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Equipment Outfitting a serious gym. Vendors & suppliers. Devices & equipment

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Old 05-11-2007, 09:27 AM   #1
Nick Cruz
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I need a recommendation on some bouldering shoes. I tried it in my Nike Free's and it was pretty bad. The indoor place that I have been going to has some for 40.00 but I wanted to check here with the experts first.

Nick
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Old 05-11-2007, 01:08 PM   #2
Mike Neill
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I am into trad climbing and use the Boreal Ballet. If you are strictly going to do bouldering, I'm sure you will be advised to get one of the many toe-curling bone-pinching shoes. I have improved my rock climbing plenty wearing the Ballets while bouldering. But as I said, my focus is all-day/multi-day trad stuff.

Don't forget: be in debt to your spotter, too.
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Old 05-11-2007, 01:28 PM   #3
Paul Findley
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Yea, I hate to boulder too, but if you made me boulder I would get slip on rock shoes.
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Old 05-11-2007, 03:26 PM   #4
David Aguasca
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check out your local sporting goods' stores, as well as your climbing gym. BTW, 40.00 for a pair of climbing shoes that fit right is a steal.

as far as what kind of shoes...you'll see some shoes that have an aggressive camber (very curved), like the 5.10 Dragon (WFS link):
http://img.epinions.com/images/opti/17/ec/pr-Climbing-Five_Ten_Dragon-resized200 .jpg

and you'll see shoes that have a very neutral (flat-footed) shape, like the 5.10 moccasym (WFS):
http://www.cpostores.com/aloutdoors/prodimg/750820.jpg

something between those two shoes would be fine. anything too aggressive will be less versatile, and anything completely neutral will make bouldering overhanging rock a little more difficult.

most people pick velcro or slipper style shoes, because of the convenience when taking them on and off between bouldering problems. lace-ups have the bonus of being more adjustable, but are less convenient. personally...i use a lace-up.

go try on shoes until you find a pair that fits. the camber is only a guideline. how the shoe fits YOUR PARTICULAR FOOT SHAPE is way more important.

remember that these shoes will stretch. you don't want to fit them snugly, and then have your feet swimming in them once the leather stretches. you also don't want to fit them too tightly, and be too distracted by pain to climb well.

oh, and be sure to fit them WITHOUT socks.
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Old 05-11-2007, 03:58 PM   #5
Pierre Descoteaux
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"Slip on shoes" will be much easier to get in and out of during long bouldering sessions. It is very nice to give your feet a breather between climbs.
Happy climbing.
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Old 05-11-2007, 07:04 PM   #6
Andrew Cattermole
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If this is your first pair of Climbing shoes.
Then go with a comfortable, tight, cheap pair that has slip on or velcro closure.
Reasons
When your starting
:you will trash your first shoe anyway,with toe drag and odd smears.
:you will, no matter how much advice,not buy the right size for your foot which is a personal thing that comes with buying lots of climbing shoes

Bouldering means lots of time sittng on your butt or spoting your partner so a shoe that comes off and on fast is the way to go.

Once you trashed your first pair and got them resoled then consider some high performance shoes that suit your style of climbing and keep your first pair for training.
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Old 05-11-2007, 09:06 PM   #7
David Aguasca
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hah, andrew definitely hit the "not buying the right size part" on the head. you think your first pair of shoes fit right until you get your second pair and climb in them, and realize that the first pair was too loose to begin with.
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Old 05-12-2007, 06:31 PM   #8
Jonathan M. Guberman
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I'm not a dedicated boulderer, but I do a lot of both bouldering and roped climbing. Climbing shoes are very personal, as has been mentioned before. At rock gyms, you'll also see there tends to be a gym preference based on local availability. I love my Galileos by Five Ten, and they work great for just about anything. I know lots of other people who swear by La Sportiva Katanas.

However, I agree with what Andrew said: if this is your first pair of shoes, go cheap because you'll trash them and they will probably be the wrong size. The Five Ten Spire is perennially the best-selling climbing shoe on the market, and it is a fantastic "first shoe."
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Old 05-13-2007, 07:46 PM   #9
David Aguasca
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yeah. the spires were my first shoe. i still have them! haven't worn them in a long time, though...
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Old 05-14-2007, 08:58 AM   #10
Jon Gilson
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Hey Nick,

My first pair of shoes were slippers (Five Ten something or anothers), and I found that they weren't supportive enough for my weak toes. Although slip-on/slip-off has its advantages, I'd recommend getting a pair of lace ups with the laces going nearly to the toe. You can then customize the fit by tightening/loosening the laces in certain places.

Note that I hate "pulling plastic", so I might not be the best source for rock gym information. Nonetheless, I'd rather have a pair of shoes I can climb in all day than a certified pair of bouldering toe crushers.

Yanking shoes on and off after every pitch appeals to me like a hole in the head. I've tried on a few of the extreme camber slippers, and they're absolutely no fun. In one case, it actually took two guys at the Wilderness House yanking on my ankle to get a pair of Millets off my right foot...

Right now, I'm climbing in a pair of Boreal Aces from the mid 1980s and a pair of Scarpa Helix from a few years back that I picked up on clearance. The Scarpas were touted as a beginner shoe, but I love them.

Best,

Jon

Best,

Jon
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