Looking for the best shoes to train parkour in is not always easy. Everyone has a different preference or style. Should you get a minimalist shoe or one with a little more padding? What kind of grip are you looking for? How much does flexibility really matter? What is better for trails or city running? The thing with free running is that there is not one clear and concise answer on what shoe is best.
The interactive chart of parkour shoes below and the in depth articles that are also on this website will help you decide which parkour shoe is right for you.
The Ultimate Parkour Shoes Comparison Guide
|K-SWISS Ariake III||The best grip for city running by far. Trail running is good but not great. Awesome for wall runs!||Feels like an extension to your leg. Has adjustable lacing options to fit even better.||Great durability. Should last you 4 months or more of consistent use.||5.0|
|Puma Faas 500||I will give these the award for best grip. They are absolutely amazing and will stick to anything. 10/10||Decent flexibility and a snug fit make them comfortable for a long time.||High durability. These shoes should last an easy 4-6 months of constant use and training.||4.7|
|Evolv Cruzer||Amazing grip on any rock, concrete or brick surfaces. Good on wood as well. Even pretty decent on wet surfaces!||Unique splt tongue design for added comfort. Fit snug and comfortable. Comparable to the Tiger Ultimates 81's.||Medium to high durability. Will last a good amount of time.||4.6|
|Onitsuka Tiger Ultimate 81||The grip is pretty amazing on these shoes. It gets better after you wear them in too.||Shoe kind of "molds" to your foot. Fits very snug and comfortable. 9/10 on comfort.||High durability. These shoes should hold up to whatever you throw at them for months!||4.6|
|Merrell Trail Glove||Great grip on everything but wet surfaces. Slightly better grip than the Feiyue's||Grip the feet nicely. Has a wider toe area to help avoid getting blisters. Very comfortable!||Pretty good durability. Should last a few months at the very least.||4.6|
|Nike Dart 10||Very consistant grip across the board. Not perfect on any one surface but great on all surfaces. 9/10||Comfortable fit. What you would expect from a basic running shoe.||These shoes should last 4+ months of consitant parkour (3-4 times a week)||4.5|
|Vibram Five Fingers||Has very nice grip. Not so great on wet slick surfaces. 8/10||Extremely comfortable. Fits snug and like a glove. Hugs your foot so that you don't even realize they are there.||Medium durability. Should last you a decent amount of time before replacing.||4.4|
|Vivobarefoot Neo||These really shine on rough surfaces and wood! They are good on wet or smooth surfaces. Outshine the Feiyue shoes.||Snug to the foot but with a little more toe room than other shoes, which is awesome! 10/10||Easily the most durable minimalist shoes out there. These will easily last 4x the length of the Feiyue shoes. Probably more!||4.4|
|Feiyue Martial Arts Shoes||Great on everything except wet surfaces. These shoes are not for training after rain!||Fits like a very lightly padded slipper. Like being barefoot but with added protection.||Low-Medium durability length. The shoes are cheap though so replacing them is inexpensive.||4.4|
Included in the table are 7 columns:
- Name and Picture – click to view more or purchase
- Grip – how well the grip is in dry and wet situations
- Comfort – how the shoes feel on
- Durability – how long the shoes will last
- Rating – Average user ratings based off of Amazon.com
*Click on any column to sort it by that criteria
What Is Parkour?
Parkour is a unique take on running that risen in popularity around the world. It is the act of getting from point A to point B as efficiently as possible. The ultimate goal of parkour is to move quickly past obstacles in your environment only using your body, not by simply going around them and never moving backwards. Climbing, jumping, rolling and other movements are incorporated into the run, which provides a great deal more freedom and creativity.
If you are looking for more information on what parkour is then you can visit our page here that we have dedicated to this question!
Top 3 Parkour Shoe Reviews
Honestly all the shoes I have reviewed above are fantastic options for parkour and free running enthusiasts. However, I just want to point out my top 3 favorite shoes. Below you will find a longer review for the shoes that I believe deserve a special mention.
