Robert is a professional journalist who’s also a freelance writer in his free time. He loves science-fiction stories and documentaries about UFO. Robert is also planning to write his own science-fiction novel in the nearest future.
Gary has been playing table tennis for as long as he remembers and is a winner of numerous regional and a few international tournaments. In his free time, Gary loves jogging and camping with his wife and two kids.
Last updated: August 01, 2021
PingPongAcademy is reader-supported. We may earn a commission through products purchased using links on this page. Learn more about our process here
PingPongAcademy is reader-supported. We may earn a commission through products purchased using links on this page. Learn more about our process here
Not all top-rated table tennis shoes are as described. In fact, there is a lot more to these sport-specific shoes than you might first be aware of.
The best table tennis shoes will comfortably support the arches of your feet while also being thin enough for ultimate flexibility. They will cushion your feet and provide a chance for everything to breathe as you go toe to toe with your opponent. After scouring the market, we found six of the best table tennis sneakers. They have anti-slip grips, shock-absorbing soles, and will really enhance your game. The shoes we found come in a wide range of colors and sizes. We’re confident that you’ll be able to find a pair that will work specifically for your needs. Table tennis is a fun game full of precision and reflexes. The right shoe can really make or break your game. Find a pair of shoes that will reflect your personality and improve your skills.
Color selection abounds with Butterfly Groovy shoes. You can select from black and gold, blue, pink, navy and pink, and white color combinations. Really, whatever your personality is, there is a color combination that will reflect that.
Butterfly Groovy shoes are made to be extremely grippy. You won’t be sliding around as you race to score your next table tennis point. Furthermore, these shoes are incredibly lightweight thanks to the very thin midsole. You won’t be weighed down by thick soles, and instead, it will feel as if you’re running around in bare feet.
Another feature is the sole’s flexibility. Because it is so thin, you can quickly push off as your race to the other end of the court. And, if you happen to jump, there is still enough cushioning to pad your return.
Why is it special? Butterfly Groovy table tennis shoes will help you make an impact on the court. All the color combinations are a real treat. Furthermore, the lightweight and flexible construction means this is a pair of shoes that will improve your game.
What are the flaws? We get that shoes are all about famous brands, but in this case, the manufacturer may have gone too far. The Butterfly logo stands out quite prominently across the toes, which may take away from the overall aesthetics. However, if you love the brand, then this might be more of a pro than a con.
While the Butterfly brand of table tennis shoes is known for its myriad of color choices, the Rifones take this one step further. The color combinations are truly out of this world and include pink, lime green, and navy. However, if you want something more basic, there is a style where the shoes are mostly black with a subtle hint of pink.
The Butterfly Rifones table tennis shoes are our Premium Pick because of their construction. While other shoes from this brand are lightweight and flexible, this style is even more so. The sole contains a shock-absorbing sponge that will cushion your arches while still allowing maximum mobility. You can run, jump, and land on your feet without worrying about injuries, especially if you already suffer from previous ankle or knee injuries.
To excel at table tennis, you need sure footing. With the Butterfly Rifones shoes, you get just that. The tread has an incredible grip so you can quickly pivot and move from one corner of the table to the other without worrying about slipping and sliding.
What stands out? The colors are absolutely wild. They are bold, and fun, and there is also a more muted option if you so desire. The grip is fantastic, and this is definitely a shoe meant to increase your table tennis performance.
What cons did we manage to find? The amazing cushioning in these shoes won’t last forever. If you love your table tennis shoes and use them regularly, you will have to invest in new ones every year. Because the Butterfly Rifones shoes come at a higher price, you will need to budget for this expense.
For those wanting a decent pair of table tennis shoes and don’t want to pay a premium, the LI-NING WHIRLWIND shoes are a great product. Their color combination is a stark white by the toes that spreads into a royal blue at the heel.
The soles are perfect for playing table tennis as they don’t leave marks. Furthermore, the soles have deep grooves that allow you to quickly pivot as you play, without any worrying about skidding to an ungraceful stop.
Around the toes there is a toe cap that prevents collisions. You can wear these shoes while playing table tennis, playing basketball, or while walking. They are quite versatile and because of this, provide even more mileage out of your money.
To make this an even more budget-friendly purchase, the company has a 100% satisfaction guarantee. If there are any issues, Li-NING urges you to contact them so they can be resolved.
What are our favorite features? It’s always nice to find a pair of shoes that don’t break the bank. At such an affordable price, you can stock up. As well, the great construction means you can still have a competitive edge against your next opponent.
What could be better? While the blue and white color combination is nice, it would be better if there were more color options. Also, while you can use these shoes for multiple purposes, it’s best to keep them as indoor table tennis shoes so that the white doesn’t become dirty.
