When it comes to wide fitting shoes, there’s no magic or special features that separate them from other shoes. They’re simply designed with wider feet in mind. Meaning, the toe sections and instep generally have more room around them.
Skating shoes are no different. Popular brands like Vans, DC Shoes, New Balance, and Nike all have pairs of shoes specifically designed to fit wider feet.
And, they all also have shoes that are great for skateboarding.
|Etnies Marana Skate Shoes||Rubber sole|
Pro Foam 1 insole
|Emerica Pillar Mid||Made in USA or Imported|
Rubber Ollie Guard
|Nike SB Check Solarsoft Canvas||Rubber sole|
This list puts those two elements together to deliver the best skate shoes for wide feet in 2021.
Before we get into the list, let’s go over some things to consider when you’re buying skating shoes.
But if you’re in a rush and need to get a pair of wide-fitting skate shoes ASAP, my top recommendations are The DC Men’s Graffik Casual Skate Shoe, Vans Sk8-Hi’s, and the Nike SB Check Solarsoft Canvas.
Alright now let’s get into what you should think about before buying skating shoes.
Things to consider before buying skating shoes
Pronation refers to the way your foot rolls inward as it distributes the pressure of your steps. There are three distinct categories of pronation used to classify how someone walks and the associated effects of their walking styles.
They are normal/neutral pronation, supination, and overpronation.
- Normal pronation – Your foot lands on the outside of your heel and then rolls inward. This creates an appropriate amount of shock absorption and causes the least amount of wear on your body
- Supination – There is little to no pronation in supinators. Their feet come into contact with the ground at an increased angle and their inward roll is very minor. This causes the lower leg to receive a large amount of shock absorption.
- Overpronation – For overpronators, the heel rolls excessively after hitting the ground.
Without going into too much detail, know that certain shoes work better for certain pronation types. Depending on which type of pronation you have, you’ll want a shoe that assists you in the best way possible. You’re aiming for a middle ground: not too tight and not too loose.
When you’re skateboarding and doing a lot of tricks, or longboarding and traveling long distances, you can build up a lot of sweat. Not just under your arms or on your head, but on your feet too.
So when you’re considering buying a pair of skating shoes, you’re going to want a pair that’s very breathable. That way, your experience is as comfortable as possible.
Breathable shoes usually feature tiny air holes on the upper section of the shoe that provide ventilation. They often have mesh tongues that help increase both breathability and stability.
For those who don’t know, overpronation and flat feet are the same things. That said, having some form of arch support, according to the Mayo Clinic, can help with flat feet symptoms.
Knowing this, people with flat feet or those looking to avoid getting them as they skate would do well in purchasing shoes with decent arch support.
Vulcanized Sole Vs Cupsole
Vulcanized soles are more flexible than cupsoles and offer a better board feel/ more communication with the board. However, the tradeoff is that they offer less impact protection and heel support.
Because of this, picking vulcanized shoes may not be the way to go if you plan on doing a lot of stair jumps. But if you’re planning on doing street and park skating, then vulcanized soles will help you feel your board more easily.
Cupsoles, on the other hand, are stiffer than vulcanized soles and offer more protection and support to the foot. With that extra protection, however, they limit the board feel which can make landing tricks more difficult. But, if you plan on doing high jumps often, then cupsoles will be the better pick for you.
Also see: Best longboard clothing
Best Skate Shoes for Wide Feet
Now that you know what factors to consider before you buy a pair of shoes, let’s dive into our list of the best wide-fitting skate shoes for 2021.
1. Etnies Marana Skate Shoes
For good reason, the Etnies Marana shoe is beloved among skaters. It’s tough, stylish, and comfortable to wear as a skate shoe.
Textiles and synthetics are used to make the shoe. It has a rubber toecap for further durability and a suede coating over the front bit for added protection. It also has a cupsole and an STI Evolution foam insole for further comfort and shock absorption when landing tricks.
In addition, it has a padded tongue and collar for enhanced comfort and flexibility, as well as a Pro Foam 1 Polyurethane insole and full-length flex grooves in the 400 NBS rubber outsole.
There are hidden lace loops to keep laces from becoming tangled or soiled, and an exposed and durable tread with a strong, car tire-like pattern.
Etnies Marana shoe is beloved among skaters.
