The Best Pickleball Shoes: Adidas Barricade

When I first started playing pickleball two years ago, I made a commitment to myself. A promise that I would avoid getting caught up in a marketing matrix that left me spending infinite dollars on pickleball gear.

I’ve been mostly successful.

After starting with a Prince Pro Response paddle, mostly based on my allegiance to the brand from my childhood tennis days, I transitioned to Engage paddles after six months and haven’t looked back.

I got lucky when settling on pickleball shoes, too.

Adidas Barricade sneakers are my favorite, and it’s not even close. I will occasionally slip on Babolat Propulse Fury court shoes for casual play. But when I know I will be moving on the court, I lace up my Barricades–the support is unparalleled. 

Adidas Barricade pickleball
I’m on my third pair of Adidas Barricades, and while I flirt with other pickleball sneakers, these are the one I marry. And that’s impressive, coming from someone who used to be addicted to buying sneakers.

 A Little Adidas Barricade History

The Adidas Barricade has been a top tennis shoe since its debut in 2000. Known for its durability, stability, and traction, the Barricade has undergone numerous iterations over the past two decades. Key innovations include the toe bumper for protection, Torsion System for adaptability, and lateral support for quick cuts. All of the shoes features and upgrades translate well to pickleball play. 

Top tennis players like Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray have worn the Barricade to Grand Slam victories. While the design and technology has evolved, the core focus on performance and longevity has remained constant throughout the Barricade’s storied history as one of tennis’ premier shoes.

Why I Choose Adidas Barricade As My Go-To Shoe

The Barricade has a relatively short break-in period when it comes to pickleball shoes, around 2-5 hours of playtime. The cushioning is on the firmer side but provides good shock absorption. The shoes have good arch support which helps prevent foot soreness. I have average-sized feet (10.5 M) and find the toe box roomy enough without causing jamming issues. 

Adidas Barricade geofit
“GEOFIT” technology feels like stitched in gel inserts that create a locked in fit that help me avoid any ankle injuries.

The modified herringbone tread pattern on the outsole offers fantastic traction on pickleball courts. I can aggressively change directions and stop quickly without slipping. The level of grip is ideal – not too sticky but enough to prevent sliding unintentionally. Even after months of use, the tread has held up nicely with minimal wear. I do find that the traction wears out quickest toward the front of the shoe, but that might be based on my style of play.

Stability is where the Barricade really shines and the #1 reason I am a fanboy. The torsion system running through the midfoot prevents rolling of the feet during lateral movements. I feel securely planted regardless of how hard I push off. My feet never slide around inside the shoes when changing directions aggressively. The Barricade gives me the confidence to play my best pickleball. There’s something about the sneaker’s construction that outshines the competition. I can’t put my finger (or toe) on it, but this is a nuanced shoe, with cushion and features specifically designed for court sports.

Adidas Barricade soles
The only part of the shoe that seems to wear down is the toe traction, which is to be expected from a court shoe after months of use. Stacked from oldest to newest.

As expected from the Barricade line, durability is excellent. I’m now on my third pair of pickleball shoes after 18 months of frequent play. Each pair lasts around 6 months before needing replacement. But since I become attached to inanimate objects, I usually keep older pairs around as spares. Aside from some minor cosmetic wear on the upper, the outsoles show barely any signs of tread wear (just under the tows). The toe bumper and medial TPU overlay provide enhanced protection for toe draggers like myself.

At approximately 14 ounces, the Barricade provides a good balance of stability and maneuverability. They don’t feel overly bulky or heavy on my feet. I can move swiftly around the court without any encumbrance. The weight is distributed to maintain quickness. You won’t confuse the weight and comfort with a running sneaker, but stability is king of the court.

Pickleball Play 
The herringbone tread pattern grips the court well during quick direction changes and lunges for drop shots. I can plant hard and stop on a dime when my opponent hits a fast return down the line. The shoes provide stability for lateral movements when I’m poaching at the net or transitioning from defense to offense. Whether I’m doing cross-court dinks at the NVZ or attacking short balls midcourt, the traction allows me to play with confidence on hard courts. 

pickleball sneakers

The Adidas Barricade has become my top choice for pickleball footwear thanks to its unmatched stability, traction, and durability. I highly recommend it for aggressive players looking for a supportive, well-constructed shoe. After 18 months and three pairs, I’m still thrilled with the Barricade’s performance and longevity. This latest model retains everything I love about the Barricade lineage while adding enhanced comfort and responsiveness.

While I do occasionally get tempted by other shoes, like the No Bull court shoes that have been on my radar, I’m staying loyal to Adidas Barricades to keep me looking fresh and, more importantly, injury-free!

So until those Nike Air Tech Challenge II Hot Lava sneakers that I’m swooning over come out, I’m a Barricade Man!

hot lava

1 thought on “The Best Pickleball Shoes: Adidas Barricade”

  1. I totally agree with you about Adidas Barricade shoes! They’ve really helped me play better and stay safe on the pickleball court.


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