Athletes are constantly looking to add a couple of extra inches to their vertical jump. Sometimes it’s so they can dunk like their favorite basketball player. Other times it’s for another sport like football where you have to catch difficult passes or soccer where you have to soar for a header. In almost all sports, having a solid vertical jump is crucial.
To boost your vertical jump, you’re going to put in hours on hours in the gym, there’s no getting around it. You’ll need the proper footwear for your training. While doing a combination of plyometrics, weight lifting, running, etc. you will need the right shoe(s). Having the right shoe in the gym reduces the chance of injury and increases training effectiveness. With that in mind, these are the Best Shoes for Jumping.
This list will not include gimmicky technologies like jump soles. They flat-out don’t work. Their marketing may say otherwise, but we (and others) have tested them extensively to arrive at that conclusion. There’s no shortcut to improving your jumping abilities. You have to put in consistent work to get the desired results.
At WearTesters, we test hundreds of sneakers each year. To put together this list, we found outstanding jumping performers that can offer what you need. We chose highly stable shoes with adequate impact protection that remain supportive throughout jumping exercises. Jumping is no easy task for one shoe, but we think you’ll enjoy our picks for the best shoes for jumping.
Categories are used below so you can easily find what’s important to you. If you know what you need, you can simply click the category link. If not, feel free to browse the whole list.
Best Shoes for Jumping Show
- Best Shoes for Jumping
- Best Basketball Shoes for Jumping
- Best Shoes for Jumping Rope
Best Shoes for Jumping
Nike Air Zoom SuperRep 3
The Nike Air Zoom SuperRep 3 is highly versatile. Few training shoes can do as much as this one does. For how the Nike SuperRep 3 performs, the retail price of $120 is a bargain. You might be skeptical at first as it’s an odd-looking shoe, but once you put the shoe through its paces, it won’t disappoint, and you’ll be able to focus on setting personal records. The Zoom Air pods up front provide excellent impact protection and stability while jumping. See the full review. Price: $120
GORUCK Ballistic Trainer
The GORUCK Ballistic Trainer’s upper uses a ballistic Cordura mesh which is soft and flexible. The Ballistic Trainer features Gradient Density EVA foam for the cushion, which means the shoe is more cushioned under the forefoot. That helps a ton when you’re repeatedly doing jumping exercises. The traction is also a highlight. The outsole uses three different rubbers. Remember, the GORUCK Ballistic Trainer fits longer than other training shoes, so make sure to go down half a size from your typical shoe size. Read the full review. Price: $125
Saucony Freedom Crossport
Saucony recently updated its Freedom line to lean into its strengths as a HIIT workout shoe. The Freedom Crossport will appeal to all Saucony fans because it brings the feel of a Saucony runner to the gym. Because the PWRRUN PB midsole is so bouncy and squishy, we don’t recommend it for heavy olympic lifts or balance exercises. Still, it excels at plyometrics, jumping work, and lateral drills. Basically perfect for a high-intensity class environment or someone who runs to and from the gym. Wide footers should go up half a size; otherwise, you’ll find a comfy upper. You will need to tighten the laces for lateral work but if you do, you’ll stay on the footbed. The Freedom Crossport is also great for wearing all day…which is not something you can say about most gym shoes. Read the full review.
Fit: True to Size, Drop: 4mm, Price $150
Nike Metcon Turbo 2
The Nike Metcon Turbo 2 has all the right pieces for jumping exercises. First, we’ll mention the cushion setup. The drop-in, full-length React midsole with a forefoot Zoom Air unit keeps your knees and joints protected against impact. Next is the stability aspect of the shoe. The base is wide, ensuring you land and lift off smoothly. Last but not least is the solid traction. You won’t slip while working on your vertical. Read the full review. Price: $120
Under Armour HOVR Rise 4
The Under Armour HOVR Rise 4 packs HOVR foam in the midsole. It does an excellent job of combining comfort and stability. Your legs won’t feel horrible after plyometrics or other jumping exercises. The stability’s great for when you’re working on squats and deadlifts. The outsole is durable and grippy on all surfaces, indoors and outdoors, so you won’t get slippage when working on quick feet drills or trying to hit a new box jump PR. The Rise 4 is a versatile shoe that shines when you’ve got to get off the ground. See the full review. Price: $110
Nike Metcon 8
The Nike Metcon 8 is excellent for weightlifting and various exercises in the gym. The Metcon 8 has become a staple for gym-goers over the years, and with good reason. It’s an almost perfect shoe for weightlifting. The Nike Metcon 8 provides a stable base and a flexible forefoot. Lifting PR levels of weight is very doable in the Nike Metcon 8. With that slab of Nike React, you get a bit more impact protection in the forefoot which helps when adding plyometrics to your weightlifting routine. See the full review. Price: $130
Best Basketball Shoes for Jumping
Way of Wade 10
The Li-Ning Way of Wade 10 is as tech-heavy as it gets in a signature shoe from any brand. And what’s great is that Li-Ning provides you with a breakdown of everything in the package. For support, they have a full-length carbon fiber torsional plate that also acts as a spring plate. The cushion is also beefed up with the brand’s BOOM cushion. These are one heck of a shoe to play in. If you’re a fan of DWade or want to try non-mainstream shoes, this sneaker is for you. See the full review. Price: $225-240
