How to Make Your Basketball Shoes Grippy

There are few things as frustrating as having your basketball shoes slip on the court. You end up losing control of the ball and looking silly in front of all your friends. Of course, this can happen during any part of the game, but it’s incredibly frustrating when you’re trying to make a critical shot. Luckily, there are some things you can do to stop your shoes from slipping.

How to Make Your Basketball Shoes Grippy

It’s essential to make your shoes as grippy as possible. This article will show you how to make your basketball shoes grippy. Read on for tips!

A Step by Step on How to Make Your Basketball Shoes Grippy

Step 1: Cleaning Methods

There are several ways to clean shoes, including dry cleaning, wet cleaning, and using a machine. Generally speaking, you should avoid overusing your dryer since it may shrink the surface of the shoe’s materials or crack any protective layers. You can also use rags or paper towels to wipe off dirt on the exterior. You may need liquid dish soap and water for tough stains for rubber surfaces. Be very gentle when scrubbing, so you don’t damage the material.

Method 1: If you do not plan on using your shoes for a prolonged period, wet cleaning is the best method to restore the grip. To clean your rubber outsoles and various exterior surfaces, you can apply liquid dish soap with water and scrub them gently. For more stubborn stains, you can use shampoo or laundry detergent.

Method 2: If you plan to use your shoes again soon after cleaning them, machine washing should be delicate as long as you set it on a gentle cycle and cold water. You may need to remove some shoestrings first since they may get tangled up in the washer’s rotating mechanism. However, this should not be necessary if you have an extra pair of laces or locking mechanisms available for replacement purposes.

Step 2: Lace Your Shoes

If you want your basketball shoes to have a good grip, you need to lace them up properly. First, tie a knot at the bottom of each shoe so they don’t come undone. Then, lace your shoes up in a crisscross pattern instead of a straight line or X-shape. This will help keep your shoes from slipping off during a game and will also make them more comfortable.

Step 3: Shoe Grip Enhancer Spray

Apply Grip Enhancers Spray on the Shoes

You can purchase shoe grip enhancer sprays at most footwear stores for between $5 and $10. After you give your shoes a thorough cleaning, spray the dirt off with water and let them dry completely (this is especially important if you use liquid dish soap). Once they are clean and dry, apply grip enhancers generously to all sides of your shoes so they can restore their original grip. You should do this periodically if you plan on wearing your basketball shoes frequently, especially during the winter months when oil, mud, salt, and ice accumulate more than usual on roadways.

Remember that grip enhancers only work on rubber surfaces; it may be best to avoid using this product with materials like leather or cloth since it may damage them. If you are not confident that your shoes can endure grip enhancers without consequences, stick to the cleaning methods above. This is a crucial step in how to make your basketball shoes grippy.

Step 4: Moisten Soles

This is a very effective method for regaining your grip, but it is also the most time-consuming since you need to do this before each game. To make your shoe’s soles wet and sticky again, pour some water onto a rag and scrub all sides of them (including the bottoms) thoroughly. If necessary, use soap with warm water instead of cold; remember that there is strength in numbers when washing shoes. This will remove the dirt, dust, and mud from your shoes, and make them wet enough to reactivate the grip. Once you are done, wipe the soles with a dry towel to get rid of the excess water.

Step 5: Household Items

There are many ways to make your basketball shoes more grippy. You can use cornstarch, rubber bands, or hair ties. However, you should only do these techniques on rubber surfaces. Follow all of the instructions and combine different methods simultaneously. You should see better results than before and achieve your desired grip levels while wearing your basketball shoes.

Step 6: Permanent Shoe Repair

If you want a permanent fix for slippery shoes, you can buy rubber cement or repositionable spray adhesive at a local craft store. Apply the cement to your shoe’s soles and attach some pieces of scrap fabric on top of it. Ensure that all sides are evenly coated with glue, let it dry completely, and then cut off any excess threads from your design. However, this method is not recommended since it can damage rubber surfaces over time if you do it excessively.

Step 7: Cleaning the Bottom of Your Shoes

Cleaning the Bottom of Your Shoes

Proper cleaning methods are a must when it comes to making your basketball shoes grippy. First, try using a plastic bristled brush on your soles instead of water and soap during the colder months. This is especially helpful after attending a rainy or snowy game since you can clean one shoe at a time under running water without getting them wet or dirty. Then, let them dry overnight to avoid losing their stickiness from excess moisture.

Step 8: Clean Basketball Shoes in General

In addition to grip enhancers, many other products can make your shoes sticky again, such as wax-based creams and sprays (for cloth and leather surfaces) and silicone sprays (for rubber surfaces). Make sure to read all of the instructions before using these products, or you may end up damaging your shoes.

Once your shoes are clean, dry, and ready for action, don’t forget to wear them frequently if you want them to stay grippy. Consistent usage will help prolong the life of your shoe’s soles while also providing better traction on the court. Also, remember that different materials require different cleaning tips, so always be conscious about the method you use on each surface. One last piece of information would be to rotate between at least two pairs of shoes so they can retain their stickiness longer during an entire season of play. These steps will help in how to make your basketball shoes grippy.

Tips and Warnings


It is not a good idea to use a scrubbing pad on your shoes if you only have your hands to work with. The scrubbing pad can damage the shoes and leave a residue on them. If you don’t want to use your bare hand, you can try using a rag or washcloth instead.

Depending on how often you play basketball and what type of court you play on, investing in some shoe grips designed for sports such as football and baseball might be worthwhile. Shoe grips intended for other sports will typically attach differently than hoops shoe grips, so look at pictures online before purchasing them.  

Investing in Shoe Grips Might Be Worthwhile

Once you have made your shoes grippier, you might find that wearing them with bare feet is not the most comfortable option. If this is the case, it’s time to invest in socks designed to help fix sweaty feet problems. With socks specially designed to help absorb moisture and wick away sweat, you will be able to play basketball without worrying about your shoes slipping on wet surfaces or having your feet slip within the shoe.

If you are still having trouble gripping onto dribble moves or playing defense after trying all of these tips, then it might be time to look into changing your basketball shoes entirely. Instead, try looking online or at a local retailer for new models that feature particular tread patterns specifically designed for holding onto a basketball court.


Abrasive cleaning methods or adhesives can significantly damage some shoe materials. Be sure that you only use these tips on rubber and cloth surfaces, not leather.

Do not spray your shoes with a silicone product if they have a transparent outsole. You do not want to risk having the liquid coat your viewable light-up insert so take precautions before using this method.

As always, it’s best to do a test run on an old pair of sneakers before implementing this technique into play. In addition, note that some grip enhancements contain chemicals that might irritate the skin, so check for warnings or ask someone with experience if necessary.

Can I Use a Thin Rubber Band Instead of Glue or Tape?

You can use a thin rubber band instead of glue or tape, but you may still want to place a thin layer of glue over it. It’s easier to apply the rubber bands if you do this. How many rubber bands will depend on each person’s preference and desired grip level.

Apply Rubber Bands on the Shoe

Experiment with different amounts to find out what works best for your shoes! How long the rubber bands last will depend on how much they overlap and where they are placed on the shoe. You might have some trial and error initially, so don’t throw away those sneakers just yet!

You Can Check It Out to: Move a Basketball Hoop Filled With Sand


We hope you have learned how to make your basketball shoes grippy. The main takeaway is to use a baby powder on your shoe’s rubber soles before you play. This will help the shoe grip better and also keep them cleaner! If you have any questions, feel free to let us know. I hope these tips help make playing basketball even more fun for everyone who reads this blog post.

Jennifer Branett
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