Tennis Warehouse selected the best performing 2021 shoe models in various categories based on customer and playtester reviews. Eventually it all comes down to personal preference, your needs and what you’re looking for in footwear. The overview below aims to help you by rating the shoes based on durability, support, lightness, comfort, and value.
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Best men’s overall: Asics Court FF 2
Created with feedback from Novak Djokovic, the Asics Court FF 2s are faster and more comfortable than most shoes. Their level of support, traction and stability suits players at all levels. For detailed information about this model, read TW’s in-depth review.
Best women’s overall: Adidas Stella Court
This women’s-only model, formerly known as the Adidas Stella Barricade Boost, blends fashion with functionality, offering the most responsive cushioning paired with a double-layer Primeknit upper making it ultra breathable and comfortable. The seamless bootee design offers step-in comfort. The Torsion system provides stability to aggressive movers, while the Boost cushioning keeps the shoes feeling responsive through long court sessions.
Best stability/durability (tie): K-Swiss Ultrashot 3
The K-Swiss Ultrashot 3s impress with their comfort, support, stability and durability, especially on hard courts. One has to look hard to find any drawback in this model, so it is making this best-of list twice, both as the best men’s overall honorable mention and best in stability/durability. The only slight negative that playtesters experienced was that your feet can feel a bit warmer after long sessions. For detailed information, visit TW’s in-depth review of women’s K-Swiss Ultrashot 3 and men’s K-Swiss Ultrashot 3.
Best stability/durability: Asics Gel Resolution 8 (tie)
Worn by Roland Garros champion Iga Swiatek, these shoes are especially recommended to players who are putting in a lot of court hours every week, as they offer durable outsoles backed by a six-month durability guarantee. Besides durability, the Gel Resolution 8 provides good stability, a secure fit and cushioning. The snug medium width will need a little break-in, but after that, players will find this shoe’s performance well worth the wait. To decide whether this model is right for you, check out this in-depth review of women’s Gel Resolution 8 and men’s Gel Resolution 8.
Durability honorable mention: Nike Vapor Cage 4
Nike merged the best features of models Vapor and Cage to create the most supportive and stable shoe on the market, perfect for hard-court sliders. The model is durable and offers six-month outsole durability guarantee. Read in-depth review of women’s Vapor Cage 4 and men’s Vapor Cage 4.
Stability honorable mention: Nike React Vapor NXT
Like the Vapor Cage 4 above, the Vapor NXT blends features of stability and speed. This shoe might tip the scales as heavy, but they still feel rather nimble around the court, and a stiff frame along the lateral side helps keep the shoe feeling stable. These Vapor NXTs won’t be as durable as the Vapor Cage 4 or Asics Gel Resolution 8 but will feel faster on court.
Best lightweight: Asics Solution Speed FF 2
Playtesters find these to be among the best game day shoes for players at any level, offering comfort and speed in a light design. FlyteFoam cushioning in the midsole adds responsive cushioning, a lighter midsole experience and more durability. The Asics Solution Speed FF 2s have an updated upper for a flexible, supportive feel, while a new outsole design is meant to center your weight for an even faster feel when taking off.
Lightweight honorable mention: Head Sprint SF 3.0
Backed by a six-month outsole durability guarantee, the Head Sprint SF 3.0 is a great choice for aggressive hardcourt sliders who enjoy flexibility, speed and lightweight feel. The upper is constructed from a unique SuperFabric material which is abrasion resistant and supportive.
Lightweight honorable mention: Nike Air Zoom Vapor Pro
The Nike Air Zoom Vapor Pro took the best features of the shoe it replaces (the Vapor X), made it lighter, more supportive than ever, and added in some new technology for the speediest Vapor yet. Debuted on tour by top pros Nick Kyrgios and Petra Kvitova, the Vapor Pro keeps the same great cushioning and traction of the Vapor X, and introduces a new overhauled upper. Instantly noticeable is the new asymmetrical lacing system, which provides a snug fit and even more support during lateral movement.
Lightweight honorable Mention: Adidas Ubersonic 4
If you’re looking for fast, Adidas Ubersonic 4s have you covered. Lightstrike cushioning is uber-comfortable and responsive to keep you reacting quickly. We think this is what makes this update better than previous models. A bonus is that the these shoes come with both hard court and clay outsoles.
Most comfortable: K-Swiss Hypercourt Express 2
The Hypercourt Express was built to be comfortable on the court, and with this second version, it feels lighter and faster. These shoes feel flexible without any break-in time and provide a cushioned ride on court. Read in-depth review of women’s Hypercourt Express 2 and men’s Hypercourt Express 2.
Honorable mention: K-Swiss Hypercourt Supreme
Even though it’s marked as an honorable mention, the K-Swiss Hypercourt Supreme is not a real runner-up to the Hypercourt Express 2 when it comes to comfort, as it depends on individual preference. Anyone who loves the standard comfort of K-Swiss shoes but sometimes feels weighed down by them will appreciate the responsiveness and quickness of the Hypercourt Supreme.
Most comfortable honorable mention: Diadora Speed Blushield 5
Diadora Speed Blushield 5s are a great option for players who are seeking a bit of everything in terms of performance with an emphasis on comfort.
Best value: K-Swiss Bigshot 4 Light
If you don’t plan to spend more than $100, look no further than the K-Swiss Bigshot Light 4. Players who are looking for shoes that do a bit of everything rather than focus on any particular performance category (light, durable, stable) will find these shoes to be a great option.
What are your favorite tennis shoes? Are they included in this list?