how do you take care of bowling shoes
how do you take care of bowling shoes

Bowling shoes are more than just a fashion statement on the lanes – they are crucial for optimal performance. But do you know how to properly take care of them? From regular cleaning to inspecting for wear and tear, these essential steps can help extend the lifespan of your bowling shoes. We’ve got the scoop on the best practices to keep your favorite pair in top-notch condition, ensuring you can continue to strike those pins with confidence. So, let’s get started on unraveling the secrets to keeping your bowling shoes happy and your game on point!

Cleaning the Shoes

Removing Dirt and Debris

When it comes to cleaning our bowling shoes, the first step is to remove any dirt and debris that may have accumulated on the surface. We can do this by using a soft brush or cloth to gently brush off any loose dirt or dust from the shoes. It is important to be gentle while cleaning to avoid damaging the shoe material.

Brushing the Soles

The soles of our bowling shoes are subjected to a lot of wear and tear, so it’s essential to keep them clean. To effectively clean the soles, we can use a stiff-bristled brush or a shoe sole cleaner specifically designed for bowling shoes. By gently brushing the soles, we can remove any sticky residue or debris that might affect our performance on the bowling alley.

Cleaning the Uppers

The uppers of our bowling shoes also need regular cleaning to maintain their appearance and prolong their lifespan. To clean the uppers, we can use a mild soap or a shoe cleaner and a soft cloth. Gently wipe the uppers to remove stains or dirt, being careful not to scrub too hard as it may damage the material. Once clean, allow the shoes to air dry before putting them away.

Drying the Shoes

Air Drying

After cleaning our bowling shoes, it’s important to let them dry thoroughly to prevent the growth of mold or mildew. The best way to do this is by allowing them to air dry naturally. To air dry our shoes, place them in a well-ventilated area by using a shoe rack or a shoe tree. Avoid direct sunlight or heat sources, as they can cause the material to warp or discolor.

Using a Shoe Dryer

If we’re in a hurry and need our bowling shoes to dry quickly, using a shoe dryer can be an option. However, it’s important to choose a shoe dryer specifically designed for bowling shoes, as it provides the right temperature and airflow to prevent any damage. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions and avoid using a hairdryer or placing the shoes near a heater, as excessive heat can ruin the material.

Dealing with Odor

Using Odor Eliminators

Bowling shoes can develop unpleasant odors over time due to sweat and bacteria buildup. To combat these odors, we can use odor eliminators specifically designed for shoes. These odor eliminators can be in the form of sprays or inserts that absorb and neutralize the odor. Simply follow the product’s instructions to effectively eliminate any unpleasant smells from our bowling shoes.

Using Baking Soda

Baking soda is a natural and inexpensive solution that can help eliminate odors from our bowling shoes. Simply sprinkle some baking soda inside the shoes and let them sit overnight. The baking soda will absorb the odor, leaving our shoes smelling fresh. Afterward, we can simply shake out the baking soda or use a soft brush to remove any residue.

Using Dryer Sheets

Another simple trick to eliminate odor from our bowling shoes is by using dryer sheets. Place a dryer sheet inside each shoe and leave them overnight. The dryer sheet will help absorb any unpleasant odors, leaving our shoes smelling clean and fresh. However, it’s important to note that this method only masks the odor temporarily and may not eliminate it entirely.

Preventing Damage

Avoiding Moisture

Moisture can be detrimental to the condition of our bowling shoes, so it’s crucial to take steps to prevent it. After each use, wipe down our shoes with a soft cloth to remove any moisture, especially if we’ve played in a particularly humid environment. Additionally, never store our bowling shoes in a damp or wet bag, as this can promote the growth of mold and mildew.

Protecting the Soles

The soles of our bowling shoes are prone to wear and tear, so protecting them is essential to ensure their longevity. One way to protect the soles is by using shoe covers or sole protectors. These covers add an extra layer of protection and can be easily replaced when they become worn or damaged. By using shoe covers, we can extend the lifespan of our shoe soles and maintain optimal performance on the lanes.

Avoiding Extreme Temperatures

Extreme temperatures, whether hot or cold, can impact the quality and durability of our bowling shoes. It’s important to avoid leaving our shoes in areas with extreme temperatures, such as in a hot car or in freezing conditions. Extreme heat can cause the shoe materials to warp or melt, while extreme cold can make them brittle and prone to cracking. So, always keep our bowling shoes in a temperature-controlled environment.

Storing the Shoes

Using a Shoe Bag

Proper storage is crucial to maintain the condition of our bowling shoes when not in use. One of the best ways to protect our shoes is by using a shoe bag. A shoe bag not only keeps our shoes free from dust and debris but also helps prevent accidental damage. When placing our shoes in a bag, make sure they are clean and dry to avoid any moisture buildup.

Avoiding Direct Sunlight

When choosing a storage location for our bowling shoes, it’s important to avoid direct sunlight. Prolonged exposure to sunlight can cause the colors of our shoes to fade or the materials to deteriorate. Opt for a storage spot away from windows or direct sunlight, such as inside a closet or a dedicated shoe storage area. By keeping our shoes protected from the sun’s harmful rays, we can extend their lifespan and maintain their vibrant appearance.

Maintaining the Soles

Checking for Wear and Tear

Regularly checking the condition of our bowling shoe soles is crucial to ensure optimal performance on the lanes. Inspect the soles for any signs of excessive wear or tear, such as smooth spots or visible damage. If the soles are significantly worn, it may be time to replace them to maintain proper traction and prevent sliding.

