Heavy v. Light shoes

thejuice

Hall of Fame
I was in a local golf store the other day and while speaking to the shop owner, was suprised at what he had to say about the weight of tennis shoes. I'm a big guy (6'4", 230 lbs) with an athletic build so I would think that I need as a light a shoe as possible since I have to lug these size 14s around a court (I prefer to play singles). He told me that because of my size, a heavier shoe would actually feel better because my weight would seem to be evenly distributed. He recommended something like a Barricade IV for me while I decided to go with the Breathe Free IIs (I also have a pair of IIIs on order). Maybe I can talk my wife into buying me a pair of the IVs to compare to the Nikes. Anyone have any opinions or comments regarding the shop owners comment?
 

louis netman

Hall of Fame
Weight of shoes & tennis rackets, etc., are all relative to the weight/strength of the user. I once met a large, muscle-bound guy who was using a 9 oz, 115 sq inch racket. "What's wrong with this picture," I asked myself. I eventually sold him one of my Volkl C10 Pro's. His game improved considerably, he now hits a much heavier ball and he'll never look back. In terms of shoe weight, think of the shoe weight required to be stable for an average-size, garden cricket.... then think of the shoe weight that would be required to provide ample stability for Shaquille O' Neil... ;-)
 

nn

Hall of Fame
He is right. I am 173 & close to 6 used heavy (Reebok Pump and Netmaster) and light shoes (Yonex SHT 303). After using both version I can say that heavy shoes are better in terms of stability, cushioning and good for knees. Light weight are not bad but gives me knee pain after playing tough matches.
 

louis netman

Hall of Fame
scez said:
What are the pro and cons of heavy and light shoes?
Light: better foot speed/agility, less energy expenditure going from point A to point B, however not as durable, less support & shock absorption.

Heavy: Better stability, shock absorption (more mass absorbs more energy just like rackets), better durability (all things equal)...downside: well....they're heavy. More energy expenditure going from point A to point B than a lighter shoe, less agility...
 

chess9

Hall of Fame
nn said:
He is right. I am 173 & close to 6 used heavy (Reebok Pump and Netmaster) and light shoes (Yonex SHT 303). After using both version I can say that heavy shoes are better in terms of stability, cushioning and good for knees. Light weight are not bad but gives me knee pain after playing tough matches.
Amen to this comment. I am almost the identical size and had the exact same response to the Yonex light weight shoes. I now save them for matches I know will be difficult, but with the heavier shoes I really don't get around that much slower. Maybe a quarter of a step....I also have very strong legs from years of cycling so I doubt the extra weight is a hindrance.

-Robert
 

Offshore

Rookie
I agree with chess9. I have had an ankle injury in the past so the heavier sneakers give much better stability. I really do not find it much tougher to get around.
 

babar

Professional
I have been using the new K-Swiss Ascendor SLT and Glaciator SCD, both very light shoes. I am 5' 8" and 170 lbs. My knees are starting to feel some slight tweaks and strains when playing that did not happen when I was using my NB 801s and 802s. I feel much faster in my K-Swiss shoes, but there might be something to the heavier shoe benefit.
 

North

Professional
Even though I am small and light, I have a very heavy footfall and can make good sudden cuts in direction, for which light shoes provide little or no cushioning and I get knee pain. I am actually a little faster with somewhat heavier shoes because I feel more confident in the support they give my feet - I get very ginger in too-light shoes. I'm also an avid cyclist - in thinking about it, I'd agree with the previous poster who mentioned this as a help in dealing with the heavier shoes.
 
Is it true the Yonex 304's really do offer the best of both worlds -- light weight AND good cushioning and comfort for aging knees and joints?
 

chris1992

Semi-Pro
Nike air max breathe Cage shoes are the lightest shoes used by the pros on tour.

They provide fantastic footwork and its no surprise nadal uses them.

As for heavy shoes, i dont like the idea of not being light and quick on my feet.
 

mctennis

Legend
I agree with chess9. I have had an ankle injury in the past so the heavier sneakers give much better stability. I really do not find it much tougher to get around.
Ditto here. I think a heavier shoe makes a better and more stable shoe. Just like a racquet IMHO.
 

miniRafa386

Hall of Fame
to be honest, i cant really feel the difference between a heavy or light shoe when im playing, its not like a tennis racquet
 

Pleepers

Professional
Heavy shoes are only for very advanced players.
I'm not sure how that works?

In any event I think tennis shoe weight is really a marginal issue. Your legs carry your body (for most people ~150+ pounds and in this case 230 pounds), so trust me when I say a few ounces are not going to make a huge difference. With in a couple of weeks of wearing whatever shoe -you will get used to them and not at the expense of loosing so much energy you will go home being exhausted. Just buy the shoe that is the most comfortable, most supportive, best looking, and reasonable for your budget. Best of luck and be careful of what salesmen are trying to "push" on you. :D
 

EasternRocks

Hall of Fame
heavier shoes drag ur feet more...it makes u more slower, you would need stronger legs

light shoes are easier to run with and it makes u much faster. i reccomend nike shoes which they tend to me alot lighter. adiadas barricades are rlly heavy, i'm not a big fan of those

..-easternrocks
 
S

Swiftslaughter

Guest
Heavy shoes are only for very advanced players.
Interesting comment. Would anyone else agree with this statement? I am actually deciding whether or not to buy the barricade 4 or the nadal shoes, and will probably buy them through TW, so I can't really say which would be better for my game since I can't try them on to see how they feel.
 
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