18

Climbing shoes need to be extremely tight* because they frequently have to support a lot of weight on extremely tiny footholds, often on the tip of the toes: Any free space inside the shoe could cause the shoe to deform (more) and slip off. *: putting on the shoes should not be painful right away, but you can't get optimal performance with shoes that are ...


17

Yes, shoe size plays a role which is quite important. But for beginners I would suggest to think more about foot technique than caring about the best possible gear. For climbing shoe sizes I give the following simple hints: choose the shoes as small as possible choose shoes which aren't causing ache of the foot/toes/nail/heel climbing rubber shoes will ...


16

I climb barefoot and in vibram five-fingers (KSO's), climbed in them for the first time in 2008 and loved them, where they excel is in roofs and overhanging problems because you can hook holds a lot easier with your toes, but for tougher wall climbing with small features (5.11+) I still use climbing shoes. There are some gyms that allow climbing barefoot, ...


14

Your climbing shoes shouldn't hurt at all. Andrew Bisharat has a great article to read on the subject: http://eveningsends.com/climbing/climbing-shoes-tight/ In summary, here's what the article says: It's a misconception that shoes have to be uncomfortably tight for good performance. Using shoes that are too tight can cause various physical problems. It's ...


13

Because you want to increase your chances of contracting nail fungus or athlete's foot from your rental shoes :) In other words, it's probably better to keep the socks on if you're renting shoes.


11

Here are some features to keep in mind when buying climbing shoes once you're past the beginner phase: Downturned: Most beginner shoes are pretty flat, which are fine for mainly vertical walls. However, as you climb harder stuff on overhanging walls, it's helpful to have downturned shoes for maintaining a hook-like foot shape. This allows you to hook your ...


11

I have had several shoes resoled, and each one fit pretty much just as they did before the resoling. No adjustments or breaking in necessary, as all the shoes were well seasoned, and the resoling had no perceptible effect on fit.


10

I'll address the mountaineering viewpoint (as opposed to the other good answers about the climbing viewpoint). Mountaineering usually involves covering a lot of distance over a bunch of different terrains: flat trails, scrambling/climbing, snow/ice, etc. A mountaineering boot thus needs to be able to do all of these in a single pair of boots, and be ...


10

Seal them away (in transit and at work - store them somewhere dry and well ventilated at home). You could use a dry bag sold for kayaking etc. Small ones are cheap on ebay but I've linked to something slightly better. There are storage bags that seal and allow you to suck out the air with a vacuum cleaner. These might actually reduce the stink rather ...


10

Even though you say cost is not a primary factor, I still think it's good to be aware of this point when buying your first climbing shoes when mainly used in gyms (I wasn't aware at the time :) ): This won't be your last pair of climbing shoes, you'll need new ones quite soon due to the sole wearing through. Therefore you don't need to get the perfect ...


9

In addition to @Liam's fine answer: The usability of both chalk and shoes will be severely limited while wet, e.g. friction is extremely reduced and you will slip. Chalk will lump. Your shoes will be completely fine when dried. They get all the time at least a little moist from sweat, they are designed to withstand that. With chalk, it will depend on the ...


9

I'll chime in from a fairly unique position with anecdotal evidence only. I feel like most of the advice you'll get is from experts that talk down to you condescendingly if you even mention the b-word. I'll describe my scenario and you can interpret it however you wish. I have been wearing minimalist 'barefoot' type shoes casually since probably earlier ...


9

Climbing shoes don't wear out from age alone (in any realistic time frame that is). However, the rubber in the soles do age (probably because it "dries" and oxidizes over time) which affects the shoes performance negatively. You can fresh up old but not worn out soles with sand paper or a steel brush to get some of the original stickiness back. And of ...


8

Generally speaking, newer shoes are going to be better and more effective and yet as you well know that costs money. So what it really comes down is a cost/benefit analysis that's going to be up to the individual. If it gets to a point where you are slipping and the shoes are falling apart at the seams then it becomes a safety issue, short of that its just ...


