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Top 10 Top Table Tennis Shoes

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Reviewing table tennis shoes is a tricky task to undertake. Just about every table tennis player has different requirements in terms of grip, cushioning, support, lightness, flexibility and price. That makes recommending the perfect shoe pretty difficult!

Instead of the ultimate table tennis shoe, what I've assembled instead is a list of ten shoes that are all worthy of recommendation in their own right, while not simply being clones of each other. Regardless of which shoe you choose, you can be sure that you will be getting a shoe that has some outstanding features of its own.

1. Yasaka Gatien De Luxe Table Tennis Shoes

Yasaka Gatien De Luxe Table Tennis Shoes
My partner's favorite table tennis shoes were the Yasaka Gatien Pro shoes. They were comfortable right from the start (as she proceeded to tell me all the first week!), and gave her excellent grip on the floor. They have also lasted pretty well, since in the past she has tried other shoes and returned to her old favorite pair again.

The Yasaka Gatien De Luxe are the upgraded model of the Gatien Pro shoes (click on the link for a full review), and promise to be just as popular. With a new design but retaining the best features of the old model, I can guess which shoes I'll be buying for my partner pretty soon!

Update 15 Feb 2008 - I got a pair of the De Luxe shoes for my partner a few months ago - needless to say she loves them!

2. Stiga Speed-Grip Table Tennis Shoes

Stiga Speed-Grip Table Tennis Shoes
I've worn my Stiga Speed-Grip table tennis shoes for many months now (as of 15 February 2008), and I'm happy to report that they are very comfortable, being nice and light but with adequate cushioning and excellent grip. As one of the less expensive table tennis shoes around, I was not expecting them to last forever, but as it turned out they are very durable, and I'm still using them as my training shoe. Excellent value for money in my book.

Note as of September 2007: Now that I've been wearing these shoes for several months, I've got a full review of the Stiga Speed-Grip shoes now available.

3. Mizuno Table Tennis Shoes

According to forum member heldown2, Mizuno table tennis shoes are worn by many of the world's top players, such as Vladimir Samsonov, Petr Korbel, Wang Nan, Jan-Ove Waldner, Wang Hao, Ma Lin, Jorgen Persson, Zoran Primorac, and Chen Qi.

Yes, they are pretty pricey, but if you want to use what the pros use, these appear to be the real deal, if not a real steal.

4. Adidas Table Tennis Shoes

Photo of Adidas ClimaCool Table Tennis Shoes
Photo (c) Table Tennis Pioneers
Over here in Australia, adidas aren't well known for their table tennis shoes. But that may change in the future, since adidas now have a whole range of table tennis shoes that provide excellent support and great shock absorbing qualities (through the use of a material called adiprene).

Many table tennis shoes are a bit lacking in good cushioning for bigger people, so heavier table tennis players may want to give serious consideration to adidas shoes that use adiprene, such as the mi-TT-enium and NewTTanglin. The joints that you save may be your own. My own aging knees are putting in a request to try a pair!

5. Donic Waldner Flex Table Tennis Shoes

Donic Waldner Flex TT Shoes
Photo courtesy of Table Tennis Pioneers

Donic Waldner Flex is the model that Jan-Ove Waldner prefers and wears. But what about the Mizuno shoes that he is supposed to be using? Beats me. It's not uncommon for players to be supposed to be using one brand and actually using another.

Regardless of whether Waldner really uses these shoes or not (you can guarantee he hasn't worn yours if you buy a pair!), the Waldner Flex table tennis shoes is another good shoe, with a grippy shock absorbing sole, breatheable material, and without too much weight.

6. Killerspin Table Tennis Shoes

Photo of Killerspin TT Shoes
Photo courtesy Megaspin.net

Killerspin have been a breath of fresh air on the American table tennis scene, and their shoes are no exception.

While the claims made about the shoe on their website and how it will improve your game may be a little over the top, they appear to have several very nice table tennis shoes on their hands (or should that be feet?). Features include a non-marking rubber sole, rounded outsole grip for better traction, ultra-light mesh for breathability, and light-weight suede on the toe and heel for durability.

7. Butterfly Radial 050 Table Tennis Shoes

The Butterfly Radial 808 table tennis shoes were widely popular, and with good reason - they were a great shoe. The Butterfy Radial 050 is the successor to the Radial 808. According to forum member MarcoHere, the Butterfly Radial 050's are the perfect shoe for him - light, grippy, comfortable, and with stitching around the sole to prevent the sole coming off.

8. Stiga Wasp Table Tennis Shoes

Stiga Wasp Table Tennis Shoes
Photo courtesy Table Tennis Pioneers
One of the local players in my area uses this shoe, which is an excellent mark of approval since he is meticulous in his search for the perfect table tennis blade, rubbers and shoes. The Stiga Wasps are the shoes that he has settled on as offering the right blend of grip, lightness, support and value for money. Knowing his high standards I might just have to try a pair for myself!

9. Donic Puma Persson UltraFlex III Table Tennis Shoes

The Donic Puma Persson UltraFlex III table tennis shoes were given the thumbs up on our forum, with forum member AGOODING2 mentioning that they give a little bit more support and cushioning than the Butterfly Radial 050's (see recommendation #9).

Like the Mizunos, they aren't the cheapest shoe around, but sometimes you do get what you pay for.

(Note: These seem to be a bit hard to find these days - their successor appears to be the Donic Targa Flex 2 shoe - Buy Direct)

10. Asics Gel-Rocket III Indoor Court Shoes

The Asics Gel-Rocket III Indoor Court shoes were brought to my attention by forum member DRIVEPEN, who uses the previous model Rocket II's. He explains that the Gel-Rockets are great at providing support, although the sole is a bit thick (as to be expected for an indoor court shoe, instead of a table tennis shoe).

So if you are looking for a table tennis shoe that can also double for squash, racketball, volleyball and the like, these just might be the shoes for you.

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