Most paintball players will spend hours looking for the perfect gun to get an edge over their opponents. They’ll do their research to find the most highly-rated paintball arena within a 30-mile radius. But, picking out their shoes seems to be an afterthought.
Best shoes for paintball are Rugged, wet, and dirty arenas call for heavy-duty combat or military-style boots. Paintball and athletic cleats are perfect for keeping traction on the slick grass and muddy areas. For a more flexible shoe with a little breathability, running or hiking shoes are your best options.
You have plenty of choices when it comes to the shoes you can wear when playing paintball. So, let’s go over exactly what you should be looking for and the types of footwear you’ll want to consider.
What to Look For
To understand what the ideal paintball shoes are, you need to consider the types of movements and environments you’ll see during a match. So, here are a few things you need to consider.
- Running (both long-distance and sprints)
- Sudden accelerations and stopping
- Swift changes in direction and agile motions
- Wet, muddy, and dirty fields
So, what does that mean when it comes to picking out shoes?
Well, that depends on your playing style and where you tend to play.
You’ll want a paintball shoe that’s lightweight and breathable when it comes to running long distances or even sprints. This can keep your legs from getting tired while also preventing your feet from getting overly sweaty or overheated during a long match.
For sudden changes in direction like when you’re dodging or ducking for cover, you’ll want a paintball shoe that offers incredible ankle support. This can limit the risk of rolling or spraining your ankle during a match.
And, wet and muddy environments call for paintball shoes that are slip-resistant or provide fantastic traction. You’ll want a shoe that keeps you firmly gripped to the ground, no matter what movements you’re making.
Lastly, you want comfortable shoes. Having uncomfortable paintball shoes not only causes aches and pains but can also severely impact your performance.
When it comes to athletic cleats for major sports, you want to do a little bit of research before trying them in paintball. That’s because not all styles of athletic cleats are the same, with some providing much better paintball benefits than others.
Here’s what you need to know before we go over each type.
- High ankle support is great for protecting your ankles from rolling during a match.
- Low ankle support gives you a greater range of motion and flexibility.
- Toe cleats have cleats at the front portion, which allows you to get a better grip into the ground when sprinting.
- No toe cleats are safer for instances where you happen to trample another player.
Here’s what makes each style of cleat different.
- Football: High ankle support and no toe cleats
- Soccer: Low ankle support and no toe cleats
- Lacrosse: High ankle support and toe cleats
- Baseball: Low ankle support and toe cleats
Paintball cleats are the ideal choice in footwear in particularly muddy or wet fields. What’s great about them is that they’re built specifically with paintball in mind, so you can be sure that they target each and every one of your needs when playing.
At the bottom of paintball, cleats are sharp spikes. These spikes allow your feet to dig into the ground at all times. This can help you keep traction while you’re running and keep your feet from slipping out. Cleats also come in handy when it comes to planting your feet to make sudden twists and turns to avoid an opponent.
What also makes paintball cleats such a great choice is that you have both low and high-top options. That means you can choose a style that’s best for your match. Low-tops would be better for ankle flexibility and range of motion. High-tops are great for protecting your ankles.
When it comes to paintball cleats, what you need to look for is a pair of cleats that give your lower body more agility so you can perform better on your upper body dexterity. Some people choose combat boots for paintball due to durability and protection, but cleats that give you enhanced agility can unquestionably enhance your game.
While main stream painball cleats like HK Army, Exalt TRX, and GL Sportz are specialized in painball, we find that most paintball players prefer major sports cleats. Here are the traits and advantages offered by sports cleats:
- If you want to protect your ankle from injury during a match, go for football cleats.
- If you’re looking for better flexibility and a wider range of movement, go for soccer cleats.
- If you need a better grip into the group for a more explosive sprint, go for baseball cleats.
- If you prefer an overall well-balanced performance, go for lacrosse cleats.
HK Army Shredder 2.0 Paintball Cleats
- Shoes run a half size small. Keep this in mind while choosing shoe size.
- 8 integrated traction spikes made of high grade TPU
- Proprietary high performance adhesive connecting the upper body to the sole for...
- Mesh ventilated upper body with TPR molded accents
When you need to be able to cut sharp corners and turn around on a dime to make your shot, trust the HK Army Shredder 2.0 Paintball Cleats to keep you stable on your feet.
