Metal or Molded Cleats for Talawanda Softball

Since the first pair was created by Paul Butler in the 1840’s, baseball cleats have come a long way. His first pair was leather for flexibility, although people complained about them being uncomfortable. The bottom of the cleats, the spikes, were also metal, now most cleats are made of synthetic materials and the spikes are molded to withstand any surface.Old cleats

According to the Ohio High School Athletic Association (OHSAA) rulebook, high school softball players must wear shoes and “the soles may be smooth, have soft or hard rubber cleats or rectangular metal cleats. Metal cleats shall not extend beyond ¾ inch from the sole and shall not be round.” In little league, most people didn’t have a choice of metal spikes but going into highschool they do.

HomeRunMonkey described the differences of metal, molded and interchangeable spikes. Molded spikes are made out of different mixtures of plastic and rubber which determines molded cleatsthe varying price of the cleats. The cheaper cleats are generally for younger players and inexperienced players who need more forgiveness when they move. The more expensive molded spikes give you the most traction before going to metal. They are made more out of plastic and are lighter than molded rubber or metal spikes. Molded shoes are made to be the most comfortable with the most spikes spread out on the pressure points of the foot.

Metal spikes are best for traction HomeRunMonkey says. These spikes are the thinnest, so they dig into the ground easier. Metal spikes are great for both dirt and grass. If you are an inexperienced Metal cleatplayer you can twist your ankle easier in metal spikes. With these it may be better to go into women’s sizes if you can’t find a men’s size small enough, you want your cleats to be snug. The new softball coach for THS prefers dmetal spikes “Some people can’t adjust to metal cleats well, but if you can it’s worth it” Coach Guenther said.

Along with choosing metal or molded, you have the choice of high top, mid cut or low cut cleats. High top cleats provide more ankle support but can interfere with running. Mid cut cleats provide moderate ankle support but still allows your ankle move to run. Low cut cleats are the lightest and you can be your fastest. The height of the shoe you get really depends on personal preference.

Whatever pair you get, you have to care for them. To make them last as long as possible you never, ever, want to wear them outside of the field or dugout. Wipe them off after games to get the dirt off your cleats and out of the air holes. Whenever you’re done with a game make sure to let your cleats air dry so the insides don’t get moisture build up

All in all it really depends on your own preferences although metal cleats are better for more experienced players. If you need a cheaper pair of cleats you may want to go with molded cleats to get a better made pair. Low cut cleats don’t restrict your ankles as much so if you need the extra speed you may want a low cut pair as well.

metal v. molded