Can Basketball Shoes be Used for Hiking

Can Basketball Shoes be Used for Hiking? (Solved & Explained)

Have you ever think if your trusty basketball shoes could handle the challenges of hiking trails? Well, you’re not alone! Many outdoor enthusiasts face this question when seeking versatile footwear for their adventures.

Personally, I’ve encountered this very dilemma during a spontaneous hiking trip with friends. I slipped on my basketball shoes, hoping they’d be good enough for the journey ahead. As we trekked through rugged terrain, I began to ponder whether they were the right choice.

I research to find out whether basketball shoes are indeed suitable for hiking or if it’s better to invest in dedicated hiking footwear. In this article, I’ll share my findings and shed light on the crucial factors that determine the compatibility of basketball shoes with the demands of hiking. So, keep reading to discover the answer!

Can Basketball Shoes be Used for Hiking?

No, you cannot wear basketball shoes for hiking. Many reasons cease we wear basketball shoes while hiking. Basketball shoes are not designed for such motions and activities. Basketball is a plan surface spot but in hiking, you rarely find any plan surface.  

Many reasons stop us from wearing basketball shoes while hiking like the weight of the shoe matters a lot, the nibs under the shoe, the sole the inner plate, etc.

Now we’ll discuss the reasons that should be considered before buying or using a shoe for hiking. 

Why Basketball Shoes Cannot be Used for Hiking?

Can Basketball Shoes be Used for Hiking

Hiking is a very tough sport if we compare it with basketball. Basketball shoes are not designed to hike. These are very soft and it’s a terrible idea to wear basketball shoes for hiking.

The following are the reasons that make basketball shoes bad for hiking:

  • Weight
  • Nibs
  • Durability
  • Midsole
  • Rock plate
  • Toe protection
  • Temperature control
  • High tops
  • Material of shoe
  • Ankle support

1. Weight

In hiking, the weight of the shoe matters a lot. In hiking, we need stability and grip on the rocks. Instability and weight matter a lot.

So, hiking shoes are more heavily weighted than basketball shoes. Basketball shoes are very light weighted because in basketball shoes we have to jump and land continuously that’s why we need light weighted shoes in basketball.

That is why we can not wear basketball shoes while hiking.

2. Nibs

Hiking shoes have nibs under their sole which supports and stabilizes you on an uneven surface. Those nibs provide you with stability while hiking.

It produces friction between the ground and the feet. Basketball shoes are not designed for this function. They do have nibs but they are made of rubber which cannot give you stability lie these surfaces.

3. Durability

Hiking shoes are more Durable than basketball shoes because hiking shoes are made of rigid material that supports tracking or hiking.

While basketball shoes are made of light rubber-like material which does not support walking on rocks, pebbles, etc.

Basketball shoes can break after 2 to 3 hikes and you have to buy a new pair of shoes. So why not buy a shoe that is specified for hiking?

4. Midsole

The midsole is made of wool-like material which allows comfort and pain relief while hiking. In hiking, most of the action is performed through your feet so, comfort is very necessary for your feet.

The midsole also acts as a shock absorber produces while hiking. It also produces heat that prevents your feet from tiredness and pain.

5. Rock plate

Hiking shoes have a rock plate under the midsole. The rock plate prevents you from hurting due to the sharp mountains, pebbles, pieces of pointy rocks, etc. This rock plate disconnects the feet and base sole to prevent hurting.

While basketball shoes do not have such a plate for protection. That is why basketball shoes cannot be used for hiking.

6. Toe protection

Hiking shoes are also accessorized with toe protection. While climbing or hiking, the toe can be hurt by crashing with the rocks. So, that is why the protection is used.

For toe protection, a rigid material is used on the front side of the shoe that is hard from the outside and soft from the inside.

Basketball shoes are not safe for toe protection.

Some basketball shoes do have toe protection but that is not enough for hiking.

7. Temperature control

Hiking shoes are designed to control the temperature inside the shoe because hiking usually is done in cold weather. The wool midsole and the tight upper control the internal temperature of the shoe.

The upper does not allow cold to enter the shoe. So, the warmth of the shoe is maintained and our feet feel cozy.

While in basketball shoes, the upper is not designed for temperature control.

8. High tops

The high tops of the shoes do not allow the pebbles and pieces of pointy rock to enter the boots. These rocks can disturb you and injure you.

High tops are a very impotent part of hiking shoes. Because basketball shoes do not have such a thing for prevention, they are not good to wear.

9. Material of shoe

The material of the shoe is very soft and heat resistant. It does not allow cold to enter the shoe. It keeps the warmth produced from the motion of the feet.

The material should support the shoe according to the weather. That is why we should use hiking shoes for hiking, not basketball shoes.

10. Ankle support

A hiking shoe also supports your ankle from injury. The ankle support is made up of soft form-type material that allows you comfort and the increased part of shoes is also not irritating. Protection should be your priority of you.

The basketball shoe is less protective.

Brands that have the best hiking shoes

There are a lot of brands that manufacture hiking shoes. Those can be cheap but cannot be more durable and comfortable than these brands.

These brands have a name of quality and durability. People have proved these specifications by using their products.

Following are some good and comfortable brands that you should buy:

  • Adidas
  • Nike
  • Jorden
  • AND 1
  • Sketchers

While buying shoes, you should take care of the following things:

  • A shoe should be comfortable.
  • It should fit your feet. Shoe size should be according to your feet size.
  • Should be more durable and specified for hiking.
  • Should be temperature resistant.
  • Should support the weight of your bag pack.

These specifications will let you enjoy your hiking without any hurdles. Any shoe that has these qualities can be used for hiking.

Is it really bad to wear basketball shoes?

Protection of yourself should be your priority of yours. There is no compromise on physical health. So, decide on your own which shoes are suitable for you while hiking.

Basketball is not designed for hiking so; you may lose your expensive basketball shoe while wearing it for hiking. So, pick your shoe wisely while hiking.

Hiking has many types. If you are hiking on a flat trail, you may use basketball shoes because basketball shoes are designed for flat surfaces. These are also a type of rock on which you can wear basketball shoes.

Basketball shoes can also be used on wind plan rocks. These rocks are like flat surfaces. So, basketball shoes can be used on this type of surface and rocks.

The shoe that has the above qualities or specifications, can be used for hiking, the shoe should be durable, comfortable, weighted, supported sole, etc. This type of shoe can be used for hiking.

We have no concern about the name of the shoe, we are concerned about the safety and comfort of our feet.


I will recommend you not to use basketball shoes while hiking. These have fewer safety measures and comfort for hiking. Heath should be your main focus and according to the specs of hiking shoes, basketball shoes are not good for hiking.

The suitable shoe for hiking should be comfortable, weighted, toe protector, consist of a rock plate, etc. so, choose your shoe wisely when buying a shoe for hiking. 

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