These shoes are designed with paintball courses in mind with 8 integrated traction spikes that are made out of top quality TPU that grips the courts and gives you better control.
The footwear features high-performance adhesive that helps keep the upper of the shoes connected securely to the soles to provide you with shoes that can outlast many games to come.
HK Army Digger X1 Hightop Paintball Cleats
- 15 integrated traction spikes
- Hightop construction for superior ankle support
- Memory Foam insole for maximum comfort on all playing terrain
- Proprietary high performance adhesive connecting the upper body to the sole for...
With all of the support around the ankles you need and the traction your paintball course demands, the HK Army Digger X1 Hightop Paintball Cleats are excellent paintball cleats designed to help you play your best.
These cleats have 15 integrated traction spikes on the bottom that provide you with all of the grip you need to stay in total control of your movements without slipping around as you play.
The footwear features high-quality adhesive that keeps the soles and the uppers securely attached to one another to make them durable enough to outlast game after game without wearing down.
Under Armour Men’s Breathe Trainer
- Durable synthetic upper & soft textile tongue deliver a lightweight & supportive...
- Die cut EVA footbed feels comfortable & stable under the foot
- Rubber molded cleats provide superior traction on any surface
- Weight: 15.8 oz.
When traction and control count the most while playing paintball, the Under Armour Men’s Breathe Trainer will ensure that you are provided with both in equal measure.
These paintball cleats feature traction spikes that help provide more grip on the terrain, letting you stop on a dime and make swift movements without losing your footing.
The high shaft gives your ankles plenty of support as well. These cleats come with a strong upper and a super-soft textile tongue that puts emphasis on your comfort while also ensuring a lightweight feel that won’t cause fatigue due to your footwear.
New Balance Men’s Rush V2
- Truly Unique: The New Balance Fresh Foam Roav v1 running shoes are the ultimate...
- Fresh Foam Midsole: Feel like you're running or walking in the clouds. The first...
- NDurance Outsole: Step up your game without wearing out your favorite running...
- Ultra Heel: These neutral running shoes boast a head-turning heel that performs...
Stay on top of your paintball game and look stylish while you do it with the New Balance Men’s Rush V2 Lacrosse Shoe.
These high-quality cleats provide support from toe to heel with its comfortable midsole that provides you with a soft place to step. The traction on the rubber outsole of the shoe ensures that every move you make will be a calculated and controlled one to keep you upright while you stop or run to shoot.
These low-top shoes stop just around the base of the ankles in order to reduce any limitation of your range of movement.
Under Armour Men’s Harper 4
- Synthetic upper is lightweight & durable with 3D print for added abrasion
- Adjustable ankle strap locks you in with powerful stability & support
- Full-length EVA midsole helps disperse cleat pressure & provides ideal comfort &...
- Rubber molded cleats provide optimal traction & durability for all field...
Get support where you need it most while playing paintball in this Under Armour Men’s Harper 4 Mid Rm Baseball Shoe.
These shoes feature high-quality traction spikes on the rubber outsole that grip the court no matter if you are running, sprinting, sneaking or stopping suddenly, letting you move with total control and ease.
The shaft rises up the ankle in an effort to give you support while you run and has an adjustable ankle strap so you can secure it properly where it belongs. The full-length EVA midsole helps spread out the weight and pressure on the shoe to keep your feet comfortable.
Adidas Performance Mundial Team Turf Soccer Cleat
Subtle style, low-key looks and high-performance capabilities characterize the Adidas Performance Mundial Team Turf Soccer Cleat, a high-quality paintball cleat that is ready to help you excel at your game.
This action footwear is fashioned out of 100 percent leather to give them that classic sporty look with a soft synthetic lining inside to keep your feet comfortable while you play.
The strong rubber sole features short cleats that wear hard to keep you stable on your feet no matter what kind of terrain you are playing on. The strong shaft measures approximately 6 inches from the arch.
New Balance Men’s Burn X2
- Fully knit upper with kinetic stitch stability/lockdown and film only where...
- Dual-Density TPU (thermo polyurethane) plate provides the perfect combination of...
