Whether you are a right-handed bowler or a left-handed bowler, you can’t beat the extra protection and control you get by using an interchangeable sole and heel system with your bowling shoes.
Benefits of Interchangeable Soles and Heels
Interchangeable slides allow you to go the extra mile because you can choose a leather sole that increases or decreases the amount of “slide” you need depending on your environment.
To be fair these shoes and soles are meant for aggressive play. But even the casual bowler will be able to benefit from using replacement soles.
Why Change Your Soles?
The ability to change your bowling shoe soles is super important to the “power player” because the environment where you are bowling can change depending on what time of year it is and whether you are on synthetic lanes or wooden lanes.
You may want more slide when you are on a particularly oily lane vs. when you are playing on an extremely dry wood lane.
On top of that, many different kinds of synthetic approaches dictate the amount of slide bowling shoe soles and heels should provide.
Customize Interchangeable Sole and Heels
Because you can now purchase bowling shoes with interchangeable soles and heels, it is easier than ever to get a custom fit for your game.
You can now be in control of how much slide your heel sole provides. Similarly, you may want to give your heel on your push off shoe more tac.
- Leather (red leather is our favorite)
- Microfiber (white microfiber is our favorite)
When you have a pair of shoes that you can change the slide on, you can make sure that you always have the right amount of grip and slide for your approach.
Approach Will Determine Which Soles Each Shoe Has
Which shoe has which soles depend on several factors:
- even or odd-step approach (4 steps vs 5 steps)
- left-handed bowler vs. a right-handed bowler (which approach above)
Push Off Shoe
Your push off shoe will be the back shoe that you use to push into your slide.
You will want your push-off shoe to have a break heel that is designed for the non-sliding shoe to give the max amount of push-off power on the approach. You will have a traction sole for the toe and a brake heel for the heel.
There are all kinds of foot pads for the push-off heel and soles. Right-handed bowlers who push off with their left foot will want to make sure that they get the right slide soles for the correct foot.
Your slide shoe is your front shoe that is the last foot down and slides you into your throw.
You will want your slide shoe to have a slide sole (toe) with a heel brake.
The 4 Parts of Interchangeable Soles
You can see from this diagram provided by Dexter bowling shoes the 4 basic parts of interchangeable soles.
1. Traction Sole
The traction sole is what allows you to push off with power.
2. Brake Heel
The brake heel gives you control and leverage for when you land on your slide pad.
3. Slide Sole
The slide sole is what you glide on when you have finished your approach and you are releasing the ball.
4. Brake Heel
The brake heel is the final slowdown after you have completed your slide.
Interchangeable Slide Sole
The slide sole is an important peice of a bowler’s equipment. The slide sole helps the bowler to deliver the ball with power and accuracy. There are a wide variety of slide soles, numbered 2 through 10, to suit different bowling styles.
Some Replacement Soles Need Trimmed
The slide soles are oversized and can be trimmed to fit any size shoe. Some soles come perfectly trimmed to the shoe brand that you are buying for. Make sure you search first to make sure that you are getting the correct sole… toe, or heel that you need.
To install a slide sole, simply remove the old sole from the shoe and trace it onto the new, oversized sole. Then, cut along the outline and apply the new sole to the bottom of the shoe.
It’s important to test the new sole on the approach before bowling, to make sure it provides the right amount of slide. Brunswick slide soles are a great way to customize your bowling shoes for maximum performance.
If you are looking for a unique sole, you can try out a red leather slide pad. We think these replacement soles look really cool with a white microfiber back skin.
The coolest part about replacement soles is that in the past you would have to throw away your old bowling shoes and buy new ones when your slide sole would wear out. But now when your slide pad gets some wear and tear, you can simply replace it.
Replacement soles can be rubber or leather depending on the use case.
The Dexter SST White Microfiber slide sole is pretty popular and is cut to fit all Dexter mens sst shoes.
Back Skin Replacement Soles.
Sometimes you will need to replace your back skin for your sole. In that case, finding a Solid Back Skin Sole can often be challenging. If you are shopping online search no further. Check out this 3G solid Back Skin Sole from bowling.com
You want your shoes to feel comfortable and give you extra protection when you slide. So shopping for the perfect slide pad with durability that is also budget-friendly can be tricky.
Luckily, there are brands that offer and sole and a heel with unique types of pad materials that will help your game even in really wet conditions.
