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The Best Basketball Shoes for Guards 2024 – All You Need to Know

Whether you’re new to playing guard or an experienced pro, you’re here because you’re serious about your shoes. Our curated list of the top basketball shoes on the market for guards guarantees you’ll find exactly what you need. Each recommendation comes with a full breakdown of specific key features, what people are saying about them, and the pros and cons you should know before buying.

Photo of Nike Kyrie Low 5 basketball shoes for guards on white background. The shoes are blue with pink Nike logo and white soles. One shoe is on its side (center bottom), one half cut off on the top left.

Why You Need Quality Basketball Shoes When Playing Guard

Wearing the wrong shoes can damage your ankles and feet, and also affect your hips, thighs, and even your back. Basketball shoes are just as essential equipment as the ball.

When buying a pair of basketball shoes, you need to weigh various factors. These include the shoe size, durability, quality, price, and very importantly, the position you’ll be playing on the team. There are basketball shoes for fast guards, shooting guards, explosive guards, and many more.

5 Factors to Consider Before Buying


If your shoes are too big, the extra space can cost you stability and grip while you’re running around on the court. If they’re too tight, they’ll lead to calluses and blisters. Both situations will hinder your productivity. 

Cushioning and Stability 

You need cushioned shoes that will continuously soften the impact your feet receive whenever they hit the ground. The midsole of your sneakers is primarily involved with cushioning and stability. It’s the key part of the shoe because the materials that make up the midsole have a direct influence on how well your feet are supported during repeated impacts.


It’s very easy to slip and injure yourself when you’re running around a court. This is where traction comes in. Opt for a shoe that has maximum grip power so you can jump, make sharp turns, and pivot freely without slipping.

As a shooting guard, adequate traction is essential so you can maintain your form and balance when you want to make a jumper. It also enables post players to hold their rebounding position more effectively. 


Shoes for guards need to be lightweight and responsive to enhance agility on the court. Picking the right shoe helps you both physically and psychologically, and consequently boosts your overall performance.

Additionally, wearing the best lightweight shoes can result in a 2.1% positive effect on your jumping performance, as well as a 1.6% positive effect on your sprint performance. Its importance cannot be overemphasized, especially for fast guards.

Top Height 

Because point guards function as team leaders on the court, they need supportive and responsive shoes that will move with them as they control the ball and change directions. For that reason, low or mid-cut shoes are the right fit for games. You want to get a pair of low or mid-cut shoes that won’t restrict your range of motion, aiding agility on the court.

Top Picks for Basketball Shoes for Guards in 2023


Best Basketball Shoes for Guards – Nike KD 14

The Nike KD 14 is one of the best shoe options for anyone that prefers a “mid” basketball shoe with good lockdown, ankle support, and great traction. 

This shoe model not only looks good but feels good too! Easy, comfortable cushioning makes it one of the most popular shoes in demand, despite the production of a newer model: the KD 15.

Why Nike KD 14?

Closeup of Nike KD 14 basketball shoe, light purple with white sole, and salmon-colored Nike swoosh.

If you’re in search of a pair of nice-looking indoor basketball shoes that offer great ankle support and cushioning, go for Nike KD 14. Straight out of the box, they might feel stiff, but they have a normal break-in period. These shoes feature a noticeable cushion. So, after the first day, you are guaranteed to enjoy maximum grip power and support while playing.

Unlike some other brands, the KD 14 does not leave any kind of burns or hotspots in the area of the foot where it’s laced. Also, the strap helps to provide additional lockdown to prevent heel slip and create a snug feel when you wear them.

Another reason why Nike KD 14 is considered the best basketball shoe for guards is that it gives you the freedom to move easily, thereby increasing agility on the court. Speed and agility are very important skills for guards during a game.

This shoe model is also durable. Sometimes it takes months before any visible signs of wear start showing, and unlike with most brands, traction gets better with time!

However, because of its thicker upper, the shoes get hotter after a while, and you might sweat through your socks after a long game. 

  • Great cushioning system
  • Reliable ankle support
  • Strap aids in additional lockdown 
  • Aesthetically appealing 
  • True-to-size 
  • Initial stiffness 
  • Runs hot

What People Are Saying About It

One reviewer called them beautiful and noted that the “multicolored wear” lets them “mix and match the shoes with whatever” they’re wearing.