- Data-driven insert and a supportive knit collar offer out-of-the-box comfort
Designed to be as breathable as possible, the New Balance Men’s Burn X2 Low-Cut Lacrosse Shoe is a high-quality shoe that will keep your feet feeling cool and comfortable for the duration of your paintball match.
The synthetic uppers have a breathable composition that pushes air in and out when you walk and run. The sole of these paintball cleats is fashioned out of high-quality TPU material and features various cleat spikes designed to grip the terrain and keep you stable on your feet.
The black color ensures they will work in easily with your favorite paintball gear.
Mizuno Men’s 9 Spike ADV Erupt 3
- Anytime, anywhere
- Another quality product
- Top of the line
Stay comfortable for the duration of your paintball match when you wear the Mizuno Men’s 9 Spike ADV Erupt 3. This action footwear features nine cleat spikes on the outsole that gives you outstanding grip against the ground, providing total support and stability while you move.
The design offers a plush tongue and collar, providing you with support around the top of the foot and as well as the ankle. Thanks to the full length EVA footbed, every step you take is cushioned and supported with a lightweight design that works together to keep your feet from feeling fatigued.
Under Armour Men’s Nitro
- Combination of coated textile with strategically placed synthetic creates a...
- Open holed mesh tongue construction for enhanced breathability
- Molded toe cap for increased protection & durability
- TPU heel clip offers additional support & stability
Play at your best and with total comfort with the help of the Under Armour Men’s Nitro Low Mc Football Shoe.
This shoe is perfect for playing paintball due to its cleat spikes that hold fast to the ground and will give you the stability you need to make sharp moves and quick stops.
The combination of synthetic material and coated textile work together to provide you with superior ventilation and comfort, keeping your feet cool and dry no matter how long you play. The die cut EVA sockliner interior works to make every step you take more comfortable.
Under Armour Men’s Spotlight Mc Lacrosse Shoe
- Woven upper provides a lightweight, sock like fit, with woven in TPU coated...
- Full length bootie construction with molded ankle collar for greater structure,...
- TPU heel unit & coating on toe box for enhanced protection & durability
- High rebound SuperFoam insole provides optimal shock absorption & comfort
Play with style and comfort in equal measure when you choose the Under Armour Men’s Spotlight Mc Lacrosse Shoe.
Ideal for paintball, these shoes feature strong, strategically placed cleat spikes on the outsoles that are specifically designed to handle all kinds of terrain, no matter where you play.
The footwear features full-length bootie construction that gives your ankles all of the support they need, helping to ensure a more comfortable fit. With the TPU coating on both the toe box and the heel, there is more protection and durability in this shoe than there is in most other cleats.
Military-style boots, sometimes called combat boots, are the most durable footwear you can use when playing paintball. This boot style is usually constructed of tough leather material, so you don’t have to worry about them becoming damaged during an intense match. In fact, some are built to last for years without falling apart.
What’s even better is that the leather in military boots is often waterproof. That means you can sprint through puddles or mud in the arena without ruining the strength of the leather. Plus, you don’t have to worry about the water soaking into your boots and leaving your boots waterlogged for the rest of the match.
Combat boots are also known for having steel toes or steel caps. These won’t improve your performance as much as they’ll provide protection to your feet during a match. If you happen to trip over a log or bang your foot into a wall, you probably won’t feel a thing.
Most importantly, combat boots extend way past the ankle. When they’re laced up properly and tightened snugly, they’ll keep you from rolling your ankle during a match.
But, the problem with combat boots is that they tend to be a little bulky. Though this is what makes them so durable, they can get a little tiring to run around in when you find yourself on the field for hours a day.
LA Police Gear Men’s Tactical Core
- CONVENIENT - Our Core Side-Zip Boots allow you to "set it and forget it". Once...
- COMFORTABLE - The breathable tongue mesh and removable EnduroPro inserts help...
- BREATHABLE - Designed with a lightweight, breathable tongue mesh, our Core...
- DURABLE - Constructed from firm action leather, EVA compressed rubber tooling,...
With the LA Police Gear Men’s Tactical Core 8″ Boot, you can look the part of a paintball player and play comfortably at the same time.
These combat boots feature a traditional combat style with lace-up eyelets on the front, which are reinforced for durability, and strong nylon laces that won’t easily fray.
