One of the first things you will probably ask yourself as a skier is how should ski boots fit? You may have memories of squeezing your feet into tight rental boots and ending up with bruised shins and numb toes. Properly fitting ski boots can be comfortable and warm. More importantly, having your ski boots fit correctly will help you be a better skier. Learn how ski boots should fit and the only thing painful about your skiing will be your big wipe out in the terrain park.
Leave Room in the Toes. Ski boots should fit so that you can still wiggle your toes when you're standing upright and buckled in. You need to be able to wiggle your toes to keep the blood circulating. If your boots are so tight your toes feel as if they're trapped in a vice, they'll end up cold and numb. And you'll ski worse because you'll be miserable. So make sure you can move your toes.
Don't Let Your Foot Wiggle Around. Your toes should be the only thing wiggling around. You shouldn't be able to roll your foot from side to side and your ankle shouldn't move up and down. Skiing primarily happens with your feet. With a ski boot that fits properly, a slight movement of your foot translates to your skis. This allows you to initiate a turn with only a slight pressure from your foot. If your foot is moving around a lot inside your boot, you'll have to move even more to control your skis. Plus, you're liable to end up with blisters. Again, pain does not equal a good time skiing, or a good skier. If you buy your own skis, the boot fitter can insert custom padding to fill in gaps where the shell of the boot is too big, and file down places where the fit is just a little too tight.
Don't Choke Your Calves. The top of your boot should close comfortably around your leg. It shouldn't be loose, but neither should it pinch. If you squeeze your calf too tight, it will cut off your circulation and you'll end up with cold, numb feet and a bad attitude that will do nothing to improve your skiing. If you have particularly muscular calves, you may find it more difficult to find a boot that fits both your foot and your calf. Find the boot that fits your calf and the boot tech can relocate or replace the buckles at the top of the boot to accommodate your calf muscles.
Wear the Right Socks. Forget anything you've heard about wearing two pairs of socks. That's a recipe for blisters. And despite what you might think, thick socks will not keep you warmer. Wear the thinnest pair of socks that will allow your boot to still fit snugly. Choose a wool sock or a blend made especially for skiing. This will wick moisture away from your foot and keep you warm. You might need to experiment to find the sock that works best for you and your ski boots. When you find the right one, buy two pairs so you can rotate them if you have times when the snow's so good you have to get out there on back-to-back days.
So, how should ski boots fit? They should cradle your foot snugly but not squeeze too tight. They should be warm and comfortable when riding the lift or standing in the lift line.
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