Clay shoes worth it on Har-Tru?

LiamMiguel

Semi-Pro
Currently in France right now and compared to the US, clay court shoes are much more available here. I just recently moved to the East Coast and have a few clay court tournaments coming up this summer. Obviously, the US has Har-Tru instead of red clay. Based on the differences between Har-Tru and red clay, is it worth to buy clay shoes here?
 

Mike T

Rookie
After slipping twice in the same set a few months ago with a "All Court" sole I went to a clay specific shoe. I noticed a huge improvement in traction. So much so that I will use only a clay specific shoe on Har-Tru in the future. I
 

g4driver

Legend
Hard court shoes get slick about 4X quicker than the same shoe in a clay court version when playing on Har-Tru.

I've played on an near equal mix of Har Tru and hard courts they last 12+ Years , and my hard court shoes get slick within 6-9 months where my Clay court shoes will last 2-3 years before becoming slick on Har-Tru
 

Sardines

Hall of Fame
Currently in France right now and compared to the US, clay court shoes are much more available here. I just recently moved to the East Coast and have a few clay court tournaments coming up this summer. Obviously, the US has Har-Tru instead of red clay. Based on the differences between Har-Tru and red clay, is it worth to buy clay shoes here?
For traction performance, especially recovering from a slide, or accelerating and changing directions, clay outsoles are essential. A freshly barrel rolled Har Tru bounces a bit lower and is faster than red clay.
 

LiamMiguel

Semi-Pro
For traction performance, especially recovering from a slide, or accelerating and changing directions, clay outsoles are essential. A freshly barrel rolled Har Tru bounces a bit lower and is faster than red clay.
Are clay outsoles the same as hard court outsoles with a full herringbone pattern? One I can think of is the Adidas Solecourt/Solematch
 

Sardines

Hall of Fame
The ribs are sharper edged with clay shoes. All clay shoes have a herringbone sharper weave outsole. I stocked up on my clay/grass shoes pre-COV19 so won't be looking at them for another 3-4 years I hope. Seeing how prices have soared, I'm pretty happy I did.
 

LiamMiguel

Semi-Pro

:cry:
I’m not sure why actually. I’ve seen some people back in high school wear them or at least the Fury. They’re not the most popular shoes but people still wear them.

I wore Propulses when Roddick used to wear them when I was a kid, everyone used them at that time.
 
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Chairman3

Hall of Fame
The Nike Vapor Pro is about the only outsole that really digs into clay and is not a clay court herringbone outsole.

That being said, buy the proper shoes.
I play mostly har-tru in FL and have separate clay court and hard court shoes.
 

d-quik

Hall of Fame
I’m not sure why actually. I’ve seen some people back in high school wear them or at least the Fury. They’re not the most popular shoes but people still wear them.

I wore Propulses when Roddick used to wear them when I was a kid, everyone used them at that time.
Have you had the chance to use the Rage yet? Curious about what your opinions are regarding toebox width compared to other heavyweight shoes you have used these years.
 

LiamMiguel

Semi-Pro
Have you had the chance to use the Rage yet? Curious about what your opinions are regarding toebox width compared to other heavyweight shoes you have used these years.
Not yet, I will soon though. Starting training for the summer this coming week. I did walk around in the shoes for a bit though and it does seem a bit more narrow than something like Adidas SCB but I’ll have to be on court to confirm.
 

Sardines

Hall of Fame
Y'all convinced me to buy clay court sneakers, now time to decide Barricades or SS FF2's... hmm
Personally I don't like the SS FF2. The only shoe I've worn where I get a bit of patella soreness after singles. I thought I was just me. However, I never had problems with other shoes, but every time I use the SS, there's soreness. It's probably a me thing, but I gave the SSFF2 away. I do like the Ubersonic 4.0 Clay version. The sock fit is high enough yet doesn't rub, so that helps keep the dirt out.
 

Mike T

Rookie
I bought my first ever pair of Lotto clay specific shoes. I am very happy with their fit, feel, and performance.
 

