Tennis Shoes Vs Sneakers

Badly need a shoe for playing tennis? Can’t understand whether to buy a Tennis shoe or a sneaker? Which one will be better for you? If you are striving with these questions, then don’t worry. Keep reading this article; you will be able to overcome your confusion.

Historically, Egypt made the world-first shoe. Then the footwear market has expanded manifold over the years. Now there are different kinds of shoes available. Among them, some are for specific usage. Tennis shoes and sneakers are such examples. But many people don’t know the difference between Tennis shoes and sneakers. As a result, they can’t understand which one they should buy. As a result, they sometimes come up with the wrong choice.

Therefore, in this article, I am going to discuss “Tennis shoes vs sneakers” in a comprehensive way. Besides this, you will get answers to some questions in the FAQ section. So, let’s begin.

What are Tennis shoes?

From the name of the shoes, it is quite easy to assume that the usage of the shoe is relatable to tennis. Tennis shoes are specially designed to be used in different tennis matches.

In tennis, a player has to change positions in a blink of an eye. These quick movements sometimes lead the players to ankle injury or knee-joint injury.

Therefore, manufacturers use shock absorbent materials in these tennis shoes. So that, the shoes can offer not only to shock absorbent capacity to the player but also an ankle supportive facility to prevent injury.

The main characteristics of tennis shoes are that they are more comfortable, slimmer, and flexible than other types of shoes. To increase its flexibility, manufacturers use polyurethane material. So that, the shoes can offer flexibility to the player and help the players to surpass the impediments of the courts.

These shoes generally use wide and low rubber soles to offer the player greater lateral mobility. Increasing the durability of the shoes, extra cushioning of rubber is used in the toes of the shoes. Moreover, these shoes use non-scuffing soles since Scuffing soles damage the tennis courts. Overall, these shoes are constructed to offer greater stability, mobility, and traction to the player.

What are Sneakers?

The US Rubber company first brought Sneakers to the market in 1892. Since then, the popularity of Sneakers has been expanding. People gave the name “Sneakers’ based on the squeaking sound created from the sole of the shoes.

However, Sneakers are normal shoes with a rubber sole specially designed for everyday usage. Usually, these shoes use synthetic materials on the top and don’t offer the discerning technical features that tennis shoes have.

For example, Sneakers don’t offer shock absorbing capacity, quick lateral mobility, extra ankle supportive padding, non-scuffing soles. So, you can’t use them while playing tennis on the tennis court though they are super comfortable and flexible to wear.

Tennis Shoes vs Sneakers: Major Differences

Till now, I have mentioned the purpose and basic characteristics of Tennis Shoes and Sneakers. But often, people conflate between Tennis Shoes and Sneakers since they look almost the same.

Though they look alike and come from the same family, there are some basic differences between these two. Now, let’s look at the basic differences between the Tennis Shoes and Sneakers.

1.  Suitability:

 Sneakers are one kind of athletic shoe so that a normal person can use Sneakers for everyday casual usage and running, playing basketball, volleyball, soccer, skateboarding, and so on. However, different sports require different types of Sneakers.

As a result, there are a variety of Sneakers with diverse color options and construction features. Moreover, you can also have your customized Sneakers. These Sneakers are more fashionable, comfortable than those tennis shoes to suit any environment.

In contrast, tennis shoes are only suitable for playing tennis. They feature the most technical features that offer a player protection and enhance his/her performance. Tennis shoes display such features that are necessary for a player to play tennis with safety and flexibility. These shoes offer greater traction, stability, breathability, flexibility through extra padding and rubber soles.

2. Sole:

Tennis shoes offer different varieties of soles that are non-scuffing. Different sole patterns are perfect for different courts. For example, rubber-constructed soles protect the court from putting skidmarks, while Herringbone is ideal for rigid surfaces. On the other hand, dimpled slippery soles are ideal for grass surfaces.

In contrast, Sneakers feature normal rubber soles for everyday wearing.

