Whether you’re a beginner looking to fight his way up the ranks, or a proven vet who knows his way around the wrestling mat, just remember one thing: if you want to be the champ, you have to lace up like a champ. Plain and simple.
Ok, so you’ll still need to rely on your athletic and mental abilities if you plan to lay the smackdown on your opponents, but having a pair of shoes you can rely on in the heat of the battle will certainly help your cause.
Compared to other sports, for wrestling, there aren’t a whole lot of footwear options out there to choose from. In fact, there are only three big-named brands—Asics, adidas, and Nike—that currently serve the wrestling market here in the states. The good news is, however, that this trio of brands has figured out precisely the footwear needs of competitive wrestling, and the results are quite impressive. Here's a round-up of The Best Wrestling Shoes Available Now.
Image via Dickssportinggoods.com
No. 5 - Nike Takedown Three-Quarter
Weight: 8.6 oz
Key feature: Full-length double lasted midsole
The Nike Takedown Three-Quarter is a comfortable and supportive wrestling shoe designed for use on all levels--whether its high school or international competition. While many wrestling shoes tend to feel constricting, the Takedown features breathable mesh upper for proper temperature regulation when the competition heats up. The shoe is loaded with a full-length double lasted midsole for enhanced mat feel, and a rubber outsole with forefoot wraps for reliable traction. Up top, you get a locked-in fit thanks to the ankle strap.
Image via Footlocker.com
No. 4 - adidas Response 3.1
Weight: 8.7 oz
Key feature: ClimaCool ventilation
As a wrestler, sometimes you just want a no-frills shoe that won’t buckle as you go for the match-winning takedown. That’s where the adidas Response 3.1 comes in. At 8.7 ounces, the Response 3.1 isn’t the lightest wrestling shoe on the market, at least on paper anyway. But thanks to its three-layer spacer construction, it feels a lot lighter than you’d think. The shoe is loaded with adidas’ proprietary adiWear outsole for ground-hugging traction, and it even has a RadicalCurve design in the forefoot for proper balance during spins.
Image via Asics.com
No. 3 - Asics JB Elite
Weight: 7.6 oz
Key feature: Split-sole design
Asics designed the all-new JB Elite with insight from World and Olympic Wrestling Champion Jordan Burroughs—so yeah, you bet your ass it’s one of the best wrestling shoes currently on the market. Aside from its flashy gold silhouette (which speaks for itself), the JB Elite is jam-packed with performance features like a Split Sole design for flexibility and traction, along with a durable single-layer mesh upper with seamless TPU overlays for lightweight comfort. In addition, the JB Elite comes with a tongue construction integrated with a lace garage which meets regulations for tournament competition.
Image via Eastbay.com
No. 2 - Nike Inflict
Weight: 9.8 oz
Key feature: Custom-fitting ankle strap
Go to any high school or college wrestling tournament, and you're bound to see your fair share of the Nike Inflict dominating the mat. It's straight-forward design and exceptional performance potential have made the Inflict one of the best-selling wrestling shoes in recent years. It's designed for athletes who like to control the tempo and use their quick footwork to subdue the opponent. The shoe features a gum rubber outsole for proper traction, along with a similar ankle strap construction seen in the Nike Takedown for a custom, locked-in fit.
Image via Eastbay.com
No. 1 - Asics Omniflex-Pursuit
Weight: 7.3 oz
Key feature: Compression-fit bootie system
A shoe designed to help you stand out on the mat, the Asics Omniflex-Pursuit features a unique upper consisting of a compression-fit bootie system surrounded by PU straps for all the proper support without the added weight. The ingenious design also serves a dual purpose, as it makes one the Omniflex-Pursuit one of the more stylish silhouettes we’ve seen in the wrestling category. The Omniflex-Pursuit also features a flexible outsole design with wrestling-specific traction zones that provide exceptional grip on all mat surfaces.