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New Balance 996v4 In-depth Review For Both Men and Women

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Product Overview
  • Comfort
  • Durability
  • Stability
  • Breathability
  • Weight
  • Fit and Size


The New Balance 996v4 is a shoe that is going to provide you with lightweight, breathability and other amazing features. You would enjoy wearing this lightweight shoe and help you to improve your speed on the court.

However, there are some areas of the shoe that needs serious improvement such as stability and the underfoot cushioning area can sometimes feel too soft. With that said it’s a nice looking shoe to have at a great price point. 


  • Superb design
  • Lightweight
  • Outsole is durable
  • Very comfortable
  • Excellent traction


  • Needs more colour options to choose from
  • Lack of stability

Over the last few years, New Balance has become one of the big brands at making quality tennis shoes for professional and recreational players. Also, New Balance has developed a reputation for making comfortable, and stable tennis shoes.

A classic example of that is the New Fresh Foam Lav which has become very popular on the market with its amazing design, durable outsole and excellent midsole cushioning.

In 2020 New Balance has released the fourth edition of 996v4s which started back in 2013 as an evolution of the popular 851 lines.

This version is by far the best in this series with its amazing features. If you are ready and excited like I am then let’s dive straight into it starting with the design.


What I like about the design is how the colours New Balance selected are very bright, colourful and attractive. If you were to ask me which one is my favourite colour I would say the men’s bright yellow and the ladies bright red is spot on.

It is great to have such an attractive colourful shoe on the court because it helps you stand out and boost your confidence and self-esteem on the court.


The upper of the shoe is made of flexible hypo-knit. New Balance decided to use this type of material to provide you with lightweight breathability. This is going to keep your feet fresh throughout your practices and matches.

New Balance 996v4 upper
Image Source: TW

On top of that, since the ventilation is excellent, you are assured that your feet are going to get fresh air during long and intense matches.

However, one drawback of the upper is that it’s not durable like the Adidas Stycon.  

This put player who are aggressive movers at a disadvantage because they are likely to damage or wear out the upper easily.

Lacing System

Unlike the Air Zoom Vapor Cage 4 lacing system that has a unique lacing system that is designed to keep your laces hidden for extra durability while sliding on the court.

The New Balance 996v4 on the other hand has a very simple lacing system that is easy to lace and wear. Also, it’s going to give you a nice cushioning and grip as you move on the court.


The outsole is made of NDurance rubber. This is going to provide you with great durability on the court. You may play for long hours and not see much difference with the outsole.

New Balance 996v4 outsole
Image Source: TW

Next is the traction. The multi-directional tread pattern is going to provide you with great traction on all court surfaces.

Moreover, you would be able to slide comfortably and still maintain your balance.

Midsole and Insole

The midsole is made of a full-length fuel cell for soft cushion and propulsion for each stride. This is going to provide you with nice cushioning and comfort as you play on the court.

Like the midsole, the insole is nicely built to add more cushioning to your feet as you play on the court. Although it would be great if New Balance can improve the stability of this shoe.

Clay Court Version

The New Balance 996v4 also comes in a clay version. This includes both women and men. Make sure to check them out because they look superb.

Colour Options

Just like the Nike Court Lite 2, this shoe doesn’t have a lot of colour options. The colour options available for both genders are limited.

It would be great if New Balance can produce different colour options such as green and so on. This helps players to select colours that suit their tennis outfit.

Weight and Size

With size 10.5 and a weight of 12.4 ounces. This shoe is one of the lightweight tennis shoes you would ever come across on the market.

It’s so lightweight to the point that when you play with it you wouldn’t even feel that you are wearing a tennis shoe. This is very good at helping you focus on the match and at the same time maintaining your speed during the rallies.

In terms of size, this shoe comes in different sizes and it’s true to size. You are not going to have a lot of issues picking your size and it fit perfectly.


This shoe does not require any break-in period which is nice to have because your feet can adapt quickly to it and start playing your style of game.

Also, you are going to feel low to the court due to the way the shoe is constructed. And lastly, in terms of fit, this shoe can fit a narrow, medium and wide foot. This is a big bonus to have on top of this amazing comfortable shoe.


I think the price of the shoe is worth pointing out. It may not be the most expensive tennis shoe on the market and it’s not very cheap either.

The price is fairly decent to afford for most players and the benefit you get is enormous. If you are someone on a tight budget then I would recommend that you check out 12 Best Tennis Shoes Under $100 or 10 Best Tennis Shoes Under $55. You would definitely find both articles very useful.

Final Thoughts!!

As this post comes to its conclusion about the New Balance 996v4, it’s pretty obvious that New Balance did their homework very well. This is because the design of the shoe is superb, the outsole is durable and very comfortable to wear.

However, like anything else, there is always a downside to it. In this case, it would be great if New Balance can provide more colour options for players. Moreover, they need to improve the stability of this shoe so that you can maintain your balance.

With that said it’s still a great tennis shoe to have at a reasonable price and with no break-in period for most players. Lastly, if you manage to pick this shoe up then I wish you a lot of success in your future matches.

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