Our parents always told us ,“practice makes perfect”, but how much proper practice do you get in a year? If you don’t have the proper gear, especially appropriate cleats, how much of your training is going to waste? Do you take a break in the winter months, having no field to train on, or being too cold outside? Do you have one set of gear that is worn year-round? You may be surprised how much the proper equipment can aid in your winter practice.
Players seeking to hone their soccer skills will want to keep up with training despite the cold thus, indoor turf fields and gyms become temples when the temperature drops. With this change of setting, there’s a needed change in gear. Seasonal gear change gives players the edge, especially during winter.
Perhaps the most important gear change starts at your feet. Outdoor cleats are great for soft mud on the field, but if you find yourself playing indoors, or on hard ground, those studs will work against you, and you will work against them.
The main difference between indoor and outdoor cleats is in their method of traction via the sole plate. On average, outdoor cleats have 6 long studs about half an inch tall, spaced a couple inches in between one another. Indoor cleats, AKA turf shoes, have a more textured plate designed to give many smaller points of traction on artificial grass.
[top down; futsal shoe, turf cleat, outdoor soft ground cleat, Nike Mercurial line]
Whether playing inside or out, your cleats should feel like a natural extension of your body enabling you to move creatively and freely. If you’re using outdoor studded cleats inside on a hard surface, you will wear down the cleat studs significantly, you may roll your ankle more easily, and you may struggle with your stride. While the idea to use a single pair of cleats across the board sounds easy, utilizing a pair of turf shoes allows you to focus on your fundamentals safely and cost effectively.
Some like to train during the winter months in “flats”, also known as Futsal shoes. Futsal is a relatively unheard-of sport in the US, but the shoes are great for winter training even if you only have interest in outdoor soccer. These are shoes designed to give the most traction possible when on wooden or cement floors. Indoor soccer shoes (flats) will have flat textured bottoms for use on hard ground like a basketball court or a gym. And when playing Futsal, indoor flats will support your quick movements and sharp ball skills.
[Soccer Post's indoor turf area]
“But wait, I have a perfectly good pair of basketball shoes, why can’t I just wear them?”
In a pinch, this may be ok, but there are big sacrifices and safety risks made in that setup. The shape of the shoe will yield unpredictable touches when compared to the close-fitting minimal nature of a normal soccer shoe. The weight of your sneaker will hinder free and creative movement. And your feet? They may complain. Using basketball shoes to play soccer is a prime example of how you can put unneeded stress on yourself, therefore wasting effort and training time. Most importantly, who wants to get soccer ball scuffs or turf burn on their nice basketball shoes?
Soccer Post offers all the top name brands online and in store, like Nike, Adidas, Puma and more, for whatever ground you find yourself playing on this winter. Our staff recommend the Nike Mercurial Vapor turf cleats for playing on turf. The stylish Nike Mercurial line of cleats has been trusted by professional soccer players the likes of Ronaldo, Mbappé and Ibrahimović since being released in 1998. For their lightweight and sleek design, these are an ideal choice for anyone looking for speed.
For those planning winter training in a gym or other hard flooring, the staff chose the classic look and feel of the Adidas Sambas. The Adidas 3 stripe style is arguably the most recognizable shoe line in the world, and will remain the gold standard for both activewear and casual wear well into the future. Buy these with confidence that they will last you quite a while, on the field as well as off.
If you are resilient enough to get outside to train this season, make sure you dress warmly, in gear that will not let you down. Soccer Post sells compression thermals and everything else for your all-season soccer training needs. Do not let Mother Nature dictate your off-season schedule! Come in today and get outfitted to make sure you are training at your full capacity, safely and comfortably, ready for the spring!