It may seem like the best shoes for table tennis come from lesser known brands, but this is not always so. ASICS Men’s Gel-Rocket 9 are manufactured by ASICS, which is well known in the sports arena. While these shoes are labeled as volleyball shoes, their indoor, non-marking soles make them versatile enough for table tennis.
The ASICS Men’s Gel-Rocket 9 shoes come in many different color combinations, including white/pure gold, grey/blue, red/white, and black/pink. All have ASIC’s signature criss-cross design over top of the colors.
For construction, these shoes offer amazing support. They have a GEL cushioning system that really supports your arches. You can run and jump and not worry about any injuries to the rest of your body, especially your knees.
Inside the shoes are a sock liner. This actually molds to your feet so that the more you wear these shoes, the more comfortable they will actually become. And, if you wear orthotics, you can actually remove the sock liners for more space.
What stands out? Table tennis can be a demanding sport, and the more support you have, the better. The construction of the ASICS Men’s Gel-Rocket 9 shoes means a much lower risk of injury. Plus, the innovative technology of the sock liner means the comfort level will actually improve over time.
What cons did we manage to find? The sizing runs a bit larger, so it’s recommended to purchase a half size smaller. Other than that, the name is really the biggest deterrent. Being labeled a Volleyball shoe, many table tennis players may pass this model by, which is a real shame.
The trend in sport shoes, no matter what the sport, is to have a flashy pattern that shows off your creative self. However, the Inov-8 Mens F-Lite 235 V3 shoes have decided that one color tone works just one well.
These color choices include black, red, white, silver, blue, and khaki. There is some texture on the mesh fabric, and no matter what color you choose, the Inov-8 logo is white and on the side of the shoes.
The Inov-8 Mens F-Lite 235 V3 shoes are lightweight and flexible. They allow you to squat and bend, improving your take-off as you dash across the floor to expertly respond to your opponent.
For construction, the toe part of the shoes are wider, allowing your toes plenty of space. As most athletes know, sweating means expansion. It’s nice that these shoes allow enough space for your toes to expand. This also means there won’t be any rubbing along the sides, which can quickly lead to blisters.
Why are we impressed? The construction of these shows that they are an athlete’s shoe. The roominess in the toe area is great, as is the elastic mesh liner, which really allows your feet to breath.
All the color combinations are nice to choose from, and they’re a great option if you like color but don’t like busy designs.
What negatives must you be aware of? While the Inov-8 Mens F-Lite 235 V3 are fairly light, there are much lighter options on the market.
The Butterfly company has a lot of options when it comes to the best shoes for table tennis. The Butterfly Trynex shoes are a bit more subtle, a bit cheaper, but still have all the qualities you’ve come to expect from the brand.
Unlike other Butterfly shoes on our list, the Trynex shoes only come in blue or red colors. These accent colors are on white mesh, which either makes the shoes sophisticated or boring, depending on your personal tastes.
The grip on the Butterfly Trynex shoes are amazing. They allow you to move quickly and stop suddenly so you can really let your paddle fly. You won’t have to worry about tripping or sliding with this pair of shoes.
As for the sole, it is nicely cushioned with EVA memory foam. Not only is this supportive, but it is also lightweight.
Finally, the price on the Butterfly Trynex shoes is less than other similar shoes. They are great, affordable ping pong shoes or table tennis shoes.
What do we love it for? The supportive construction and low price make the Butterfly Trynex a winning combination. These shoes are some of the best ping pong shoes as well as table tennis shoes.
What were we disappointed with? While they may score in the area of price, the Butterfly Trynex shoes lose points in the area of design. The white background is nice, if a little boring. There are only two-color choices, red and blue. As younger people enter the sport of table tennis, they want the option of colors that really represent their personalities.
Things to Consider
Finding the best shoes for table tennis can seem a bit difficult, but if you start breaking down your purchase, it is actually quite manageable. Look to our Buying Guide to help you understand what is important in your shoes and what will bring you the confidence and skill to win against your next opponent.
Features to consider when choosing table tennis shoes
A good pair of table tennis shoes will enhance your game and make you a formidable force. Don’t be fooled by their simple design. Behind each pair of shoes is a long process to envision and then create all the amazing features they offer. Be sure to consider these options as you shop for your next pair.
All table tennis shoes have no-slip soles, but beyond that there are many differences between each product. Table tennis is about reacting to your opponent and can require a lot of quick movements and sudden pivots. You want a pair of shoes that has enough grip to get you around while also being light enough, so they don’t weigh you down.
