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  • La Sportiva - Skwama Climbing Shoe - Men's - Black/Yellow

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  • La Sportiva - Skwama Climbing Shoe - Men's - Black/Yellow

La Sportiva Skwama Climbing Shoe - Men's


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    23 Reviews


    Skwama: Sportiva's strong sending slipper.

    The Men's Skwama Climbing Shoe is La Sportiva's high-performance slipper for competition bouldering and technical sport climbing. P3 technology applies a Permanent Power Platform that ensures the Skwama's downturn stays downturned. The S-Heel construction optimizes heel hooking and gives a snug fit, while Vibram's XS Edge sole sharpens the sides for ideal edging, slicing, and dicing. This shoe's soft LaspoFlex midsole gives enhanced sensitivity, a better feel, and more control on microscopic jibs and technical, insecure moves. La Sportiva styled the Skwama's upper with laser-cut leather and microfiber reinforcements that reduce stretch.
    • P3 downturned performance
    • Leather upper with microfiber reinforcements
    • Rubber toe cap
    • Unlined
    • LaspoFlex midsole with soft stiffness
    • S-Heel construction
    • Vibram XS Edge sole
    • Item #LSP008X

    Tech Specs

    Upper Material
    leather, microfiber, rubber
    0.8mm LaspoFlex
    Vibram XS Grip 2
    aggressive downturn
    Claimed Weight
    7.5 oz
    Recommended Use
    Manufacturer Warranty
    1 year

    Tech Specs

    • Reviews
    • Q & A

    What do you think about this product?

    Have questions about this product?

    Aggressive yet comfortable!

    • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
    • Fit: Runs large
    • Size Bought: 40.5

    I've used these shoes about 5 times a week doing mostly indoor and competition climbing. For comps they're great, they're comfortable enough to wear for long periods of time yet aggressive enough for the climbing that I do! LS got the balance perfect on this one! The smearing and edging has been great, along with toe hooks and heel hooks. My street size is a 44 but I went down to a 40.5 for an aggressive fit and taking into account that the shoe runs large. For as long a LS makes these, they will be my go to aggresive shoe!

    Good start lacking towards the end.

    • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
    • Fit: Runs large
    • Size Bought: 45

    First off I love this climbing shoe. It truly was a good performing show in the beginning to mid way through use. Precision, good sensitivity, snug fit, and comfy even with me going a full size and a half down. Really love the heel hook power and durability.

    Now towards the bad. Before I get into that I am going to say I have truly used these shows not stop in the gym and outdoors. I don't baby them. First off right now they stink so bad! Which I guess is normal but just had to point that out. Next they stretched to the point that I try to edge some times and I can feel the shoe rotating or not supporting my weight properly. Next there is some rubber on the innner toe area that is coming off the leather. I don't know if these are faults of early models because as soon as it was released to public purchased them.

    I still will continue to use them but I definitely will be getting a set that I baby for special stuff and use these for mileage.

    Good start lacking towards the end.

    Great gym, but very specific fit.

    • Familiarity: I returned this product before using it

    These things are great if they fit you. They didn't fit me, and I've worn only Sportiva boots for years. My issue was in the heel pocket where they were a little baggy.

    Amazing toe and heel hook!

    • Familiarity: I've used it several times
    • Fit: Runs large
    • Size Bought: 40

    Skawma offers amazing toe and heel hook ability. With this shoe, I can bicycle on even small foothold on horizontal roof because even toe smear with appropriate tension sticks really well. It is comfortable and fits like a sock. I was previously using Evolv Shaman but I have now realized how much a stiff shoe can hinder your performance on harder, more technical routes/problems. Skawma, on the hand, is much softer and performs better. For example, you can tell a significant difference when smearing on insecure foothold. But Skawma still offers good edging ability. One downside of being soft is that the rubber may not last as long. I can already start seeing wear and tear on my toe hook rubber. Another issue I have struggled with over the years with Evolv Shaman is that the shoe stinks easily due to the materials used. Skawma does not have such issue with leather as the construction material. All in all, this is an amazing climbing shoe and I will be stockpiling them whenever there is a discount. It is also a little cheaper than Solution.

    a bit different than python, but great!

    • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
    • Size Bought: 42

    I loved the Python shoes, but I sized them a bit too small to actually be usable for longer outdoor climbs & projecting. So, when the Skwama's came out I decided to give them a try. They're awesome! The heel is great, and super sturdy. While they aren't quite as sensitive as the Pythons were in the toe, they still have great flex/smear ability. These are NOT a stiff toed shoe. If you look at the bottom of the shoe, you'll notice a cutout in the rubber around the ball of your foot. From what I've gathered this is what allows you to have so much flex in the toes. La Sportiva definitely knocked it out of the park on these.

    Better than the Solutions

    • Familiarity: I've used it several times
    • Fit: True to size
    • Size Bought: 39

    These shoes are sick, the toe box is a little bit wider and fits my foot AMAZING! The heel is also way better than the solutions, the S-heel is great for heel hooks. They are also probably the softest pair of climbing shoes ever they are crazy sensitive and fit like a second skin.

    Versatile, but a little too much stretch

    • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
    • Fit: True to size
    • Size Bought: 41.5

    I love these shoes. I use them exclusively for indoor, both sport and bouldering. They excel at both, and the fact that they are a bit on the softer side makes them very precise. I wear my Miura Lace's in a 42, and these shoes in a 41.5, but I am considering getting a new pair in either a 41 or 40.5 because the ones I use now stretched a bit too much. Overall, though, they are a fantastic shoe especially considering they cost about $30 less than many other high-performance shoes!

    Just a perfect shoe

    • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
    • Fit: True to size
    • Size Bought: 41

    LS hit it out of the part when they built this. Never had a shoe that allowed for nearly flat toes yet still provided for powerful pulling and even some edging with minimal pain. Solid and thus far my new go to weapon.

    Very comfortable

      I usually climb in a 43.5 Genius, but I wanted to give these a shot. They were really comfortable right out of the box but there was some dead space in the heel. After going down a full size, they seemed ok but still felt baggy in certain areas. Felt looser than my Miuras too. Size down at least 1.5 since they'll stretch. Otherwise, great feeling in the wider toe box and sturdy shoe for longer pitches.

      Pretty solid so far

      • Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
      • Fit: Runs large
      • Size Bought: 40

      Just got these in the mail the other day on sale for $111 I think, which for what they are, is pretty great. I ordered a size 40, a full size down from my solutions at 41 due to the fact that the skwamas are made to give a little stretch and the toe box is wider. Ive worn them in the gym twice and am still in the break in process but I'm super excited for when they are fully broken in although I can already feel them molding to my foot. Definitely aggressive. The cut out in the mid sole rubber really helps with smearing but without reducing stiffness and torque through your toes when you need it most. Super excited about these. May be the new replacement to my solutions. With regards to the heel I feel that if I would've gone any larger in size there would be some deadspace. The S-heel feels solid, feels like a heel should, no big pros or cons I've found yet in that.
      Overall these are pretty solid so far. Definitely down size a half or full size because they will stretch and mold to your foot. They are sensitive, aggressive, and versatile.
      Haven't used enough to test the longevity but if your footwork is clean you shouldn't have problems.


        I really like this shoe, great power nice toe box, awesome heel (s-heel), I just suggest getting a smaller size than you are use to getting. I have a size 42 scarpa instinct and I knew la sportiva ran big so I ordered a size 41 but wound up returning them for a size 40.5 because they were a tad bit loose.

        2nd Skin

        • Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
        • Fit: Runs large
        • Size Bought: 42.5

        I tried the Skwamas out at the gym last night and let me tell you, I freaking love 'em. They are incredibly tight, way tighter than my other shoes, but they aren't uncomfortable and my toes aren't curled up. The best way I can describe them is they feel like a 2nd skin. Oh, and they stick to EVERYTHING. I have pretty sloppy footwork and usually bounce or slide around a little trying to find the hold but these bad boys just stuck wherever they landed. I was smearing on accident because my footwork isn't precise and I was missing the holds but somehow still felt confident moving from the smear. It forced me to slow down a little and focus on my feet and place them more deliberately. This side effect will do more for my climbing in the long run than any piece of gear ever could. I'll be taking them out both days this weekend and will be working on some projects so I'm excited to see how they feel outdoors.

