Finding the Perfect Pair of Snowboard Boots
Choosing a snowboard may be the most exciting part of shopping for new snowboard gear, but it's important to choose the perfect pair of boots first. If your feet hurt out on the mountain your entire day of riding can be ruined.
This guide explains the key parts of every snowboard boot in order for you to find the perfect pair based on your riding style, preferred price point, and comfort and stability needs.
Stiffness or Flex
You may hear the support of a boot described as stiffness or flex. While it really comes down to personal preference, there are some guidelines to get you started. Softer (or more flexible) boots are recommended for beginners and riders who prefer more forgiveness on landings, such as when performing maneuvers in the terrain park.
Stiffer boots are more responsive than softer ones. They provide more stability so you can turn your snowboard more precisely than with a softer boot.
However, you're not always forced to decide between stiff and flexible boots. Some boots feature flex control systems, which allow you to fine tune the stiffness of the boots to your riding needs.
You'll typically find snowboarding boots with a traditional lacing system (similar to a sneaker), an easy-to-use quick-pull system or the Boa dial system. Traditional laces are often used on the most budget-friendly boots or for those that want more control over tension in different areas of the boot. They're inexpensive and easy to replace, but they can also come untied or loosen while riding.
Quick-pull lacing systems are faster and easier to tighten (especially while wearing gloves) than traditional lacing systems. A variety of quick-pull systems are available, and many allow you to tighten the forefoot separately from the ankle and lower leg portions of the boot. Some common quick lace systems include the Burton ‘Speed Zone’ or ThirtyTwo ‘Fast Track’.
Boa dial lacing systems come with one, two or three dials that allow you to customize the fit of your boot by tightening or loosening the dials. The Boa lacing systems add cost to the boot, but they offer faster and more effective adjustability for riders.
Footbeds (in-soles) are similar across all snowboard boots, and most are made from a foundation of EVA foam. Higher-end boots are often equipped with more arch support, anti-odor treatments and increased airflow, but riders can always add orthopedic in-soles to increase comfort levels to any boot.
Finding the Perfect Size
Your boot size isn't always the same as your shoe size. Boot sizes vary from manufacturer to manufacturer and even among different models by the same manufacturer. If possible, try on a few different brands/models and see what works best for your foot.
Thankfully, our experts can help you find the best snowboarding boots. Contact us online, over the phone or stop in our Chicago location just south of Wrigley Field. Continue with more resources below to help you understand more about snowboard boots.show related articles