Sports Type Shoes

Introduction to Types and Performance of Athletic Shoe Uppers

Classification of athletic shoe materials

Sports shoes have several types of fabrics, including PVC, PU, cowhide, ultra-fine fibers, natural leather, mesh, etc. Here's a brief explanation of each:


Most of them are cheaper and of poor quality, not resistant to cold and bending. PVC is not used as the fabric for products.

PU leather and cowhide

They are the most commonly used materials on the market. PU leather is soft, elastic, and has good hand-feel, with a shiny surface. Cowhide is mostly matte and rough, with little shine, a matte surface, and little elasticity. Although cowhide and PU have different characteristics, each has its own characteristics when used. PU is more commonly used and the price ranges from a dozen yuan to hundreds of yuan. Mid-range cowhide and PU leather are used as the upper for sports shoes.

Ultra-fine fibers

Soft touch, uniform texture, and performance close to natural leather. Unlike natural leather, it has a more uniform thickness and balanced elasticity, making it one of the best artificial leather materials. Most shoe types currently use this material.

Natural leather

It is a widely recognized material that is breathable, soft, resistant to peeling, bending and cold, durable and long-lasting. The disadvantage is that there are defects, many pores, and irregular shapes which make it difficult to cut. Natural leather has always been loved by people; there are many kinds of leather used for shoes, such as cowhide, pigskin, deer skin, ostrich skin, crocodile skin, snakeskin, etc. Athletic shoes generally use cowhide. Cowhide can be divided into top grain leather and split leather (also known as corrected grain leather or paint leather). Generally, the price of top grain leather is 3-5 times that of split leather. Athletic shoes, especially basketball shoes, use a large amount of top grain cowhide, which is valuable.


It is mainly divided into three categories: main mesh, used in exposed parts of the upper, is lightweight and has good air permeability and bending resistance, such as sandwich mesh. Collar accessories such as velvet, BK fabric, and lining accessories such as Lixin fabric, are mainly characterized by wear resistance and good air permeability.

Production process and technology of athletic shoes

Production process

Athletic leisure shoes have now developed to a fairly high level, with fine division of labor within enterprises and effective production processes. How are a pair of exquisite and practical sports shoes made? There are 15 major steps, which can be summarized as follows:

Order review, material ordering, pre-production trial, physical testing, material storage, material cutting, upper stitching, sole molding, finished product packaging, finished product storage, market research, design and development, sample evaluation, new product sample making, sample viewing and ordering.

From the above production process, it is not difficult to see that a finished pair of shoes must go through at least 15 major steps, and each step must be subdivided into up to thirty or more processes.

Production technology

If athletic shoes are made only from upper materials and soles, they will appear dull and monotonous. In order to make them unique and show different individual characteristics, people use various colors, patterns, and shapes on relatively monotonous leather or mesh, and this is where craftsmanship comes in. Craftsmanship mainly plays a decorative role, and can leave people with a sense of ambiguity, three-dimensionality, metallic texture, speed and other beautiful feelings and aesthetic taste.

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