Best Bowling Shoes For Men
Here are some of the best bowling shoes for men that use interchangeable sole and heel technology.
Dexter Men’s SST 6 Hybrid BOA Bowling Shoes For Right-Handed Bowlers
The SST 6 Hybrid BOA is the first bowling shoe with the popular and successful BOA Fit System, in which you adjust the tightness of your laces using a micro-adjustable dial. During your release, a broad toe box ensures a solid foundation.
This well-liked consumer favorite has a Hybrid toe protector for increased durability and a fixed Goodyear push-off sole.
Hammer Men’s Bowling HAM Force
When it comes to bowling, having the right shoes can make all the difference. That’s why the Hammer Men’s Black Widow Gold Performance Bowling Shoes are such a popular choice.
Even some of the best bowling shoes on the market can’t compete with this new innovative h-bar technology.
These shoes are designed for comfort and performance, with features like a stay-dry open mesh tongue and collar for maximum breathability. They also have interchangeable soles and heels, so you can customize your approach.
Plus, they’re a limited edition shoe that won’t be available once they sell out. So if you’re looking for a quality bowling shoe, the Hammer Men’s Black Widow Gold Performance Bowling Shoes are a great option.
Rubber Heel Bowling Shoes
If you are looking for a little bit more traction, you may want to consider a pair of bowling shoes with a rubber heel.
This type of heel will provide you with more grip, which can be helpful if you are sliding on slippery approaches.
It is important to note that a rubber heel can make your shoes feel a little stiff, so you may want to try them on before you commit to buying a pair.
No matter what type of bowling shoe you are looking for, you can be sure that you will find a great pair of shoes with interchangeable soles and heels.
Microfiber Side Sole
One of the newest innovations in bowling shoes is the microfiber side sole.
This type of sole is designed to provide you with more grip and traction, while still allowing you to slide when needed.
A microfiber side sole is a great option for bowlers who want a little bit of both grip and slide in their approach.
How Can I Get my Bowling Shoes to Slide Better?
The whole point of interchangeable soles is to allow you to increase or decrease your slide when you make your approach.
Slide Soles are designed to provide a customized slide for any bowler on any approach! The removable soles are numbered #2 to #12, with #2 being the least amount of slide and #12 being the most amount of slide.
Most slide soles are trimmed to fit, to customize to almost any size of shoes!
Heels are the same way except they range from #1 to #7 with 1 having the least slide and 7 being the tackiest.
What Are the Best Women’s Bowling Shoes?
Dexter bowling shoes are the best women’s bowling shoes when it comes to good shoes that have an interchangeable sole.
Dexter bowling shoes are made of high-quality materials and their replacement soles are no different.
Brunswick slide soles are also some of the best bowling shoes out there regardless of gender.
How Do Interchangeable Soles and Heels Work?
Most bowling shoes have either a leather or synthetic leather sole with a rubber heel. The soles and heels of these shoes are attached to the shoe upper (the part of the shoe that covers your foot) with either nails or screws. Interchangeable soles and heels, on the other hand, have soles and heels that are held in place with Velcro or another type of fastener.
This allows bowlers to quickly and easily change out the soles and heels on their shoes to suit their needs. For example, a bowler who typically bowls on dry lanes may want to switch to a sole with more traction if they are competing on oily lanes.
Are There Any Disadvantages to Interchangeable Soles and Heels?
While there are many advantages to using interchangeable soles and heels, there are a few potential disadvantages as well.
First, because the soles and heels are not attached as securely as they are on non-interchangeable shoes, there is a greater risk that they will come detached during use.
Second, because they are not as widely used as traditional bowling shoes, it can be difficult to find replacement soles and heels if you lose or damage them.
Can You Make Your Own Bowling Shoes?
Technically since the interchangeable soles are held onto the bottom of a shoe with velcro, you could easily make your own pair of bowling shoes by removing the sole from your existing shoes and attaching high-quality velcro to the bottom. Then all you would need to do is attach the bowling soles and pads to the new shoe.
If you are a competitive bowler who is looking for an edge on your competition, then interchangeable soles and heels bowling shoes may be worth considering. These shoes provide bowlers with the ability to customize the grip and traction on their shoes to match their individual styles and preferences. While there are some potential disadvantages to using these types of shoes, such as a greater risk of detachment and difficulty finding replacements, the benefits may outweigh the risks for some bowlers.