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2012 Gear Guide: Shoe Reviews

Sunday, April 15, 2012 /by


From top left: Men's Wilson Tour Ikon; Women's New Balance 1005; Men's Babolat SFX Ergo-Motion; Men's K-Swiss Tubes Monfils Mid; Men's Asics Gel-Resolution 4; Men's Head Speed Pro Lite; Women's Prince T-24; Women's Prince Rebel 2LS; Women's Adidas Barricade 7.0; Women's Yonex Power Cushion 308


Take the right first step with the sport’s latest footwear releases.

Start with your foot type

Before you pick out your next pair, consider the shape of your foot. Shoes that fit poorly can hinder your movement, or even lead to injury.

Supinated feet have high arches. People with this foot type will have shoes that show wear on the outside of the heel and forefoot while the inner portions will be barely worn. Supinators tend to have a wide forefoot and need shoes that provide more comfort. They require extra cushioning to compensate for their high arches and the fact that their feet tend to be inflexible when they hit the ground.

Pronated feet are the opposite of supinated feet; with pronators, the inside of the forefoot area wears down the most. Pronators tend to have flat feet and need a shoe with extra support on the medial (big toe) side to help keep their feet from rolling inward.

Neutral feet are the most efficient and versatile type. Players with neutral feet can wear just about any shoe they want.

How We Test

Dozens of weartesters, from recreational players to former touring professionals, put this crop of shoes through their paces. They rated each shoe with scores from 1 (poor) to 10 (outstanding) in six categories: stability, cushioning, arch support, weight, ventilation and break-in time; the results were then averaged for an overall satisfaction score. (Shoes’ weights represent a size 9 in men’s and size 7 in women’s.) Dr. David G. Sharnoff, a consulting podiatrist for the WTA Tour, rated each model separately based on technical components. We averaged the weartesters and Dr. Sharnoff’s ratings for a combined score. While we don’t evaluate shoes’ long-term durability, you can get a sense of how models will likely stand the test of wear and tear if they come with outsole guarantees. And of course, every model’s sizing is different. Make sure the shoe fits properly before you step out onto the court.

2012 Shoe Reviews


Adidas Barricade 7.0 (M/W)

Asics Gel-Resolution 4 (M/W)

Asics Gel-Solution Speed (M/W)

Babolat SFX Ergo-Motion (M/W)

Head Speed Pro Lite (M)

K-Swiss Tubes Monfils Mid (M)

New Balance 1005 (M/W)

Nike Zoom Court Lite 3 (W)

Nike Air Max Courtballistec 4.3 (M)

Prince T-24 (M/W)

Prince Rebel 2LS (M/W)

Wilson Tour Ikon (M/W)

Yonex Power Cushion 308 (M/W)




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