-Shield, Pro Shield and Soft Shield tech.

The S-Shield takes care of the upper and is a material that varies in thickness by the zone. Areas that catch more of the ground are thicker, and it tapers in zones which require more flex. The Soft Shield targets flexible areas of the shoe as well while Pro shield uses high-performance materials to increase durability in localized spots.

Active Flexion is another cool piece of tech built into the shoe. It doesn’t add any cosmetic flair but certainly won’t cramp your style as it handles pressure points in your foot. Like a shoe with thick tread built to last years on the court? Well, it’s hard to top Michelin rubber, and these shoes are suitable for all surfaces as you can see from the video below…

The Babolat Propulse Fury comes with a six-month warranty on that thick Michelin outsole and is available from a size 6.5 to a 12 in standard width. This pair is only available in the black and white fade color scheme, but there is a slick grey and orange combo available as well.

Features

  • Orhtolite insole
  • Kompressor heel cushioning
  • Tri-shield technology
  • 15.2 ounces (size 10 ½”)

Pros

6-month outsole warranty

Comfortable, little to no break-in

True to size

Roomy toe box

Cons

Limited sizes and colors

Style and height won’t be for everyone

Possible slippage


03

ASICS Men’s Gel-Solution Speed 3 Shoe

ASICS Men’s Gel-Solution Speed 3 Shoe

Capture4 300x111 - ASICS Men’s Gel-Solution Speed 3 ShoeLooking for a tennis shoe that screams speed at first glance? Well, ASICS has just the thing for you with the Gel-Solution Speed 3, a responsive shoe with a low profile design that’s great whether you’re playing tennis or a few rounds of ping pong.

This tennis shoe has a vented design that’s a little busy, but easy on the eyes. The top of the toe box and sides are mesh to help keep your feet cool. A material called Flexion Fit takes care of the rest and provides support in all the key areas. It also looks pretty darned cool and stretches more than shoes with basic mesh venting.

ASICS didn’t slot this shoe into a class, but it’s safe to say it’s an all-terrain tennis shoe. You’ll have no issues playing indoors or out. We’re not sure if they have a name for the pattern employed on the sole, but trust us when we say it gives you plenty of traction and allows you to cut on a dime. Responsive is certainly an accurate word. We don’t have a shot of them on the court, but they do look good out of the box…

One feature we want to touch on is called the P.H.F. system. That stands for personal heel fit and consists of two layers of memory foam around the collar. They conform to your heel which leaves you with a customized fit without the cost of true custom shoes. It also adds an additional layer of comfort along with a unique cushioning system.

The ASICS Gel-Solution Speed 3 uses rear and forefoot cushioning that would make other shoes jelly. It helps with impacts and toe-off phases while covering all the transitions in the foot. The PGuard toe protector adds protection to the tips while a high abrasion rubber outsole takes care of damage from the sides.

From the company’s tried and true Trusstic system to their shock absorbing gel, there is a lot to like about the Speed 3 tennis shoes from ASICS. The only issue is that some consumers feel these shoes run a bit narrow, so you may need to size up if you have a wider foot. They are sized from a 6 to a 15 in a half-dozen colors and come with a 1-year warranty against manufacturing defects.

Features

  • Gel cushioning system
  • PGuard toe protector
  • Heel fit collar lining
  • Flexion upper

Pros

They are extremely comfortable

Accurate sizing

Sweet price tag

Six color options

Cons

May require an extended break in

The design may not be for everyone


04

Adidas Barricade Club Tennis Shoe

Adidas Barricade Club Tennis Shoe

Adidas produces footwear for all the major sports including tennis. While they had a half-dozen eligible contenders for our list, the Barricade Club shoe stood out due to a combination of style and affordability.

Capture6 300x112 - Adidas Barricade Club Tennis ShoeThis shoe has an interesting, yet functional style that provides a good amount of airflow while you’re on the court. The upper is made from a lightweight mesh that covers the middle of the shoe and wraps around the top of the toe box. The three stripe logo is on the outside of each shoe along with the tongue and counter as well.

