Juggling Barefoot Vs Shoes: Which One Is Best? (Guide)

Soccer is a fast paced sport where you use plenty of energy. But with tonnes of practice you can become a master!

Here Is Why Juggling Barefoot Is Harder Than With Shoes:

It is more challenging juggling a soccer ball without shoes as you don’t have the padded protection of the shoe, but is is possible but not as easy.

This is the short answer! In this article we are going to discuss :

Is Juggling Barefoot Harder Than With Shoes?

People often say juggling with shoes on is more straightforward than juggling barefoot.

If you asked a juggler why they think this, the answer would usually be something like, “shoes provide some protection for your feet so it’s harder to drop.” But is this really true? To show juggling with and without shoes isn’t different, I experimented.

The Experiment

I wore soccer shoes for one juggling session and juggled barefoot the next time. The juggling shoes were my regular juggling shoes with a fabric upper, rubber bottom, and small rigid plastic plates on the bottom of each shoe where your toes would be. After juggling both ways, I spoke with other soccer players to determine why they thought juggling with shoes on was easier.

The Common Answer

Our typical answer was that juggling barefoot is more of a challenge because you can’t catch the balls, and juggling feels unstable. Then I asked some juggling friends to tell me if they could tell the difference when I juggled both ways. Most of them couldn’t, but two people said juggling barefoot felt better.

We had my computer time juggling with and without shoes. We used juggling balls because the bounce is predictable, so we could get more accurate times juggling both ways.

Jugglers say juggling with shoes on is more accessible, but my juggling average was 6 seconds faster juggling barefoot than with shoes on. We did two sets of 50 jugglings each way, so juggling barefoot was actually 200 juggling throws longer than juggling with shoes on.

This is not much of a difference when juggling balls because juggling balls are so easy to catch. This would be a big difference if we were juggling clubs or rings because it’s harder to see them in the air.

Is It Bad To Practice Soccer Barefoot?

If you’re wondering whether practicing soccer barefoot is wrong, this guide will give you insight into this question.

Some soccer players might be wary of playing soccer without wearing shoes because they may become prone to injuries. On the contrary, playing without shoes can help build muscles and prevent injuries. Therefore, you need to know that it’s not wrong to practice soccer barefoot because of five reasons, including:

Better Agility and Balance

When you wear cleats, the spike on the bottom of your shoe will improve your ability to turn sharply when moving at high speeds. However, this same feature that improves agility may lead to poor balance since they are easy to trip over during quick pivots or sudden stops. If one trips while wearing cleats, they might sprain an ankle. This injury is more likely when the ground is wet or icy.

Improve Ball Control and Touch

If you’re a player who loves practicing soccer barefoot, you’ll have many gains. You may improve their balance and agility more safely if you train barefoot. You will control the ball and move around their environment more accurately and quickly than those wearing cleats.

Prevent Injuries and Overuse

There are several overuse injuries that players can suffer from because of using cleats. These include stress fractures, plantar fasciitis, stiff ankles, shin splints, broken toes, and sprained ankles.

The aforementioned sprained ankle is especially likely when you play on wet or soft ground because of the extra torque the cleat puts on the foot. If you choose to practice soccer barefoot, you’ll likely not suffer from these injuries.

Get Better at Barefooting

Some people are barefoot naturally, so they have a better sense of controlling their body weight when using their toes to grab or push off the ground.

This is an excellent soccer skill that you should develop as a player because it will improve your dribbling, juggling, and overall foot skills. Some professional players like Leo Messi like to play barefoot occasionally because it allows them to feel the ball better.

Save Money

Training with turf shoes is expensive; they usually cost at least $120 (USD) or more for a pair of cleats or turf shoes. When you wear your first pair, you will need to buy another one. By practicing without shoes, you can save money.

Players who want to juggle or do foot skills will need to learn how to control the ball using their feet first. By learning this skill barefoot, you can improve your touch on the ball and prevent unnecessary injuries because of overuse during training sessions.

How Do You Juggle A Barefoot Soccer Ball?

Juggling a barefoot soccer ball takes a lot of practice. You might get frustrated at first, juggling a soccer ball without shoes on!