- Rubber sole
- Michelin Performance rubber outsole
2. Vans SK8-Hi
Here are another pair of great wide-fitting skating shoes: Vans SK8-Hi.
This high-top design was inspired by one of the brand’s classics, the Old School. There are eight eyelets, which accommodate larger feet, as you can try out several lacing techniques and adjust them to your liking.
Being a high-top, this shoe provides a significant amount of ankle support which is reassuring for riders of all learning levels.
And, it pairs this high-top design with a vulcanized sole which blends both stability and board feel together, making an all-around superstar of a skating shoe.
It pairs high-quality suede and canvas together for a shoe that’s lightweight and flexible. And while it does have less ventilation than some of the other shoes on this list, it still provides a high amount of protection with its reinforced toe caps and supportive padded collars.
This shoe provides a significant amount of ankle support which is reassuring for riders of all learning levels
- Rubber sole
3. Emerica Pillar Mid
If you’re looking for an overall fantastic skate shoe, the Emerica Pillar is the way to go. The Pillar, as a mid-top, features some often needed ankle support. Also, it includes a collar that has more padding around it. A feature that increases heel protection and helps reduce slippage.
These babies are durable. The suede top and rubber ollie guard, combined with the double wrap vulcanized sole and its rubber taping, make for one reliable shoe.
They do take some time to break in, but they feel amazing after, providing excellent communication and control with the board.
Two distinct tread patterns meet in the middle of the sole. On the forefront of the shoe lay a series of deeper dots that aid in altering foot placements for various tricks. The heel features a thinner arrangement of lines that hold the board effectively and assists in flip-trick execution.
A caveat to these shoes’ amazing durability and grip control is the extra height it gives the wearer from its thick sole; as, being higher off the ground usually entails less stability.
Still, it’s important to note that after they’re broken in a bit, the footbed will sink, slightly smoothening out some of these stability issues.
All and all, the Emerica Pilar Mid’s are superb skating shoes for people with wide feet and people without them.
Those with wider feet can get shoes that are half-a-size larger to make sure they still get this quality skating shoe.
This shoes have feature that increases heel protection and helps reduce slippage.
- 100% Synthetic
- Rubber sole
4. New Balance 913
The New Balance Numeric 913 Shoes are one of the most durable in the NB’s Numeric Skate series. They were designed for pro skater Brandon Westgate, with similar technology as the NB running shoes. The 913 has a revolutionary REVlite midsole, which is 30 percent lighter than other midsoles with equivalent performance.
To deliver next-level flex, feel, and durability, NB and Westgate created FantomFit Tech, an ultra-light skeletally designed upper that combines two very thin fabrics using a no-sew technique. It provides decent board communication as a cupsole skate shoe and does take some time to be broken in; originally feeling pretty stiff and solid on the feet.
After a week’s worth of walking or skating, however, it’ll loosen up.
Finally, the brand-oriented Ndurance rubber on the sole does well to increase the longevity and grip of the shoe.
Anyone with wide feet looking for a breathable and long-lasting skating shoe should check out the New Balance 913.
5. Nike SB Check Solarsoft Canvas
The Nike SB Check Solarsoft Canvas is another terrific skate shoe with a relatively short break-in period with a very wide toe area.
It has a vented and comfy canvas top, and the vulcanized sole enhances traction between the shoes and the board, which helps with board feel.
It comes with an insole that provides an adequate amount of padding, but a thin outsole that negates some of the insole’s comforting ability. Still, its lightweight feel and breathability shine well despite the limited support the shoe provides.
If you expect to have sweaty feet for whatever reason, a pair of Nike SB Check Solarsoft Canvas might be your next best friend.
Another terrific skate shoe with a relatively short break-in period with a very wide toe area.
- Rubber sole
DC Men’s Graffik Casual Skate Shoe
The Graffik Skate Shoe is DC’s most popular skate shoe, featuring a cushy layer of cushioned panels across the upper that will provide you with optimum protection both on and off the board.
The wide-set mesh tongue is great for wide feet, ensuring that your feet do not feel constricted or tight.
Ventilation holes ensure proper breathability with these shoes and it provides a sizable amount of stability and ankle support with its cupsole bottom and mid-sized backing.
It features DC’s patented pill pattern tread, which is well-known in the skating industry for providing one of the greatest grips across decks and outstanding traction on slick streets.
This is one of the most well-rounded skating shoes available. Not too stiff. Not too soft. Just what you need for most of your skating adventures.
