Top 10 Basketball Shoes That Make You Jump Higher


We all know the importance of a strong vertical jump in sports and the role of appropriate footwear in boosting jump performance. 

That’s why I made a comprehensive list of the Best basketball shoes that make you jump higher.

This article shows technologies like jump soles, emphasizing that there are no shortcuts to improving jumping abilities. Consistent hard work is key. 

So, check out the list of the best shoes for jumping I have created for you based on stability, impact protection, and support during jumping exercises. 


Table of Contents

Jumping height and basketball shoes

Basketball performance is significantly influenced by the type of shoes a player wears. Having the right pair of basketball shoes is crucial for several reasons. 

The cushioning in basketball shoes is designed to absorb shock, protecting your joints from the impact of jumping and landing. The right shoes can enhance your game, improving agility, speed, and jumping height.

For instance, shoes with stiff midsoles can facilitate powerful jumps, enhancing your performance in the game. Therefore, investing in a high-quality pair of basketball shoes is essential for every player looking to optimize their performance on the court.

Performance benefits of good basketball shoes


Athletes must invest significant time in the gym, engaging in plyometrics, weight lifting, and running. The right shoes are crucial for reducing injury risk and enhancing training effectiveness.

Key attributes of high-performing basketball shoes include traction, support, and comfort. Traction allows players to maintain their footing and balance during quick movements. At the same time, support is essential for protecting the ankles during jumps and cuts. 

Conversely, comfort ensures players perform at their best without being hampered by foot fatigue or discomfort.

Moreover, high-performing basketball shoes are designed to facilitate powerful jumping and cutting movements while reducing the risk of non-contact injuries. It is often achieved through features such as midsole stiffness.

How do the right basketball shoes enhance jumping ability?

While testing the shoes, I noticed that the right pair of basketball shoes can improve jumping performance by providing traction, support, and comfort.

  1. Traction: Basketball with good traction generates more power which helps you jump higher. When jumping or dunking, your muscles generate force against the ground, which is transferred into the air. If your shoes have good traction, they can help you grip the court better and prevent slippage, allowing you to generate maximum force.
  2. Support: Basketball shoes provide ankle support which is essential during jumps. It can help prevent injuries and provide stability, enabling you to make stronger and more confident jumps.
  3. Comfort and Fit: Comfortable Basketball Shoes ensure your feet are not strained, allowing you to perform at your best. Proper fit is crucial, as ill-fitting shoes can disrupt your balance and hinder your jumping ability.
  4. Technology: Certain brands like APL (Athletic Propulsion Labs) use technology designed to enhance jumping ability. Their Load N’ Launch technology claims to increase a player’s vertical jump by 3.5 inches.
  5. Weight: Lightweight shoes can also contribute to a higher jump as they don’t weigh down your feet.

Importance of shoe features like cushioning, grip, and weight


Shoe features like cushioning, grip, and weight are crucial in enhancing performance and preventing injury, especially for athletes. 

In the next paragraphs, I have given details of these three features.


Cushioning is essential as it absorbs the force of an impact, reducing the stress on the body’s joints during physical activities like running or jumping. It provides comfort during each stride and aids in the smooth weight shifting from heel to toe. 

However, while cushioning is important, the notion that more padding will always lead to reduced impact forces is only sometimes true. It varies depending on individual needs and shoe design.


The grip is another critical feature for maintaining contact with varying terrains. A shoe’s sole has a tread that provides grip, helping to prevent slips or falls on surfaces like loose gravel, mud, or boulders. 

It becomes especially important in sports like basketball, where swift and sudden movements are common.


The weight of the shoe also matters. Lighter shoes can enhance agility and speed but might lack support and stability. 

On the other hand, shoes with stability and cushioning may be heavier. Still, they provide necessary injury protection and comfort. This balance between light weight, support, and stability is crucial, especially in activities like hiking.

Top 10 Basketball Shoes that make you jump higher

Shoes designed for jumping or sports performance often have features like enhanced grip, cushioning, and support that can help increase vertical leaps. Furthermore, they can aid in force production and reduce injury risk, ultimately improving jumping performance.

Based on the earlier criteria, I’ve curated the top 10 basketball shoes that I tried for jumping higher.

Nike Lebron 18


The Nike LeBron 18 is a lightweight basketball shoe with the Knitposite 2.0 upper and a full-length Zoom Air Unit. This combination helps maintain speed and provides a comfortable, secure fit for sharp cuts and explosive sprints. The shoe’s design supports high jumps due to the Zoom Air Unit, which offers spring-like action, aiding in higher leaps and soft landings.

