Skate shoe

Skate shoes or skateboard shoes are a type of footwear specifically designed and manufactured for use in skateboarding.[1] While numerous non-skaters choose to wear skate shoes, the design of the skate shoe includes many features designed especially for use in skateboarding, including a vulcanized rubber or polyurethane sole with minimal tread pattern or no pattern, a composition leather or suede upper, and double or triple stitching to extend the life of the upper material.[2] A low, padded tongue is often included for comfort.[1]


Skate shoe companies have integrated a number of special features into their shoes. These innovations have a number of functions, including prevention of "heel bruises" (damage to the heel area of the foot caused by harsh landings from high distances), enhancement of "skateboard feel" through increased flexibility, and increased grip action.

These include but are not limited to:

  • Ollie patch (Vision Street Wear/Airwalk - 1980's)
  • Cup soles
  • Vulcanized rubber soles
  • DURACAP (Vans)
  • Air pockets in the heels
  • Canvas
  • Shoelace protectors
  • Dynamic Grip Technology (DGT) (DC Shoes)[3]
  • Super Suede (DC Shoes)[4]
  • System G2 Cushioning (etnies, Emerica, éS)
  • STI foam (etnies, Emerica, éS)
  • Lace Loops that "hide" shoelaces
  • Action Leather
  • Thermoplastic Toe Box Reinforcement
  • EVA Mid Sole[5]
  • Fusion Grip Rubber Outsole
  • Asymmetric stabilizer
  • Silicone Rubber makes shoes last longer (SiRC)
  • Stash Pockets (under sole or tongue) (DVS,[6] Ipath[7] and Supra[8])
  • Shock-Absorbing insoles (Nike SB)
  • Kevlar-reinforced laces (Nike SB)[9]
  • Cold Grip Technology (CGT) (DVS)[10]
  • Lunarlon (Nike SB)[11]

Many features of a skate shoe are designed to increase its durability. Skate shoes are subjected to the abrasiveness of a skateboard's grip tape on a regular basis when used for skateboarding. This is why skaters tend to go through shoes quickly. Super suede, action leather, and plastic underlying the toe cap help to increase the durability of a skate shoe. Lace loops and protectors are designed to prevent laces from shredding by shielding the most common areas that contact with grip tape.

Other common features include: triple stitching with thicker treads to prevent ripping, more width so that there is more contact with the board with thicker tongues and sides to compensate, and deep sole patterns for grip.

Further reading

  • Made for Skate: The Illustrated History of Skateboard Footwear, Jürgen Blümlein, Daniel Schmid & Dirk Vogel, Gingko Press (2008) ISBN 978-158423348-0


  1. Hvs Boardsport, HVS BOARDSPORT (29 November 2017). "Best shoe brands for Skateboarding". Hvs Boardsport.
  2. "How to Choose Skate Shoes - Tips, Advice, & Selection — Athlete Audit". Athlete Audit. 2016-10-20. Retrieved 2017-07-24.
  3. ZapposGear (31 March 2011). "DC - Pro Spec 2.0 Mid 7816784". YouTube. Google, Inc. Retrieved 24 September 2012.
  4. bk (8 January 2005). "DC Super Suede Lynx Shoes". No Comply Media. Retrieved 24 September 2012.
  5. Max (29 August 2012). "The 10 Sickest Skate Shoes At Urbansurfer!". Urban Surfer Blog. WordPress. Retrieved 3 October 2012.
  6. hurbangrower (12 January 2012). "Stash Pocket 420 by DVS". YouTube. Google, Inc. Retrieved 24 September 2012.
  7. BrotasticLaxer (4 August 2012). "CUSTOMER REVIEWS FOR IPATH GRASSHOPPER - MEN'S". CCS. CCS. Retrieved 3 October 2012.
  8. Nice Kicks (2008). "SUPRA SKYTOP BLACK/PURPLE DETAILED LOOK". Nice Kicks. Complex Sneakers. Retrieved 3 October 2012.
  9. "NIKE SB DUNK HIGH PREMIUM". revert. 1995–2012. Retrieved 3 October 2012.
  10. ZapposGear (10 November 2010). "DVS Shoe Company Militia Boot 7465598". YouTube. Google, Inc. Retrieved 3 October 2012.
  11. nikeskateboarding (7 July 2011). "Nike - Lunarlon Cushioning With Eric Koston". YouTube. Google, Inc. Retrieved 3 October 2012.
  12. Vans Official Site. "Vans Skate Shoes". Vans Skate News.
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