Sardines

Hall of Fame
I'm never gonna use the Ubersonic after seeing what happened to Zverev. Honestly after this and the Tsitsipas debacle I'm not sure why anyone buys their crap.
I believe Zverev wears the barricade and rolled his foot because he made a mistake by landing on his toes first, which dug into the clay, while his 6'6" frame kept moving. No shoe would've prevented that inversion injury, and it happened even though I'm sure he's taped up the ankle as a preventative measure. Ankle rolls on clay especially is more an issue with errant footwork, more than shoe design.
Tsitsipas' issue is a problem for serious court sliding, which is more extreme use, which isn't a design aspect most designers think about for hard courts, until the last 5-10 years. Extreme use anecdotes do not mean a design "flaw". Of course, you are entitled to your choices and decisions.
 

LiamMiguel

Semi-Pro
I believe Zverev wears the barricade
I think those are still the UB4 chassis.
alexander-zverev.jpg
Either way, I played with the UB3 and never felt secure in that shoe. Not sure if it’s the same in the 4 but still, horrific injury.
 

Sardines

Hall of Fame
Ankle rolls are one of the most common injuries, even when high top tennis shoes were around. I get that stability is important, but citing his injury as a reason why a shoe a flawed is overdoing it, imho.
 
Back to the OP question. Yes, get clay court shoes for Har Tru. It does make a difference. If the Har Tru you're playing on is not well maintained and doesn't have a lot of material on it, go with hybrid shoes where the majority of the outsole is a herringbone pattern.
 

18x20 ftw

Semi-Pro
I finally got tired of skinned up knees and got some clay shoes a couple years ago for hartru. I had slipped to where I had to at least put a hand down at least 10-15 times. The last straw was a match playing a 4.5 counter puncher where I had to come into net a lot. That push off from the split step into the volley was where I kept slipping. It was night and misty and I had had enough! Went to the ASICS gel res 8 CLAY and what a difference. These have mud tire treads. Probably doesn’t matter as much for lower movement folks but as you get higher in level (3.0/3.5?) with more movement it can really help out.
 

silentkman

Professional
Clay court shoes will probably be a purchase you make on occasion. I purchase two pairs for hard court every year and I purchase one clay court pair about four years or so ago. I probably play on clay maybe 4-5 times a year but it's a worthwhile purchase.
 
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d-quik

Hall of Fame
Not yet, I will soon though. Starting training for the summer this coming week. I did walk around in the shoes for a bit though and it does seem a bit more narrow than something like Adidas SCB but I’ll have to be on court to confirm.
So how was it in the end? Forgot about this until now. Did you end up deploying them? Grateful for any feedback specifically regarding toebox width and also heel slippage without runner's knot.
 

Fintft

G.O.A.T.
Went to the ASICS gel res 8 CLAY and what a difference. These have mud tire treads. Probably doesn’t matter as much for lower movement folks but as you get higher in level (3.0/3.5?) with more movement it can really help out.
I second this.
 

LiamMiguel

Semi-Pro
So how was it in the end? Forgot about this until now. Did you end up deploying them? Grateful for any feedback specifically regarding toebox width and also heel slippage without runner's knot.
Yes! Totally forgot about this. Practiced and played on clay courts for most of the summer (with the exception of college tournaments) and it was great. I could easily control sliding on the har-tru and it definitely took some time to get used to.

I’m going to Italy with my team in January and we’re going to be playing dual matches against other academies on red clay so I’ll update after that too.

TLDR: BUY CLAY COURT SHOES IF YOU CAN
 

LiamMiguel

Semi-Pro
In regard to shoe fit and stability, I did try the shoe with both a runner’s knot and without. The Propulse is a pretty stable shoe on its own but I didn’t know how it would feel with the sock-like tongue. Either way, it was stable with and without the knot but with my previous ankle issues, and how much I slide (both on hard and clay), I used the runner’s knot.

Toe box was still slimmer than the SCB so I had a little tighter fit but I think that was just fine with how stable the shoe was.
 

dotmundo

New User
Are clay outsoles the same as hard court outsoles with a full herringbone pattern? One I can think of is the Adidas Solecourt/Solematch
My local court is Har-Tru and I use the Solematch Control. They actually do hold grip and I've had few incidents of slipping. So far they have lasted me for a year although this summer I did have to replace the worn insole.
 
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