The footwear is both slip- and oil-resistant with quality traction on the rubber outsoles that will help keep you on your feet while you play. The boot is fashioned out of film-action leather that can be safely polished and cleaned after your games.
CQR Men’s Combat Military Tactical Mid-Ankle Boots
- CQR Combat Boots Series designed for military and law enforcement performance.
- [3D Structure Ankle & Durable Eyelet] Ankle-high protection that wraps and...
- [Premium Insoles] It has endless cushioning and comfort with the extra smooth...
- [Hardened Eyelet] Metal eyelet system for quick and easy lacing without tears.
Make your paintball matches a more comfortable, enjoyable experience with the CQR Men’s Combat Military Tactical Mid-Ankle Boots.
These boots are fashioned out of high quality material, which is made to the same standards of military and law enforcement boots to offer durability you can trust. The design provides an ankle-high reach that supports the ankles while you play to keep your comfort in check.
Inside is super-smooth padded lining that works in harmony with the insoles that give you plenty of support with every step you take. Durable reinforced eyelets ensure no tearing takes place.
Under Armour Men’s Stellar Military and Tactical Boot
- DWR treated Leather & 900D nylon textile upper
- Polishable toe
- Quick-dry minimalist design
- Anti-odor technology is a superlative innovation which helps prevents odor
Play your best paintball match yet when you wear the comfortable and traditionally stylish Under Armour Men’s Stellar Military and Tactical Boot.
These boots help you look the part wearing tactical gear as you play, thanks to the classic combat boot look, which is crafted out of 100 percent leather and textile to bring together both form and function.
The footwear has an ankle-length height that gives you the support you need while playing long patches. Thanks to the anti-odor technology, the shoes won’t take on a bad smell even when you wear them to play for a long time.
Danner Men’s Tachyon Military and Tactical Boot
- Removable insole
- Shank Material is made up of Nylon
With the Danner Men’s Tachyon 8 Inch Coyote Military and Tactical Boot, you can play your next paintball match efficiently and comfortably while also looking your best on the course.
This shoe has a traditional military style with an high shaft measuring 6.5 inches from the arch, giving you plenty of support around the ankle and shin.
The design features a high-quality rubber sole that has traction carved into it to help you stay stable on your feet while you play. The laces are thick and strong, and the eyelets are sure to outlast the years.
FREE SOLDIER Men’s Tactical Boots
- MATERIAL: The tactical shoes for men with Scratch-resistant 1000D Cordura...
- LIGHTWEIGHT: This mid camouflage tactical boots weigh approx 1.67lb / 0.76kg,...
- BREATHABLE: Vented holes were designed on both sides of of the camo military...
- CAMOUFLAGE: This men's camo military boots was designed with 2 colors according...
Get all of the support and power that tactical-style military boots have to offer disguised in a form of a pair of sneakers when you wear the FREE SOLDIER Men’s Tactical Boots.
These shoes are designed to be as durable as possible with scratch-resistant 1000D Cordura uppers that won’t weaken or rip. There are ventilation holes on the sides of the boots that help dissipate heat, which will go far in keeping your feet cool even when playing your paintball match in hot weather during the summer.
Their lightweight build helps prevent foot fatigue while playing.
Women’s ATAC Military Combat Boot
- Air flow breathable tongue construction
- Achilles heel flex zone for enhanced comfort & flexibility
- SlipStream waterproof BBP membrane
- Full-length dual durometer Ortholite footbed
Gear up for a game of paintball with the Women’s ATAC 2.0 8″ Tactical Side Zip Storm Military Combat Boot, a pair of boots that give you the look and performance of a combat boot while also being easier to put on than most similar tactical boots.
The footwear has a flexible back that ensures that even with the high ankle shaft of these boots, your range of motion is not inhibited.
Thanks to the strong oil- and slip-resistant outsole, you can play on virtually any terrain without losing your footing for perfect control over your steps.
Men’s ATAC Military Boot
- The A.T.A.C 2.0 Side Zip Desert boot features a full-length dual durometer...
- This tactical boot has a shock mitigation system, strobal construction with...
- The Slip and Oil Resistant Outsole with SlipSteam waterproof BBP membrane keep...