Someone else wrote that his son “loves the shoes because they fit well, provide good support, and look stylish.”

Best Nike Basketball Shoes for Guards – Nike Kyrie Infinity 

If you’re looking for a pair of nice, comfortable basketball shoes with a sturdy grip and a very supportive upper, then the Nike Kyrie Infinity is your plug!

The aesthetically appealing model is just as loud as Kyrie Irving himself, and it makes a great choice to wear on and off the court. Even Nike acknowledges the Kyrie Infinity as their best basketball shoes for guards, so you know it can be trusted. 

Still not sure if it’s your pick? Well, keep reading.

Why Kyrie Infinity?

Black Nike Kyrie Infinity basketball shoe with red detail on heel and lacing area, and red Nike swoosh on the side.

The Nike Kyrie Infinity is one of the best high-top shoes for basketball players on the market. 

If you’re a guard in search of a shoe that’s responsive enough to support swift direction changes and sprints, then this is a perfect fit for you. It has dependable traction on mildly dirty courts and is versatile enough to accommodate all kinds of foot types.

The Kyrie Infinity’s well-balanced cushioning system alludes to its low-to-the-ground design, giving you a smoother court feel while playing. Even with its premium court feel, the shoe adequately ensures impact protection, making the brand stylish, swift, and safe.

With this shoe model, you’ll get to enjoy smooth, comfortable strides as the midsole and upper materials ensure both breathability and step-in comfort.

The shoes also feature great heel-to-toe transition and fit almost all foot shapes, making them a crowd favorite. There’s also great ankle support and lockdown to avoid slipping while running around on the court. 

  • Incredible grip, even on slightly dusty courts
  • Very pronounced court feel
  • True-to-size fit 
  • Comfortable padding in the upper
  • Solid heel support and heel-to-toe transition 
  • Lightweight feel
  • Insufficient torsional rigidity
  • Light lateral support

What People Are Saying About It

We found two reviews that spoke for themselves:

“My son is playing even better basketball with his new Kyrie’s. Now I’m thinking about getting a pair, too!”

“Super comfortable and super fit. Even though I have wide feet, I ordered my usual size and they are great. They’re easy to put on and have lots of padding.”

Best Basketball Shoes for Shooting Guards – Air Jordan 36 Low

If you’re in search of a more cost-effective but durable option as a shooting guard, the Air Jordan 36 Low is your fix.

The Air Jordan 36 Low is a great match for basketball players that prefer a low top and big players that require a lot of impact protection. Because of its pronounced bounciness, you’ll also love it if you’re playing as a guard or a scorer that requires a lot of propulsion to the basket.

Why Air Jordan 36 Low?

Neon blue Air Jordan 36 basketball shoe with pale yellow sole and white/lime green/white sole siding.

The Air Jordan 36 Low is not only great for shooting guards, but it’s also an amazing choice of shoe for point guards. The shoe is made for lightweight players and with materials that make it very breathable to wear for prolonged hours.

Also, the roundness of the fore and rear sections of the outsoles add to a very smooth heel-to-toe transition.

All these will give you a better, more comfortable court feel. And this, in turn, enhances your performance. Experts and users commend its true-to-size fits as it feels nice and snug to wear.

The Air Jordan 36 Low is also an excellent pair of shoes for point guards with flat feet. 

However, even though it features incredible traction on various surfaces, the outsoles are not very suitable for outdoor games because of their soft rubber, and the lack of ankle support.

  • Smooth heel-to-toe transition
  • Amazing grip
  • Dependable impact protection
  • Great court feel
  • Pronounced bounce
  • Lightweight
  • Outsole easily attracts dust
  • Lacks effective ankle support

What People Are Saying About It

These shoes were described as “great and lightweight” by one reviewer, and “fits to size” by another.

Best Basketball Shoes for Big Guards – Lebron 19 Low

The Lebron 19 Low is a lightweight alternative to the classic Lebron signature Nike basketball shoes. The low-top shoe is specifically designed for dominant players who need to make quick, sharp turns on the court and direct plays for the team, like point guards.

As a big guard, you need shoes with thicker midsoles; this is because your weight will compress the midsoles and naturally bring your foot closer to the ground. 

You don’t want to feel “too low,” and this is why the slightly “high-off-the-ground” Lebron 19 Low is the best choice for big guards that still love to enjoy a degree of court feel while playing.