        I ordered a full size smaller than my other La Sportiva shoes (katanas & muiras) from the recommendation of my gearhead and it was the right call. The leather uppers should stretch just a little which will make them a bit easier to put on/take off but aside from that, they feel like they were made from a mold of my foot.

        New favorite

        • Familiarity: I've used it several times
        • Fit: Runs large
        • Size Bought: 38

        I have been climbing in the Scarpa Instinct VS for the last ~3 years or so, but I wasn't able to find them on sale anywhere ($170 vs. Skwama $118 on sale) and was desperate need of new shoes. These are the closest things to the Instinct VS that I have found. I used to compare Pythons to Instinct VS but everything that was different between those two is practically gone when you compare the Skwama and Instinct VS. The only big difference is the slight "hook" or concave toe on the Skwama. I don't know what to say about fit though. Like most other La Sportiva shoes, you have to size way down for these. I wear street shoe size US 8.0 (40.5) but fall between a 37.5 and 38 (US 5.5 and 6) in these. They are definitely larger than Solutions but since they're a slipper style shoe (with a velcro strap) there's a bit more wiggle room. Plus the toes are a bit wider which is another reason why these are comparable to the Instinct VS. My favorite part about these shoes is the heel. It is a snug fit and doesn't flex much. But unlike the Solutions, these heels don't feel like someone strapped a lacrosse ball to your foot. And the biggest problem I found with the Instinct VS is that the rubber on the heel has a seam close to the bottom of the shoe--right in the sweet spot for heel hooks, which caused them to peel after about a year. These have rubber that wraps up the side quite a bit which means they aren't very likely to get torn off. Definitely recommend these shoes as a relatively cheap, aggressive, shoe ideal for toeing in hard and heel hooking like no other shoe.

        My Favorite Shoes

        • Familiarity: I've used it several times
        • Fit: Runs large
        • Size Bought: 41.5

        - First off, I have only been climbing in the Skwama for 1 week. So at this point I can't speak to their Longevity.
        - They run large. I had to size down a whole number from my other Sportive shoes. I wear a 42.5 in Muira VS and Genius, but had to drop all the way to 41.5 in the Skwama.
        - They perform amazing as all top end sportive shoes do, but for me the greatest feature is the fit. Now that I have these completely broke in, they feel like a natural appendage to my body. Seriously though, I feel like I have high performance rock climbing socks on.
        - The split rubber sole makes the pad of the foot more flexible which has felt great while smearing and probably has a lot to do with the comfort of the shoes. Even with this flexibility the toe box holds up strong for edging and the heal is strong and secure.
        - I could see the Skwamas becoming my go to shoe for everything from high volume gym days to hard boulder problems.
        - For context: I have been climbing for about 5 years, owned probably more than 10 different shoe models, have bouldered up to V8 and sport climbed up to 5.12b.

        A change from 5.10 Arrowheads

        • Familiarity: I've used it several times
        • Fit: True to size
        • Size Bought: 44.5

        I normally climb in 5.10's Arrowhead shoe, and the Skwama is great. I like the large toe box, since I have a wide foot, it's super comfortable, and since it does stretch ever so slightly, it has molded to my foot quite well. The heel on this shoe is not bulky at all, and it hugs your heel like a glove! Unlike others, the back part of the heel, that is lined with a black plastic/synthetic material has not in any way irritated my ankle. Overall a great shoe, I guess my only concern at the moment is how well/long they will hold up.

        Not a Python replacement, but solid shoe

        • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
        • Fit: Runs large
        • Size Bought: 39.0

        I LOVED the pythons. I ended going through about 4 pairs of those shoes, loved the soft, flexible feel, thin and sensitive rubber, and heel cup. When I found out they were discontinuing that model, I was not super happy, and then they came out with the Skwama, so I figured I would give it a shot.

