Shoes (US size)

American Football Shoes


Cleats were designed to protect soccer players from foot injuries. Now their purpose is to give players more grip on the pitch especially with bad weather conditions. Since the beginning of American Football new developments in the cleat where implemented to american football shoes.

Slow Beginnings

Cleats where first seen in 16th century England. In the early 19th century cleats were used for soccer in Europe. American Football came along, the early models had leather, metal or even wooden studs which caused numerous injuries.

Along Came Rubber

With the evolution of football people began to see that the cleats needed to improve.
With the development of vulcanized rubber around the 1920s, so now using rubber for cleats was possible before it was considered too heavy. In 1925 the first cleats with removable studs where invented so people could use their shoes during the match and after they could just take the studs off and walk home. These shoes with removable studs where invented by the German brothers Rudolf and Adi Dassler. These two brothers are famous for their big companies Puma and Adidas.

Playing in Mud

Joseph Pipal was the developer of what is known as mud cleats. These cleats have longer studs and they are sharper as well, this gives you more grip in the mud.

Built for Speed

With the futher development of cleats companies saw that making them lighter was the way to go. 196 grams was the lightes football cleat the world had ever seen in 2011 it was the 5 Star by Adidas. In 2013 Nike beat that record with the Vapor Laser Talon which was the first shoe to have 3D printing techonology in it. It weighed 158,8 grams.

Materials and types

Making sure that you have proper gear before going on to the field for practice and games is probally the most important part of being an American football player. Cleats are a essential piece of equipment for an American Football player. 

Leather shoes: form around your foot to give you a good fit. They breathe well which makes them more comfortable for the players. Leather shoes have a good durability if you maintain them. Because of this they are higher in price.

Synthetics: these are lower in price, but they don’t breathe as well as leather ones and the durability are also less. Most shoes have synthetic materials in them, mainly as reinforcements.

Cleat types

There are two types of cleats, you got the screw-in and the molded cleats.

Because games can be played on grass or turf grass you need a shoe that can be used on both surfaces. The most important part of a shoe is that they fit wel and feel good during a match.
always make sure to check what shoes are allowed in the league you play


  • ½ inch- Dry start-of-the-season surfaces
  • ⅜ inch- Normal surfaces that have been played on numerous times
  • ¾ inch- Soft muddy surfaces
  • 1 inch- Extreme surface conditions (too much moisture or even ice)

American Football shoes can be used the whole year. However, some studs are better in certain weather that is the benefit of screw in studs. Joseph Pipal was the developer of what is known as mud cleats. These cleats have longer studs and they are sharper as well, this gives you more grip in the mud.

Parts of the shoe

  • Outsole - The outsole is the base of the shoe which uses spikes to provide the highest amount of traction on the field.
  • Midsole - The midsole is the internal support of the shoe which provides cushioning under the foot and heel.
  • Upper - The upper is the outer layer of the shoe, usually made from leather or synthetic leather in football cleats and is designed with durability in mind.    
  • Lace-Up – This used the most with american football shoes, you can tie them as tight as you want so they fit the way you want them to
  •  Strap – These American Football shoes have velcro staps and extra lace holes for more support and a more customizable fit.
  •  Slip-On – these can be found on the more expensive shoes. The Slip-On makes it that u still get support on your ankles but because of the flexibilty of the material you can still make fast manouvers.

Ages and gender

The only difference between men and women shoes is that they have different sizes


  • Wide receiver: Low-Cut, lightweight and give good support.
  • Running back: Low or Mid Cut, lightweight, good grip and good support.
  • Lineman: High Top cleats, lace up, ankle support and traction.
  • Defensive backs: Mid-Cut, mobility and support.
  • Quarterbacks: Mid-Cut, ankle stability and nimbleness.
  • Wide receivers: Mid-Cut, mobility and support.
  • Running backs: Mid-Cut, combonation of support and speed.

Cuts of cleats

There are 3 different cuts available for American Football players, Low, Mid and High Cut.
the Cut you play with is mostly personal preferance and can also be determined by the position you play.

  • Low cleats- These shoes are good for mobility, fast manouvers and high speeds.
  • Mid-Cut cleats - These shoes have good ankle support while also still able to do fast movements.
  • High top cleats - These are mostly worn by defenders and linemen, because they provide good ankle support and stability.


These are the safety rules for cleats from the NFL.

“Shoe cleats made of aluminum or other material that may chip, fracture, or develop a cutting edge. Conical cleats with concave sides or points which measure less than 3/8-inch in diameter at the tips, or cleats with oblong ends which measure less than 1/4 by 3/4-inch at the end tips are also prohibited. Nylon cleats with flat steel tips are permitted”










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