Ski boots are one of the most important parts of your ski gear, and, comfortable boots that fit properly will ensure you can stay on the slopes all-day long.
This article was originally published here.
The three most important things to consider when choosing your ski boots are flex, size and fit. The last two are pretty self-explanatory, but you might be unsure what the ‘flex’ of a ski boot is…
‘Flex’ is a ski boot’s ability to bend as you move your knee and ankle joints. If the flex of your boot is high, your leg will feel supported and it’ll be easier to control the direction you’re going in. If the flex of your boot is weak, you’ll have access to a wider range of movement but need the strength to hone it. You need to find the right balance for your body and ability.
When you’re shopping for your new ski boots, you’ll find the flex is determined by a number that can be found on each product page.
Ski boot are measured on a scale called Mondo Point, which is based on the length of your foot from your heel to your longest toe (in cm).
When trying on your new ski boots, you should wear them with the ski socks you intend to use or usually use on the slopes. The buckle should close at the halfway setting – if you’re able to pull it tighter, the fit isn’t right for you. Then, stand up and touch the tip of the outer shell. Put your hands on your knees and bend your legs a couple of times to push the heel back into the boot. Once your foot is at the back of the boot, your toes shouldn’t be able to touch the front of the boot – there should be a small amount of wiggle room.
1) Don’t expect your ski boots to feel as comfortable as your trainers or any other shoes you wear all the time. They’re designed to protect your feet and enhance your skiing, and as such are made from pretty resilient materials
2) If you feel like the foam padding inside the boot is taking up too much room, don’t worry. Wear them at a dry ski slope or even just stood upright around the house and after a couple of days of use, it will compress slightly.
3) What are you using your ski boots for? To ski of course, but will you be spending a lot of your time walking between runs, children or chalets, or even alpine touring? If so, look out for ski boots that can switch from a fixed ski mode to walking mode, which offers a greater range of movement. If you’ve ever tried walking for long in ski boots without this mode, you’ll know it’s tricky and very tiring on your shins and ankles.