Friday, July 8, 2011

Youth Baseball: Nike Swingman Cleats Product Alert

U13 baseball is the first year that metal spikes are allowed. (I debated the metal vs molded plastic cleats for U13 in two posts Metal or Molded Plastic Cleats, What to do?)

My son was very excited to buy his first pair of metal cleats. We went to Dick's Sporting Goods and bought the Nike Swingman Cleats in blue and black, his team colors. Two of his 9 other teammates also bought Nike Swingman cleats. The Nike Swingman Cleats are the most comfortable cleats he has ever had. He has not complained of foot or heal pain all year.

The only complaint he has is that the strap on his left shoe did not last the entire season. Before game 45 of the season, the ankle strap buckle broke off. The same buckle broke off the cleats of one of his teammates just a few games before his broke. To me this indicates a manufacturer design flaw. High end Nike cleats should last the entire season if not longer.

Perhaps we should have known that these shoes would not be durable because Ken Griffey Jr was pitching them. He never lasted an entire season when he was in Cincinnati either.

Left cleat strap buckle broke. Athletic tape secures it now.

Right cleat strap buckle broke. Athletic tape secures it now.
The Main Point

Nike Swingman shoes might have a design flaw. Buy and use with caution.

Side note to coaches: This was also the first year that my son was allowed to select his own cleats. His previous team issued cleats as part of the uniform. For the last 4 years, my son has worn cheap cleats that were not exactly comfortable for his wide feet. Foot comfort is more important than everyone wearing matching shoes. One type of shoe or even brand does not fit all. Give your kids the freedom to select shoes that are comfortable.


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