Which climbing shoes are the best is a very personal choice.
As all peoples foot shapes are different you need to take into account the arch type, comparative length of toes, width of foot, angle of the heel, what level they climb at, whether the person likes climbing with socks, if someone climbs indoor or outdoor, what type of rock, their preferred climbing style and whether or not they take their shoes off after each route. As you can see when it comes to what climbing shoe is best the answer is whats best for each climber. This is why Simond create a number of different climbings.
The best beginners rock climbing shoes should be comfortable and with a flat sole so they can be worn regularly at your climbing wall, with or without socks for comfort. A good quality rubber on the sole, heel and toe will give a good grip on indoor holds and rock.
For the regular climber, great fitting climbing shoes are a really important factor and an essential part of your rock climbing gear. It is important to try a number of climbing shoes to ensure a snug fit, particularly in the toes and heel areas. Aim for a fitting with as little spare space as possible all around the foot, similar to the snug fitting of a sock. Every foot shape is different and dependant on the width of the foot or arch of the instep, which is why Simond have designed a great range of intermediate shoes.
Advanced climbers may be looking for a particularly asymmetric or aggressively downturned shaped sole on their rock climbing or bouldering shoes, in order to achieve the best grip on the rock or holds on steep problems or routes. The toe box will be fitted much tighter to ensure a solid unit of strength through the foot. At this level climbers will be looking for different flexibility levels in the rubber of the sole which can enable either smearing, edging and a varying sensitivity.
Whichever shoes you choose, bear in mind to keep the soles as clean and dry as possible, both indoors and particularly outdoors to avoid transferring dirt on to the holds.
About the authors :
Joseph Sutton : I started climbing with my dad when I was 3 years old and have always enjoyed it. I primarily climb outdoors but I do go Indoor Bouldering as well. I dream is to launch a 7 Summits bid so I also have experience in Mountaineering and Snow and Ice Climbing. Come and say hello in our Decathlon Giltbrook store
Kat Jackson : I have been climbing for around 5 years and have recently completed my Climbing Wall Award in instructing and coaching children and groups. I mostly boulder as I love the challenge of problem solving and the strength based technical moves, both indoors and outside. I also enjoy pushing my limits in training and travelling around the world to climb in beautiful places! I am always happy to help in our Decathlon Sheffield store.