Verdict from 2 experts and +100 user reviews

8 reasons to buy

  • According to several players who enjoy the lightweight feel of the New Balance 996 v3, it helps them move around the court quickly. 
  • Most of the users who put mileage to this shoe find the traction to be spot on.
  • A good bulk of wearers like the design of the Ndurance rubber in this version as it offers strength and flexibility.
  • Its knit upper breathes well as indicated in a considerable number of reviews.
  • Quite a lot of buyers declare that they can feel the support under the foot arch. 
  • It holds up to several months even with frequent use, according to some satisfied supporters of New Balance tennis shoes.
  • A modest sum of wearers find the heel cushioning to be adequate.
  • It falls under the reasonably-priced range of the brand’s tennis trainers.

2 reasons not to buy

  • A considerable sum of wearers recommend giving this shoe an ample break-in time before using it for match game. 
  • Few wearers complain that the seam under the tongue is rubbing across the instep.

Bottom line

New Balance modified its 996 line with the drop of the knit-covered 996 v3. It may not belong to the cheaply-priced New Balance court trainers, but it’s lauded for offering optimum performance. Its soft fabric upper provides ventilation, while its considerably light midsole offers comfort, notably under the heel. Outsole durability and traction got good scores from versatile players who tend to toss from one type of court to another.

Tip: see the best tennis shoes.

Good to know

Following the release of the 2nd generation 996 covered with mesh with TPU, New Balance dropped its first-ever knit and nylon-made tennis trainer, the 996 v3. Such a foot-hugging outer membrane is heat-fused. This engineering is directed to provide durability and strength remarkably during a prolonged practice session and intense court matches. 

This footgear from New Balance’s stability court shoe family is built with the patented Probank. Such technology offers support and helps control the foot during multi-directional movements. 

Fitted for clay, grass, and hard courts, this design is crafted with a shock-ready REVlite cushioning midsole. 

On the flip side, this trainer is made with a high-wearing Ndurance rubber. Such full-length unit allows the user to slide, skid, and shuffle from one corner of the court to another.

Composition. The heel and ball of the foot are areas of the outsole that are most prone to wear and tear. To strengthen these areas, New Balance layered them with the high-wearing Ndurance rubber compound. The main objective is to put more life into the shoe. 

Traction. This abrasion-resistant rubber is designed with a herringbone tread pattern which is equipped to dole out the right amount of grip on different court scenarios. Such a non-marking unit allows the wearers to slide and skid without leaving any scuff and scratches on the court surface.

Cushioning. The middle layer of the shoe is dominantly made of a lightweight type of foam unit called REVlite. This innovative feature compresses and thereby cushions the foot from impact during heel-to-toe and sideway movements. Its lightness is around 30 percent lower than the typically heavy and dense foams used in tennis shoes.

Support. The support unit placed under the midfoot called Probank is also made light. Despite slashing off much weight under the arch, this stability element helps guide the positioning of the foot during directional changes and lateral cuts. It prevents awkward rolling of the foot.

Material. This 3rd generation New Balance 996 comes in different gradients of colors utilizing the state-of-the-art knitting process. Synthetic material is fused onto the high-stress areas like the forefoot to provide another layer of protection.

  • The New Balance 996 v3 comes with an approximately 12mm drop. This means that the heel is elevated to provide the needed energy return when pushing for shot after shot.


How New Balance 996 v3 ranks compared to all other shoes
Bottom 22% all court tennis shoes
All all court tennis shoes
Bottom 18% New Balance tennis shoes
All New Balance tennis shoes
Bottom 24% lightweight tennis shoes
All lightweight tennis shoes


The current trend of New Balance 996 v3.
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