Do you prefer clay specific shoes?

Discussion in 'Shoes and Apparel' started by syc23, May 6, 2012.

  1. syc23

    syc23 Professional

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    I normally play on HC but will be taking on weekly lessons for the next 12 weeks on clay. I had a hit with a friend on clay last week and wore my CB 3.1 which I bought last Aug - the shoe has served me well but is pretty beat up now with a lot of tread pattern worn.

    Since I bought a pair of B7s and CB 4.3 (both HC versions), I'll only use these on HC and 'retire' the CB 3.1 and keep these for clay as I seldom play on it.

    I did find a struggle with traction with pretty worn out soles which is no surprise. I'm considering getting another pair of shoes for clay but I not sure whether to get a pair with generic soles for all surfaces or a clay specific soles.

    What are your preference, does a clay sole work so much better?
     
    #1
  2. Say Chi Sin Lo

    Say Chi Sin Lo Legend

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    Never played on clay so I'm interested in this too.

    How is a hard court sole different from a clay sole?
     
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  3. TennisJ

    TennisJ New User

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    Unless you play mostly on clay, you don't need clay specific shoes. I save one of my HC shoes for clay only and the other for HC only. When the HC shoes wear out, I use the clay shoes for HC, and I get a new pair which then I use as the clay shoe. That way I have fresh sole threds when I play on clay.
     
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  4. syc23

    syc23 Professional

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    Seems pretty good logic. My B7 and CB 4.3 both have mesh uppers so not want to mess them up. I don't mind getting another pair for specific use on clay - been thinking about getting a pair of Vapor 9 in cyber/black or clay Breathe 2k11 iD in all black with volt swoosh :)
     
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  5. mikeler

    mikeler G.O.A.T.

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    I just use a shoe with a non marking sole on clay. Works just fine for me.
     
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  6. Ramon

    Ramon Hall of Fame

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    Same here, and I play mostly on clay. I can't even think of a current tennis shoe that doesn't have a non-marking outsole.
     
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  7. McLovin

    McLovin Hall of Fame

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    My summer's are spent mostly on clay, and the last few years I've invested in clay-specific shoes. I can tell a difference, and prefer them to normal hard-court shoes, but most of the time you have to deal w/ odd colors, such as these:

    [​IMG]

    Although I will say that not all clay-specific shoes are great. I didn't care for the Babolat Team All Court clay version last year.
     
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  8. McLovin

    McLovin Hall of Fame

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    Last year I used these:

    [​IMG]
     
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  9. sports4eva115

    sports4eva115 Semi-Pro

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    I used to play on clay with HC shoes (adidas barricade 5's) cuz I didnt think there was much of a difference, but a year ago when I turned my adidas B6's in to TW and thought I might try the adidas B6 clay version. I have to say, to play optimal tennis, play with clay soles on clay. If you play competitively, clay soles definitely give you an advantage on clay to those with HC soles. They grip the clay way better, and with practice you can control when you want to slide and when you want to sprint without slipping. The difference is quite noticable if you're putting some good movement and footwork into your game.
    that being said, I have tried playing on clay with nike 2k11's, which seem to have a sole pattern for both clay and HC, and it performs well enough.
     
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  10. hcb0804

    hcb0804 Hall of Fame

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    I have used clay court shoes and can tell absolutely no difference from wearing normal all court or "hard court" shoes.
     
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  11. TopFH

    TopFH Hall of Fame

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    I played with my 2K10s a good while ago, but their sole was perfect for clay. Since 2K11s have the same sole, try them.
     
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  12. Ramon

    Ramon Hall of Fame

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    What's kind of ironic is that if you wore those shoes to my club, they could throw you out for not having shoes with a predominantly herringbone pattern. What the clubs usually are concerned about is shoes that would wear out the courts faster, and many of them believe that the herringbone pattern is the easiest on the clay courts.
     
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  13. BHiC

    BHiC Rookie

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    I don't think it is worth it to get clay-specific shoes. I play on clay more often than not, and a normal hard court shoe with decent traction works fine. The only time I can tell a significant difference is playing late in the day, in the summer, when the court is dry. Then the clay court shoes will give you much better traction. If you are playing on a decently maintained court, then the difference is very minimal.
     
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  14. Samo

    Samo New User

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    If you know how to slide (and you plan on doing it) on clay, then you definately need clay version. If not than it doesn't really matter.
     
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  15. 6-2/6-4/6-0

    6-2/6-4/6-0 Semi-Pro

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    The new Barricade with the omni sole is pretty solid on clay I've heard.

    I play on clay very rarely, so I just use which ever set of shoes is in the best shape on the sole to maximize the grip. If I could have a set that was for clay only, then I probably would, but that pair would last me years and I'd be going through my HC shoes every few months as usual so I haven't bothered up to this point...

    If you're just on clay one day a week for 12 weeks and then probably not playing on clay again much at all, I'd get an omni/multi surface tread pattern or just a fesh set of HC/herringbone sole shoes rather than a clay-specific set to maximize the versatility.
     
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  16. syc23

    syc23 Professional

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    Thanks for the advice guys :)

    Decided to purchase a pair of FO Vapor 9s - as others have said, will keep these for clay until my other HC shoes wear out.
     
    #16
  17. vsbabolat

    vsbabolat Legend

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    I have found I get better traction on clay with Clay court specific tread.
     
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  18. davedomart

    davedomart Semi-Pro

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    the uppers on the v9 are very liable to rip... just saying 2k11s wouldve been better.
     
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