Nike KD 15
The Nike KD 15 is, without a doubt, an excellent shoe for jumping. Although we already know that mesh and other textile materials move well with the foot, there’s more to it. The Cushlon foam midsole, in conjunction with the full-length Zoom Air Strobel unit, is where this shoe delivers a considerable value. It provides impact protection and bounce that work well for even the longest jumping sessions. Read the full review. Price: $150
Nike Air Zoom GT Jump
The Nike Air Zoom GT Jump, Nikola Jokić’s shoes, features the bounciest cushion, perhaps of all time. The shoe features two large volume Zoom Air units in the heel and forefoot, a Cushlon midsole, and a full-length Zoom Air Strobel on top. That’s just an INSANE amount of cushion. To top it off, it features a synthetic upper that requires no break-in time and is breathable and lightweight. The shoe is probably better suited for larger players that need a lot of cushion or anyone who lands heavily when returning to the ground during various jumping drills. Read the full review. Price: $180
Air Jordan 36
The Air Jordan 36 is Jordan Brand‘s flagship performance shoe and thus receives the best tech. That makes it the most jump-friendly option from the brand. Although the midsole is basic Phylon, there is a full-length Zoom Air Strobel unit that you can feel right away, plus an additional Zoom Air unit in the forefoot. It’s the same setup as the Nike KD 13. We’re not complaining as far as comfort goes. Plus, the upper is breathable and soft. Read the full review. Price: $185
Anta KT 7
The Anta KT 7, Klay Thompson’s signature shoe, feels like the Nike LeBron 19 because the brand just threw every piece of tech in there. As far as Anta basketball shoes go, it’s the elite of the elite. The cushion is for sure the highlight of the sneaker. They describe it as nitrogen-infused foam. It does look like an ETPU, and it feels comfortable yet stable at the same time. You can also opt for the Anta KT 7 Low as it offers the same tech specs with more ankle mobility. If you’re doing a lot of jumping, the KT 7 line delivers the impact protection you’ll need. See the full review. Price: $150
Best Shoes for Jumping Rope
Best Responsive Shoes for Jumping Rope
Nike Metcon 8
The Nike Metcon 8 may not have the thickest slab of Nike React, but that doesn’t mean it’s a bad option for jumping rope. Some people prefer ground feel to being high off the ground. This is what the Nike Metcon 8 offers, plus a lot more. If you’re looking for a shoe to lift in and do some jumping rope sets, the Metcon 8 gets the job done. See the full review. Price: $130
GORUCK Ballistic Trainer
The GORUCK Ballistic Trainer has more cushion than most cross-training shoes, but it isn’t as cushioned as other shoes on this list. It offers decent impact protection but not like what Zoom Air or Cushlon offers. This performance sneaker offers a more stable ride when jumping rope. See the full review. Price: $125
Nike Kyrie Low 5
The Nike Kyrie Low 5 is aesthetically very similar to the flagship Kyrie 8 / Infinity, but the shoe is quite different in performance features. The main difference is in the cushioning. The Kyrie 8 is way plusher, and the Kyrie Low 5 is more low profile and responsive. The Kyrie Low 5 is a great shoe for jumpers who love ground contact. It’s got Zoom in the forefoot but you’ll still be able to feel the ground beneath your feet. Read full review. Price: $110
Best Cushioned Shoes for Jumping Rope
Nike Metcon Turbo 2
The Nike Metcon Turbo 2 has all the right pieces for jumping rope exercises. First to mention is the cushion setup. The drop-in, full-length React midsole with a forefoot Zoom Air unit keeps your knees protected against impact. Next is the stability aspect of the shoe. The base is wide that makes sure you land and lift off at peace. Last but not the least is the traction. You won’t slip while working on your vertical in these. Read the full review. Price: $120
Nike Kyrie Infinity
The Nike Kyrie 8 (Infinity) is an excellent all-around performance model and the best shoe in Kyrie’s signature line alongside the Kyrie 6. The shoe offers a great blend of features, including a large volume forefoot Zoom Strobel unit and another standard unit in the heel. This means that even if you accidentally land on your heel, you have Zoom Air absorbing impact. On top of that, you get excellent lockdown and some premium materials along the upper. It’s a cushy ride but sits low enough to the ground to make jumping rope in it work well. See the full review. Price: $140
Nike Air Zoom SuperRep 3
The NikeAir Zoom SuperRep 3 is one of, if not the, most cushioned cross-training available today. The foam midsole is softer than typical Cushlon and the Zoom Air pods at the front of the sneaker give impact protection like no other. You will sit high off the ground, so be wary if that’s not your preference. Your feet and legs won’t ever feel beaten up after doing numerous sets of jump rope in them. See the full review. Price: $120
Nike PG 6
The Nike PG 6 has traction and cushioning as its most vital points, and support and fit are on point. The full-length, thick Nike React midsole is bouncy and comfortable. It’s a well-cushioned yet responsive platform for jumping rope. The one weakness is the shoe’s materials which are cheap but functional, they won’t affect your ability to jump rope. Read the full review. Price: $110
Thinking of a shoe we should add to the Best Shoes for Jumping list? We’d also like to hear your thoughts on this list and see your best weightlifting shoes list in the comments. Comment below or message us on Instagram or Twitter.