Because soccer and football cleats look identical, most people assume you can use them interchangeably. Cleats are important footwear for both sports. However, each football is designed to offer players a chance to deliver top performance.
Now, here’s the truth about football. Since football is a sport that requires movements, players need footwear that boasts a high amount of traction. Expect players to sustain injuries when they put on shoes without traction. It can happen, given the high intensity the sport is known for.
Now, let’s address the question.
Can You Use Soccer Cleats For Football?
Yes, you can use soccer cleats for football. However, you may notice some slight differences when playing at high levels, but note that your performance won’t be hampered when wearing soccer cleats while playing football.
Soccer cleats do a great job of offering players proper footing on grass and turf. Most football players also prefer soccer cleats because they’re lighter and offer flexibility that football cleats usually don’t have.
A Handy Tip: Note that you can play football wearing soccer cleats. Referees allow it. The sport also permits it. However, you cannot wear football cleats to play soccer, as referees don’t allow it.
Besides, football cleats will stifle your flexibility when you wear them to play soccer. And in the game of soccer, you need to be incredibly flexible. Traction is essential, but it’s not everything in soccer. You need a higher degree of flexibility in the game.
Does Football Cleats Truly Permit The Use Of Soccer Cleats?
Rules govern every sport. They make sports enjoyable and guide every player, official, and coach. A violation of these rules can attract penalties. In a worst-case scenario, players who violate laid-down laws are prevented from participating in a game.
The NFL (National Football League) is the governing body of football. They make the rules on the type of footwear allowed too.
Now, understand this. NFL rules are designed to make the game well-organized and reduce the chances of players getting injured. And one way to avert player injuries is to enforce footwear rules.
Here is what the NFL, the football governing body says about footwear:
“Article 3: Item 7. Shoes: Shoes must be of standard football design, including “sneaker” type shoes such as basketball shoes, cross-training shoes, etc.”
“Article 3: Item 5. Improper Cleats: Shoe cleats made of aluminum or other material that may chip, fracture, or develop a cutting edge. Conical cleats with concave sides or points which measure less than ⅜-inch in diameter at the tips, or cleats with oblong ends which measure less than ¼ by ¾-inch at the end tips are also prohibited. Nylon cleats with flat steel tips are permitted.”
So, that’s NFL’s rules on footwear for players. You can see that the rules are straightforward.
Do the NFL rules restrict players to using only soccer cleats? They don’t. Instead, the rules give players a wide array of options for footwear.
You can see the guidelines for footwear by the NFL. And soccer cleats meet those guidelines. So, you can use them to play football.
A Handy Tip: The referee or any official won’t prevent you from playing if you show up to a football game wearing soccer cleats.
But then, just because no one will scold or punish you for wearing different footwear doesn’t mean it’s the right thing to do.
Understand this: football cleats are specially designed for football. They are built to withstand the demands of the game.
So, wear your football cleats when playing football. Only wear soccer cleats to play football when you don’t have any other option but to use them.
What Are The Similarities and Differences Between Soccer Cleats And Football Cleats?
You’ll spot the similarities when you compare football and soccer cleats side by side. One of them is the presence of studs on both footwears.
The stud on soccer and football footwear is what gives players traction. It makes it possible to play on grass and turf. In other words, the studs allow players to run and not slip while running on the turf.
Another similarity between soccer and football cleats is that they are made with the same materials.
Now, let’s discuss the differences between football cleats and soccer cleats.
1: Soccer cleats are lighter:
One of the differences between soccer and football cleats is the weight. Soccer cleats are lighter, as they are designed to look that way.
Soccer cleats are designed to be lighter because of the nature of the sport. The game depends on speed and endurance, making the light cleats the ideal footwear.
Unlike soccer, football players don’t have to run hundreds of miles during games. But that isn’t to say speed isn’t essential in football. On the contrary, it is crucial.
However, stability is crucial in football. That’s why football cleats are heavier than soccer cleats. They are more stable and ideal for high-intensity matches.
Soccer cleats may not even be comfortable for some of the big football players because of the stability issue, which players need to avert injuries during games.
2. Football cleats last longer than soccer cleats:
Durability is one of the differences between soccer cleats and football cleats. The latter usually lasts longer because of the quality of the material used.
Generally, football players are heavier and bigger than soccer players. They tend to have more weight. So, imagine a big football player stepping on you during a match. Without proper protection, your feet could sustain serious injuries.
In football and soccer, players can be stepped on by another player, but this incident occurs more often in football than in soccer.
So, cleats used in football are designed with thicker materials for maximum protection. Another thing you need to know is soccer cleats used in football won’t last long. It may even end up getting spoiled during or after the game.
3. Materials used in football and soccer:
Both cleats are made with the same materials. What differentiates them is the pattern or way the materials are distributed around the shoes.
For the football cleats, stability is the primary focus. It’s about the players having stable feet to move around in.
The outside of football cleats doesn’t need to possess the same touch and feel as soccer cleats. Another thing that differentiates both cleats is how soccer players like to have their footwear built. They prefer their cleats to be narrower to look almost exactly like their feet.
3. Soccer cleats are built for precision:
Of course, no one will argue this point. Soccer is played with the feet. So, players have to be extremely precise.
So, cleats used in soccer are designed to be precise. However, precision isn’t an issue for cleats built for football. Instead, they are made to be sturdier and can handle anything thrown at them.
4: The cleat pattern on football cleats:
The pattern of football cleats differs from that of soccer cleats. Football cleats boast toe studs, while soccer cleats don’t have such studs.
The toe stud is a wise addition to the football cleats, offering some traction. However, as players move around, they don’t need such extra stud on soccer clears. Thus, the toe stud can get in the way of soccer players if added to their cleats.
Another thing the toe stud can cause if added to soccer cleats is injuries. It can leave players badly injured when slide tackled.
5: Soccer cleats’ height differs from football cleats’ height:
Check the soccer cleats on the market. You’ll discover that nearly all of them are low-cut. The low-cut design offers some benefits to players. It allows a better range of motion.
Soccer cleats’ low cut exposes players’ ankles, and that’s something football players don’t fancy. And even though soccer players still cover their ankles using braces, socks, tapes, and other materials, they don’t have to worry as much as football players.
A Handy Tip: Football players still wear low-cut, but the wide receivers mostly wear it. Additionally, the wide receivers wear low-cut cleats for the same reason soccer players wear them.
Wide receiver football players prefer low-cut cleats because it allows them to quickly change their direction when running. It also allows wide receiver players to have better motion range.
Wearing high-top cleats to protect the ankles from injuries may seem like a reasonable thing to do. Besides, the high top ensures there are materials positioned behind your ankles.
But the thing is, doctors suggest taping of ankles is a much better way to protect them than wearing high-top cleats.
So, can you use soccer cleats for football? Yes, you can. The NFL isn’t against it, as there are no rules stating that a player must wear football cleats only.
However, most players prefer soccer cleats because of the flexibility they offer. But in terms of durability, football cleats are a wise choice. They last longer and are much sturdier than soccer cleats.
We also discussed the similarities and differences between soccer and football cleats. Among the differences is that soccer cleats are lighter than football cleats. In addition, they are more precise than football cleats.
To end this post, remember that you can wear soccer cleats to play football cleats, but you can’t wear football cleats to play soccer. Why? It’s unacceptable. Football cleats don’t offer the flexibility soccer players need for the game.