While boxing gloves are the most important piece of boxing equipment, the shoes that you choose will have an influence on your speed and agility in the ring. Boxing shoes are a must if you plan on boxing on a regular basis, since they are more supportive than regular running shoes. Take your own boxing style into consideration when picking out a pair of shoes that's right for you.
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Visit a sporting goods supply store that specifically offers boxing shoes. Wrestling shoes are sometimes mistaken for boxing shoes, but have slightly more traction on the sole. While it may not be a difference to an amateur, if you're a seasoned or pro boxer, you'll need boxing shoes.
Look at both high-top and low-top boxing shoes. Low-top boxing shoes look more like a high-top sneaker. They don't provide as much ankle support as a high-top boot, but they can make for faster foot and ankle movement. If you're a speed boxer, choose low-top shoes. If your quick maneuvering is your claim to fame in the ring, you'll want high-top boots that support your ankles and shins as you pivot and move your legs.
Look for the lightest shoe possible. Boxing shoes should be a help, not a hindrance, in the ring. Most boxing shoes are made of breathable suede and leather, with a rubber outsole that allows you to get a good grip on the mat while you move around the ring. Since you'll be on the balls of your feet much of the time, ensure that the heels feel light.
Try on the boxing shoes; never buy a pair without putting them on your feet first. Choose a size that's comparable to your regular shoe size, remembering that boxing shoes are narrower and fit tighter than street shoes. While you have the shoes on, rise onto your toes and bounce a few times. Check for anything that could become bothersome, like wayward tags or uncomfortable arches. Even a slight annoyance can become a big problem in the ring.