However, some reviewers have noted that the shoe’s support could be weak, as the Battleknit materials might take a while to break in.


  • Lightweight and comfortable
  • Full-length Zoom Air Unit enhances jumping ability
  • Stylish design with various color options


  • It may require a break-in period.
  • Some users reported issues with support.

Adidas Dame 6

The Adidas Dame 6 is a signature basketball shoe associated with NBA star Damian Lillard. The shoe is known for its lightweight design, weighing in at approximately 13.5 ounces, lighter than most shoes which typically range between 14.5 to 16 ounces. It makes the Dame 6 an excellent choice for players seeking agility on the court.

Features that Aid in Jumping Higher

Jumping higher is made easier by the herringbone pattern, lightweight materials, and responsive cushioning of the Dame 6.

  1. Lightweight Design: As mentioned earlier, the Dame 6’s lightweight design allows for more agility and less energy expenditure when jumping.
  2. Herringbone Traction Pattern: The Dame 6 features a herringbone traction pattern from heel to toe, providing excellent grip on the court, which can contribute to more powerful jumps.
  3. Responsive Cushioning: The Dame 6 uses Lightstrike cushioning for explosive movements and quick direction changes. This responsive cushioning can aid in achieving higher jumps.


  1. Lightweight: The shoe’s lightweight design aids in quick movements and jumps.
  2. Excellent Traction: The herringbone pattern provides exceptional grip.
  3. Comfortable: The shoe is praised for its comfort, even during extended periods of play.


  1. Lack of Color Options: Some users have expressed a desire for more color options.
  2. Durability Concerns: There have been reports of the shoe showing signs of wear and tear after extended use.

Under Armour Curry 7


The Under Armour Curry 7 is a popular basketball shoe series named after NBA superstar Stephen Curry. This model is characterized by its stylish design, high performance, and the cutting-edge technology it incorporates.

Features that aid in jumping higher

Flexible plate, synthetic mesh upper, outriggers, and Under Armour Curry 7 heel counter play an important role in jumping higher. Let me give you a short description of them.

  1. Flexible Plate: The Curry 7 has a flexible plate built into the shoe’s structure. It provides added support and contributes to the springiness needed for high jumps.
  2. Synthetic Mesh Upper: This feature ensures breathability and comfort, making it ideal for extended wear on the court.
  3. Internal Heel Counter & Outriggers: These offer enhanced lateral protection and stability – a priority in Curry’s footwear line.


  1. Supportive Upper: The shoe is lauded for its supportive upper, which ensures a snug fit.
  2. Stability: The internal heel counter and outriggers provide great lateral protection and stability.
  3. Stylish Design: It’s not just about function. The Curry 7 is also known for its appealing aesthetic.


  1. Material Quality: Some users feel that the materials used do not justify the price point of a $140 signature model.
  2. Firm Cushioning: The cushioning is very firm, which may not appeal to those prefer softer padding.

Jordan Why Not Zer0.3

The Jordan Why Not Zer0.3 is a signature basketball shoe of NBA player Russell Westbrook. This shoe is a tribute to Westbrook’s dynamic play on the court and his eccentric style off it. The model features a unique, flashy design, much like Westbrook himself.

Features That Aid in Jumping Higher

Features of the Jordan Why Not Zer0.3, like Zoom Air unit, weight, and traction, assist in achieving higher jumps:

  1. Zoom Air Unit: The shoe incorporates a large forefoot Zoom Air unit that provides responsive cushioning and aids in explosive movements like jumping.
  2. Lightweight Material: The shoe is made of lightweight materials that reduce the overall weight, allowing for more effortless vertical leaps.
  3. Traction Pattern: The outsole features a circular traction pattern that helps grip and stability during quick movements and jumps.


  • The shoe’s design stands out, making it a good choice for those who prefer unique, flashy styles.
  • The Zoom Air unit provides excellent cushioning and responsiveness.
  • The lightweight design allows for quick, agile movements.


  • Reports have shown that the shoe runs small, suggesting that buyers may need to order a half size up.
  • There have been some concerns about the shoe’s durability, with users reporting signs of wear and tear after a few months of use.

Nike Zoom Freak 1


The Nike Zoom Freak 1 is the debut signature shoe of NBA player Giannis Antetokounmpo. The shoe is designed to support the dynamic and powerful style of play that Giannis is known for. It features a breathable mesh upper and forefoot lockdown support for stability and enhanced traction.

Features That Aid in Jumping Higher

Nike Zoom Freak 1 has Zoom Air cushioning, forefoot lockdown support, and enhanced traction. These features of the shoe aid athletes in jumping higher.