Puma Faas 500 Review
The Puma Faas 500 running shoe is fantastic for parkour. There are many reasons to love these shoes.
Grip: The grip on these shoes is absolutely amazing! They will literally stick to any surface and give you never before experienced traction. People all around boast that they can easily jump a few inches higher on a wall run using these shoes. The shoes even perform decent on wet surfaces.
Fit and Comfort: Some of the most comfortable shoes I’ve worn. the shoes feel pleasant on your feet. There is enough padding around the shoe to be comfortable but not enough to be bulky. The back heel wall on these shoes is extremely flexible and make for extreme comfort. Bioride mechanic in the shoes helps transition smoothly from heel-strike to toe-push.
Durability: Another high point of these shoes is their durability. The glue and threading on these shoes holds up extremely well. You can easily get 5-6 months of heavy use out of these shoes. This alone can easily justify paying the $90 price tag.
Bottom Line: The shoes have amazing grip, durability and are extremely comfortable. The only reason I would not recommend these shoes is if you are used to or prefer barefoot/minimalist running. With an average rating on amazon of 4.7 it is easy to see why people are loving them!
Vivobarefoot Neo Review
The Vivobarefoot Neo Running Shoes are probably my favorite minimalist shoes for parkour. I even like them more than the Feiyue’s. Here’s why.
Grip: The grip on these shoes is amazing for any rough surface. If you are running on brick, concrete or asphalt then it doesn’t get much better than these. The Neo’s also shine when running on wood. They do not lend themselves particularly well to smooth or wet surfaces. Not bad on them, just not great. They definitely have better grip than the Fieyue Martial Arts shoe.
Fit and Comfort: The Neo’s are very light and fit nice and snug on your foot. There is a little more toe room than other minimalist shoes. This ensures that your feet will never feel cramped after hours of parkour training. Definitely one of the most comfortable minimalist shoes.
Durability: If you are looking to justify the high price tag of the Neo’s then this is it. The Durability of these shoes is absolutely fantastic. The grip on the bottom seems to barely wear down after a few weeks of regular use. The bottoms are made out of a rubber that is much much harder to pierce through than the Feiyue’s. This is important because in a minimalist running shoe there is not much protecting your feet. The shoes will easily last 4-6 months.
Bottom Line: If you are into barefoot or minimalist running then there is no better way to go. The standard for minimalist shoes seems to be the Feiyue’s, but the Neo’s blow them out of the water. The price tag is easily justified thanks to the fact that they will last 4x long than the Feiyue’s. Probably longer actually.
Evolv Cruzer Review
The Evolv Cruzer rock climbing shoes are a great, lightweight pair of parkour shoes that work perfect for pretty much any style.
Grip: The Evolv Cruzer’s are actually made by a company known for making rock climbing shoes. That means that the grip on these shoes is absolutely amazing on brick, rock, or any rough surface. If you are a city runner then I do not believe you have to look much further for a shoe with the perfect grip for you. The shoes perform decent on wet surfaces, just not great. Also the only other thing they do only “okay” on is rails. Once again, it is not bad, just not perfect.
Fit and Comfort: These shoes are very very comfortable. They have a unique design that has a “split tongue”. This makes the shoes extremely comfortable, even when landing at weird angles. They are snug on the foot and can be worn for hours with no problems.
Durability: Because the Cruzer’s are shoes made for rock climbing, it is safe to say that these shoes are made to hold up to rough treatment. The grip can take a lot of running before it will start to wear down. The stitching is solid and the glue holds strong. You should be able to get 5-6 months or more of regular training out of these shoes.
Bottom line: The Cruzer’s are a tough shoe ready to take on almost anything. They are extremely durable and will last you a long time. They are made as a rock climbing shoe so they can put up with the rigorous wear that parkour puts on shoes. The price tag is not to bad and you can expect to get a ton of use out of these shoes!