As we said, the design is functional on the Barricade Club tennis shoe. ADITUFF covers the front of the toe and the area around the medial forefoot. This provides protection from the court against dragging your foot on serves and other types of lateral movement on hard courts. The high toe cap also helps in that regard.

What about clay?

While these shoes will work on clay courts, they are ideal for hard surfaces or indoor courts. They are perfect for aggressive players as well thanks to features like 3D Torsion which gives you adaptive midfoot support. They have a lightweight EVA midsole to go along with the company’s non-marking ADIWEAR 6 outsole.

We’re happy to let you know the Adidas Barricade Court is a comfortable shoe. ADIPERNE+ runs the full length of the shoe which adds considerable comfort and cushioning at the point of impact. The cuff is nice and cushy as well along with the tongue. It’s a shoe consumers have enjoyed for years, and one you’ll dig as well provided you have a normal-sized foot. Here’s what the shoe looks like out of the box…

While the Adidas Barricade Court is available in a wide variety of sizes from a Men’s 4.5 all the way up to a 14.5. Unfortunately, they are all normal or medium width, so you’re out of luck if you need something wider. The Barricade’s should definitely be on your list although users we polled also felt the newer models don’t hold up quite as well as the previous generation.

There are 10 different colors available however depending on this size you choose. We couldn’t dig up any concrete info on the warranty for this particular pair of shoes, but this may clear up any questions you have in regards to returns.

Features

  • Full-length ADIPRENE+ cushioning
  • 360-degree TPU support
  • ADITUFF protection

Pros

Great price point

10 different colorways

Perfect for hard courts

Very durable sole

Cons

Only medium widths

Quality control


05

New Balance MC806 Tennis Shoe

New Balance MC806 Tennis Shoe

One of the things consumers love about New Balance is they give you the ability to pick up your favorite style year after year. It’s nice to have some stability from a brand that in the design department, and your feet will be stable on the court with the New Balance MC806 tennis shoes.

The first type of tech we want to talk about in this shoe is called ROLLBAR. It’s basically a TPU medial or lateral post with a plate built into the shoes towards the rear. It helps minimize foot movement by controlling the motion. This prevents pronating or supination as it reinforces the midsole sidewalls. In layman’s terms, you’re not going to break your ankles trying to cut on the court with the MC806s.

Capture8 300x115 - New Balance MC806 Tennis ShoeMotion control is nice, but it won’t do you a whole lot of good if the shoes are uncomfortable. That’s one area that has never been an issue for New Balance, and we’re pleased to say these shoes are as comfy as they come. That’s due in part to the ABZORB cushioning system and the C-CAP midsole. Compression-molded EVA is never a bad thing when you want flexibility and support.

As for the style, this shoe isn’t too wild and looks like a traditional tennis shoe. It’s cut at just the right height with a full-grain leather upper, and a reinforced long-wear drag tip on the toe. The herringbone pattern ensures you’ll get plenty of traction, and while there isn’t much venting, most consumers found these shoes to be comfortable and cool.

One interesting feature…

The New Balance MC806 aren’t necessarily expensive, and you’re getting a lot of bang for your buck with these shoes. They come with a cool perk as well if you’re on Medicare as this particular style is approved with the HCPCS code A5500 which means they are “eligible” for Medicare reimbursement. That’s a nice bonus, and so is their Lightning Dry tech which wicks water away from your feet on those hot summer days.

We’re big fans of anything New Balance, and the MC806s are a nice alternative to flashier brands like Nike and Adidas. If you have a narrow or wider foot, you’ve just found your best option as well considering you can purchase these shoes in different widths. There is no extended warranty with these shoes, but you can scoop them up from a 7 to a size 16 from narrow to extra wide.

