Best Shoes for Bowling

Bowling has been widely accepted as more than a mere leisure sport. This growing popularity has urged more families and groups of friends to spend fun nights at the bowling alley. If you are among these people, you may be familiar with the rental shoe system for probably less than five dollars. And although this may be a cheap way to enjoy the sport, you may need to invest in your pair of shoes for bowling. This is especially so if you are a regular in your local alley and want to pursue being a professional bowler.

shoes for bowling

The best shoes for bowling differ depending on your needs, preferences, and what type of player you are. Of course, non-frequent bowlers can do with rental shoes or the common athletic-style shoes. But if you are the type who takes your games seriously, you may need a performance type, if not an athletic style. Ahead are some of the best shoes for any type of bowler – beginner to professional, slim or wide-footed, men and women.

  • Dexter Men’s Pro-Am II
  • BSI Men’s Basic #521 
  • Dexter Turbo II Wide Width 
  • Storm Istas
  • KR Strikeforce Men’s Flyer
  • Dexter Women’s Ana
  • Dexter Women’s Raquel IV
  • Karma Ladies’ Bowling Shoe
  • KR Strikeforce Ladies’ Kross
  • BSI Women’s #651

A lot of people think that the key to a successful shot is all about wrist action. However, contrary to popular belief, the most important parts are the approach, slide, and release. And your footwear will determine whether you are going to up your game level or not. It is paramount that you have a bowling shoe that can cope with the pressure on your toes when you slide. Thus, you must know enough about what to expect when choosing the footwear you can bring to the alley.

Types of Bowling Shoes

A lot of people neglect buying shoes for bowling, not knowing how integral it is in lifting your game level and preventing potential injuries. If you want to stray off of this group of people, you will have to take a look at the different styles available on the market.


These are the footwear you can find on display in every bowling alley. They are quite basic with a few wears and tears here and there. Typically, they will have rubber stopping heels but not a lot of support and attraction. Thus, more serious bowlers eventually opt to move on from them quickly. They may work just right, though, if you are at the bowling alley on rare occasions to have some fun.

Athletic Style

Shoes of this type look a bit more like your running shoes and offer added support with more controlled attraction. Unlike some rental shoes that sometimes use Velcro, athletic-style ones usually come with laces. Moreover, they are considerably lightweight and have some cushioning for additional comfort.


These are for you if you are someone who prefers to customize to suit the conditions of the lane better. You may opt to have your heels and soles, including the midsole construction, changed. And depending on which of your hands you use to bowl, you have an option to have a slide and a brake shoe. The dominant side will have the brake shoe that will stabilize your body so that you get the most Power behind your every shot.

Best Shoes for Bowling

Dexter Men’s Pro-Am II

Prepare to get the exact slide you want with every frame with the Pro-Am II that comes with a raised heel and classic rubber outsole. The brand also equipped the model of a fabric-lined interior, padded tongue, and adjustable upper. All these combine to produce a superb fit and feel for you. Therefore, a pair of Pro-Am II shoes for bowling is a reliable option in performance as well as in looks in its unassuming gray and black design.

BSI Men’s Basic #521 

Obtain the BSI Basic #521 cheaply for the price of about three to four rentals without compromising performance. It comes in a neat all-black design to match whatever your team shirt color may be. It also features a durable rubber outsole, a sliding sole with microfiber, and a sock liner insole for optimum comfort. This is a great choice to make if you are yet a new bowler that is hesitant about making a big investment.

Dexter Turbo II Wide Width 

Despite being specially-tailored for sports, some footwear may inhibit optimal play for people with wide feet. Fortunately, Turbo II from the top brand Dexter is present, which is comparable in fit to other 4E sneakers. But although wide in the base, it may run about half a size small. Other than that, it only offers the best with its Universal Microfiber S8 slidefabric-lined inner sole, and leather upper. It comes with a padded collar and tongue as well for maximum comfort.

Storm Istas

Wearing a pair of Storm Istas shoes for bowling will have you standing out in a sea of retro rentals. It features a bright and bold geometric pattern so you can make a statement on the court. The crafting, conversely, included a defined heelmolded footbed, and lightweight fabric upper. These create a footwear model that is highly supportive, breathable, and would not slow you down on the lanes.

KR Strikeforce Men’s Flyer

The Strikeforce Men’s Flyer is also a good choice to make for your first pair of shoes for bowling. It is a synthetic shoe that presents a multi-piece, non-marking outsoleFlexSlidermicrofiber front footpad. What stands out most about it, though, is its comfort-fit construction with a textile-lined interior as well as padded collar and tongue.

Dexter Women’s Ana

Dexter produced the Ana model to be a durable, retro-stylish shoe for ladies. It has a soft synthetic suede upper with a plaid graphic design. Moreover, it features a universal slide to cater to both right and left-handed players. It also has great traction provided by its rubber outsole.

Dexter Women’s Raquel IV

Be a proud feminist with the Raquel IV that comes in synthetic materials and stylish white color with colored lines. Performance-wise, it proves competent with its universal sole that provides some excellent sliding. It does not have a raised heel so you can keep your comfort and balance while playing. Additionally, it features a lace pattern on the front end for toe protection and to allow your toe to slide as if it is a part of your play.

Karma Ladies’ Bowling Shoe

This shoe is enough to be a statement on the alley with its lightweight, flexible, breathable denim upper. For an easy put on and take off, you can customize the shoe and convert it from a lace-up to a slip-on. The laces are essential for a secure fit. Additionally, it presents a Pure Slide microfiber universal sole to accommodate whatever is your foot preference.

KR Strikeforce Ladies’ Kross

You can observe easily from the KR Kross its soft mesh upper that contours your foot without being constricting. But besides that, KR Kross also presents full textile lined with padded collar and tongue for an added plush feel. It has a non-marking rubber outsole, raised heel, and a #8 Microfiber slide pad with patented FlexSlide technology. This primarily gives you effortless control of your footwork and a maximized slide for a finesse shot.

BSI Women’s #651

The BSI #651 is not only modern-chic with its black and pink color combination but also adequately accommodating to wide feet. It runs much wider and a size bigger than the average women’s shoes for bowling. Additionally, it presents an exceptionally durable material as well as a lightweight EVA midsole. The latter especially provides your approach a little extra lift for optimal game performance.

Related Questions

How should your bowling shoes fit?

Next to slide, one of the essential aspects of your bowling footgear is comfort, followed by softness and flexibility. Your shoe should be comfortable, or else you will suffer in tournament games that require standing for about three hours. Conversely, your shoe must be soft and flexible to enable your foot to breathe and flex as you keep shooting your shot.

Can you bowl using regular sneakers?

It is possible to bowl using your regular sneakers, but no professional would recommend it. The thing about sneakers is that their outer sole is not adequately soft to grant you a gliding feeling. This could make a huge drawback in your games. Furthermore, some bowling alleys do not allow them unless you came to rent a pair.

Can you use your bowling shoes outside the bowling alley?

You can use your bowling shoes outside, but it is not recommended. It’s just that their soles may quickly start to wear out if they are on other types of surfaces. Rocks, sands, and other debris can tear the soles apart, which in turn, may eventually damage the bowling lane. Besides, bowling shoes do not have the ordinary traction ideal for outside use.

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