Choosing the Right Soccer Shoes for Your Playing Conditions

Written by Spike Soccer Store.

When it comes to soccer supplies, few items are more important that soccer shoes. Finding the right pair of cleats can help you to feel comfortable when you play while improving your traction and balance. One of the challenges of finding the right pair of soccer shoes is selecting from the different types that are available. Soccer shoes are specialized with different styles for different playing conditions.

Here’s a look at your options when it comes to pairing your soccer cleats to your playing conditions:

Firm Ground

These shoes are meant to be used on natural grass pitches that are maintained at a regular level of height and softness. They typically have long studs that are fairly evenly distributed throughout the outside of the shoe’s bottom and are molded into the shoe. The studs can either be conical or bladed in shape. Firm Ground soccer shoes are meant to provide traction and support for most typical field conditions.

Hard Ground

Although their names sound similar, there’s a big difference between Firm Ground and Hard Ground soccer cleats. Hard Ground shoes are designed for playing on surfaces that are very dry and hard or where the grass has been worn away from the pitch. This is a very common playing condition at many open parks in the United States.

Hard Ground cleats have a lower profile than Firm Ground shoes, with many small and flat studs spread out throughout the bottom of the shoe. This provides some traction while also allowing for proper balance while playing on harder surfaces. Hard Ground cleats can also be used in regular turf conditions.

Soft Ground

On the other end of the spectrum, Soft Ground shoes are made for natural grass conditions where the field is particularly spongy. This can include pitches where the grass is exceptionally long or playing conditions during or after rain. These cleats have typically had a small amount of long studs that are strategically placed in the shoe to provide maximum traction. These cleats should not be used on harder surfaces, as they can be uncomfortable and lead to pain and injury.


Artificial turf soccer fields are growing in popularity around the world. They are easy for facilities to maintain, can be used in any weather condition and provide a uniform playing surface for players. They also require specialized shoes such as Adidas soccer shoes for turf fields. These cleats feature rugged, rubber outsoles that can take a beating. They will also usually have very small spikes or patterns on the sole to increase traction.


Turf shoes are different from futsal shoes, which are used on hard indoor surfaces such as basketball courts. They closely resemble sneakers but have rubber soles with patterns to increase traction and insteps design to help with passing and shooting.