  1. Zoom Air Cushioning: This technology provides responsive cushioning that helps athletes achieve higher jumps.
  2. Forefoot Lockdown Support: These are four internal bands integrated into the lacing system to keep the foot secure and stable during explosive movements like jumping.
  3. Enhanced Traction: The Nike Zoom Freak 1 outsole features a multidirectional traction pattern that helps provide excellent grip on the court, essential for making powerful jumps.


  • Breathable due to the mesh upper.
  • Good stability and support from the forefoot lockdown feature.
  • Excellent grip from the enhanced traction.


  • The shoe runs narrow, which can be uncomfortable for people with wider feet.
  • There have been some complaints about the lack of cushioning in the heel area.

Adidas Harden Vol. 4

The Adidas Harden Vol. 4 is the fourth edition of the signature basketball shoe line for NBA star James Harden. The shoe is known for its solid performance, stability, and support. It has a mixed-media upper that not only provides plenty of stability but also allows for increased breathability.

Moreover, it’s designed to sit low to the ground over a wide base, providing a stable, responsive ride.

Features That Aid in Jumping Higher

Adidas Harden Vol. 4 has light strike cushioning. It also has good traction quality and stability features that make it helpful for jumping higher.

  1. Lightstrike Cushioning: The Harden Vol. 4 uses Lightstrike cushioning technology. It isn’t overly bouncy or plush but offers adequate impact protection, making it good for jumping.
  2. Stability Features: The shoe is designed with portions caging you in and acting as outriggers, providing enhanced stability which can aid in powerful jumps.
  3. Good Traction: The shoe has an exceptional floor grip, providing the foundation for higher jumps.


  1. Good Traction: The Harden Vol. 4 is praised for its outstanding traction on most surfaces.
  2. Stable and Supportive: It offers a stable, responsive ride, and the fit and support are good.
  3. Breathable: The mixed-media upper provides increased breathability.


  1. Cushioning: While the Lightstrike cushioning works, it is manageable and gentle. It might not be to everyone’s liking.
  2. Traction Dependence: The traction performs outstandingly when clean, suggesting it might be less effective if not kept clean.

Under Armour Project Rock 1


The Under Armour Project Rock 1 is a high-top training shoe designed by Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. It features a knit upper for a breathable, compression-like fit and lightweight directional strength. The shoes are part of the Project Rock Collection and are available in multiple colorways, such as ‘Blue,’ ‘White,’ and ‘Red.’

Features that aid in jumping higher

Project Rock 1 of Under Armour is also a great option for high jumping with the features like a knit upper, compression-like fit, etc.

  • A fully knit upper delivers lightweight directional strength with a breathable, compression-like fit.
  • Although not explicitly mentioned, the shoe’s design could potentially enhance all aspects of athletic performance, including jumping.


  • The high-top design provides extra ankle support.
  • A fully knit upper allows for breathability and a snug fit.
  • Lightweight design can enhance mobility and performance.


  • The shoes may be on the pricier side when compared to other training shoes.
  • While providing extra support, the high-top design may only be preferable for some.
  • Specific features aiding in jumping higher should be explicitly mentioned.

Nike Kyrie 6

Nike Kyrie 6 is a popular basketball shoe designed by the renowned NBA player Kyrie Irving. The shoe is built for playmakers who demand enhanced comfort, control, and energy return on the court.

It features various styles, including the Kyrie 6 ‘Shot Clock,’ Kyrie 6 ‘Bred,’ and Kyrie 6 ‘Jet Black,’ among others.

Features that aid in jumping higher

While not explicitly designed for jumping higher, the Kyrie 6 has several features that could enhance this performance aspect. Its flat sole with rounded edges provides stability and control, which are crucial for jumping. 

Moreover, the shoe’s design ensures that your foot sits within it, further enhancing stability and control.


  1. They are designed with a focus on comfort, control, and energy return.
  2. Flat sole with rounded edges for improved stability.
  3. Variety of styles to choose from.
  4. High user rating (4.4 out of 5 stars on Amazon).


  1. The shoe does not have features specifically designed to aid in jumping higher.
  2. Some users might find the shoe expensive.

Adidas Pro Bounce 2019


The Adidas Pro Bounce 2019 is a performance-oriented basketball shoe that has garnered attention for its functionality and affordability. It’s designed with features that aid in jumping higher while providing comfort and support on the court.