Replacing Sliding Soles

Bowling shoes typically have one sliding sole and one traction sole. The sliding sole is responsible for allowing us to slide smoothly during our approach. Over time, the sliding sole may wear down or become damaged. If we notice any signs of excessive wear, it’s essential to replace the sliding sole to maintain our ability to slide properly. Consult a professional or refer to the shoe manufacturer’s guidelines to ensure a proper replacement.

Replacing Traction Soles

On the other hand, the traction sole provides grip and stability during our approach. If we notice any signs of damage or excessive wear on the traction sole, it’s important to replace it promptly. A worn or damaged traction sole can compromise our balance and potentially lead to slips or falls on the bowling alley. Again, consult a professional or refer to the shoe manufacturer’s guidelines for the appropriate replacement.

Lubricating the Sliding Sole

Cleaning the Sliding Sole

To ensure our sliding soles perform at their best, regular cleaning is necessary. Over time, dirt, oil, and debris can accumulate on the sliding sole, affecting our ability to slide smoothly. Gently clean the sliding sole with a soft brush or cloth, removing any dirt or residue that may be present. Be careful not to apply excessive force or use abrasive cleaners that can damage the sole.

Applying Slide Shoe Conditioner

To enhance the glide and performance of our sliding sole, we can apply a slide shoe conditioner. Slide shoe conditioners are specially formulated to reduce friction and maximize slide on the lanes. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions when applying the conditioner, ensuring an even and thin application on the sliding sole. Regularly applying a conditioner can prolong the life of our sliding sole and optimize our performance.

Protecting the Uppers

Using Shoe Covers

To protect the uppers of our bowling shoes from scratches and scuffs, using shoe covers can be beneficial. Shoe covers provide a barrier between the shoes and any potential objects that may cause damage. When not on the lanes, slip on shoe covers and securely fasten them over our shoes. This simple step will help preserve the appearance and condition of the uppers, ensuring they look their best for years to come.

Avoiding Sharp Objects

While bowling shoes are designed to be durable, it’s important to take precautions to avoid sharp objects that can damage the uppers. Be mindful of where we walk when not on the lanes, avoiding areas with potential hazards such as broken glass or sharp edges. By being cautious and aware of our surroundings, we can prevent unnecessary damage to our bowling shoe uppers.

Replacing Shoelaces

Removing Old Shoelaces

Over time, shoelaces can become worn, frayed, or dirty. When this happens, it’s time to replace them. To remove old shoelaces, simply unlace them from the shoe, starting from the top and working our way down. Avoid pulling too forcefully to prevent any damage to the eyelets or other parts of the shoe.

Choosing the Right Replacement Laces

When selecting replacement laces for our bowling shoes, it’s important to choose the right type and length. Look for laces specifically designed for athletic shoes or bowling shoes. These laces are typically made of durable materials that can withstand frequent use and provide a secure fit. Additionally, ensure the length of the laces is appropriate for our shoe size, allowing for a comfortable and snug fit.

Replacing the Shoelaces

Once we have the right replacement laces, it’s time to lace up our bowling shoes. Start by threading the laces through the bottom eyelets and work our way up, making sure the laces are evenly tightened on both sides. Securely tie the laces at the top, ensuring a secure fit. Take care not to overtighten the laces, as this can cause discomfort or restrict movement during our approach.

Seeking Professional Help

Finding a Bowling Shoe Repair Shop

If we encounter more significant issues with our bowling shoes, such as sole separation or extensive damage, seeking professional help is the best course of action. Look for a reputable bowling shoe repair shop in our area. These professionals have the expertise and tools to address any repairs or maintenance needs our bowling shoes may require.

Getting Professional Cleaning and Repairs

Professional cleaning and repairs are essential to keep our bowling shoes in top shape and extend their lifespan. Bowling shoe repair shops offer services such as sole replacement, re-gluing, and thorough cleaning. By entrusting our shoes to professionals, we can rest assured that they will be properly taken care of and maintained, ensuring optimal performance on the bowling alley.

In conclusion, taking care of our bowling shoes is essential to prolong their lifespan and maintain optimal performance on the lanes. By following these cleaning, drying, and maintenance tips, we can ensure that our bowling shoes remain in top shape for many games to come. Remember, prevention is key, so regularly inspect our shoes, avoid moisture, and store them properly. And if we encounter any significant issues, seeking professional help is always a reliable option. With proper care and maintenance, our bowling shoes will continue to deliver strikes and spares for countless games to come. Happy bowling!

Previous articleWhat’s The Difference Between A Strike And A Spare?
Next articleWhat’s The Maximum Score You Can Achieve In Bowling?
Jack Jones
Hello! I'm Jack Jones, and I'm thrilled to welcome you to the world of bowling at As a dedicated bowler and bowling enthusiast, I am excited to share my passion for the sport with you and provide valuable tips to enhance your bowling skills. With years of experience in the bowling industry, I have gained a deep understanding of the game and the techniques required to improve your performance on the lanes. I have had the privilege of bowling in various leagues and tournaments, honing my skills and learning from top-notch professionals along the way. Through my articles and content on, my aim is to guide beginners and experienced bowlers alike towards achieving their personal goals on the lanes. Whether it's refining your bowling technique, mastering tricky oil patterns, selecting the right equipment, or strategizing your game, I'm here to equip you with the knowledge and insights you need to excel. I strongly believe that bowling is not just a sport but a way of life. It brings people together, fosters friendly competition, and provides a platform for personal growth. My writing philosophy is centered around promoting a positive and inclusive bowling community where everyone can thrive and enjoy the game. As you explore the rich resources and articles on, I encourage you to reach out and engage with me. Share your experiences, ask questions, and let's build a vibrant community of bowling enthusiasts who are passionate about improving their game. Thank you for joining me on this exciting bowling journey. Together, let's knock down those pins and inspire each other to reach new bowling heights! Sincerely, Jack Jones