Football cleats take their name from the cleats or studs on the bottom of the shoes and they are there to provide traction, and also assist in speed, sudden stopping, sharp turns, lateral movements, all of which are in the repertoire of a footballer's legwork . Football cleats are an essential part of a footballer's equipment. They have been around since the year 1526 when King Henry VIII's shoemaker made him a special pair of shoes to play football!
Football cleats have evolved through the dedication of the shoe industry to the game and in their present form as always, are indispensable for anyone who enjoys playing a professional game of football.
The features of a pair of football cleats as opposed to other cleats are the following:
1. Football cleats have a toe stud, more specifically, two studs below the heel and five under the toes and the ball of the foot.
2. They are made of heavier material and construction
3. They have thicker outsoles
4. They are available in three cuts; high, mid and low.
The different parts of a football cleat are
1. Outsole – the base of the shoe containing the studs
2. Midsole – the internal support of the shoe which supports the heel and the foot with cushioning
3. Upper – that part which is visible and attractive with the laces, normally with the brand logo, etc. and made from leather or synthetic leather, designed for lasting long.
With all these features, there are still many more which vary depending on the following playing factors:
Position of play – whether a defender or a wide receiver will determine whether you use a low cut, mid cut or high cut cleat
Type of field – whether astro turf or grass
Rules – whether detachable cleats usually made of metal are allowed for a younger group
Team players – requiring that all have the same color football cleats.
Types of cleats
Cleats may come molded or detachable.
Molded cleats are permanently attached to the outsole, and they are made of hard plastic. They are less expensive and are used by beginners
Detachable stud cleats have longer studs or cleats and they can be removed and changed according to your preference of field positions. Professional players prefer this one. A cleat wrench will be required for this. They are more expensive.
Why are cleats expensive?
· They are made of quality material. Flyknit for example, used on the uppers feels very light as if bare feet when tackling the ball. Yet it offers the required protection and traction, especially because in football fields, they water it to make the ball move smoothly. So the expensive material still has the friction when wet.
· Professional players train one to three hours every day, six days a week. The cleats have to last at least half a season and that is a good estimate.
· Top brands also mean high priced soccer cleats.
Yet, it is easy to get the top brands at discount. There are good deals on older models and it is a good idea to buy football cleats only when there is a discount on or from certain sites which offer cheap soccer cleats, but ones which are branded.
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