Why Lebron 19 Low?

Black Lebron 19 Low basketball shoe with white toe and red heel, and white Nike swoosh on the back side of the heel.

When you put on a Lebron 19 Low, the first thing you’ll feel is comfort. The upper is extremely comfortable and breathable. It’s made of mesh and a padded sock liner that hugs the foot and gives support to the feet while playing.

Another reason why the Nike LeBron 19 Low is the best option for big guards is the well-balanced cushioning that comes with it. Nike React foam traces the entire length of the foot to help minimize the impact on joints. 

The Air setup also combines well with the React foam to add extra cushioning to the heel. As such, the well-designed combo creates an overall breathable, lightweight, and secure experience when you wear them. 

The Lebron 19 Low also features excellent traction as it bites various surfaces well. It’s a fitting choice for players with wide feet, heavyweight, and a preference for playing indoors.

Important to note: The outsoles of the Lebron 19 Low aren’t very suitable for playing outdoors for long because of wear.

  • Effective impact protection 
  • Great traction
  • Reliable support
  • Best for wide-footers 
  • Stylish for casual wear 
  • Efficient bounciness
  • Heavy for lightweight players 
  • Not durable for playing outdoors 

What People Are Saying About It

We found one review that specifically stated the buyer’s grandson was so thrilled with the shoes that he “slept with it, which I guess means the shoes are deemed fabulous.”

“These cleats are exactly what I’ve been wanting for months,” wrote someone else, who added, “and they’re even better than I thought! Super comfy!”

Honorable Mention

Another shoe that made our list was the Adidas Harden Vol. 6. It’s a great choice for guards because it features a herringbone traction pattern, internal ankle pods, boost cushioning, and rubber sidewall to aid balance, and fits true to size.


Best Basketball Shoes for Explosive Guards – Adidas Crazy Explosive 2017

With its excellent support, cushioning, and traction, the Adidas Crazy Explosive 2017 is a multifaceted option for any type of player. However, it’s perfect for players who long to reach new heights, as it’s designed to release your explosive abilities on the court.

Why Adidas Crazy Explosive 2017?

All-white Adidas Crazy Explosive 2017 shoe, with light gray Adidas raised logo on side of heel.

The Adidas Crazy Explosive 2017 is an excellent choice for big players and explosive players. If you’re one, and you need a shoe that will adapt to your powerful moves, the Adidas Crazy Explosive is your best bet. 

A lateral TPU roll cage wraps the cushioning to provide medial responsiveness and stability, while midfoot stability is provided by an infinity-shaped shank plate. This combo enhances energy return for intensified control when propelling up to the basket.

Because of its 360-degree coral-inspired power grip around the midsole, the A.C.E 2017 features a very powerful outsole; this gives it great traction in various court conditions and types. It also boasts a sturdy, secure lockdown system that reduces pressure on the foot to create added comfort. 

It’s also breathable, snug, true-to-size, and stretches to adapt to your every explosive move!

Important to note: Because of the stiff upper, quick guards may not enjoy these shoes. However, if you’re an explosive guard in search of impact protection and solid support, these will be a good fit for you.

  • Excellent support
  • Incredible impact protection
  • Excellent traction 
  • Aesthetically appealing 
  • Durable mesh
  • Poor wearability 
  • Stiff upper

What People Are Saying About It

We found a review describing the fit as “snug”, as well as a satisfied parent who said her son “loves his new shoes.”

Best Basketball Shoes for Fast Guards – Nike Kyrie Low 5

If you’re a fast guard looking for the right kicks to help you express your speed freely on the court, the Nike Kyrie Low 5 is your best choice.

Why Nike Kyrie Low 5?

Image of Nike Kyrie 5 Low Men's Basketball Shoes, salmon pink with teal green accents on sides and sole, with white outline of Nike swoosh on side.

With the Kyrie Low 5, it doesn’t just get good, it gets better. It delivers an incredible court feel, emphasizes impact protection, and gives maximum grip on clean courts. 

The Zoom Turbo bag provides your knees with the well-balanced cushioning they need—you can easily feel the support in every rebound jump you make because of its responsive Zoom system. Zoom is also effective in lateral cuts and quick changes in pace.

