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5 Basketball Myths You Need to Know

By: Jordan Madigan, Dr. Tyler Foster, and Max Goto

Over the past few decades, basketball culture has been rapidly developing in terms of training, attire, footwear, and rehabilitation, and is making a lasting impact on athletes of all ages.

Through Kobe Bryant’s low top shoes changing the face of the high-top NBA, Allen Iverson’s shooting sleeve to overcome an elbow injury, and James Harden’s shoulder Kinesio Tape – the NBA stars of the past 20+ years have shaped how younger generations suit up, train and play the game of basketball, but are these habits and equipment the best option for you?  Here are the top 5 myths we commonly hear about basketball fashion and the evidence behind what options a best for you. 

1.) High top shoes are better and safer than low tops

Basketball shoes are a billion-dollar industry, with many players having their own brands, designer shoe lines, and custom apparel. But with each new brand also comes a focus on increasing footwear technology, including inner sole comfort, grip traction, ankle support, and weight of materials, making shoes safer and more appealing. When you look beyond who is wearing what shoe and what's the best-looking trend among the NBA stars, we always fall back on this question: what's the best type of shoe for you? And our biggest debate is high tops vs. low tops.  

It's generally thought that high top shoes have better ankle stability due to their position above the ankle joint, whilst low top shoes are supposed to be lighter and allow for more mobility. But with the multiple studies conducted on the biomechanical principles, or movements of our bodies, there has been no conclusive evidence to warrant choosing one style of shoe over another. These studies show that the style of shoe was not a major risk factor for an ankle injury. Instead, a large portion of ankle sprains in NBA, College, and High school basketballers occur due to stepping on another athlete's foot. But that’s not to say one shoe isn’t better than another. Comfort, suppo