How to know if you need a wide shoe?
Quite simply, if your feet feel cramped in your shoes, there’s a good chance you need wider-fitting shoes.
Maybe it’s a size up you need, or maybe it’s a shoe designed with a little more wiggle room in the toe section.
Whichever of the two, the end result will be you needing a shoe to fit better the size of your foot.
And a great way to tell just how big or small your foot actually is, you know, instead of going with the size you’ve been accustomed to back when your parents bought you shoes, is by measuring your feet.
1. Measure at Night
Heat and wear on your feet can make them swell. Because it’s hotter during the day and most people are generally more active, it’s better to measure your feet at night to get a more accurate measurement.
2. Measure Your Foot
Grab a pen or marker and a piece of paper. Place the paper on the floor and then your foot on top of the paper. Trace it.
If you tend to wear thick socks often, consider putting those on before measuring to have more data in your shoe purchasing decision. Repeat the tracing on your other foot.
3. Review Your Measurements
With a ruler, measure the length of the tracing. The length is the distance from your big toe down to your heel. After, measure your foot’s width. To do so, measure the distance from the broadest part of your foot, one side to the other.
4. Shop Accordingly
Now that you know both the length and width of your feet, it’s time to shop for a pair of shoes that will properly accommodate them.
And if you’re someone who skates or you’re buying shoes for someone who does, you’ll likely want to get a pair of shoes that are good for skating. Not just ones that are wide fitting.
Check Zappos’ chart to measure the size of your feet. It’ll help select the appropriate size given your measurements.
I’m a skater with wide feet. What should I do?
Well, first and foremost, know that there are tons of options for shoes out there for you like the ones mentioned on this list.
But if you’re looking for more information on how to make the best of shoes you already own or other pairs you’re interested in using for your skating adventures, check out these tips.
1. Use a Shoe Stretcher
Shoe stretchers are devices used to do exactly as the name suggests: stretch shoes.
There are multiple types of shoe stretchers available and they come in multiple sizes. Before using one, be sure to know with close accuracy your current shoe size.
Once you do, buy and use a shoe stretcher that matches the size you’d like to reach. While some shoe stretchers are advertised as one size fits all, others are specifically designed for a range of foot sizes.
This video here covers several types of shoe stretchers that work for different kinds of shoes.
2. Use Shoe Stretch Spray
Sounds a bit strange, doesn’t it? Shoe stretch spray. Well, it’s real. While some sprays work best when combined with wooden shoe stretchers like Houndsbay “Bulldog” Shoe Stretcher, there are shoe sprays available that can be applied to shoes that will still work as you walk in them.
FootMatters Professional Boot & Shoe Stretch Spray is a great product for just that. This spray will work great for whether you’re in a rush and need to use your shoes immediately, or if you have more time and would like to leave them to stretch overnight.
It’s very easy to use:
- With thick socks on your feet, spray the area you’d like to expand and then walk with the shoes on your feet
- Spray the area you’d like to expand and then place a wooden shoe stretcher inside of the shoe and leave it for 7-8 hours to stretch.
3. Use Ice Water
Another unconventional way that’s known to effectively stretch shoes: freezing Ziploc bags filled with water.
This way makes sense once you think about it. Water expands as it freezes. So, a water-filled Ziploc bag that’s placed in your shoe will do just that. And as it expands, it’ll also stretch out your shoe.
To do this:
- Get a medium-sized Ziploc back and fill it with 1-2 cups of water.
- Secure the Ziploc bag and place it inside your shoe
- Place your shoe inside the freezer and leave it overnight
- Carefully remove the bag from your shoe. If it’s stuck, give the ice some time to thaw a bit then attempt to remove it again.
And there you have it: A list of the best skate shoes for wide feet and tips on what to do if you’re someone with wide feet looking to make your shoes fit better.
Remember that even with wider feet, there are several options of shoes out there that will help you skate smoothly and comfortably.
And, if you have a pair you own or you’re already interested in, there are tools and techniques you can employ that will stretch your shoes to sizes more suitable for your feet.
So take this information and apply it to your next shoe purchase!
Best of luck to you and happy skating!
I’ve been riding longboards for a little over 13 years now, mainly bombing hills and cruising through beach towns. I’m also a journalist and content writer with a special interest in learning and relaying what ignites people’s inner fires.