Features

  • ABZORB cushioning system
  • Long wear drag tip
  • Lightning Dry tech
  • Medicare approved

Pros

Very comfortable tennis shoes

Excellent durability

Leather upper

Narrow and Wide sizes!

Cons

No warranty

Lack of colors


06

Nike Air Zoom Vapor X

Nike Air Zoom Vapor X

Capture10 300x121 - Nike Air Zoom Vapor XIf you love Nike’s lineup of shoes, but don’t fancy the Swiss cheese nature of the Cage 3, we have just the thing for you. The Nike Air Zoom Vapor X is another shoe geared towards the court although it has a completely different style along with something called a Zero Distraction Upper.

Before we get to that fancy upper, we’re going to talk about the outsole. This is a hard court shoe that’s built for speed and control. While you can use it on other surfaces, it’s not what it’s made for so keep that in mind. You’ll get excellent traction from herringbone pattern on the Air Zoom Vapor X, and the non-marking outsole will outlast other shoes in this range. Nike bills it as an “explosive” shoe, and we can certainly see why.

Back to the upper…

While this shoe is decked out with plenty of tech and some interesting marketing terms, we’re going to talk about that upper. It’s deemed “Zero Distraction” due to its minimalistic design as it’s not busy like other shoes but still feels fast.  It’s a one-piece mesh upper with an overlay which adds structure and also protects areas like the toe. Here’s a better look at the shoe…

All the design elements flow together nicely, and if you like clean shoes with a modern look, the Zoom Vapor X is tough to beat. It’s quite comfortable as well thanks to Nike’s Dynamic Fit system. It essentially wraps around your foot to give you a snug fit from the arch to the laces. You can stop on a dime with these shoes, and the Zoom Air pocket in the heel will help keep you comfortable on the court.

You can scoop up the Nike Air Zoom Vapor X in a variety of hues from solar red and black to hyper crimson and cream. Despite their “Zero Distraction” tag, there are some patterns that pop in this lineup. They still don’t come in narrow sizes, but you can pick up a pair for the little man in your life as they come in child sizes as well!

Features

  • Dynamic Fit technology
  • Zero distraction upper
  • XDR rubber outsole
  • TPU midfoot shank

Pros

Great design and colorways

Outstanding traction

Lightweight

Little to no break-in

Cons

The price tag

Not ideal for wider feet


07

ASICS Gel-Resolution 7 Tennis Shoe

ASICS Gel-Resolution 7 Tennis Shoe

While we’re fans of the Speed 3 and that lineup as a whole, sometimes you need something a little more stable on the court. That’s where a shoe like the ASICS Gel-Resolution 7 comes into play as it doesn’t compromise when it comes to stability or durability on the court.

Comparing the Resolution 7’s design to the Speed 3 is like comparing apples and oranges. The latter is built for “speed” with a lightweight upper and plenty of ventilation. We’re not going to say the ASICS Resolution 7 is a slow shoe, but the design certainly makes a difference.

Capture12 133x300 - ASICS Gel-Resolution 7 Tennis ShoeThe area around the toe box has been enhanced. This means you’ll get an additional layer of protection over the mesh and some extra rubber on the toe. That rubber is AHAR+ and used on the outsole as well where it provides grip and excellent abrasion resistance that’s three times higher than traditional rubber.

How tough is the rest of the shoe?

Fairly tough although after the third eyelet from the toe, the back half of the upper softens up. The Flexion Fit upper allows for a snug fit while gender-specific cushioning ensures you’ll have the right amount of cushion and compression. It’s a little heavier than full mesh shoes and well-built like the rest of the company’s shoes, but only the outsole comes with a 6-month warranty.

Another thing we like about the Resolution 7 tennis shoes is the GEL cushioning system. In this case, you’ll find it in the rear and forefoot where it handles shock during toe-off and impact phases. While it’s not what we would consider a “fast” shoe, most folks have been happy with the weight given the durability.

