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Aesthetic_Mess's avatar

Is it "sneakers" or "tennis shoes"?

Asked by Aesthetic_Mess (7892points) October 20th, 2010

What do you call them, and where are you from? I’m trying to figure out if it’s a regional thing to call them tennis shoes.

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35 Answers

janbb's avatar

Sneakers in New Jersey for at least the last 40 or 50 years.

(In England, they call them “trainers.”)

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

Tennis shoes or gunboats if it’s my sister XD
I’m in Michigan.

JilltheTooth's avatar

I think it may be a generational thing as well. It was always sneakers when I was growing up in the 60s, then somewhere along the line people started saying “tennies”. I lived around the country, and found it to be more generational than regional, but that’s just me.
OK, looking at those ^ ^ ^ I stand corrected.

downtide's avatar


Seaofclouds's avatar

I’ve always said sneakers. My mom and grandmother both say sneakers too. I grew up in Delaware and so did they.

BoBo1946's avatar

Both will suffice here!

harple's avatar

Yes, as @downtide said – Trainers :-)

Austinlad's avatar

We called ‘em tennis shoes when I was growing up, but nowadays, all I hear is sneakers or running shoes.

Aesthetic_Mess's avatar

@janbb in PA it’s sneakers too, but in NC it tends to be tennis shoes.

muppetish's avatar

I am a “sneaker” person from California.

@JilltheTooth My mum calls them tennies :)

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JilltheTooth's avatar

I feel so silly, now

Aster's avatar

what @janbb said. Now I say tennis shoes.

ucme's avatar

Treads. Incidentally, Claire Rayners is the cockney rhyming slang for trainers. a little useless information there!

cookieman's avatar

“Sneakers” or “Kicks” here in Boston.

marinelife's avatar

I used both sneakers and tennis shoes when growing up. Now I call them running shoes or athletic shoes.

BoBo1946's avatar

loll..“kicks” are for kids!

downtide's avatar

@ucme Claire Rayner passed away a couple of weeks ago. She was a former President of the British Humanism Association, which I hadn’t known until recently.

ucme's avatar

@downtide Oh i’m aware of her recent demise. Nice of those living in the east end to keep her “sole” alive.

Aethelwine's avatar

I call them gym shoes (or athletic shoes) since that’s what the school requires the children wear for gym. We live in Illinois.

tedibear's avatar

Sneakers where I grew up in Western New York. Tennis shoes where I now live in Ohio. I think “athletic footwear” would be a nice compromise. ;~)

DominicX's avatar

I grew up saying “tennis shoes”. I’ve never called them “sneakers”. (I’ve lived in Las Vegas and the Bay Area).

rts486's avatar

I used to call them “keds”, no matter what brand. I grew up all over.

MissA's avatar

‘Tennie runners’...back in my Illinois days.

aprilsimnel's avatar

When I was very small, I heard them called tennis shoes. My family are from Michigan via Alabama and Arkansas. After I started school (in Milwaukee), I called them sneakers and that caught on at home. When I’m in the UK or speaking with my UK friends, I call them trainers. Now I live in Brooklyn and I call them either kicks or sneakers.

And the rubber-soled Converse types the kids at school called “pee-wipers” when I was a little girl because they’d squeak if one tried to skate across the highly-polished gym floor.

john65pennington's avatar

In the North, it’s sneakers.

In the South, it’s tennis shoes.

Why? who knows?

Same applies to “soda’ and a “coke”. soda up north and coke in the south.

shego's avatar

Tennis shoes that’s what I grew up to say but my dad says sneakers

downtide's avatar

@john65pennington with questions like this I always think the answers are useless without knowing where they come from.

tedibear's avatar

@john65pennington – It’s not simply a north/south thing. I currently live near Cleveland, OH, which is “north” and they say tennis shoes here. And on that “coke” or “soda” thing, you missed those of us who say “pop.”

Aesthetic_Mess's avatar

@john65pennington Why do they say Coke? Coke is one type of soda.

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