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Soccer Cleats Vs Softball Cleats: 4 Vital Differences You Need To Know

As a recreational sports player, you must have the correct equipment to play the sport. This is why I am going to compare soccer cleats vs softball cleats and explain the major differences.

The differences between soccer cleats and softball cleats are the following:

  • How much they cost.
  • The design and the cleat position on the underside of the shoe.
  • How much protection they provide.
  • How durable they are.


It’s hard to pinpoint whether a soccer or softball cleat is more expensive, as all types of brands come at different price points.

If you buy a top-of-the-range pair of Nike Zoom Mercurial soccer cleats, they cost more than a budget pair of Pumas. This is the same with softball cleats, with big differences in style and brand across the board.

As a general rule of thumb, softball cleats are cheaper than soccer cleats. Softball is for younger ages and is less popular than its older brother baseball. So there is less demand for softball cleats.

Soccer is an international sport played on every continent. This makes the demand for soccer cleats much higher.


One of the biggest differences between soccer cleats and softball cleats is their location at the bottom of the shoe.

There are two cleats located at the top of a softball shoe. You can see them right above the toes to help with grip on different types of surfaces.

You can play softball on grass or dirt and having this added grip means you have less chance of slipping or falling. Which is vital in softball.

The highest cleats on a soccer shoe are further down. The reason soccer cleats do not have these high-positioned cleats is down to the contact aspect of soccer.

As it is a contact sport, a soccer player has the right to steal possession from the opposition by tackling them.

If there are two cleats at the top of a soccer cleat, this increases the chances of injuring another player.

If you know how much it hurts when a soccer cleat scrapes down the side of your leg, you’ll appreciate why soccer cleats need to be different!

The other major difference is softball cleats are much bulkier than soccer cleats. Softball cleats tend to offer more protection around the ankle for stability. This is vital for softball games.

A soccer cleat is also designed with the sport in mind. A soccer player changes direction a lot more than a softball player and needs to be light on their toes. Soccer cleats are lighter and allow a soccer player to move about in all directions.

Think of softball cleats as a muscle car that can get you between two points as fast as possible. Whereas a soccer cleat is more of a rally car, allowing more control for bends and turns.


Soccer cleats come in one design: low top. There is no extra material at the top of the ankle or around the laces area. We’ve established soccer players need to be nimble. Having this extra material is unnecessary.

Softball cleats come in both low-top and high-top styles. This provides even more ankle protection for the player should they want it.


This refers to how long a pair of cleats will last. I would argue that soccer cleats wear out faster than softball cleats. You do much more movement and get more mileage out of a pair of soccer cleats than in playing softball.

You also make contact with a soccer ball using your feet, whereas in softball you don’t kick the ball. These factors alone can wear down a pair of soccer cleats.

Don’t worry though. There’s no reason why a decent pair of quality soccer cleats can’t last a long time. If you think you need to replace soccer cleats every season, you won’t. Rest assured a decent pair will last longer than this.

Can You Wear Softball Cleats When Playing Soccer?

You cannot wear softball cleats when playing soccer. Due to the design and position of the cleats on the underside, they would be too dangerous to use.

Minimizing the risk of injuring another player needs to be a main priority.

The good news is that wearing soccer cleats for other non-contact sports is acceptable. Their lightweight design allows for running and carrying out fitness activities if you plan to get fitter.

Or you can use them for recreational bat-and-ball games such as softball.

There’s also nothing to say that you cannot use softball cleats if you intend to play soccer without opposition.

Let’s say you want to improve your soccer skills and don’t have the money to buy a new pair of soccer cleats. Those softball cleats will be fine for drills and light-skill activities.

I wouldn’t recommend anything other than light drills, especially shooting, and should remain a temporary measure. If you intend to get better at soccer then it’s best to invest in a decent pair of soccer cleats.

If I Need Soccer Cleats, Now What?

Making sure you buy the perfect pair of cleats is vital to your soccer game, but also to the health of your feet.

Here is a guide on how a soccer cleat should fit and a guide on how to stretch a pair of soccer cleats the correct way.


Are There Any Differences In Comfort?

Both types of cleats are comfortable, and they shouldn’t cause any discomfort. If they do then they are likely the incorrect size. Check out this guide on how a soccer cleat should fit.

Do Other Sports Have Different Cleats?

Not only are there differences between soccer cleats and softball cleats, but other sports as well. Ensure that you also understand the difference between football cleats and lacrosse cleats.

They each have distinct differences which means you should pick up a pair relative to the sport you wish to play.

Are Soccer Cleats And Softball Cleats Made From The Same Material?

There aren’t many differences in the material used between both types of cleat.
Soccer cleats are either synthetic or a synthetic-leather blend. They used to be leather-based, but different designs and price points mean there is no universal approach.

Softball cleats are also made from synthetic leather, mesh, or real leather. Again, it depends on the price point and brand.

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Two soccer players battling for the ball
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a soccer player striking a ball
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