Bmx Shoes vs Skate Shoes: Similarities & Differences

A lot of times, users are always confused about the roles of BMX shoes vs Skate shoes. Do they both play the same role? Can skate shoes be used for BMX?

What is the difference between skate shoes and BMX shoes? One of the reasons why you are skeptical about your choice of shoes is that you understand how paramount your safety is.

You are indeed considering the level of durability offered by Bmx shoes and Skate shoes. At the same time, you want pairs that fit the exact purpose of what you want them for.

Bmx Shoes vs Skate Shoes

What are BMX shoes?

BMX shoes are specially crafted shoes for Bicycle motocross. These shoes come with specially crafted designs that meet the needs of riders and cyclists. They come in the form of similar sturdy frames as mountain bike shoes. 

This gives them enough support and pedal grip to offer you 100% control of your bike. The treading aligns to offer the wear full-foot confidence during hikes or races.

Most BMX shoes come with a dura cap reinforcement, the pedal feels construction, and a padded collar for support and comfortability. This includes pop cush insoles, reinforced or vulcanized rubber grip for full traction.

With a BMX shoe, you have the assurance that you can handle drifts or even time-lapse races without losing grip on your pedal. Its level of comfort makes it easy to handle long rides without inflicting pain on the rider.

What are Skate shoes?

Skate shoes are simply a special class of shoes for skateboarding. These shoes usually come with a vulcanized rubber sole, waffle sole-like pattern or hexagonal threading, padded tongue, and double or triple stitching for durability.

The goal is to ensure that skateboarders have a maximum balance on the skateboard. A good skate shoe also helps users to easily perform difficult tricks. Skate shoes come with different designs to match the brand identity of the different producers.

Some have thermoplastic reinforcement, dynamic grip technology, fusion grip rubber outsole, etc. The combination of these features ensures durability and allows them to handle the abrasiveness of a skateboard.

A good skateboard shoe must have a triple stitching pattern. A strong seam line helps prevent the shoes from ripping.

Why is it difficult to differentiate between BMX shoes and Skateboard shoes?

A lot of users and readers misplace skate shoes for BMX shoes. Most times, people find it difficult to differentiate the both of them as they look similar.

However, here are a few reasons why most people see Skate shoes as BMX shoes:

Some skate shoes are good for BMX

A lot of individuals assume that any shoe that is good for rides and BMX races is a BMX shoe. This makes most skate shoes fall into this category.

The attention shifts from getting BMX-specific shoes to wearing any skate shoes that have a considerable level of traction to handle races.

Some skate shoes are good for BMX. Some of them have a sturdy frame that offers durability.

To some users, the tag BMX shoes are just a marketing strategy as some BMX shoes do not meet their required duty; while, some skate shoes perform better on the pedal.

Both shoes have similar features

Both skate shoes and BMX shoes have similar features. BMX and skate shoes have a peculiar trait; they are easy to wear, and they have a strong grip technology.

You will end up discovering that both shoes have Duracap reinforcements, and the waffle bottoms for skate shoes seem to work like BMX-specific soles.

Choosing a skate shoe from a company with a BMX program gives you a similar feeling as riding on BMX shoes.

The design of some of these skate shoes makes them stand out as multisport shoes and can handle different terrains and pressure levels.

A lot of times, you might find it difficult to differentiate between BMX and skate shoes because of their physical appearance.



Five Similarities between BMX and Skate shoes

Bmx Shoes vs Skate Shoes
Vans BMX Shoe
  • Both shoes offer a strong form of ground grip
  • Great support for ankle and maximum support
  • Durability
  • Duracap reinforcement rubber
  • BMX shoes and skate shoes are both fitting and flexible

Both shoes offer a strong form of ground grip

One of the reasons why you will see Skate shoes described as BMX shoes is because they offer similar strong traction and frictional resistance. One of the great things about these shoes is that both handle a great amount of pressure from hard surfaces.

A basic skate shoe must have a strong grip technology that must keep it stuck to the skateboard. This also refers to BMX shoes. If you must gain full assurance of your bike safety, you must wear BMX shoes that keep your feet glued to the pedal.