- The knife pocket is a key bonus on these 8-inch military boots which is why the...
Enjoy greater control over your footwork when making sharp moves playing paintball by wearing the Men’s ATAC 2.0 8″ Tactical Side Zip Military Boot.
These boots are designed with comfort in mind, thanks to the full-length, dual-durometer Ortholite foot bed that provides cushioning with every step and a flex zone in the back of the boot to ensure you can move with ease even with the tall ankle shaft.
The strong outsole of these boots is both slip- and oil-resistant, working hard to keep you stable on your feet when making quick stops even on terrains that are wet.
Oakley Men’s Light Assault Boot 2 Boots
Step out into the paintball course looking professional and ready for battle in these military-style Oakley Men’s Light Assault Boot 2 Boots.
hese boots are lightweight and comfortable, making it easy for you to move around in them without making your feet feel tired, even when the paintball matches go on for hours. EVA midsoles and outsoles are installed so that the shoe moves naturally with your feet, giving you plenty of shock absorption.
Premium and rugged nylon laces will outlast plenty of wear without fraying, and the eyelets they are woven through are just as reliable.
Magnum Classic Unisex Boots
- Durable full-grain leather and 1150 Denier ballistic Nylon upper
- High traction slip and oil resistant carbon rubber outsole with ladder grips
- Fast wicking BK Mesh lining for moisture management. TPU reinforced toe box and...
- Removable/replaceable insole. 3/4 bellows tongue. Padded foam suede collar and...
Enjoy paintball matches played with unparalleled levels of comfort and support with the Magnum Classic Unisex Boots.
hese heavy-duty combat boots are crafted out of a blend of strong, full-grain leather as well as 1150 Denier ballistic Nylon for its upper, providing a tough, durable shoe from toe to heel to ankle.
The design features a carbon rubber outsole that offers a high level of traction and is resistant to slips even on oily terrain. Inside of the shoe is fast-wicking BK mesh lining that helps to manage moisture and keep your feet cool and dry.
Trail Running & Hiking Shoes
Running shoes don’t provide the most protection during paintball, but they sure have their benefits if you trek across the arena dozens of times per match.
The key feature of running shoes is just how lightweight they are. Not only does this keep your feet from being weighed down when running, but it also allows you to run much quicker for a much longer period of time. They also tend to have great interior cushioning, which makes for a much more comfortable match.
The breathability of running shoes is truly what you might be seeking. Wearing combat boots or even cleats can be taxing on your feet. During a long match, you might notice that your feet are overheating or sweating uncontrollably. Since running shoes usually have a mesh exterior, they freely allow air in and out, meaning you don’t have to worry about blisters any longer.
If you think running shoes seem a little flimsy, you might want to try out hiking shoes instead. Hiking shoes are usually built with tougher outsoles, so you won’t feel each and every rock or notch that you encounter on the field.
And, you have a ton of options for running and ankle shoes. That means you can choose a style that supports the arches of your feet and the exact amount of grip that you need.
What you’ll notice about running and hiking shoes is that they usually don’t cover the ankles. While this definitely gives you a greater range of motion and flexibility in your movements, it does put you at risk for spraining your ankle in rougher areas.
Related: Top 10 Best Trail Running Shoes
Generally speaking, any type of shoe can work when you’re playing paintball. You just have to choose a shoe or boot that matches your playing style and your ideal arena. Here’s a quick guide for choosing the perfect shoes.
- For wet and muddy fields with little traction: Athletic or paintball cleats
- For long matches and overall foot comfort: Running or hiking shoes
- For unsurpassed durability and dependability: Combat boots
- Reddit: What kind of shoes do you guys wear?
- PB Nation: Best footwear for paintball?
- AC Paintball: What to Wear to Play Paintball
- Wikipedia: Combat Boot
- Active: Running Shoe Guide for Dummies
- REI: Hiking Boots vs. Trail Runners: The Great Debate
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Austin is the author of loveatfirstfit.com and a personal trainer with extensive knowledge in nutrition. Austin is passionate about helping others to find a suitable healthy lifestyle and feel good about themselves. Austin’s goal is to help people push their limits and achieve their physical performance.
Last update on 2023-02-13 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API