Features that Aid in Jumping Higher

Bounce cushioning, supportive upper and ankle support, and the lightweight design of Pro Bounce make it a great option for the high jump. It also has superior traction to many other basketball shoes

Here is a short description of the features:

  • Bounce Cushioning: The Adidas Pro Bounce 2019 features Bounce cushioning technology. This technology offers enhanced comfort and flexibility, which can contribute to improved jump performance. It absorbs impact and provides a balanced ride, helping to boost responsiveness during jumps.
  • Superior Traction: The shoe boasts excellent traction that supports rapid movements and jumps. This feature is particularly beneficial for outdoor play, where grip and stability are essential for high jumps.
  • Supportive Upper: The shoe’s upper is designed with FusedMesh, providing zonal support and reinforcing high-wear areas. This design aids stability, providing a secure fit crucial for jumping higher.
  • Ankle Support: The mid-top design of the Adidas Pro Bounce 2019 provides extra support around the ankle area. This support can enhance balance and control during jumping, reducing the risk of injury.
  • Lightweight Design: Despite its robust construction, the shoe is lightweight. This lightness can aid in jumping higher as it reduces the weight one has to lift off the ground.


  • Good traction, making it suitable for outdoor play.
  • Effective Bounce cushioning aids in jumping.
  • Lightweight support for comfort and ease of movement.
  • Affordable price point.


  • Some users have mentioned a break-in period required for optimal fit.
  • There may be instances where the minimalist design may need more support for some players.

Jordan Super.Fly MVP L

The Jordan Super.Fly MVP L is a basketball shoe that pays tribute to Michael Jordan’s five MVP wins. It’s designed for multi-surface play and incorporates innovative Nike React technology for 360-degree comfort and energy return.

Features that aid in jumping higher:

Nike added their React technology and pressure-mapped outsole design to make Jordan super.Fly suitable for high jump athletes. 

  • Nike React Technology: This feature offers ultimate energy return, which can provide a powerful lift-off for jumps.
  • Pressure-mapped Outsole Design: The outsole’s design adapts to various surfaces, providing excellent traction that aids in jumping higher.


  • Comfort: The shoe matches 360-degree comfort with energy return thanks to the innovative Nike React technology.
  • Aesthetic Appeal: The shoe combines an attractive aesthetic appeal with comfort.
  • Versatility: The pressure-mapped outsole design allows for multi-surface play.


  • Stiff Material: The shoe’s upper material is stiff and restrictive, taking a long time to break in.
  • Popularity: The Jordan Super.Fly MVP L reportedly gets very little love from sneaker reviewers, suggesting it may not be as popular or well-received as other models.

10 Honourable Mentions of Basketball Shoes for Jumping Higher

We have seen a detailed overview, pros and cons, and some important features of the top 10 basketball shoes that make you jump higher. Now, I want to make some honorable mentions, and believe me; they are also very good for the specified reasons. 

I have tried them on, and these shoes are from renowned brands like Puma, Nike, Under Armour, and Adidas.

  1. Puma MB.01 Lo – Known for its sleek design and comfort, this shoe is a great choice for those seeking improved jumping performance.
  2. Under Armour Curry 9 – This shoe offers excellent traction and support, helping to facilitate strong jumps.
  3. Under Armour Curry 8 – Similar to its successor, the Curry 8 provides excellent grip and support, essential for powerful leaps.
  4. Nike PG 5 – With a lightweight design and superb cushioning, this shoe helps enhance your jumping performance.
  5. Nike Kyrie 6 – The shoe’s unique design provides optimal traction, aiding in powerful jumps.
  6. Nike Air Zoom GT Cut – This shoe is praised for its drop-in react foam and zoom Strobel midsole, which aids in jumping and dunking.
  7. APL Superfuture – Known for the Load and Launch Technology, which captures compression energy to aid jumps.
  8. Nike LeBron XVII Low offers excellent support and cushioning, crucial for enhancing jumping ability.
  9. Nike KD Trey VIII – This shoe’s design aims to provide maximum comfort and support, helping improve jumping performance.
  10. Adidas Pro Bounce – Known for its bounce cushioning, this shoe provides excellent energy return, facilitating higher jumps.


After an extensive review of 10 basketball shoes designed for increased vertical leap, I’ve found some exceptional picks and shared their nitty-gritty. 

These shoes excel in basketball performance and offer the necessary features to enhance jumping abilities, such as superior cushioning, a lightweight design, and excellent support. 

They are aesthetically pleasing and provide a strong and well-rounded option for those seeking to improve their jumping capabilities. 

Also, the shoes offer great comfort and support for running and playing defense. These shoes are highly recommended for anyone looking to enhance their jumping performance.

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