BMX and skate shoes have one significant thing in common; they stick to hard surfaces and handle abrasion perfectly. Both shoes can handle long rides because of their ergonomic design.

Great support for ankles and maximum comfort

BMX and skate shoes come with advanced features that assure the comfort of users. This includes the use of padded collars, low and high tops, small cut profile, and large profile.

The mechanism is the same for both shoes but there might be slight differences amongst different brands. These brands decide which of these technologies fit the brand and its users but the goal remains the same.

The high-top design offers great ankle protection while the low-top design assures easy and better mobility. The use of a small cut or large profile is to provide cushioning and a better pedal grip and control.

Both BMX and skate shoes follow this simple routine which makes them similar pairs for the same use.


The use of tough fabric material in skate and BMX shoes goes beyond the need to combat friction, but also provides resistance against wear and tear. Styling is not usually the first thing in the mind of a skateboarder or a cyclist.

The primary goal is to get good shoes that will last long. Great skate shoes and BMX shoes have a sturdy frame that makes it difficult for them to rip. This includes the use of quality stitching processes, high-impact foam, or cushion foams.

The goal is to ensure that it comes in high-quality designs that can withstand any external factor. The material of these shoes is the first thing to consider. Most BMX and Skate shoes are products of suede materials.

This makes them more durable than shoes made of plain fabric or canvas. Nevertheless, you will stumble upon BMX/skate shoes made of canvas material.

These Canvas BMX and Skate product lines are not as durable as the latter as they can easily tear. Can skate shoes be used for BMX?

The answer is yes, but the design must meet high standards, backed up with durable materials that can easily handle abrasion and friction.

Duracap reinforcement rubber

One of the peculiar features that you will find among BMX shoes and Skate shoes is that they all have dura cap reinforcement. For these shoes to withstand abrasion, their underlays must prove effective against wear and tears.

The dura cap reinforcement offers protection for the soles of your shoe to ensure that they remain strong even after they go through extreme conditions. This offers an unrivaled level of durability on the shoes.

Some high-end shoes include a “stitchless” construction that intensifies the durability standard of these shoes.

Fitting and Flexibility

Skate and BMX shoes come in either lace or slip-on designs. This gives them a defined fitting, flexibility, and styling.

Although these shoes are made of hard materials that ensure efficient cycling, grip, and impact absorption.

At the same time, they come in a flexible form that offers your leg enough balance and keeps them at ease.

Good skate and BMX shoes fit and wrap around your feet perfectly. You shouldn’t have fears of losing them during a crash.

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What are the key differences between BMX shoes and Skate Shoes?

Bmx Shoes vs Skate Shoes
Skate Shoe
  • BMX shoes provide a better solid footing than skate shoes
  • BMX shoes are more comfortable and cushion better than skate shoes
  • Skate shoes get damaged faster than skate shoes
  • BMX shoes have better arch support than skate shoes
  • BMX shoes are more durable

BMX shoes provide a better solid footing than skate shoes

One of the popular questions on the web is; are skateboard shoes good for biking? The truth is there are slight differences in the sole structure of BMX shoes and skate shoes.

A lot of users stick to Skate shoes because of their waffle soles, while some go for them because of their affordability. However, you will find out that skate shoes may wear down quicker than BMX shoes. 

There is a 73% chance that the soles of your skate shoes will wear down, compared to BMX shoes. BMX shoes provide a better solid footing with supports of a high footbed and a rugged bottom. 

This reinforces its strength and ability to handle friction and abrasion. The availability of thick soles has stood out as a big difference between BMX and Skate shoes.

BMX shoes are more comfortable and cushion better than skate shoes

BMX shoes have a waffle cup design that is different from the regular waffle design on Skate shoes. The Waffle type construction is the custom design strategy for Vans skate shoes, especially.

This includes supports of its vulcanized rubber soles. The introduction of the waffle cup construction is to provide advanced strength for BMX shoes.

