If there is one piece of ski equipment you should consider buying instead of renting that certainly is the ski boots. Just like the rest of your footwear, your ski boots need to be the right fit for you so that you can focus on the beauty of skiing and not on the discomfort your shoes are causing you. With the right pair on your feet, you will feel more confident, safer and ready to show your best techniques up on the slopes without thinking about the nagging pain in your feet. Without further ado, here is what to consider when buying the perfect pair of ski boots for you.
Consider the Kind of Skier You Are
This is important because the boot will need to transfer your body energy to the ski when you put pressure on it. If you plan on using them just for skiing around the park, ski boots with a soft flex index (typically below 80 for men and 70 for women) are what you need. For hard-charging piste skiing, you will need a more rigid and stable boot, with a flex index above 110 for men and 85 for women. For freeriding, you will need to look for something in between, with a flex index ranging from about 85-105 for men and 70-80 for women.
Measure Your Feet’s Lenght and Width
The second step to finding the right ski boots is to measure your feet. The easiest way to do this is with a pen and paper. Tape the paper down to the floor, sit on a chair and plant your foot firmly on the floor with your leg bent slightly forward so that your shin is just in front of your ankle. Trace the outline of your foot. Use a ruler to measure the length and width of your foot trace.
Ski Boot Sizing
Ski boot sizes are measured in Mondo size which is the internal centimetre measurement. If your foot measures 29.2cm choose size 29.5. When you try the boots on, your toes should hit the front end of the boot. When you tighten the buckles your foot will slip back into the heel grip of the boot and when you flex the knee forward – the toes should not touch the front anymore. The inside of ski boots tends to widen 3-4mm after a couple of hours of skiing.
Features to Consider
Insoles are an easy and affordable way to improve the comfort of your ski boots. You can get them custom molded but there are also some brands that make well-built universal insoles. Booster straps are another great feature to consider. Besides providing good support while skiing, they can also be adjusted depending on how aggressive you planning on going.