Addressing Persistent Heel Pain: Finding the Right Heel Cup in Pickleball Shoes

Persistent heel pain in pickleball not only does it make you uncomfortable but also affects your performance overall. You can’t play the pickleball game when you have severe heel pain. Therefore, addressing persistent heel pain in Pickleball is crucial. So, what’s the solution? The solution is to wear a Heel cup.  If you wear a heel cup while playing the game, you won’t have any heel pain as it’ll give your feet proper cushioning, alignment, support and even shock absorption. Therefore, finding the right heel cup in the pickleball shoes is crucial, and this is how you can do this:

Finding the right heel cup in pickleball shoes is important for comfort and performance. Some tips are fit, cushioning, durability, traction, breathability, and hygiene.

Addressing Persistent Heel Pain Finding the Right Heel Cup in Pickleball Shoes

To know the causes of heel pain and the tips for finding the best heel cup for yourself, read this article through the end.

What causes Heel Pain in Pickleball?

Knowing the causes of the heel pain is crucial for you to avoid them. I am now going to walk you through each cause of heel pain in Pickleball:

  • Plantar Fasciitis: The most common cause of persistent heel pain in pickleballs is plantar fasciitis. This is a heel condition, basically an inflammation of the tissue that supports your arch. When the inflammation happens to your arch that causes the heel pain, this pain will be more noticeable when you get up in the morning and take your first steps.
  • Heel Spurs: The heel spur is a small, bony growth on your heel bone, often accompanied by plantar fasciitis. They cause localized pain, akin to walking on sharp rocks. For pickleball enthusiasts, this can seriously hinder their game, making every move painful.
  • Achilles Tendinitis: Achilles tendonitis is inflammation of the thick band between the calf muscles and the heel bone. It results in a consistent, nagging pain, aggravated during physical activities like pickleball. Playing with this condition feels like having an unwanted companion on the court, slowing you down at every turn.
  • Excessive Pronation: If pronation is excessive, it stresses the plantar fascia, causing heel pain. Think about your foot trying to balance but stressing your heel. Pickleball, where swift movements matter, can be significantly affected.
  • Poor Footwear: Inadequate shoes needing proper arch support can wreak havoc on your heels. It’s akin to dancing in ill-fitting shoes; your feet protest with every step. In pickleball, where precise footwork is essential, the wrong shoes can throw off your entire game.
  • Overuse and Strain: Pickleball is addictive, but overplaying without a break can cause overuse injuries. Like a car being pushed beyond its limits, your foot muscles rebel, causing heel pain. It’s just as important to rest and recover as to play.
  • Flat Feet or High Arches: You can get heel pain if your foot is flat (low arches) or high arches. Pickleball requires proper arch support so you don’t hurt on the court. The foundation is like a building – if it’s shaky, everything suffers.

These are all of the causes of the heel pain in pickleball. Now, you must be thinking about addressing the persistent heel pain that you’re having. So, what’s the solution? The solution is a heel cup. What’s a heel cup?

What causes Heel Pain in Pickleball

Heel Cup

A heel cup is a great support for your heel, which relaxes and cushions it. This is the most critical thing for a pickleball player, as in this fast-paced game, the player has to make quick, literal moves in different directions. These moments pressure the heel. If the heel doesn’t have proper support, alignment and cushioning, it may lead to a serious heel injury, resulting in severe pain. 

It’s also great for heel pain like plantar fasciitis, heel spurs, and Achilles tendonitis. A heel cup cushions your heel and keeps it in the right position and alignment. Some people use heel cups to prevent or relieve heel pain, while others use them to improve their posture and balance.  So, how do you find the best heel cup for yourself? Let’s talk about that.

Finding A Right Heel Cup In Pickleball

If you’re a Pickleball player, then you need to follow the below-mentioned steps to choose the right heel cups for yourself.

Go For the Right Size

I’ve seen one common problem among new pickleball players is that they go wrong about the size of the shoe and the heel cup. You can’t get a too-big or too-small cup size, as it may lead to irritation, blisters, friction and slipping, which can further cause severe injury. Also, when your cup is the wrong size, you won’t be comfortable playing on the court, keeping you from performing well. 

Other than the size, you also want a heel cup that matches the contour of your shoe, especially if you have a curved or flat heel. Some heel cups are designed for specific shoes, such as court or indoor shoes. Therefore, make sure to choose the heel cup that suits you.

Good Cushioning and Shock Absorption

Proper cushioning in the heel cup is critical for pickleball players. You, as a player, may already know that you have to make a lot of literal moments in the game. To avoid that, your heel cup needs good cushioning and shock absorption. The best heel cups have a thick layer of gel, foam, or silicone that absorbs impact and reduces muscle and joint stress.


Having Breathability in the heel cup is important, especially when playing in humid weather. Because there is no breathability in the cup, your feet will get moisturised. This will wet your feet, which can lead to blisters as well as heel pain. 

So,  your heel cup should have a breathable mesh or perforated material to allow air circulation. You also want a heel cup with an antimicrobial or odor-resistant coating or insole to prevent bacteria growth and bad smells.


Durability is the last thing to consider in a heel cup. You can’t spend money on buying heel cups every 6 months. Therefore, your heel cup should be made of high-quality material and withstand friction and abrasion on the court’s surface. A high-quality heel cup should have a non-marking, non-skid sole that can grip the court well and prevent you from sliding or slipping.

That’s how you can easily choose a heel cup in pickleball. Now, let me answer a few of your questions.


Why does the back of my heel hurt after pickleball?

A common cause of heel pain after pickleball is plantar fasciitis, an inflammation of the thick band of tissue running along the bottom of the foot. It can be caused by overuse, improper footwear, or standing on hard surfaces.

Is pickleball bad for plantar fasciitis?

Those with plantar fasciitis can enjoy pickleball, but they have to take precautions so they don’t get hurt more. Wear supportive shoes, warm up before playing, and stretch after playing. Stop playing pickleball if you feel heel pain.

What pickleball shoes are good for foot pain?

Here are some pickleball shoes that are good for foot pain:
Asics Gel-Challenger 13
K-Swiss Express Light Pickleball Shoe.
New Balance FuelCell 996v5.

Final Words

Addressing persistent Heel pain in pickleball isn’t a big deal. You can easily do it with a good heel cup. A heel cup will give your heels all they need to absorb the shock and withstand the pressure and friction while playing the game. I’ve given you some tips for finding the right cup for pickleball shoes. Follow these tips to choose the right heel cup for your pickleball shoes. Use that and prevent heel pain.

Ameli Jame
Ameli Jame

Meet Ameli Jame, the Pickleball Maestro! With a paddle as her wand and the court as her canvas, Ameli has honed pickleball into an art form. Whether you're a seasoned player or a novice, Ameli's expertise and passion will elevate your game. Immerse yourself in the world of pickleball through her insights, strategic tips, and spirited stories. Get ready to smash, volley, and dink your way to pickleball glory under Ameli Jame's guidance. Let's score some points and have a smashing good time on the courts!

Similar Posts