When talking about skateboard shoes, people fondly refer to the original deck shoe by Vans. It started a whole new revolution of skateboard shoes with its comfort, flexibility, and excellent performance. In fact, I have one sitting on my shoe shelf that I take out during special days.
Vans have surely come a long way since then. They have revamped their catalogue and have many different shoes in their inventory for you to choose from. But despite all of these changes, they have stayed true to their skating fans. Even to this day, Vans shoes are considered one of the best choices for skateboarders.
When I take out my skateboard, I make sure I put on a pair of Vans. Being somewhat of a shoe connoisseur myself, I have had the pleasure of trying out many different pairs of shoes so far. And though I like some options from Nike or Converse too, I always seem to come back to my trusty pair of Vans.
In this article, I will give you my take on the quality and performance of Vans for skating. So, if you are planning to buy a pair for your next skating day, this article will give you all the info you would need to make an educated choice.
What Makes Vans So Good for Skating?
When I first tried out a pair of Vans while skating, it felt good. To be honest, I did not even think about it that much. But later on, after trying out other shoes by different brands, I wanted to figure out what made Vans feel so special.
Once I took the time to look at different design features in this shoe, I could appreciate its quality even more. It seemed to me like every aspect of these shoes has been designed carefully keeping skaters in mind.
Here are a few things that make Vans such a great shoe for skateboarding
All Vans shoes are made using high-quality canvas. Now you might be thinking that canvas is not exactly “pro-choice” for shoes. It is not that durable after all. However, canvas offers a reliable performance if you stitch it right. And since all Vans shoes come with double-stitched canvas, durability is no longer an issue.
Besides, using canvas to make their shoes, also allows the brand to price their shoes cheaper. This is also good news for skaters since a large group of them are young teens. So, buying a new pair of Vans does not burn a hole in their wallets since these shoes are so affordable.
When it comes to the padding on a skating shoe, it is almost always a personal preference. Some people choose to go with a lighter shoe with less protection and more mobility, whereas others, especially beginners, opt to go with a pair of shoes that offers excellent cushioning.
Thankfully, Vans shoes offer you the choice between mid, low, and high tops which means you will be able to decide the level of padding you want from your shoe. I personally go with mid-tops, but some might go with high and some might prefer low.
Again, it all comes down to what type of padding makes your feet comfortable.
Whether you are lifting weights or skating, it is important for the shoe to have a nice, firm grip on the surface. Without a good sole design, the shoe will feel slippery. And since skating is all about balance, the shoe must feature a high-traction sole with good stability.
This is another field where Vans shoes trail ahead of its competitors. Their signature waffle grip sole ensures you get a firm fitting on any surface. And on a skateboard, it sorts of acts like a magnet. So, you will not have to worry about any stability issues when skateboarding wearing a pair of Vans.
Low, Mid, or High: Which Vans is best for skating?
As I said before, people tend to have a varied preference when choosing the padding type while buying their skating shoes. Vans shoes come in three variants in terms of padding level, Vans low, Vans Mid, and Vans High.
If you are wondering which one is right for you, the following section will give you a solid idea.
Vans Low shoes are the ones that feature the least amount of padding. On the upside though, the flexibility and mobility offered by these shoes are superb. Typically, I would only recommend these shoes to seasoned skateboarders who want to pull off intricate tricks. Some Vans Lows are also decent for running.
However, some Vans Lows come with TNT pro model cup soles. These shoes are quite good at absorbing shock which makes them a lot sturdier without sacrificing any of the mobility.
Vans Mids are always my go-to choice in skating shoes. They sit at a comfortable spot between the Highs and Lows giving you the best of both protection and flexibility. They offer a bit more support around the ankle area without restricting your movement.
However, I would recommend always going with Pro models if you want to buy Mids. The Pro models offer better support and flexibility than normal ones.
Lastly, you have the Vans Highs which are a great choice if you want the most protection and stability from your shoes. Although most of these models are not advertised as skating shoes, they work quite well. However, the increased amount of padding and protection makes it a bit harder to do intricate maneuvers.
Vans is a great choice for skateboarders. It is one of those brands that revolutionized the industry and united all the skaters under one banner. The sense of community it gives is also nothing to shrug off.
I personally cannot think about going skating without my Vans Old School. It got me on my first skateboard, and I still trust it blindly after all these years, ciao!