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What type of shoes should football kickers wear?

Football kickers choose their shoes based on a variety of factors, including turf or grass surface, weather conditions, comfort, and support.
 
Natural grass is the optimal surface for a kicker except when it is wet. On natural grass, the kicker would want to wear a detachable cleat. A detachable cleat allows the kicker to change the length of the cleats. This particular type performs best on normal and wet conditions.
 
On artificial turf (carpet-like), the kicker should wear a turf shoe. A turf shoe is similar to a tennis show with multiple built in cleats. This offers more grip on this particular surface, as well as more support and traction, especially on the planted foot. Sometimes a kicker will wear a turf shoe on the planted foot only, and the normal shoe on the kicking foot.

Kickers, in comparison to other positions on the field, have a larger variety of cleats to choose from. However, the cleats that most football players wear are very similar to soccer cleats; some even wear soccer cleats. No matter the type, there are some important elements that one looks for in a cleat. It is important the cleat weigh less than a normal football cleat. It should have a thinner padding, which enhances contact with the ball. Some cleats have laces that are offset so that there is a wider, smoother surface for kicking. As mentioned above, it is not uncommon for a kicker to wear two different shoes—one for traction (usually the planted foot) and one for kicking that is lighter and more flexible. (This answer provided for NATA by the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Education Program.)

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.