We think the ASICS Gel Resolution 7’s are an excellent option for beginners as they are in the middle of the pack in most areas. That’s ideal when you’re not sure what you need from a shoe, and can’t try before you buy. On the downside, they aren’t the best choice if you want a quick shoe that lets your feet breath. You can pick these shoes up in the usual sizes and in five colors ranging from wild to mild.

Features

  • Flexion Fit upper
  • PGuard toe protection
  • Impact Guidance System
  • AHAT+ outsole


Pros

6-month warranty on the outsole

Excellent abrasion resistance

Ample cushioning

Clean and simple design

Cons

The weight

Hotter than other shoes


08

Babolat Jet Mach 2 Tennis Shoe

Babolat Jet Mach 2 Tennis Shoe

Our second option from Babolat is completely different than our first. Not only do they have a different style and design, the Jet Mach 2 tennis shoes are built for clay courts. While that’s nice, it’s far from the only unique feature unless you consider Kevlar and Michelin-grade rubber common materials.

When you play on clay more often than not, you need a special shoe. Those all-court shoes may work, but they won’t have the same construction and build quality of the Jet Mach 2. Babolat wanted to make sure this shoe was tough, even if it doesn’t look like it. They accomplished this feat through an interesting blend of materials called Matryx.

Capture14 300x117 - Babolat Jet Mach 2 Tennis ShoeThis material utilizes a blend of Kevlar and Polyamide fibers woven into targeted zones on the shoe. In this case, you’ll get abrasion resistance on the inside and additional protection around the toe. The fabric looks good and still allows your feet to breathe without compromising when it comes to stability.

But isn’t it still mesh?

Technically it is although the blend is strong and there is a Stability Arch system to boot. It consists of four durable fiber straps and compliments the shock absorption setup nicely. An EVA pad called the KPRS-X takes care of impacts from the court and is designed especially for the movements of tennis players.

We’re big fans of this shoe and think you will be as well – they perform as advertised. The only downside is that you’ll need to break them in and they aren’t exactly budget-friendly. We hope you like blue and yellow as well considering it’s the only option available for the clay version of this shoe. The Babolat Jet Mach 2 Clay is available in the usual sizes but only in standard widths.

Features

  • Stability arch system
  • Zone-woven Matryx fibers
  • Michelin outsole
  • Built for clay courts

Pros

Excellent motion on clay

Stylish design

Great airflow

Built to last

Cons

The price tag

Limited colors

Need to be broken in


09

Adidas Men’s Adizero Ubersonic 2

Adidas Men’s Adizero Ubersonic 2

This tennis shoe has an interesting moniker, and we can say the same thing about its design. The Adidas Adizero Ubersonic 2 could pass as a mid-cut basketball shoe, but is definitely built for the other type of court…

Capture16 300x111 - Adidas Men’s Adizero Ubersonic 2Adidas, like other companies, loves to give their technology funky names. This time around it’s something called SPRINTFRAME which was first introduced in soccer shoes. It’s basically a frame or chassis that gives you additional support and stability while keeping your feet low to the ground.

They won’t increase your height, but they will allow you to cut on a dime without damaging your feet or the sides of your shoes. As you’d expect, you’ll get ADIPRENE under the forefoot along with other types of tech like 3D TORSION for midfoot support and good old ADITUFF. We’re not going to go into the fine details of what each feature does, so we’ll simply say it’s a well-built shoe that’s stable and fast on the court.

It’s an “all-court” shoe as well, so you’ll get the same performance playing badminton indoors as you will playing tennis on clay. Well… maybe not the same, but they do perform admirably on almost any type of surface as you can see from the video below.

When it comes to the construction, the rubber, and other elements will hold up well, but there is a lot of mesh on the Ubersonic 2. That’s not great for durability but is ideal in warm weather as your feet will certainly stay cool in these shoes. The stretch mesh upper and inner bootee give you a snug fit, and most folks feel these shoes are in the true to fit category as well.