7

There probably is a point where not having a toe-crunched fit would make a difference, but it's not V3. Climbing shoes do wear out relatively quickly. The difference in the sharpness of the rubber edge between a newly soled shoe and worn shoe can make a difference on small holds. Your climbing gym likely has a referral for getting climbing shoes re-soled. ...


7

When I managed a climbing gym we got some resole kits so I thought I would give one a try. The result was not particularly good, but meant a pair of shoes that were totally trashed were at least wearable. The edges didn't bond particularly well, so there is not a very precise toe/edge. It is certainly nowhere near as good as if you get it done ...


7

Where I am from it costs $60CAN to get your climbing shoes Resoled by a professional. Alternatively, you can try yourself with a KIT that costs $35CAN. However this $35 does not include a knife, sandpaper or acetone to clean the shoe/rubber and does not account for labour, in other words your time taken to repair your shoes. Ultimately to me it seems to ...


6

They key to all smelly shoes is bacteria. From a prevention perspective, I always wash my feet before they spend a prolonged or arduous of time in shoes or boots. A good spray with an anti-bacteria can do the trick. I've also heard good thing about dusting them with bicarb and then vacuuming it out some time later.


6

Be careful to check the health warnings on most sterilizing sprays as most of them state not to get on your skin (I don't wear socks in my climbing shoes). There are also a large number of deodorizers, but they can at times produce a far more distracting scent that will fill a room instead of just filling your shoe. As for freezing your shoes, this can ...


6

Feet and fit are very personal and shoes are no substitute for good technique and strength. How should I choose the proper size of my climbing shoes? I think the best thing you could do would be to borrow a smaller pair from a friend next time you go climbing (or rent a pair) and see what works best for you. some general guidelines; Not being able to ...


6

Aside from the excellent answer by Michael Borgwandt, I have to add that a climbing shoe isn't just there for better gripping. Just like any other shoe, it also protects your feet from any sharp objects or rough surfaces that you may encounter along your trip. The more widely used paths have probably been worn down, but if you're on a new path, it is likely ...


6

They won't wear out from age alone. It seems like the big sticking point to the author of the article was that the foam loses its padding over time, As a general rule, he tells customers who are casual runners they can go about a year (even if you don’t rack up 300 to 500 miles in that time, the foam still loses its oomph). Source That really doesn't ...


5

Of course your outdoor equipment has no problems with getting wet. It's not getting any damage if used in rain. While wet the function of your gear may be influenced, e.g. in the case of rubber soles and chalk this will be inevitable the case. Your gear is designed and exists to be used outside where it may rain. Even back in the old days when they started ...


5

Not unless they did a really bad job. Shoe size starts with the sole. It would be really hard to even sew in an upper to a wrong sized sole. If you told the cobbler you want less width they could stitch in a bit but not very much. It will take a bit of time to break the sole in but not nearly as long as the original break in period.


5

A UV-C germicidal light kills the odor-producing bacteria, so used regularly the smelly compounds never build up and your shoes don't stink. It also helps to dry your shoes after use, e.g. in front of a fan. And, as stevemarvell said, wash your feet before you climb. I assembled my own UV-C sterilizer and I can attest that it works. It uses a higher ...


5

One thing is that I doubt it's possible to train the toes to have significant strength; unlike the fingers, they are simply not built for that job. And most of the time, you have a lot more weight on your feet than on your hands. Injury and strain would be a big problem. Then there's the sweating: there's actually more sweat glands in your soles than ...


5

These shoes are pretty far gone. At the very least you'll need a new toe rand in addition to the resole, which is going to cost you a significant portion of the price of a new shoe. Your shoes may even be too far gone for any repair at all. Treat this as an opportunity: it's unlikely your first pair of shoes fit exactly right. Now, you know much more about ...


Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible