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Football-Soccer Footwear Traction Options

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Surface and conditions be what they may, Nike can help you stay glued to the pitch.

Explore all the different field types and how cleat shape, configuration, outsole material and technology help determine what type of boot you need.

Nike Cleats

During a game of football a professional player runs an average of seven miles. One of the biggest benefits they want in footwear is comfort, provided in part by the outsole.

Nike Outsole Benefits


Dispersed cleat pressure increases comfort.


Players can get great grip on a variety of field surfaces.


During lateral movements such as cutting (or changing direction) from side-to-side, stability is key.

Cleat Types

The boot’s name includes the type of surface it is designed for. So if you know what you’ll be playing on most of the time, finding the right traction is easy.

Soft Ground (SG)

These outsoles are beneficial for fields that are wet, muddy and require the most traction. They are popular in areas where it rains a lot and are used most in northern Europe.
Most of the time you’ll see a six-stud configuration with the traditional screw-in studs.
With a screw-in stud, the entire stud is removed for easy replacement.

Firm Ground (FG)

In the United States firm ground is the most common surface for soccer games. Firm ground cleats are used on a field with short grass that may be slightly wet, but rarely muddy.
These use molded, conical- or blade-shaped studs, designed for comfort and enhanced traction.
The FG stud offers traction and comfort for firm ground cleats by dispersing cleat pressure evenly across the foot.
Structural elements—bars or plates—are also used to provide support, motion control and improved stability.

Hard Ground (HG)

Hard ground boots are popular in Japan and China. They are designed to provide traction on hard surfaces such as extremely dry grass, dirt or gravel.
These use a harder TPU compound for enhanced durability and typically feature slightly shorter, evenly dispersed studs for optimal pressure distribution.

Artificial Grass (AG)

Artificial grass boots utilize a unique stud configuration, featuring various heights for optimal traction and performance on artificial grass surfaces.
Cored-out (hollow) studs in the heel and forefoot reduce the overall weight of the cleat, enhance cushioning, and provide optimal comfort on the field.
The strategically placed shorter studs help provide a smoother transition during horizontal and vertical movements.

Versatract (VG)

Usually found in kids’ boots, Versatract outsoles feature rubber studs that deliver traction suitable for a variety of surfaces, from firm ground to turf. It’s one of the most versatile outsole options available.

Turf (TF)

Turf refers to synthetic-grass surfaces. Playing soccer on these surfaces requires less cleat penetration, which is similar to the needs of a hard ground cleat.
Turf cleats are designed to provide traction appropriate for play on very dry surfaces, hard dirt fields and dry artificial turf.
Cleats designed for this surface feature a solid rubber outsole with many small (5 mm or 6 mm), multidirectional “studs.”

Indoor (IC)

Indoor outsoles use non-marking materials such as gum rubber, durable, clear rubber and molded rubber to provide traction, flexibility and durability.
Indoor soccer shoes use pivot points, flex grooves and herringbone patterns for optimum movement and traction.
-Soccer Mom
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