Here’s What Kind of Shoes You Should Wear When Paintballing


An ideal pair of paintball shoes will help you keep your footing on the paintball field. Ankle injuries are common in paintball, so the right shoes and grip are a crucial part of the paintball equipment. For both safety and comfort, you should ensure that the footwear you choose is closed.

Military-style boots or heavy-duty combat shoes are ideal for paintballing. Athletic and paintball cleats are also perfect because they provide the best traction on the muddy and slick glass areas. Hiking or running shoes may also be a great option if you seek more flexibility and breathability.

The rest of this article will discuss:

  • What you should look for in paintballing shoes
  • The different types of paintballing shoes
  • Paintball cleats
  • Combat boots
  • Athletic shoes
  • Athletic cleats

In a hurry? For muddy and wet paintball fields you should wear paintball cleats shoes, while for overall comfort trail running shoes are a perfect fit. You can get both from Amazon.

Prices and images pulled from the Amazon Product Advertising API on:

What to Look for in Paintballing Shoes

Many paintball games focus all their attention on choosing the right gun to give them an edge over other plays and forget one essential item; paintball shoes. Many players will conduct extensive research to select the suitable paintball arena but fail to choose the shoes. There are several options when selecting the right paintballing shoes.

You should consider the environments you will encounter and the movements you will make during the match to choose the ideal paintballing shoes. Will you be running both short and long-distance splints during the game? Consider whether you will be stopping or making swift changes during the match. Ensure that the shoes you select will withstand agile motions and speedy changes in direction.

Always remember that paintballing fields are often dirty, muddy, and wet. Your shoe should be strong to withstand this. Where you intend to play, and the playing style will determine the right paintballing shoes. If you are making long runs or short sprints, you should go for breathable and lightweight shoes. This will prevent your feet from getting overheated, overly sweaty, or too tired during a long paintball match.

Go for paintball shoes that provide excellent ankle support if you will be ducking or dodging during the match. Shoes with excellent ankle support will also be ideal if you will be making sudden changes in direction. This will prevent you from spraining or rolling your ankle during the game.

You should choose paintball shoes with great traction or slip-resistant shoes if you play in wet or muddy areas. You would not like to slip and fall during the match. You’ll need shoes that help you maintain a firm grip on the ground irrespective of the movements that you will be making.

Above all, ensure that you choose comfortable paintball shoes. Uncomfortable shoes will severely affect your performance and could lead to ankle injuries. Whatever the type of paintball shoes you choose, ensure that they are a perfect fit, and provide maximum comfort.

Below is a video on what to wear to play paintball for the first time:

Different Types of Paintballing Shoes

When paintballing, you should wear boots or high-tops if possible to avoid ankle sprains since ankle twists are the most common paintball injury. Hiking boots that offer a good grip on the mud would be ideal while playing in muddy areas. Old trainers may be just fine if they are comfortable. Whichever shoe you choose, go for those that you don’t mind getting dirty or wet.

Paintball Cleats

If you are playing in wet and muddy fields, paintball cleats are the ideal shoes. Paintball cleats offer an advantage over other shoes because they are designed with paintball in mind. Therefore, a paintball cleat will fulfill all your needs, including traction and comfort as you play.

Paintball cleats have sharp spikes at the bottom. Even while playing on wet ground, the spikes will dig into the ground and provide a firm grip. You will maintain traction at all times, and there is no risk of slipping and falling while running. Paintball cleats come in handy if you will be making sudden turns and twists to avoid your opponent.

You can choose between high and low-top options while selecting your paintball cleats. You will find the perfect style for the match. Low-top paintball cleats provide a great range of motion and ankle flexibility. On the other hand, high-top cleats provide the best protection for your ankle. 

Combat Boots

Combat boots, also known as military-style boots, are also an excellent paintball shoe option. Combat boots rank among the most durable footwear for paintballing. Combat boots feature rigid leather material that will not tear during a rough paintball game. The shoes could last for many years without falling apart.

The best thing about combat boots is that the leather in them is waterproof. You can pass through muddy areas and puddles in the paintball arena without ruining your boots. You don’t have to worry about water penetrating your boots and leaving you uncomfortable for the rest of the match.

The majority of combat boots are complete with steel caps or steel toes. These features will improve your performance and offer protection to your shoes during the match. You’ll probably not notice it even if you bang your foot on the wall or other obstacle during the game.

Another great advantage of military or combat boots is that they extend above your ankle. All you have to do is lace them up properly and tighten them. The boots will prevent you from rolling your ankle during the paintball match. Since combat shoes are a bit bulky, they may not be ideal if you prefer lighter shoes. Even if combat shoes may be a bit tiring, their bulkiness is what makes them tough and long-lasting.

Hiking or Running Shoes

Running shoes do not provide the best protection while paintballing. However, these shoes are ideal if you will be trekking across the arena countless times while paintballing. The main benefit of running shoes is how light and comfortable they are. You will be able to run quicker and much longer during the game. Most running and hiking shoes have exceptional interior cushioning that makes them comfortable.

Cleats and combat shoes may be taxing to your feet, but running shoes offer unmatched breathability. Your feet will not overheat or sweat excessively during a match. Most running shoes have a mesh exterior that will allow free airflow. You don’t have to worry about getting blisters on your feet.

If you feel like running shoes are not tough enough for paintballing, you may want to try hiking shoes. Hiking shoes have tougher outsoles than running shoes, and you will not experience discomfort when you encounter rocks on the field.

You can barely exhaust the wide variety of running and hiking shoes available to choose from. You will get a pair that supports your feet and provide the grip you desire. However, most running and hiking shoes do not cover the ankles. Therefore, you might be at risk of spraining or rolling your ankle while playing in challenging places.

Athletic Cleats

It would be best to do some research before selecting the right athletic cleats for a paintball game. Not all types of athletic cleats are similar and different shoe options offer different benefits. Choosing athletic cleats with high ankle support will prevent your ankles from rolling or spraining during a match.

Athletic cleats with low ankle support will give your ankles more flexibility and a wider range of motion. Consider whether you need toe cleats athletic shoes or no toe cleats shoes. Toe cleats allow you a firm and better grip, mainly while sprinting. No toe cleats may be safer, especially if you trample on another player. 

Summing Up

You have several options while choosing the ideal shoe for a paintball game. You just have to select the shoe that matches the paintball arena and playing style. Paintball cleats will be ideal if you play in fields with little traction, mainly muddy and wet fields. Running or hiking shoes are ideal for overall comfort during long matches. Combat boots provide unmatched dependability and durability.

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