Comfort, style, and predictable traction is a realistic possibility with the latest turf cleats and shoes. Artificial football turf is fast becoming the golden standard for facilities around the world, and every athlete should have a pair or two of the top-performing artificial grass cleats if they want to compete with the best-of-the-best. 

Before getting into the best options for football, soccer, and other turf fields, it’s important to understand why the type of footwear you choose matters. Unlike natural grass athletics that require sharper and longer cleats to get a grip in wet grass, mud, and softer soil, using such cleats on artificial turf can tear the mesh matrix and damage the integrity of the synthetic layers. 

Since artificial grass naturally dries faster and is engineered for enhanced surface traction, sharp cleats aren’t necessary. A quality artificial grass will have the same or better traction performance with softer cleats than sharper cleats do on natural grass. 

With damage prevention in mind, which cleats and shoes are best for turf fields and specific sports? In this helpful breakdown, we compare the best turf cleats for tournament-level competitions and other multipurpose shoe types you can use for recreational practices and games. 

Opt for Turf Shoes for Balanced Surface Performance

In between turf cleats and grippy trail-running shoes you’ll find turf shoes. On your typical pair of turf shoes, you’ll find rubberized nubs and slightly-more-pronounced tread patterns that provide additional surface grip without overdoing it. Since the small rubber additions are less bulky than you might find on a pair of traditional turf cleats, this type of shoe is often the ideal choice for athletes who find traditional cleat styles too bulky, uncomfortable, or incompatible with their play style. 

Brand to brand, you’ll find a ton of variety when exploring turf shoes. Some edge closer to turf cleats with larger nubs, while some look and perform more like grippy trail shoes with trimmer tread patterns that work well with the thicker artificial turf grasses you might find on an artificial football field. 

In general, turf shoes are often a better choice for casual or mid-level competitive play because the slimmer tread profile is not quite as responsive as you can expect from a dedicated turf cleat. For the casual soccer, football, or field hockey player, this is the premier choice if comfort is equally as important as traction performance. 

Choose Turf Cleats for Faster Pivots & Responsive Stops

For the die-hard soccer and football players, sport-specific turf cleats are the way to go. These dependable shoes are defined by longer plastic or rubber studs that are safe to use on turf. When searching for a pair of cleats, look for brands like Nike, Reebok, Adidas, and Under Armour that carry shoes that are specifically intended to maximize traction performance for specific sports. 

As well as finding hyper-specific turf cleats for soccer, football, or lacrosse, you can also find a healthy variety of multipurpose turf cleats that provide predictable traction across a variety of artificial grass types. This is often the best option if you want a dependable shoe that is great for practices, competitive tournaments, and casual games. 

Grab a Pair of Texturized Trainers for Casual Practices & Games

If comfort is your main priority, you don’t always need a pair of turf-specific shoes. In reality, for some athletes, the added comfort of a casual running shoe or cross trainer might actually improve performance if bulky and uncomfortable cleats limit mobility.

Still, it’s important to find a casual shoe that has sufficient tread. A smooth shoe like a skateboarding or walking shoe can lead to serious slip-and-fall risks, so take a good look at the tread pattern before adding it to the cart. 

Looking for other pro turf and shoe tips? Visit our athletic turf company and find everything you need to maximize performance today.