The style of these tennis shoes may rule them out for some as not everyone will be a fan of those plastic looking “wings” towards the back – even if they are functional. You won’t get the 6-month outsole warranty with the Adidas Adizero Ubersonic 2’s, but they are available in the standard sizes and in six different colors.

Features

  • 3D TORSION midfoot support
  • Stretch mesh upper
  • SPRINTFRAME supportive chassis
  • All-court shoe

Pros

Mesh upper keeps your feet fresh

Reasonably priced

Excellent support structure

Six colorways

Cons

Limited color options

No wider sizes


10

Wilson Men’s Rush Pro 2.5

Wilson Men’s Rush Pro 2.5

Wilson is a well-known name in the Tennis world, and they make plenty of equipment for other sports like golf and basketball. We’re not sure how long they’ve been in the footwear game, but the Rush Pro 2.5 tennis shoes are well worth a look and pretty darned stylish to boot.

We’re going to start with the design this time around as Wilson has surprised us with the 2.5. It’s a good looking shoe with a clean design reminiscent of something that would roll off the line at New Balance. There are a variety of colors to choose from as well from wilder colorful hues to more subtle shades like greys and blacks.

This shoe is in the middle of the pack with weight even though it’s mainly made of mesh, not leather. A size 9 weighs around 13 ounces although it’s far from what we would consider heavy. The weight is partly due to the construction and a thick Duralast rubber outsole. The tread pattern makes it suitable for all types of courts including clay and grass.

Capture18 300x116 - Wilson Men’s Rush Pro 2.5Wilson changed a few things up from the Rush 2.0 as the new model has better reinforcement around the toe. It’s also reinforced by the company’s 3D-F.S. technology which adds forefoot support which increases responsiveness for when you need to stop and start suddenly on the court.

Like a snug fit?

If so, you’ll be thrilled to know they went with the “bootie” route with their ENDOFIT system. It’s a full inner sock that keeps your feet in place while allowing them to breathe and pairs nicely with the padded tongue and collar. Other features to note include a cushy R-dst+ midsole and a Pro Torque chassis for improved torsion control.

As you’d expect, there are no narrow or wide options available with this particular shoe. It runs from a 7 to a size 14, and there are 12 different colors to choose from depending on the size you need. It also has a 6-month warranty out of the box, something you won’t find on tennis shoes from other brands.

Features

  • Duralast outsole
  • 3D-FS forefoot support
  • Pro Torque chassis
  • Endofit bootie

Pros

An aggressive shoe that’s low to the court

Feels great on the foot

6-month warranty

Easy to break in

Cons

Quality control

You can get a more popular brand for the same price


11

K-Swiss Men’s Hypercourt Express

K-Swiss Men’s Hypercourt Express

K-Swiss may not be the first name to come to mind when you’re looking for a solid set of tennis shoes made for cutting across the court. It would be a mistake to overlook the men’s Hypercourt Express however as they are built for any court and will outlive other shoes at this range.

While you can play tennis casually without breaking a sweat, the sport itself can wreak havoc on your footwear. Soles can wear out quickly, and the sides can give away if the design is poor or the company uses odd materials. K-Swiss combats this by using a seamless heat welding technique which keeps things clean while adding support.

As for the traction, that comes from the sole which has herringbone tread and is made from Aösta II, a high-density rubber. There is a molded EVA insole which an ample amount of cushioning and a nonslip heel lining. The tongue and collar are also heavily padded on the Hypercourt Express, and the overall is what we would refer to as an acquired taste.

Capture20 300x126 - K-Swiss Men’s Hypercourt ExpressThese aren’t bad looking shoes by any means, and more than just a set of Adidas with a few extra stripes. The upper is mesh like most athletic shoes, but the company carried that herringbone across the sides and tip of the toe box as well. It’s different, and we dig the contrasting colors, but it will turn folks off that are looking for a more traditional shoe with a little less pizazz.