The thinner the sole is, and the more flexible it, is the easier you can move around. This not only includes side to side but up and down, as well. If you can bend in your shoes, it allows you to position your knees so as to take weight off your body. This is important as it will prevent injuries in the long run.
Cushioning is a tricky part of table tennis shoes. You want a lightweight, flexible shoe, but this can’t come at the expense of cushioning. The ASICS Men’s Gel-Rocket 9 shoes do this really well. They have a GEL Cushioning System. The cushioning is in the mid-sole, which sits just above the outsole. It cradles your feet, but because it is made from a proprietary gel, it is very lightweight.
The ASICS Men’s Gel-Rocket 9 shoes also have a sock liner that adapts to the shape of your feet. In fact, the more you wear these shoes, the more comfortable they become. It’s always amazing how innovative shoe companies are.
The arches in your feet can start to drop if they aren’t adequately supported. Good arch support in table tennis shoes is vital as there is so much movement and impacts. Be sure to look for a pair of shoes that highlights this, such as the Butterfly Rifones shoes.
While the soles of table tennis shoes are rubber, the upper material will be a mesh fabric. Mesh allows your feet to breath and move. The longer you play tennis, the more your feet will expand. Mesh naturally expands so you can have comfort the whole time you’re playing.
Look for roominess in the toe area so that your feet can wriggle around a bit. Toes are prone to blisters if they are confined. Even a little bit of friction between your toes and shoes can quickly lead to blisters, which will greatly hamper your game.
Sizes and colors available
It used to be that sports shoes were a boring white. Now, you can find shoes in just about any color imaginable. Even the most budget-friendly table tennis shoe will still have some zing to it. However, there are only some shoe brands that offer multiple color combinations for each model of shoe. For example, the LI-NING WHIRLWIND shoes are very budget-friendly but only come in one color combination of blue and white. At the other end of the spectrum, the Butterfly Rifones shoes have a heftier price tag but come in innovative color choices such as neon green and vivid pink.
Unfortunately, there are some shoes that have limited size ranges. The Butterfly Groovy shoes only come in sizes 4.5 to 6.5, and the LI-NING WHIRLWIND shoes only come in sizes 8 to 10. Because shoe sizes online can be limited, it’s best to start with this feature first. That way, you won’t be disappointed if you find the perfect shoes that aren’t actually in your size.
The final aspect about table tennis shoes is that, like other types of shoes, the sizing may be a bit off. For example, the ASICS Men’s Gel-Rocket 9 shoes run larger, so it’s recommended to purchase a half size smaller. This means if you’re naturally a size 9, purchase these shoes in a size 8.5. Likewise, if you wear orthotics, you may need to purchase a half size larger to accommodate any special braces or inserts.
Table tennis shoes are made to be light and nimble. While they can be used for table tennis, they can also be used for ping pong and indoor volleyball. In fact, some table tennis shoes can even be used for walking, although we don’t recommend taking them outside as they will become dirty and then not suitable for indoor use.
The design of table tennis shoes involves a thin sole, a mesh upper fabric, and good arch support in between. There should be a toe cap to protect your toes, especially as you pivot on the hard floor surface.
While table tennis shoes are indoor shoes and therefore not exposed to the dust and dirt from the outside, they are regularly exposed to the sweat that comes from a heated match. If you want to freshen them up, you can place your shoes in a washing machine. Simply follow these steps:
Now that there are more color options than ever, many table tennis shoes state they are unisex. However, the sizes will most likely be in men’s sizes. You’ll have to look online for a comparison chart to find the right fit if you’re a woman.
Unfortunately, this can mean that if you are a woman with smaller feet, there might not be enough sizes for you. While shoe size availability is improving, there are still more steps needed for shoes to truly be considered unisex.
Yes, anti-slip soles squeak. They are made out of a special rubber, and while they are great at gripping, this material has the tendency to squeak while you are running and stopping. While there are some DIY ways to stop the squeaking. This includes sprinkling your shoes with baby powder and rubbing the bottom with a dryer sheet. However, if you play table tennis long enough, you do get used to the sound.
If you’re ready to take your table tennis game to the next level, then you need to find the best table tennis sneakers.
Our Editor’s Choice are the Butterfly Groovy shoes. With amazing color combinations and an extremely thin sole, you’ll be sure to impress everyone.
For those that have a bit more room in their budgets, consider the Butterfly Rifones shoes. Not only do these shoes come in vibrant colors, but their grip is truly incredible.
Finally, if you want a budget-friendly option that is still under the umbrella of the best table tennis shoes, the LI-NING WHIRLWIND shoes are perfect. They have excellent grip and a sophisticated, lightweight structure.
Table tennis is all about reaction, and with any of our shoe options, you’ll be able to respond to your opponent in a memorable way.