The Kyrie 5 transitions well from toe to heel and it is a great choice for ballers of all ages and foot shapes. The Kyrie 5 is especially popular among players with flat feet and boasts a great upper design, both in aesthetics and materials. 

The flat-foot favorite has great lockdown and wonderful ankle support, and it’s an excellent choice for outdoor games. However, you’ll need to clean it regularly to maintain its superior traction. 

Unfortunately, the shoe isn’t a good choice for players with wide feet, and because of its bright colors, stains are easily visible. 

  • Maximum grip
  • Impressive court feel
  • Solid impact protection
  • Great for flat-footed players 
  • Suitable for outdoor courts
  • Hard to put on
  • Not suitable for wide feet

What People Are Saying About It

Although one person noted that the shoe was “a bit tight,” they also said it was comfortable with “good stability and grip.”

From another reviewer, “My husband loves these. I bought them after he hurt his Achilles and he uses them for when he’s on his feet all day.”

Best Basketball Shoes for Female Guards – Nike KD 15

The Nike KD 15 is one of the best basketball shoes out there in the market today. From the upper to the midsoles and outsoles, it’s obvious that a great deal of attention and time was paid to designing the product. 

Why KD 15?

Red KD 15 basketball shoe with white detailing (laces and side of heel) and white Nike swoosh on side.

The Nike KD 15 is a great choice for both male and female guards. Because of its narrow forefoot, it’s a particularly great option for women. The Nike KD 15 is generally known for its comfortable, snug, lightweight feel. Only players with small to normal-sized feet will enjoy the Nike KD 15.

Because of its soft outsole, the KD 15 is perfect for hoopers who mostly like to play indoors. This, however, doesn’t mean it isn’t durable, as experts agree on its durability after extensive testing.

Durability is important to guards because it means the shoes can last for longer while playing. A durometer measurement shows that the Nike KD 15 is made from stiff rubber and its outsoles measure a thickness of 4.2 mm, which is thicker than that of many other basketball shoes. Surprisingly so, considering how soft it feels.

It also has great traction on various types of courts, and even when there’s dust pickup, it still bites well while playing. There’s also a great deal of breathability and ankle support for a low-cut shoe. 

  • Constant grip on diverse surfaces
  • Dust-resistant outsoles
  • Lightweight 
  • Bouncy midsole
  • Well-ventilated upper
  • Not for wide-footed players
  • Not recommended for outdoor use

What People Are Saying About It

One woman wrote that although she wouldn’t know the durability of the shoe until she’d played in it a while, “the fit was perfect.” Another reviewer wrote, “I went up half a size because of my wide feet. I like them since I can move side to side better on defense.”

Best Youth Basketball Shoes for Guards – Under Armour Curry 8

The Under Armour Curry 8 is a great choice for young adult basketball players who want to enjoy overall well-roundedness and elite traction.

The Curry 8 is also perfect for quick-footed guards that play with a great deal of speed and shiftiness.

Why Curry 8?

Black Curry 8 basketball shoe with white sole. Under Armour logo and text "FLOW" is written in soft gray on the side of the sole.

The Curry 8 has a tight fit and top-notch traction. The shoes bite hard to the ground (even on a slightly dirty floor) and you don’t need to worry about slippage. 

You know you’re in for a treat with the Curry 8 when you consider the lean, stable cushioning that reduces impact considerably. 

However, to fully enjoy the shoes, a short break-in time is necessary for the upper knit to loosen up a bit. Its lightweight feature also makes it an excellent choice for young basketball players functioning as guards. 

The shoe features solid lockdown in the heel, slightly soft ankle support, and commendable breathability. 

Meanwhile, you need to ensure that you keep the Curry 8 indoors at all costs. Outdoor games will only shorten their lifespan.

  • True-to-size
  • Superb traction
  • Stable cushioning
  • Nice fit
  • Lightweight 
  • Breathable
  • Slightly tight
  • Only for indoor use

What People Are Saying About It

One person said, “My grandson asked for these and wore them to his first basketball practice! Loved them!”

Someone else provided confirmation of the feel of the shoes and their fit: “They’re true to size and comfortable, also really lightweight!”

Time to Get on the Court

As a basketball player, your shoes are your foundation. If you miss it with the shoes, you miss it with the game. Now that you know all there is to know with trusted recommendations, what are you waiting for? It’s time to hit the road and get your next pair of basketball shoes!

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