3. Durability:

Sneakers have less durability than tennis shoes, because manufacturers know that the shoe has to tolerate more wearing and tearing than Sneakers. So, they make tennis shoes in that manner.

However, Sneakers can have more durability if the material is top-notch.

4. Materials:

Tennis shoes are made up of polyurethane and shock absorbent material. The purpose is to provide flexibility while protecting the ankle of the player from rolling. This feature is also beneficial for a player to take quick movement with greater stability.

On the other hand, Sneakers are built up of materials such as canvas, rubber, etc., with nylon or leather on the upper side.

5. Cost:

Both tennis shoes and Sneakers display various cost ranges based on the material, technological feature, brand, and model. But generally, tennis shoes are more costly than Sneakers because tennis shoes are more durable and use comparatively premium materials.

On the other side, you will also get Sneakers with a wide array of prices. Low-priced Sneakers are generally feature-poor, unbreathable soles with poor stitching. At the same time, high-priced Sneakers offer premium soles, and standard stitching ensures longer durability.

6. Cushioning

Tennis Shoes don’t offer that much cushioning because they increase the weight of the shoes. As a result, it will be difficult for the players to make quick moves. Sneakers offer more Cushioning to provide more comfortable walking.

7. Availability: 

Sneakers are easier to find than those tennis shoes. You will get Sneakers in every shoe store with a wide price and pattern options. But you will get tennis shoes in tennis stores.

You can have both Sneakers and tennis shoes online but make sure you can return them if you find any defect.

8. Weight:

Tennis shoes are heavier than Sneakers because tennis shoes provide extra padding to support the ankle, which Sneakers doesn’t offer.


Do sneakers and tennis shoes indicate the same thing?

Although they look similar and come from the same family, they display a wide range of differences. While sneakers are for everyday usage, tennis shoes are for a specific sport. Moreover, tennis shoes offer some extra features such as non- scuffing sole, lateral support, which sneakers don’t offer.

What qualifies as a tennis shoe?

The following features are the major characteristics of a tennis shoe that make it different from the other variety:

· Tennis shoe provides lateral support

· They tend to be flatter yet heavier

· Tennis shoe uses shock absorbent materials to surpass the impediments of the court or road

· Tennis shoe features non- scuffing sole

· They feature less cushioning

Should you buy a tennis shoe or a sneaker?

It depends on what purpose you are purchasing. As aforementioned, there is a diverse range of dissimilarity between a tennis shoe and a sneaker. If you want to buy a shoe for everyday wearing and want something comfortable and stylish, it would be wise to buy a sneaker.

On the other hand, if you are a sport-oriented person and want to buy a shoe for playing tennis, then go for a tennis shoe.

But if you are still confused about whether to buy a tennis shoe or a sneaker, then buy a tennis shoe because you can carry on your everyday wearing and tearing with a tennis shoe but can’t continue with a sneaker for playing tennis.

Are tennis shoes and basketball shoes similar?

Tennis shoes and basketball shoes display almost the same features, but the main difference is that tennis shoes provide lateral support to protect the ankle that basketball shoes don’t feature.

So, if you think of buying one between tennis shoes and basketball shoes, it is beneficial to buy tennis shoes. Because you will get everything that a basketball shoe provides, at the same time, you will get ankle protection.

The Bottom Line

Though Sneakers and Tennis shoes look similar, they display differences based on purpose, materials, soles, weight, comfortability, and other factors. While sneakers are more focused on providing comfort to individuals with the latest designs, tennis shoes focus more on the safety and flexibility of the shoes rather than comfortability because sneakers are for everyday usage while tennis shoes are for tennis.

In this article, I have tried my best to provide all information regarding the differences between Tennis shoes and sneakers. Now, I believe you know all the distinctive features of Tennis shoes and sneakers and will choose the perfect one for yourself. I hope you have found the article comprehensive and helpful, as I said earlier.

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