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Everything you need to know about a handball shoe
Explosive movements, high speeds and many dynamic actions. Those are the main features of the beautiful sport handball. To meet all the needs of the handball player, handball brands such as adidas, Mizuno, Kempa, ASICS, and Hummel have designed the handball shoes for everyone’s liking for women, men and of course for children.
Light, flexible and durable; these are the 3 pillars that a handball shoe must generally meet. In addition, it is an advantage if the upper is provided with breathable material so that the shoe is comfortable and generates an optimal foot climate. The game of handball demands a lot from a shoe, such as running forwards and backwards, changes of pace, turns and abrupt stops, jumps and changes of direction. Essential is professional ankle and knee protecting footwear with heel protection and a secure fit. The freedom of movement and the propulsion function of the foot must be very good. This together ensures that the risk of an injury is low.
With different technologies, the cushioning and soft comfort are optimally incorporated into the midsoles and insoles. An important part of the shoe is the wear-resistant outsole that provides a firm grip, endurance and jumping ability. In addition, you also want your shoes to look good and the handball shoes of the leading handball brands look anything but boring. On the contrary, our branded shoes are guaranteed to attract attention with their stylish design and combine a modern look and safe functionality.
Which handball shoe suits you?
The shoe is in many cases the most important part of your handball outfit. You need to be grounded with your shoes because they are the only contact between you and the floor. When the shoes and you are not a match, you run the risk of serious injuries, overuse, blisters or suffering of your performance.
When choosing a shoe, it is important to first carefully examine your package of requirements. Often the requirements depend on the position. For example, for every position in the handball field there is a specific wish list that a shoe must meet in order to achieve maximum performance.
The ideal shoe for the playmaker
The playmaker benefits from a flexible and agile handball shoe. At the same time, the shoe must also be stable, because the playmaker is involved in many duels and has to do with sudden changes in running directions. The most ideal shoes for this position have a flat sole with sufficient cushioning for direct feedback from the ground, a flexible upper and have a booty construction (slightly higher than standard) for extra comfort, stability and support. Popular models for this position are ASICS Netburner, adidas Crazyflight and Mizuno Wave Lightning.
Left and right winger opt for flexibility and cushioning
For the left and right winger a combination of several facets is important in a good handball shoe. On the one hand the stability in duels and on the other hand the flexibility during changes in direction. Good cushioning is also important for the more offensive tasks of this position. adidas Crazyflight, Mizuno Stealth and ASICS Sky Elite meet these requirements and are suitable for these players in several respects.
The pivot player needs stability
For the pivot players, maximum stability is the key to success. They put the blocks, are pushed from one end to the other, often fall and land on one leg. Relatively speaking, the pivot players are the largest and most physical players on the field. The combination of these two facets means that these players need a lot of foot and ankle support, a lot of stability in the midfoot and the shoe must have good cushioning. Mizuno Wave Stealth, adidas Stabil and Kempa Attack Contender are models that are ideal for players in this position.
Light and nimble for the left and right backcourt
Players on the left and right back sprint and jump. A light shoe that is flexible and agile is the most logical choice for these handball players. Often times, the shoe's light weight comes at the expense of stability, but that's what these players also need less because they aren't as often involved in direct duels. Kempa Wing Lite, adidas Counterblast Bounce and Mizuno Wave Mirage are extremely light shoes with a heel counter, flat sole and flexible upper. Ideal for the left and right back players.
Direct ground contact for the goalkeeper
A goalkeeper must be able to react quickly with his feet to what he sees with his eyes. It is important that he has direct contact with the floor so that he can make quick changes in direction. Real handball goalkeeper shoes are characterized by a leather and flexible upper, little cushioning and a thin rubber sole. The best goalkeeper shoes are adidas HB Spezial, Liga HK and Swift Lite from Hummel. But a goalkeeper can of course also choose a specific field handball shoe.
How important is cushioning in a handball shoe?
Cushioning is one of the most important aspects of a handball shoe that makes a good handball shoe. Each brand has developed its own cushioning system to protect joints during landings and sudden changes of direction. Over time, the cushioning in the shoe wears out and it is time to replace your shoes with a new pair.
ASICS has been known for years for its GEL cushioning with small and medium-sized GEL cushions placed in the midsole. The Japanese sports shoe specialist has now launched a new cushioning system: FlyteFOAM (FF). The cushioning foam absorbs the shocks evenly, as the FlyteFOAM can be inserted into the entire midsole construction.
Mizuno uses the specially developed WAVE plate. This is a wave-shaped plastic plate that absorbs shock, converts it into energy and returns it to the feet so that you experience a lot of forward propulsion during every action.
The BOOST material that adidas has patented is used in handball shoes, which are therefore particularly well cushioned and return the absorbed shocks to your feet, so that you benefit from every action.
The double layer EVA cushioning is used by Kempa and Hummel and is made of an extremely resilient and cushioning plastic material and provides excellent shock absorption.
Puma opts for the IGNITE foam that gives the shoe a comfortable fit and good cushioning, so that knees and ankles are less stressed.
Different upper materials
PU skin is often used in indoor shoes to promote stability. The plastic material is tear-resistant and often made in one piece, without seams and attached directly to the sole. This makes you very stable, but you experience less flexibility.
Mesh material is made of woven plastic fibers woven into different meshes. It is lightweight and has an air-permeable effect. This increases the flexibility and comfort of the shoe, but is therefore less stable. A combination of mesh material and PU reinforcement pieces is common so that the shoe has best of both worlds.
Another frequently used material is knitted prime knit. Cotton or synthetic fibers are made by machine, making the shoes very light and yet also stable. This technique is used exclusively in the top models such as Mizuno Wave Stealth Neo.
How do I take good care of my handball shoes?
Moisture is a killer for (handball) shoes. Handball shoes are highly exposed to sweat during training and competitions. Even after the handball activity, the handball shoes are stored in sports bags with wet sports clothes and get soaked in body fluids. That is why it is very important to keep the shoes in a dry place at home and let them dry. The PU and mesh material are put to the test in wet conditions for a long time and are less resistant to tearing.