How to clean volleyball shoes

How to clean volleyball shoes? Step-by-step guide

Among all the essentials of a volleyball game, your shoes are the ultimate hero that provides comfort during a hard match. This companion allows you to take extra bounces, swift stepping, and a high jump to get a good spike. The best volleyball shoes never come cheap in the market, all the reliable and comfortable volleyball shoes cost 100$. Caring for and cleaning this fearless companion is as important as practicing for the volleyball game.

I remember the time when I was not aware of the importance of cleaning volleyball shoes and wondered why my shoes did not last more than 3 months. So, to ensure the proper working of your volleyball shoes, I have a complete guide for you how to clean Volleyball shoes and washing them to keep your volleyball shoes in top-notch quality and performance. Let’s dive deep into the shoe care world.

How did my volleyball shoes become dirty?

Below are some common reasons Why your volleyball shoes become so dirty even after a day.

  • Although the indoor courts are cleaned properly with some cleaning detergents, still due to over-practicing and stepping on multiple shoes they become dirty. And this dirt ultimately accumulates on your shoe sole.
  • Walking or running through mud, grass, and water causes additional strains or debris on the shoes.
  • Ball or other equipment available inside the court also contain dust, that can easily move to your shoes.
  • Additionally, during a hard game, if you step over toward another player or even your shoes come in contact with another player’s shoes, it becomes dirty.
  • Sticky residue, such as spilling any soft drink can also add strain on your shoes.
  • Swift movements, bending, and jumping also create scuff marks on the shoes.
  • Improper and infrequent cleaning also leads to a high accumulation of debris and dirt particles.

How to clean volleyball shoes – Best Practices

If you clean your shoes routinely, then simply wiping the dirt with the help of a piece of cloth or brush is enough. However, after a week or twice a thorough cleaning is mandatory for your shoe’s peak performance during a tough match. Here’s how I used to clean my volleyball shoes and they never betray me during practice and game.

Normally I prefer the shoe cleaning kit, however, if it is not available then the following materials can work for you in this regard;

  • A dry, soft, and clean towel
  • A water spray bottle
  • Mild soap or detergent
  • A brush (you can also use a toothbrush)
  • Baking soda (optional)

1. Handwashing method of cleaning volleyball shoes

    The superior and comfortable way of cleaning volleyball shoes is handwashing. Additionally, it properly cleans and a matter of seconds as well. For this use the below-mentioned steps;

    • First of all, take a brush and remove the debris and accumulated dry dirt from the upper and lower areas.
    • Now take a small tub and add soapy water to it. You can use any mild detergent for this purpose as well.
    • Now soak a clean piece of cloth on that soapy water.
    • Rinse the excess water from that wet cloth.
    • Now rub the wet cloth over your shoes and dirt particles. Thoroughly clean it from upside down.
    • After cleaning it, now add clean water to remove the soapy appearance.
    • After satisfied cleaning, it’s time to dry the shoes. For this place the shoes in the open air, fully ventilated area where there is no direct contact with the sunlight.

    2. Machine washing method of cleaning volleyball shoes

      I usually do not recommend machine washing for normal dirty shoes as the swift revolutions of the washing machine can damage the soft material of the shoes. However, if your shoes are crafted of good quality and are super dirty then go for the machine washing method by using the following steps;

      • First of all, remove the removable material just like shoe laces and insole. These parts are removed during rapid washing machine rotation, therefore better to exclude them by yourself.
      • Now put the shoes in a mesh bag.
      • Add cold water to the washing machine along with mild detergent and baking soda this will remove the stubborn dirt particles.
      • Now give 3-4 gentle cycles.
      • Dry the shoes in a ventilated area, without directly contacting the sunlight.

      3. Cleaning with baking soda method

        Baking soda works best if your shoes are dirtier than normal and the stubborn debris denies leaving your shoes. Here’s the way to use baking soda for cleaning purposes;

        • To apply baking soda on your shoes, just make a paste first by adding 1 spoon of baking soda in 1 cup of water. Mix it well.
        • Now apply this paste over the shoes, especially the area where debris is hard to remove.
        • Now rest it for 15-20 minutes and wash the shoes with running water.
        • Now dry shoes in an open area.

        Although baking soda is a safe option, however, I must recommend you first apply a very small area to know that your shoes are not sensitive to it.

        Why is volleyball shoe cleaning necessary?

        Cleaning your volleyball shoes is not just for getting a good appearance and tidy look. Nevertheless, it directly impacts your peak performance during a hard match and the life span of your shoes as well. The accumulated dirt particles on the outsole remove the marks and make it flat, thus reducing the friction. This makes your shoes slippery and also causes injury while getting a high jump for a good spike.

        Apart from the performance and appearance, the uncleaned shoes are totally unhygienic for your feet, thus increasing the chances for bacterial and viral infections. Moreover, sweating causes bad odor to burst out of your shoes and feet as well. So, cleaning it properly offers your feet a comfortable playing environment.

        How can I clean volleyball shoes with vinegar?

        Sometimes the nasty odor and hard debris become so frustrating that they refuse to leave the shoes even after a second wash. At this stage, we do not recommend any harsh chemicals except for the vinegar. Vinegar is a natural cleaning powerhouse that’s gentle on your shoes and does not harm them. For this purpose;

        • First, brush off any loose dirt and pebbles with a soft brush or cloth. 
        • Then, mix equal parts white vinegar and water in a bowl or spray bottle (spray bottles are best for this purpose). 
        • Dip a clean cloth or sponge in the vinegar solution and gently scrub the outside of your shoes. 
        • Pay extra attention to any stains or especially dirty areas.
        • For the inside, give the insoles and the lining a quick wipe with the vinegar solution.
        • Don’t forget to rinse the cloth often to avoid spreading dirt. 
        • Finally, let your shoes air dry completely. 

        Vinegar is a natural disinfectant and odor eliminator, so it will leave your shoes smelling fresh and clean. Make sure your shoes are 100% dry before wearing them again. Damp shoes are a breeding ground for bacteria and can cause blisters. 

        5 minute cleaning hacks for volleyball shoes

        If you want maximum cleaning of your shoes five minutes before your practice, here are some quick hacks for you in this regard.

        • A quick removal with baby wipes will help you to clean your shoes immediately in a second. This is not a thorough cleaning method, however, it will work for your sudden practice.
        • If your shoes are continuously bursting with odor, just put them in a plastic bag and place them in a freezer overnight. This will kill the bacteria, giving a fresh vibe to your shoes.
        • Rubbing lemon to the strain parts is a good way to get rid of them. Also, the citrus smell will freshen your shoes.
        • Another way to quickly remove strains is to place the shoes in direct contact with sunlight. The UV light will diminish all the bad odor by killing the bacteria.

        Preventive measures to take before cleaning your volleyball shoes

        • Avoid using hot water, it will damage the soft material of your shoes.
        • Do not directly contact your shoes with UV light.
        • Avoid using a dryer machine for quick drying purposes, better to dry your shoes in open air to avoid any damage.
        • Don’t use the washing machine frequently to clean the shoes.
        • Avoid using tough tools for cleaning purposes. Better to rely on soft cloth and toothbrush.

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