On the flipside…

If you do dig shoes that are going to stand out in a crowd, you won’t do much better than these. The color options are outstanding as you can choose anything from blue and neon citron to dark shadow and blazing orange. There truly is something for everyone including calmer hues like white, navy and glacier gray. Color options depend on your size as these run from a 7 to a 12, but we could not dig up any warranty information on this particular shoe, so you’re limited to the usual 30-day return window.

Features

  • Seamfree bonded layers
  • High-density Aösta II outsole
  • Die-cut sock liner
  • DragGuard toe

Pros

Good quality for the price

Nice array of vivid colors

Feel good out of the box

Cons

Lateral support is lacking

Poor warranty


Break-in Period

It can be exciting to crack open a box and see your new shoes in all their glory, and it’s tempting to hit the court straightaway. Well, that could be a mistake depending on the brand and how those shoes are made. Shoes built for tennis courts are just like other types of footwear and sometimes need to be broken in.

Mesh has a lot more give than leather out of the box, so you could be good to go if you have a flexible shoe. You’ll know it once you slip them on and take a few steps, but if they are mainly leather, you may need to do a bit more than walk from the kitchen the couch, so be sure to give them extended time on your feet. Alternatively, you can break them in on the court although you may regret it later.

There are also methods you can use to stretch shoes out if you’re in a pinch, but it’s not something we recommend as you want tennis shoes to conform to your feet – they shouldn’t need stretched. If they feel too tight after you’ve walked around for a bit, exchange them for a different size and don’t try to make them work.

pexels photo 1432039 - 13 Terrific Mens Tennis Shoes  – Hit the Court in 2018

Final Thoughts

We tried to keep things simple with our guide and hope you found something to your liking in our list of the best mens tennis shoes. While we did leave a few brands out, we researched all the top brands along with some you might not be familiar with.

Leaders comparison
The winners

Best products from range

Best of the best

Nike Mens Zoom Cage 3 Tennis Shoes

Nike went all out with this modern tennis shoe and its unique cage which protects the foot as you slide from side to side. It’s available in more colors than you can shake a stick at, and is a favorite among players on the Pro circuit as well!

Best for the money

Adidas Barricade Club Tennis Shoe

This slick looking tennis shoe is a winner in our eyes for several reasons although it all starts with a sweet price point. The Barricade is budget-friendly but packed with features like 360-degree TPU support and abrasion-resistance where it counts.

If you feel we left something out or forgot to mention a key area with tennis shoes, feel free to sound off in the comments section below!

Runner-up

FAQ
Faq

Frequently asked questions

Q:

Can I play badminton, pickleball or squash in these shoes?

Of course, as long as the shoes won’t alter the court or cause you to trip, you’re good to go 99% of the time.

Q:

My club has a grass court; will my hard court shoes be okay?

Great question, and one where we advise you to ask an expert, so you’ll want to call the club.

Q:

Can I toss my shoes in the dryer after I clean them if they have a mesh upper?

Nope, it will ruin your shoes quicker than you’d think. Heat will break down bonds between the soles, uppers and other areas of the shoes. The toe guard is generally the first to “peel” so stay away from excess heat and always let your shoes air dry.

Q:

What will happen if I play in regular shoes?

That depends on your skill level, how long you play and about a half-dozen other factors. The short answer is yes, as many of our staff members have played rounds in regular athletic shoes. You shouldn’t roll an ankle unless clumsy is your middle name, but you’ll want dedicated shoes if you’re picking up the sport.

Q:

Do I need special socks to go with tennis shoes?

Not really as we’ve seen people play in everything from minimalist socks to classic tube socks with colored banding across the top. It comes down to style in some cases although we are fans of any athletic sock that keeps our feet dry and cool.


The team
The team

We made this review

Fletcher Adams
Writer Fletcher Adams
Tiffany Mueller
Editorial Director Tiffany Mueller
Valeria Garcia
Graphic Editor Valeria Garcia
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