Summary

We spent 6.6 hours reading reviews from experts and users. In summary, this is what sneaker fanatics think:

12 reasons to buy

  • The extra padding around the collar makes the Vans Checkerboard Old Skool Pro a comfortable sneaker, according to a good deal of reviewers.  
  • The combination of leather and textile on the upper makes it fitting for skateboarding and everyday wear, related by pleased buyers.  
  • A reasonable sum of owners was captivated by the removable UltraCush insole as it offers sufficient cushioning especially towards the heel.  
  • Buyers are impressed that this sneaker offers a snug and comfy feel from the first wear.  
  • This Checkerboard Old Skool Pro garnered heaps of praises from lots of purchasers as its padded footbed supported the feet most of the day.
  • A satisfied biker testified that the shoe’s grippy gum outsole hugs the pedal.
  • Wear-testers applauded the hard-wearing rubber outsole as it offers traction that’s ideal for skateboarding.
  • Some complimented the suede and canvas upper for its breathability.  
  • Its checkerboard pattern offers a classy look to any outfit, highlighted by many users.
  • The Duracap underlay rubber beneath the suede cover makes this sneaker long lasting, as noted by awestricken skaters.  
  • Avid Vans followers are drawn to this fab style as it doesn’t cost an arm or leg.   
  • The added cost on this Old Skool Pro model as compared to the non-pro variety is worth it, attested by plenty of owners.

5 reasons not to buy

  • Some buyers noticed that it’s hard to keep the suede portions clean as it easily collects dirt.  
  • Few users mentioned that this sneaker tends to be small.  
  • The canvas portion got ripped off too soon, according to one user who threw this on and did just a couple of ollie tricks.  
  • Few noticed that the sole wore down rather quickly.
  • It lacked cushioning at the ball of the foot, observed by very few users.

Bottom line

Vans launched the Old Skool pro-skater version, adorned with the most recognizable checkerboard pattern that’s been the talk of the town for its eye-catching façade and rewarding interior structure. It got the nod from style-savvy wearers as its retro finish is as powerfully attractive as ever.

The rubber reinforcement on the upper placed on the critical zones and the pillow-like footbed impressed skaters. Overall, many valued this pro edition’s case-hardened build and didn’t mind paying the extra cost.

Facts

Base model: Vans Checkerboard Old Skool
Top: Low
Inspired from: Skate
Collection: Vans Checkerboard
Price: $65
Colorways: Blue, Gold
Special editions: 2 special editions
Size
Small True to size Large
See more facts

Rankings

A top 4% best sneaker
A top rated Vans sneaker

Expert Reviews

Experts are sneaker fanatics, who post reviews at youtube, directly at RunRepeat or at their own websites. Each expert is categorized from level 1 to level 5 based on expertise. See stats on expert reviews and how we calculate scores here.

Are you an expert? Apply to contribute here.

  • First look | Calvin Phlannel

  • First look | Ryo Adityo

Become an expert

Fit & Sizing  

The Vans Checkerboard Old Skool Pro turns up with a generally true to size fit. Since this pro version is engineered with a removable UltraCush HD inner sole, which is thick on the heel, some broad footed wearers opted to go a half size higher to enjoy sufficient wiggle room. This unisex kick is available in sizes 6.5 to13 US and 5 to 14.5 US for the men’s and women’s respectively.  

The traditional low-top Old Skool gets funkier with fully retro checkerboard attire that’s ready to get hurled up with the addition of tech features. Aptly labeled the Vans Checkerboard Old Skool Pro, this revamped style wows avid riders who needed a foot gear that matches the abrasiveness of street skating and keeps them styled up even when they’re off their boardsThis skate shoe puts a charming contrast to a pair of light-toned tee or hoodie baring prints that match the dominant checkerboard shade. 

Vans’ low-top Checkerboard Old Skool Pro, a modified version of the skate classic, is laden with supportive, durable, and resilient features which make it of better quality than the traditional Old Skool. Fittingly classified as a pro, this skateboarding sneaker is integrated with comfortable UltraCush HD sockliner granting high level of impact cushioning, as well as an enduring Duracap rubber underlay that strengthens the upper with its ability to withstand the toughest demands.  

The vibrant history of the Vans checkerboard pattern was inspired by the Southern Californian spirit from the late 1970s. During that time, Vans sneakers are considered a natural canvas for creativity that it was a common practice among SoCal kids to customize their shoes to express their individuality. Some were seen sketching black and white square patterns on the side profiles of their Vans sneakers.  

The Van Doren brothers replicated the concept and conceived waffle-soled footwear named the Vans Style 48 in 1977 showcasing, no less, the checkerboard print. This sneaker, later known as the Classic Slip-On, was warmly welcomed by a ballooning number of skaters back then. This checkerboard sneaker garnered even stronger footing when it surfaced in the 1980s film Fast Times at Ridgemont High, starred by real-life skater Sean Penn.  

A couple of decades later, Vans revisited the timeless checkered style and incorporated it into the brand’s iconic silhouettes, including the 1977 Old Skool. This two-toned square pattern that has been an enduring symbol of Vans was also incorporated into the pro edition of the Old Skool, particularly labeled as the Vans Checkerboard Old Skool Pro.  

  • This sneaker comes with an extra set of laces. 
  • The rubber perimeter at the bottom is built with a single-wrap foxing tape. 
  • Underneath the Vans tag, stitched on the lateral side, is a Pro label. 
  •  “Off the Wall” branding is attached on the heel.  

Comparison