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Jordan 1 Mid vs High

A white Jordan 1 Mid with salmon pink and black overlays on the left. On the right, a white and blue Jordan 1 High with a grey heel.
Credit: Nike

Comparing the Jordan 1 Mid vs High can be tricky if you're unsure which to add to your collection. To help make the decision easier, we've put together everything you need to know about their price, performance, and comfort right here.

Not only that, but we've also given our overall verdict on which we think are the best sneakers out of the two, factoring in details like their price, comfort, and performance if, for example, you're looking for a great pair of Jordans for basketball.

We appreciate that selecting which is "best" is completely subjective, but we've made sure to weigh up the pros and cons of both the best high-tops and Mids impartially to give a fair judgement when it comes to our selection.

To start, we'll take you back to Jordan 1's beginnings by discussing the history behind the two silhouettes. Let's get into it...


In 1984, basketball rookie Michael Jordan was selected as the Chicago Bulls' third overall pick in the NBA draft. By 1985, the world saw the first Nike Air Jordan 1 Highs in the "Chicago" and "Bred" or "Banned" colourway, which are arguably now two of the most popular sneakers ever made.

The story goes the NBA fined Jordan every time he stepped foot on the court as the shoes violated the league's uniform policy. However, Nike used this to its advantage and made it the focal point of its "Banned" commercial which, along with MJ's performances, took the Jordan 1s popularity to new heights. In fact, the model is so popular that new colourways are still being produced to this day despite the silhouette being almost 37 years old.

While the high-tops have continued to grow exponentially in popularity as one of the best basketball shoes on the market, the mid-top counterparts never really took off in the same way, and often come under scrutiny from sneaker purists.

This is mainly due to the fact that the Jordan 1 never saw a Mid variation until 2001 because, despite MJ expressing a preference for mid-tops, he had already begun wearing the lower-cut Air Jordan 3s by the time this information came to light.

Originally Jordan Jumpman logo from 1985 with Jordan jumping in the air in a symmetrical pose.
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Credit: Nike

By 2001, MJ had passed his peak in popularity despite making a comeback with the Washington Wizards on 25 September. As a result, the Jordan 1 Mids simply got lost in the shuffle and never really became as popular as the Highs.


At this point, you may be considering picking up a pair of either the mid-top or high Jordan 1s. If so, you'll probably want to know which of the two is the cheapest.

Air Jordan 1 Mid "Night Stadium" product image of a two-tone grey mid-top with a black Swoosh and orange stitching, and a white midsole underneath.
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Credit: Nike

Generally speaking, mid-tops, like the "Night Stadium" Mids, arguably some of the best Jordan 1 Mids on the market right now, are cheaper than comparable Highs when purchased through Nike or selected footwear retailers.

The popularity of the Jordan 1 High is probably one of the main contributing factors behind this. However, you've also got to take into consideration that more materials are required to create the slightly higher collars of the high-tops.

Air Jordan 1 High "Mauve" product image of a white and light purple leather high-top.
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Credit: Nike

That said, some of the best Jordan 1 Highs, like the "Mauve" 1s, are only a tad more expensive than most Mids on the resale market, thus demonstrating that not all Jordan 1 Highs come with sizeable price tags.

Performance and comfort

If you're comparing the two to use on the court, then we believe the mid-tops may have a slight edge over the Highs.

The Mids offer almost identical amounts of ankle support and lateral stability; however, they should be slightly less restrictive on the court due to their lower collars.

Air Jordan 1 Mid vs High height comparison.
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Credit: Sneaker Jagers

This is supported by reports claiming MJ found both the Air Jordan 1 and 2 too tall and, in turn, too restrictive. This is why the Jordan 3 began life as a mid-top, which later spawned some of the best Air Jordans ever made.

The unrestrictiveness of the Mids may also help to improve comfort, but this will ultimately come down to personal preference as the two can't be separated in terms of underfoot support.

To ensure you get a secure lock-in though, make sure you check out our guide to lacing Jordan 1s.

Jordan 1 Mid vs High: Which should you buy?

Once again, this will come down to personal preference. In our opinion, while the Jordan 1 High comes with a ton of nostalgia and history, the most popular colourways are often hugely expensive and, while they may be a great collector's piece, they're probably not entirely practical to wear during a game these days due to their restrictive collar.

Mids, on the other hand, are lower-cut, and may be more comfortable on the court and perhaps even for everyday wear depending on your preference.

Also, Nike seems to be pushing Mids more as of late, with a number of great colourways released, like the "South Beach" 1s and the "Pink Shadow" Mids to name just a few. As a result, we believe the Jordan 1 Mids make for a slightly better purchase at this moment in time.

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