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How to Buy Rock Climbing Shoes

Whether you're bouldering or top-roping in the gym, the right pair of climbing shoes is essential. Rock climbing shoes have sticky rubber soles that increase friction to keep your feet on the rock. Climbers often choose a climbing shoe one to three sizes smaller than a street shoe. Consider the type of climbing you usually do and the way the shoe fits your unique foot shape.

Sport Climbing
Sport climbing can involve everything from technical slabs to brutally steep overhangs. As such, a rock climbing shoe that will be best suited to all-around sport climbing will have a flat to moderately downturned profile shape, a balance of stiffness and sensitivity, and will fit snugly. Shop Sport Climbing Shoes
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Trad Climbing
The best climbing shoe for traditional climbing will depend on the specific type of routes you plan to climb. Desert crack climbers often prefer a sensitive slipper with a narrow shape to fit cracks, while big-wall and multi-pitch climbers often prefer a shoe with a flatter and more natural shape and more comfort for all-day use. Shop Trad Climbing Shoes
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The hardest moves in rock climbing happen at the boulders. Because of the focus on technical difficulty, a bouldering shoe often has an aggressive downturned shape, high asymmetric curvature, a sensitive feel, and are sized tight for enhanced performance. Shop Bouldering Climbing Shoes
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