        Out of the box, the shoe is super cool looking and definitely had people asking me about it at my local gym. Toe box is more squared off than the python, and the shoe narrows down a bit more aggressively at the heel.

        Fit is...different. I bought the same size I used in the Python (39.5) and had to exchange for a half size smaller. This shoe still fits lower volume, narrower feet really well like sportiva typically does, but the heel does not seem to fit as snugly and the overall length of the shoe is a little longer.

        Shoe performs like a python, but with a little bit stiffer of a sole and less sensitivity. The Vibram grip rubber is super sticky and performs as well as I would expect. Heel hooks and toe hooks are super solid and secure.

        The construction of the shoe is very good, although there is one issue that has been bothering me and I hope sportiva does a running change. There is a weird synthetic rubber/plastic cuff that goes around the ankle of the shoe, and I have been noticing it start to split and chafe my ankles already. I have taken a file to the sharp edges to make it less scratchy. Overall, this is a good shoe and will probably still be my go to bouldering option, but I hope sportiva can make the running changes that I mentioned.

        Quite happy

        • Familiarity: I've used it several times
        • Fit: True to size
        • Size Bought: 39

        I've worn Pythons (EU 39) for years bouldering, miss those shoes...La Sportiva stopped making them, and everyone says the Skwamas are the replacements for that product line. At least at the price point. Here are some of the key differences.

        - The wider toe box is welcome. You don't realize how nice it is until you actually have room for your pinky toe to be in a tight climbing shoe.
        - It starts off feeling a bit stiffer, might still be a bit stiffer than the Pythons except now I'm used to it.
        - The heel is more shallow, though I haven't had any problems with it. There's slight rub on the achilles back there for the first couple of times wearing them. Resolved after break in.
        - The toe is more aggressive and hooked (it isn't a big honking toe like the Solution talon btw). Probably the most aggressive shoe I've ever used comfortably in four years of climbing. The toes feels soft, precise and reliable.
        - It's harder to get on your foot than the Python, the sleeve of elastic is pretty grippy and the tab you use to raise the front part of it is quite small.

        Alright now having said all that I'm very satisfied with the Skwamas. The break in took a few sessions, but now they just come off once an hour. I like the Skwama's performance better on terrain where aggressive shoes help. No issues with durability in sight so far. If they do have that I'll update this review.

        Issues with durability

        • Familiarity: I've used it several times
        • Fit: True to size

        I left a previous review boasting the performance features of this shoe, but I was skeptical of the construction of the shoe. After 3 weeks and maybe 15 times wearing them, the enclosure system is beginning to fall apart. This is far below the la sportiva standard that I have become accustomed to. I have emailed backcountry about returning them due to manufacturer error. This is certainly not something that should be happening right after buying the shoes. Extremely disappointing considering how well the shoes fit my feet and perform.

        Issues with durability

        Great Shoe

        • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
        • Fit: Runs large
        • Size Bought: 39.5

        Comparing to solutions I would say that they are slightly softer and slightly wider toe box with a tighter heel. I downsized half a size from my solutions and found that to be perfect.
        As noted with the other reviewers the shoe felt like it was digging into my Achilles at first. But after one pitch I didn't notice it at all. The heels on these are awesome and do not feel clunky like the solutions.
        The toe is not as pointed as the solutions so if you are climbing small limestone pockets I still think the solutions are better. Overall I think its a great shoe that's cheaper and a great addition to the sportiva lineup.

        Unanswered Question

        SIZING??? I have never owned a pair of aggressive shoes but I put on a pair of these and they seem like the right shape for my foot. I put on a 41 (smallest the shop had) and it was definitely too big. I usually wear between around a 41/42 street shoe (also never owned sportivas) and was wondering what size I should get. I also know that they'll stretch because of all the leather, so how much stretch is expected on these?

        I'm a long time La Sportiva Python wearer, size 39 fits me exactly perfect. Street size is 42 (US 9). What size should I get the Skwama?