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Alpine Ski Boots: Tips for the Perfect Fit

Fit is king when it comes to alpine ski boots, and few individuals know more about getting the perfect fit than veteran Backcountry ski buyer Hud Knight. With over 25 years of ski industry experience—including a stint as a specialized boot fitter, it’s clear Hud knows a thing or two about getting the most out of your boots. The Backcountry video crew caught up with Hud and had him share a few tips on getting the perfect fit.

Check out all three videos (Shell, Last, and Insoles & Liners) below.

Shell Fit

Hud shows us a quick trick to ensure your boot shell fits properly.

Last Width

While the variance in last width can seem marginal, a few millimeters can have a big impact on how your boots feel and perform. Hud breaks down the basics to help you get a fit that will accommodate your foot shape and delivers performance.

Insoles & Liners

Hud gives us a rundown on one of the easiest ways to customize the fit of your ski boots—aftermarket insoles and heat moldable liners.


Video Transcription

Hi. This is Hud with Today, we are here to talk to you a little bit about shell sizing on alpine ski boots. Definitely, fit is a very tricky thing with ski boots and we want to make sure that out of the gate you are at least starting with the right size boot because it’s going to definitely enhance the performance of your boot and the comfort of it in the long haul.

So the first thing that you are going to do when you receive the boot from is take the boot out of the box, remove the liner from the boot. Once the liner is out of the boot, you are going to want to spread open the cuff and put your foot in wearing a very thin ski sock or what you would normally wear on the hill. Then what you want to do, using this as an example, you would want to have your big toe so it is just grazing the front of the shell of the boot. And then what you are going to want to do is check for the amount of space that is in between the heel and the rear of the boot.

So generally speaking, there are two types of fit. There is a race fit which is going to have roughly a finger’s width of room between the heel on the rear of the boot. And then, more of a comfort oriented fit which is going to be generally between two fingers, definitely no more than two fingers, to a finger and a half behind the rear of the boot. This is going to ensure that you are going to have the best fit over the lifetime of the boot.

Obviously, there are going to be more tweaks that you can do to enhance the fit of the boot to improve performance and just give you generally more comfort over the lifetime of the boot. But if you have any more questions about fitting boots, about the boots that we carry or any other general questions, feel free to give the Gearheads a call. Get on live chat if you have any questions. And if we don’t have the right answers, we can definitely get you to the right resources to make sure that you get the best fitting boot possible.


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