But with time and persistence, juggling a barefoot soccer ball will get easier. One way to juggle a barefoot soccer ball is to try juggling while you’re standing still.

This exercise can be easy or challenging, depending on your coordination skills. Keeping your body stable might be hard at first, so take a few steps back. To keep juggling a barefoot soccer ball, follow these tips:

• Keep your feet shoulder-width apart. If juggling the ball is more manageable with your feet closer together or further apart, you can adjust it.

• Stand on the balls of your feet. This will make juggling a barefoot soccer ball easier.

• Keep your eyes on the ball at all times! Like juggling with shoes, this exercise is most straightforward when you follow the ball’s movement with your eyes. It might take time to get used to juggling a soccer ball while looking into it, but time and persistence will pay off.

• Bend your knees slightly. Keeping your knees bent will help you keep juggling a barefoot soccer ball for more extended periods without tiring as fast.

• Use both of your feet to juggle the soccer ball as opposed to using just one foot or juggling with your hands as well.

• Keep juggling a ball with both feet at the same time. Don’t juggle one barefoot soccer ball with each foot. You won’t be able to keep it in the air for long.

Are There Socks You Can Wear While You Juggle?

We have used socks for juggling since time immemorial. They’re easy to find and cheap too. Most people would say that juggling socks is a must-have for any juggler.

They’re so common you would think they were the only juggling socks there are. But juggling experts know better. Here I will introduce you to some juggling socks you can wear while juggling and their appropriate juggling patterns.

Nike running socks are also good juggling props, but not the only way to go. Sometimes, juggling sock props are too long or thin or not stretchy enough for juggling socks or patterns. When you want to perform juggling patterns with your hands, Nike running socks can sometimes get in the way by getting tangled up in juggling balls, swinging around wildly, and so on.
Stretching sports socks: Stretching sports socks is not the juggling pattern where Nike running socks or juggling tights would be best, but they’re much better than juggling with your feet naked. They often feel too tight when you first use juggling patterns designed for stretching sports socks. However, this feeling quickly goes away after a bit of practice.
Stretchy socks: These socks are the juggling sock to use for juggling patterns like the 5-club juggling pattern, as they’re very flexible and really do stretch, unlike Nike running socks that split when too much pressure gets applied. They also work great for juggling patterns that require juggling your hands.
Wrapping ankle socks: Wrapping ankle socks are juggling socks that really helps juggle five ball juggling patterns or any juggling pattern where you need a slightly thicker juggling sock, not too thick as to get in the way when juggling balls from hand to hand, but just suitable for most juggling patterns involving spinning juggling balls in the air.

Looking for juggling shoes to help you succeed? Here are some of the top-rated juggling shoes on the market:

Adidas Samba Classic: These classic shoes will get you into that jester frame of mind so you can throw juggling balls high in the air.
K-Swiss Men’s Jiff Lite: These juggling shoes are great for juggling because they’re comfortable and stylish. They’re lightweight, have a flexible sole, and come in many colors. You might have to order them online because good juggling shoes are only available in small sizes.
PUMA Men’s Clyde Indoor Soccer Shoe: These juggling shoes are great for juggling because it has a thick sole and good traction, which means juggling soccer balls won’t be as hard as juggling pizza dough.
Puma Fenty Bow Slide: These juggling sandals look like something Beyonce would wear, and juggling will be a breeze with juggling balls because of the soles.
Sanuk Men’s Yoga Mat: These juggling shoes are perfect for juggling as they’re comfortable and flexible, just like juggling soccer balls. They’re good juggling shoes that cost little.
Reef Fanning II Men’s Sandal: These juggling shoes are great because juggling is super fun.
• Adidas Performance Men’s Samba OG: If you want juggling shoes that are stylish, comfortable, and durable, juggling soccer balls won’t be a problem with these juggling shoes on your feet.
Diadora Samba Brasil Classic: These juggling shoes are great because juggling is a blast.

What’s More?

The study results show that the difference in foot strike and stride length between barefoot and shoe runners is enough to impact the running economy significantly.

This means, if you’re looking for an edge over your competition, it may be well worth investing in some minimalist footwear or even going without shoes at all. If you want more information about how this affects your performance as a runner, reach out to us!

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