Are Bowling Shoes Required to Play Bowling?

If you are new to bowling or have recently developed an interest in the sport, you need to learn all the game basics. This game is played with full protocol by choosing the best bowling ball and the gear required to play it comfortably. One of those basics is the bowling equipment, specifically the bowling shoes.

So, the question you have right now is, are bowling shoes required to play bowling? Well, no need to worry because that is precisely what I am here to tell you.

In this article, I will discuss what bowling shoes are, how they work, and whether they must be worn while bowling. I will also talk about a few benefits they have, so make sure you sit back, relax, and read this article till the very end.

Are Bowling Shoes Required to Play Bowling?

What are Bowling Shoes?

Bowling shoes are, well, shoes in the sense that they are quite similar to casual shoes you might be wearing even right now, but for another reason, they are quite different.

They are designed in such a way that their sole is constructed so it provides the best smoothest motion on the bowling alley floor for the perfect bowling ball throw.

These shoes are made of either leather or rubber. The heel of the sole is mostly made of rubber so that the bowler can stop effectively without going over the foul line once the ball has been thrown.

Regular shoes are made with the idea that they will provide more friction with the ground and remain stuck on it. Whereas bowling shoes are made to achieve swift bowling throw movement for the best shots.

Are Bowling Shoes Required to Play Bowling?

You must have understood what bowling shoes are and how they work. But are bowling shoes necessarily required for bowling? Or are they just meant for the higher-end professional tournaments? Here is what you should know about their usage.

It does not matter whether you go to the nearest bowling alley with your friends or family or participate in a professional league; you must wear bowling shoes to play accurately.

It is just a requirement. Consider it as important as the bowling ball or the bowling pins. The game is incomplete with bowling shoes. That is why every bowling alley has varying-sized pairs of bowling shoes for bowlers.

Also, read this article on other dos and don’ts: Proper Bowling Etiquette.

But professionals go a step further, get their custom bowling shoes fit and design, and wear them to all their casual and professional ten-pin bowling games. Ultimately that is the way to go, in my opinion.

Benefits of Wearing Bowling Shoes

Curious as to what kind of benefits bowling shoes bring to the bowling alley? To make things easy for you, I have made a list of some of the major benefits you will find while you are bowling with these shoes.

Swift Motion

Compared to normal shoes on the shined floor of a bowling alley, bowling shoes provide a smoother, swifter, less-frictional motion that will allow you to move freely while you are throwing the bowling ball.

Better Control

If you played a game of bowling with casual shoes, you would experience a lot of jerks and stops while making the throw due to the friction your shoes bring into play, which may hinder your ability to control the ball. That will not be the case with appropriate bowling shoes, and you can control the ball and its movement perfectly.

Reduced Risk of Injury

Experiencing jerks and stops while taking a shot means you will be prone to sudden injuries to the hand, arm, foot, and back. So, going for bowling shoes is better because you will not experience any jerks or stoppage anyway.

Stopping at the Right Time

Another great benefit of using bowling shoes is although you move freely and swiftly wearing these shoes, it is not that you cannot control your movement or when to stop. The rubber sole at the back makes it quite easy to stop your movement once you have thrown the ball so that your feet do not touch the foul line and the shot stays fair.

Read more in this article: What Are Bowling Shoes For?

Use Bowling Shoes for Bowling Advantage

What tips and tricks should you know about if you want to take complete advantage of your bowling shoes? I have a few tips and tricks you should know before playing the game.

Bowling Shoes Fit

If your main goal is to become a bowling professional, wearing house shoes is not the right way. These shoes might be too loose or tight for your feet. That is why ensure that as you practice making your game better, you get your custom bowling shoes designed for maximum performance.

Slide Strip

Now, if you have your bowling shoes and are not getting the swiftness and smoothness in the motion you expected, it is not the end of the world. You can use a slide strip that you wear over the bowling shoes that causes the motion to be even smoother and better, making your performance incredible with the ball.

Cleaning Bowling Shoes

Another thing to remember is to clean and maintain the bowling shoes. Not only will doing so keep your bowling shoes clean, but it will also increase their performance and lifespan, saving them from dirt, mildew, mold, and simply wearing out before time.


Bowling shoes are a great invention for the sport if I am real. Using the amazing movement freedom that the shoes bring you and the ball’s control, you can easily achieve the score you want in bowling if you practice your game.

Hopefully, you learned a lot from this guide, and you will get your custom bowling shoes designed soon so you can take things further and get better at the sport, become a professional, and have a great time in the bowling alley. Enjoy bowling with your friends and family the next time you are in the gallery!

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