BMX shoes with a waffle cup provide a more supportive heel on a thick structure. This also includes a thinner forefront of the shoe. Users have the opportunity to enjoy a bulky feel that supports impact absorption on its heel. 

The idea of a waffle cup is to thin out the forefront of the shoes towards the toe region and fill it up with a thicker midsole or insole. This provides an advanced level of comfort and cushioning on the shoes.

This also allows riders to feel their pedals so well, with the ability to try out some maneuvering skills during rides. This feel and design have made BMX shoes a cool option for skating.

Skate shoes get damaged faster than skate shoes

One of the disadvantages of skating with a non-BMX shoe is that they barely last long.

Although most skate shoes come with an extra cush design and a waffle sole design, the design is not too rugged to handle intense rides.

BMX shoes have better arch support than skate shoes

There are chances that you will come across Skate shoes that do not have arch support, but, you will never see a BMX shoe without arch support. The benefit of arch support is to ensure that your feet align with the shoes.

This allows even distribution of pressure through your feet. You have the assurance of stability and balance.

This also helps in offering your feet support and easing mobility. All good BMX shoes come with arch supports, so riders are not worried about inflammation, heel or arch pain

BMX shoes are more durable

The rules are simple; use BMX-specific shoes for riding and skate shoes for skating. Casual skate soles have weaker soles that will easily wear off.

Your choice for mid, high or low tops is personal and this should go in line with your preferred styling.

Can a BMX shoe be used for skating?

Yes, you can. A BMX shoe that is built with a waffle cup construction can be used for skating. Some BMX shoes come with a hybrid design that makes them multisport shoes. 

They offer great fitting even for skating. This includes the fact that most of them come with flexible outer soles and sole support that makes them cool to handle your skating tricks and flips.

For a BMX shoe to work well for skating, it must have a flat sole, sleek design, and an ideal sole structure to keep your feet glued to the board. Most BMX shoes offer this feature, so it’s not a bad idea to take your BMX shoes for skating.

BMX shoes also come in a similar fabric type as skating shoes; leather, suede, leather. While leather shoes might look heavy to take them for long hours of skating, a suede BMX shoe is a great choice for skating.

It handles the abrasiveness of your skills and is also built to a durable standard that accommodates stress and pressure. It is easier to get BMX shoes that are for skating.

However, before you transform your BMX shoes into your skating companion, you must ensure that they meet the minimal requirement for your skateboard. Your safety comes first!

Can skateboarding shoes be used for BMX?

Yes, you can. Some Skateboarding shoes are built to a high standard that makes them BMX-specific. This includes the availability of a waffle cup sole that provides extra durability and acts as an impact absorber. 

This provides extra durability and strength than a waffle sole. The bottom line about using skateboarding shoes for BMX is that you should choose shoes that offer the best comfort.

Skateboarding shoes offer an affordable means of getting BMX-enabled shoes. You wouldn’t need to break a bank to afford a skateboarding shoe for BMX.

If the bottoms of your skateboarding shoes are not thin, then you can use them for BMX. The problem with choosing the right shoes for BMX doesn’t lie in choosing a BMX shoe or a skateboarding shoe.

It lies in choosing shoes that meet all factors for BMX. You must ensure that your skateboarding shoes meet all the requirements for BMX.

The necessary factors that you must consider before choosing a skateboarding shoe for BMX are


For you to use a skateboarding shoe, it must fit firmly around your feet. You should not choose skateboarding shoes that are too tight on your feet to avoid ankle pain.

However, firm fitting is advisable to keep them secured to your feet. You wouldn’t want a dangling shoe when you are taking dare-devil turns.


One of the turn-offs to choosing skateboarding shoes for BMX is how long they can last. If they are strong enough to last longer and won’t rip easily, you can use them for BMX.


Balance and support are factors you should consider in choosing a skateboard shoe for BMX. A good skateboard shoe for BMX must have arch support, padded collar and structured construction that keeps your feet secured


One of the reasons why riders prefer the Vans Skating shoes for BMX is because of their waffle soles. These soles have openings that trap in the pedals of your bike, keeping your feet glued to the pedals.

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