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What Are Indoor Soccer Shoes?

What Are Indoor Soccer Shoes?

Indoor soccer may share certain similarities with outdoor soccer but the choice of shoe is not one of them. Indoor soccer shoes are designed with gum rubber soles which makes them suitable for the smooth playing surface.

Key Takeaways

  • Indoor soccer shoes are designed for use in indoor soccer games like futsal
  • They have lug gum rubber soles that provide optimum traction on hardcourt, turf, and hard floors
  • Just like turf shoes, indoor soccer shoes don’t have molded studs
  • Indoor soccer shoes for playing on wood or ceramic are slightly different from those for playing on Astro Turf

Soccer player in the indoor soccer game

What makes indoor shoes what they are is their outsoles. Outdoor soccer shoes, on the other hand, are usually designed with studs that dig into the ground as soccer players run, thereby providing the needed traction.

Likewise, the flat surface of indoor soccer shoes are flexible, non-marking, and provide maximum grip on flat surfaces. Now, you probably think that’s all to know about indoor soccer shoes. Well, there is more.

Surprisingly, some people have only known outdoor soccer all their life and they have never imagined that there is a difference between indoor and outdoor soccer shoes.

In some cases, the upper can be similar or identical to outdoor soccer shoes. Indoor soccer shoes can be used on flat surfaces, turf, gym floor, and hard floor.

What are indoor soccer shoes?

At a glance, an indoor soccer cleat looks like a regular pair of sneakers or running shoes. However, at a closer look, you will discover the difference in their outsoles.

indoor soccer shoes

While indoor soccer cleats are made with soft rubber outsoles, the outsoles of regular sneakers are harder. The second obvious difference you will discover on a closer look is that the lugs on the outsoles are different.

Regular sneakers will usually have deeper lugs on their outsoles while the lugs on indoor soccer shoes are usually shallow. Due to the nature of indoor soccer surfaces, wearing proper indoor soccer shoes whenever you are out playing is a no-brainer.

The outsole of indoor soccer shoes

Indoor soccer surfaces have different surfaces which range from polished wood or ceramic to ground cork or rubber and AstroTurf. Wearing the wrong pair of shoes on these surfaces is dangerous because you can easily slip and fall owing to their smooth and slippery nature.

Consequently, manufacturers of indoor soccer shoes pay more attention to the outsoles. Wearing the right indoor soccer shoes will allow you to perform at your best without the fear of slip and fall accidents.

What should I look out for when buying indoor soccer shoes?

When shopping for indoor soccer shoes, there are important features you should look out for. We will discuss all of them below.

Stability and traction

Futsal is also a form of indoor soccer. However, they are played on polished wood or ceramic surfaces. This distinguishes them from the other form of indoor soccer that is played on Astro Turf.

Soccer shoes specifically designed for futsal have flat rubber outsoles. The flat outsoles allow a wider surface area to come in contact with the smooth surface. This enhances your traction and gives you better stability.

Man wear indoor soccer shoes and playing game

On the other hand, shoes designed for indoor soccer played on AstroTurf have rubberized studs that mimic that of outdoor soccer. This is not to be confused with the molded studs found in outdoor soccer.

The sole of indoor soccer shoes

The ones found in indoor soccer are more of little rounded rubber projections from the soles. Also, unlike outdoor soccer studs which are fewer in number, the rubberized studs for indoor soccer are usually scattered all over the soles.

The studs on the entire soccer shoes

The use of rubberized studs allows the shoes to provide traction without tearing through the turf. While you can use turf shoes and futsal shoes interchangeably, your traction will be reduced each time you flip the two. This can increase your chance of getting injured.

Indoor soccer players


Indoor soccer is not any less demanding when compared to outdoor soccer. Therefore, the fit of your shoe is another important factor that you should take seriously.

When shopping for a new pair of indoor soccer shoes, make sure that they fit snuggly. The last thing you want is adding a nagging pain on your feet to the pressure of the game.

Pay attention to the heels and toe area of your shoe and make sure that they have around half a knuckle size of space (about 2/3 inch) between the shoe and your toes. This makes it easy for you to change direction without feeling like the shoes are crushing your toes.

However, you must make sure that the space is just right. If your heels and toes are sliding around freely, you will likely end up with blisters.

Man are playing indoor soccer shoes


Indoor soccer shoes can either be made from leather (kangaroo skin or calf skin) or synthetic. Regardless of the material used for making indoor soccer shoes, make sure that they give you a better touch on the ball.

Shoes with coarse patterns and details on the upper improve ball control better than those with smooth uppers. Also, shoes with thinner upper will allow you to feel the ball on your feet which is also instrumental to ball control.

Upper of turf soccer shoes

This is a crucial factor because balls move faster on hard surfaces and will often need more effort to control than in outdoor soccer. Also, because of the smaller playing space and the faster nature of indoor soccer, fast ball control is a big deal if you don’t want to lose the ball often.

While the material or shape of the upper is not a critical factor when it comes to choosing indoor soccer shoes, choosing soccer shoes with uppers proven to enhance ball control is a bonus.


indoor soccer game
Indoor soccer shoes are specifically designed for use in indoor soccer where the surface is either wood, ceramic, or Astro Turf. On the upper, they look identical to outdoor soccer cleats. You will only discover their differences when you examine their soles.

Unlike outdoor soccer shoes, they have rubber outsoles that will not scratch the indoor playing surface while still providing grip and traction to the soccer player.

Also, indoor soccer shoes designed for use on hard, smooth surfaces are slightly different from those designed for turf. Knowing these subtle differences and making the right choice will affect the experience you will get out of your indoor soccer shoes.